These soft and chewy chocolate brownie protein bars are a PERFECT treat for chocolate lovers! Gluten-free, vegan, refined sugar-free, and super easy to make, they’re a great grab and go snack for when you need something healthy and satisfying.
It’s Monday! And I’m guessing you either love it or hate it.
Love it because Mondays come with that “fresh start” feeling, where motivations are high and you’re ready to tackle ALL the things like the rockstar you are. Work projects? Gonna blow their socks off. Workouts? Gonna rock ’em. Studies? Gonna soak it all in. Get.ing.things.DONE.
Orrrrr you hate it because Mondays also come with the knowledge that there are 5 more days standing between you and your next weekend. 5 more days of dragging through work, school, and various other obligations that come with being a responsible adult. Life is hard. I know.
Personally, though? I love Mondays. I’ve got both feet firmly planted in the “fresh start” camp and I look at each new week as a chance to rock the socks off of life.
Is that too much RAH, RAH, RAH for a Monday? Too much enthusiasm at a time where you just want to drown your sorrow in your coffee mug and hope the caffeine kicks in soon so that you can muster the energy to make it through the day? Sorry. But maybe this’ll make things a little brighter for you?
I know, I know… another chocolate recipe. I told you the addiction was real! But, honestly? Can you ever have too much chocolate? And if your answer is “yes, you can” then I kindly ask you to keep that to yourself. We’re chocolate-lovin’ folk around these parts, and there’s no room for that kind of negativity in this space.
I kid, I kid. I realize not everyone likes chocolate (even though that fact boggles my mind), and I promise that the next recipe coming your way will be sans chocolate. But today? Today this…
… with “this” being a recipe for soft and chewy chocolate brownie protein bars. Or granola bars. Or protein granola bars. It really depends on how you want to look at it. Either way, there’s cocoa, protein powder, and oats baked up with a few other ingredients and cut into bar form — hence “chocolate protein granola bars.” The “brownie” part is in there purely because these bars taste and feel like… well… brownies. Healthy brownies that just so happen to be vegan (depending on what protein powder you use), gluten-free, refined sugar-free, and protein-packed, but soft and chocolately brownies nonetheless.
Don’t take my word for it, though — whip up a batch for yourself! These bars are ridiculously easy to make, with a food processor doing all the work for you. And if you don’t have one of those? Then all you need is a bowl, a spoon, and a strong arm. These bars also make a great balanced snack, which you can make ahead and have on hand for the whole week. Does that make your Monday a little easier to bear?
- ¼ cup almond butter (or any nut/seed butter)
- 1/2 cup dates (about 100g or 6 large Medjool dates)*
- 3/4 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- ½ cup chocolate or vanilla protein powder
- 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- ¼ tsp. salt
- 1 3/4 cups quick oats
- ⅓ cup mini dairy-free chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 350F and prepare an 8x8 baking dish by lining it with a sheet of aluminum foil or parchment paper, leaving a few inches of overhang on the sides to allow for easy removal. Spray foil with cooking spray and set aside.
- Add almond butter, dates, almond milk, and vanilla to the bowl of a food processor or blender, and process until smooth and well-combined. Add protein powder, cocoa, and salt, and continue processing until all ingredients are fully incorporated. Finally, add oats and pulse until just combined. You don't want them to break down too much. Stir in chocolate chips by hand.
- Transfer dough to the prepared baking pan, and use a spatula or your hands to spread the mixture evenly in the pan.
- Bake for 15, until edges and top have set. Remove from oven and let cool in pan before cutting into bars using a sharp knife. Store in an airtight container for up to a week, or in the fridge for
Looking for more protein granola bar recipes? Try one of these!
How do you feel about Mondays?
And… how’s your day going so far? 😀