Dec 022012
 December 2, 2012  Posted by on December 2, 2012 Breakfast, Gluten Free, Snacks, Vegan, Vegetarian  Add comments


It’s Sunday already, whaaaa?! The weekend is almost over, what the heck, where did it go?! Hmmph.

If you’ve got 10 extra minutes this beautiful Sunday, why don’t you make some of these energy bars as a breakfast on-the-go or a  healthy snack to have during the week – you can take them to work to perk you up in the afternoon, have them for the kids to enjoy after school before sports, or munch on these pre-workout! Enjoy in moderation of course … these ARE “energy bars” so they do pack calories and natural sugars!

A peanut butter and jam sandwich… just the thought makes my mouth water and brings back memories of being a kid.

Peanut butter and jam is just truly a match made in heaven… unfortunately not always the healthiest match. I guess this all depends on how you make it, but typically – what I remember from my childhood sandwiches was hydrogenated sweetened peanut butter with sugar-laden jam on top of two slices of glistening white “roll-it-into-a-ball” Wonderbread. Nutritional value = zilch, nada, nil, zero.. you get the point.

Well, these energy bars, actually, no-word-of-a-lie, taste like a PB & J sandwich.. and they sure pack a punch! They are high in energy, high in fiber, a good source of protein, delicious tasting, and you can whip them up in less than 10 minutes (plus 30 min freezing time).

They are made with only 5 ingredients which is great because many energy bars out there on the grocery store shelves have a Novel of an ingredients list; filled with added sugars, stabilizers, fillers, flavors, preservatives, and more. And well, your body just doesn’t need that junk-o-la! So make these lovely bars instead, and bring yourself back to the days of PB & J!

Enjoy the rest of your Sunday, and stay tuned for some more amazing recipes on the blog this week!

4.3 from 3 reviews
Vegan PB & J Energy Bars
Serves: 8
  • 1¾ cup pitted dates (soaked in warm water for 15 minutes, then drained)
  • ½ cup unsweetened dried cranberries
  • ¼ cup natural peanut butter (no added sugars or oils, just peanuts)
  • ¼ cup whole raw almonds
  • ½ cup instant plain oats (gluten free if you need!)
  1. Soak the dates in warm water for 15 minutes, and drain.
  2. Place dates, dried cranberries, almonds, peanut butter, and oats in a food processor and blend until combined well.
  3. Scoop mixture into a square baking pan, and firmly press down to make an even layer.
  4. Place in the freezer for 30 minutes to set, then cut into 8 rectangle bars.
  5. Store in the freezer or fridge.


Nutritionist in the Kitch


  46 Responses to “Vegan PB & J Energy Bars”


    I made these and LOVE them! I love peanut butter so these definitely hit the spot, a little too sweet with the cranberries so might cut back on them a bit next time. I’ve also made some of the other energy bars/balls and am loving the whole idea of them with the dates and everything. You’ve hooked me Christal! Thanks for some amazing recipes!


      SO glad to hear you love the energy balls/bars! They are a super easy and cheap snack option than store bought bars!


    Hi, really want to make these do you have the measurements in grams lol I in England and the cup measurement guides all say so,etching different.





      Hey – try this:

      220g pitted dates (soaked in warm water for 15 minutes, then drained)
      50g unsweetened dried cranberries
      60g natural peanut butter (no added sugars or oils, just peanuts)
      40g whole raw almonds
      40g instant plain oats (gluten free if you need!)


    Delicious. Great lunch box snack. Heck of a work out for my food processor tho. Had to do it in a couple of batches as it kept stalling.


    do you think it’s okay to keep these on the room temperature about 10 days? because i want to bring these for travel.


      They may be a little soft/mushy if they get too warm, but that can be corrected by tossing them in the fridge!


    Do you think prunes would work instead of dates? I’ve got a bunch of prunes lying around that need to be used up!


    Made these last night for my kids to use as a grab-n-go breakfast on school mornings. Not gonna lie – I snuck one. They are GOOD (surprisingly filling, too)! Love that they’re sweetened naturally with the dates. The only problem I had with them is, after freezing, I wanted to cut them into small bars and put them into ziplock baggies and they seemed to crumble rather than hold in bar. I think next time I make them I may slightly reduce the amount of oats or add a Tbsp-ish of water.


    [...] PB & J Energy Bars.. [...]


    [...] snack for the day was homemade PB & J energy bars (remember these I made a long time ago??) I added some protein powder to the mix to bring up the [...]


    Do you think using rolled oats would work?


    [...] PB & J Bars Swap the elementary school staple for a healthier, grown-up snack that pays homage to the classic PB [...]


    [...] Homemade Energy Bar ( such as my PB & J Energy Bar, Banana Bread Energy Bar, or Apricot Cashew Energy [...]


    I’ve been trying lots of raw desserts recently, and I’ve noticed a theme with the dates. They are crazy sticky, so I’m guessing they act as a binder of sorts. Question though. You recipes are the first I’ve come across so far that soak the dates first. What is the purpose of that? Also, the other similar recipes I’ve thus tried specifically suggest mehjool dates. I’m curious if you are familiar with these versus other dates I might find as the store.

    Thanks for any advice.


      Hey Bethany! The reason I suggest to soak the dates is that when soaked they soften and are easier to work with – they blend/process better and aren’t as sticky! Medjool dates are the best for these types of recipes because they are larger, softer, and moister than other date varieties!


    [...] PB & J Energy Bars [...]


    I’ve had them on the freezer for several hours :( maybe it was the type of date I used. Trying to think of how to salvage this.


    I followed you directions exactly and they are too mushy to even be called bars! Is there any thing I can do? Bake them?


      Hi Laura! Did you let them firm in the freezer?? They are supposed to be stored in the fridge or freezer, at room temperature they will become very soft.


    Would these still be good without the dates?


      The dates make up the bulk of them… if you wanted to try something else, you could try using raisins and add in extra oats and nut butter! I’m not totally sure how well it would turn out though!


    [...] Vegan PB & J Energy Bars | Nutritionist in the Kitch | I also made these last week.  These are surprisingly sweet even though no sugar is added.  I love them! [...]


    [...] Vegan PB & J Energy Bars by Nutritionist in the Kitch [...]


    Making these tomorrow!!! I love your creativity!


    Hi! I’m starting a Daniel Fast tomorrow and this recipe is wonderful! I do have one question however. How long do you think these bars last unrefrigerated? I would like to send some to my brother down in California. (I’m from Oregon). Do you think they’ll survive the trip?


      Hi Amy! That’s great! I would guess that the bars should stay good for at least a week even if left unrefrigerated. I always keep mine in the freezer and they last at least a month – that’s usually when I’ve eaten them all!! I would recommend packing them with a sheet of wax paper between each bar and in an airtight container. They do soften quite a bit when left unrefrigerated so this would prevent them from sticking together and turning into one big sticky bar! Also maybe consider freezing them before shipping!


    I’ll be adding these ingredients to my grocery list this week so I can try this! Thanks Christal!


    These sound great, do you think using almond butter would work well?


    These are exactly the kind of thing I like to pack along with me when I’m traveling. Sweet (naturally), protein filled, and filling! Thanks for posting the recipe, I’ll definitely be giving it a try.


      Thanks Katie!! They are wonderful as a bring along snack! I had one packed in my purse yesterday while I was out and about on-the-go! :)


    Also, where does one buy pitted dates?


    Christal: With recipes like these that require a food processor, do you use the smaller bowl, i.e., the 3-cup bowl with the blade to slice this stuff up and blend it? I haven’t tried this one, or the Hallowe’en cookies, or those delicious bars, but I want to, but I’m hesitant, because I don’t know HOW to use the food processor on these recipes, exactly.


      Hey Randy! I always only just use the large bowl in my food processor, with the one blade at the bottom – so technically I use it much like a blender! I don’t often use the other blades and functions!

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