Grabbing a store-bought protein bar is such an easy and convenient meal replacement or post-workout snack. But many brands can leave something to be desired, in terms of texture, crunch, and nutrition. And monotony can set in: a Think Thin bar, day after day, can get old.
It’s time to “raise the bar” with this simple, no-bake recipe, which will provide you with grab-and-go bars for the week ahead.
Dates make such a great binder. Frankly, dates are such an underrated fruit with countless health benefits. Being high in fiber, they are a great digestive aid. Dates have also proven to maintain bone health, and their natural sugars provide a great energy boost. Coupled with the energy-boosting protein from the nut butter and almonds, these bars will keep you satisfied for hours.
Energy Date Bars
- 2 cups packed pitted dates
- 1/4 cup honey or agave syrup
- 1/4 cup natural peanut butter or almond butter
- 1 cup roasted unsalted almonds, loosely chopped
- 1 1/2 cups rolled oats
- 1/4 cup shredded coconut
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries
- optional add-ins: chocolate chips, raisins, dried blueberries, chia seeds
- Pulse whole almonds in a food processor until coarsely chopped. Remove and set aside in a large bowl, adding oats, coconut, and cranberries.
- Process dates in the food processor in batches for about 1 minute. It should form a “dough” like consistency, and roll itself into a ball.
- Warm honey and peanut butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Stir and pour over oat mixture and then mix, using your hands to combine really well.
- Transfer to a 9 x 13 baking dish lined with plastic wrap or parchment paper. Press down very firmly until uniformly flattened and well packed.
- Cover with plastic wrap, and let firm up in the refrigerator before cutting into squares. Store in an airtight container, or freeze indefinitely. Grab and go!