Sunflower Sesame Homemade Energy Bars
These homemade energy bars are made with healthy ingredients that can be mixed and matched to create delicious a vegan snack bar everyone will love. Try them with tahini for a nut-free version or switch it up and try peanut butter or almond butter. They’re made with 3 nutritious seeds, sesame, hemp and sunflower plus coconut and dates for a simple, easy recipe that can be customized as needed. For a yummy treat, try adding dairy-free chocolate chips.
How to Make Homemade Energy Bars
I have so many homemade energy bar recipes on the blog, it’s hard to keep track of them all. That’s how easy they are to make. By mix and matching different healthy ingredients you can create endless energy bar flavours from chocolate chip, to peanut butter, to cinnamon, to oatmeal raisin and more. They’re perfect for a quick snack but yummy enough for dessert, or my favourite…crumbled over a smoothie bowl.
The first step to homemade energy bars if having a well-stocked vegan pantry. Check out my post on how to stock a vegan pantry to get started. You don’t have to buy everything overnight but slowly keeping a stock of your favourite items is so handy when you want to make no-bake energy bars on the fly.
Here are my go-to homemade energy bar ingredients:
- Nuts. I typically stock cashews, almonds, pecans and walnuts. If I want something like pistachios or hazelnuts, those are usually a one off since they’re quite bit more expensive. I didn’t use any nuts in this recipe but you can try them in my No-Bake Vegan Hemp Protein Bars or No-Bake Vegan Almond Joy Bars.
- Seeds. Seeds are a great alternative to nuts because they’re typically have a lower price tag, except may hemp seeds and chia seeds. Either way, I stock hemp seeds, chia seeds, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds and sesame seeds and those are my favourites for homemade energy bars. These bars are made with a mixture of hemp seeds, sunflower seeds and sesame seeds and the flavour is awesome.
- Coconut. Coconut is another one of my favourite ingredients for no-bake bars. I usually have unsweetened shredded coconut and flaked coconut on hand.
- Dates. Dates are my go-to sweetener and base for no-bake recipes. I like medjool dates, sayer dates and deglect noor the best. It’s important to use soft, fresh dates in no-bake recipes otherwise they won’t hold the recipe together. If you only have dry dates, you can pour boiling water oven them and let them soak for 15 minutes, then drain before using.
- Rolled Oats. Rolled oats make a delicious and hearty ingredient for homemade energy bars and you can use them to make oat flour which can be handy for certain recipes. Try them in my cinnamon energy balls.
- Cacao. I like cacao powder and cacao nibs for creating chocolate energy bars or adding crunch. Sometimes I’ll use chopped dark chocolate or dairy-free chocolate chips for a treat.
- Spices. Cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cardamom and turmeric are my favourite for homemade energy bars.
- Sea salt. I add a little good quality sea salt to almost all of my energy bar recipes. I find it really brings out the flavour of the other ingredients. You can always omit it but I love the flavour it adds.
Those are the main ingredients I use in homemade energy bars. On occasion I use a small amount of maple syrup but it’s not often needed as dates do all the sweetening. Sometimes I use vegan protein powder, coffee, other various superfood add-ins such as maca or dried fruit such as raisins or goji berries but the ingredients above are the ones are use the most.
Food Processor or Blender
I used to make all my homemade energy bars in my Ninja blender so it is possible. However I much prefer to use a food processor. I have a Vitamix now rather than a Ninja but I haven’t used it for energy bars. I’m sure it work just fine though!
I actually use the food processor part of the Ninja Mega Kitchen System and I can’t say I have any complaints however when and if it dies, I’ll probably pick up a dedicated food processor since I use it quite often.
Depending on the ingredients you’re using, I like to add any nuts and seeds to the food processor first and let them process a bit so they can break down into smaller chunks, or even into flours depending on the recipe. After that, I’ll add the dates and any wet ingredients like peanut butter. Once everything has broken down into a dough, you’re all set.
Some recipes will form a big ball of dough right in the food processor, like my chocolate tahini energy bars, for example, but some will stay more crumbly, like this recipe does. However once you press it into the baking pan, it all firms up into perfect, delicious energy bars.
Energy Bars or Energy Bites
You can make any of my energy bar recipes into energy bites, and vice versa. Energy bites would be a slightly smaller serving size and you’d get more of them. If you’re looking for some yummy energy bites, check out my Raw Vegan Cashew Coconut Balls, Lime Coconut Energy Bites, No-Bake Chocolate Coffee Energy Bites or Oatmeal Raisin Cookie Dough Bites.
Sesame Hemp Homemade Energy Bars
Alllright, so these homemade energy bars made with nutritious seeds are like a chewy, soft granola bar. I’ve made them with tahini and with peanut butter and both are delicious. I love them with tahini though and if you have a nut allergy tahini, go with tahini. Sunflower seed butter would work too. As long as the nut or seed butter is drippy and not too dry, you’re good to go.
I used sesame seeds, hemp seeds, raw sunflower seeds and unsweetened shredded coconut to make these bars and I love the flavour this combo creates. You can mix and match these 4 ingredients up to 2 cups total and even add in some chocolate chips, chopped dark chocolate or cacao nibs for a treat.
This recipe creates 14 energy bars. Each bar is 239 calories with 23 grams of carbohydrates, 15 grams of fat and 6 grams of protein. If you use tahini, they’re also rich in iron and calcium. They also contain healthy omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin E, magnesium, selenium, B vitamins and a range of other essential nutrients.
More Energy Bar Recipes
Here are some of the most popular homemade bar recipes from the blog:
- Sweet and Salty No-Bake Peanut Butter Bars
- Chocolate Chip No-Bake Granola Bars
- No-Bake Chocolate Chia Energy Bars
- 1/2 cup sesame seeds (70 g)
- 1/2 cup hemp seeds (80 g)
- 1/2 cup sunflower seeds (75 g)
- 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut (50 g)
- 2 cups lightly packed, soft and pitted dates (400 g)
- 1/2 cup drippy tahini, peanut butter or almond butter (120 g)
- 3/4 tsp sea salt (optional, I love the salted flavour but you can leave out if you like)
- Add the seeds and coconut to a food processor and pulse a few times to combine.
- Add the dates, peanut butter and sea salt and process until it resembles a crumbly dough.
- Line a square baking pan with parchment or wax paper or saran wrap and press the dough firmly into the pan. Take a few minutes to really work it in there.
- Place the pan in the freezer for 3 hours to firm up.
- Lift the bars out of the pan and cut into 16 bars or squares.
- Store in the fridge for up to 2 weeks or freezer for up to 3 months. They don’t freeze solid and taste amazing straight from the freezer, so I would recommend storing them in a sealed container in the freezer.
I didn’t add chocolate to mine but for a treat, try them with 1/4 cup of dairy-free chocolate chips, chopped dark chocolate or cacao nibs pulsed in at the end.
I cut mine into 16 bars but you could 12-14 larger bars, or even 8 really big bars. You can also roll the dough into balls if you prefer.
Keywords: nut-free, gluten-free, sugar-free, no-bake, healthy, kids, oil-free
- Serving Size: 1 bar
- Calories: 202
- Fat: 13 g
- Carbohydrates: 20 g
- Fiber: 4 g
- Protein: 5 g