Maria is a master gardener and master of public health. She & her husband, known online as The Gardener & The Cook, live in coastal Alabama.
Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free and Almost Sugar Free
My daughter introduced me to these delicious gluten-free and almost sugar-free chocolate protein bars. Our readers will know I tweaked the recipe a bit to make it my own. Whether or not you avoid gluten, if you love chocolate and oats, and are looking for a healthy snack, you will love these protein bars.
So that I don't have to make them as often, I have doubled the recipe. Doing this requires two 8 x 8 pans. It also allows me to use the entire 16-oz jar of peanut butter instead of needing to measure out 1 cup (8 oz) then scoop it out of a measuring cup.
The “Wet” Ingredients
- 1 (16-oz.) jar organic peanut butter (or almond butter)
- 1/4 cup almond milk
- 1/2 cup raw honey
- ¼ - ½ cup dark mini chocolate chips
- 1 teaspoon stevia
Note: Yes, I know the last two ingredients aren’t wet — just go with me here.
The “Dry” Ingredients
- 2 cups oats
- 2 ounces chocolate protein powder
- ¼ cup unsweetened coconut flakes (optional)
- ¼ cup ground organic flax seed
- Line two 8 x 8 baking pans with parchment paper.
- In a bowl, combine the dry ingredients.
- Over medium heat, combine the wet ingredients.
- Stir until the chocolate chips have melted, and the mixture is smooth.
- Add wet ingredients into dry.
- Fold all ingredients together until well-combined. If the mixture is too dry, add almond milk in very small increments.
- Pour the combined mixture into the parchment-lined pans.
- Press mixture into the corners of the pan, and create a smooth, even surface. You may need to use your fingers.
- Chill for 2 hours.
- Using the parchment paper, lift the chilled mixture out of the pan, and cut into 16 small squares (I cut it into quarters, then cut each quarter into quarters.)
- Chocolate chips: My daughter’s recipe called for the chocolate chips to be mixed in with the dry ingredients. I found the bars to more “chocolaty” if the chips are melted and blended in with the peanut butter mixture.
- Stevia: I included the stevia with wet ingredients so it would dissolve in the heat, and blend better.
- Chilling process: For the bars to hold their shape, they need to be completely chilled, but nothing stops me from sneaking a few bites of the mixture while it is still warm.
© 2021 MariaMontgomery