Nut-Free Energy Bars
These easy, no-bake seed bars are perfect for a healthy and delicious, nut-free snack everyone can enjoy.
These nut-free bars are made with healthy ingredients that can be mixed and matched to create a delicious vegan snack works for you.
They can be made with tahini or sunflower seed butter for a nut-free recipe but also work work with peanut butter or almond butter. The seeds can be mixed and matched with various nuts, and the coconut can be swapped for additional seeds if needed.
You’ll love these for an easy, no-bake bar that’s yummy enough for dessert but perfect for an energizing snack too.
- Dietary Needs: Vegan, gluten-free, nut-free, oil-free and no added sugar.
- Nutrition Features: 239 calories per par with 6 grams of protein and 5 grams of fibre.
- Easy to make with just 6 simple ingredients.
- Customize as needed to suit your preference.
- Great for hiking, road trips, camping and otherwise taking on-the-go.
- Cut them into 28 mini bars for a kid-friendly snack or dessert.
- Yummy crumbled over smoothie bowls, yogurt and ice cream.
What You’ll Need
Complete list of ingredients with amounts and instructions is located in the recipe card below.
The recipe calls for 2 cups of mixed seeds and coconut but the amounts and variety can be adjusted to suit your preference or dietary needs.
- Sesame Seeds: You can use hulled or unhulled, toasted or plain white or black sesame seeds.
- Hemp Seeds: May be labelled as hemp hearts. As they’re a little more expensive than other seeds, feel free to swap them for additional sunflower or sesame seeds.
- Sunflower Seeds: Use raw sunflower seeds with no added oil, salt or sugar.
- Coconut: Use unsweetened medium or fine shredded, or desiccated, coconut. This can be swapped for 1/2 cup additional seeds or nuts such as almonds, walnuts or pecans.
- Dates: I like sayer dates for recipes like this. They’re more affordable than medjool dates and have a soft texture that works well for no-bake recipes, though you can use any variety of date as long as they’re soft and moist and not overly dry.
- Nut or Seed Butter: Use tahini or sunflower seed butter for a nut-free recipe and delicious taste, or use almond butter, peanut butter or cashew butter.
Scroll down to find the complete written recipe. This section shows step-by-step photos for a quick, visual reference.
Step 1: Add the seeds and coconut to a food processor and mix until broken down into a flaky consistency.
Step 2: Add the dates and nut or seed butter and mix until you have a thick, sticky dough you can easily press between your fingers.
If the dough seems too crumbly, add 1-2 tbsp warm water and process again. That should do the trick.
Step 3: Line an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper so it sticks out over at least two sides of the pan.
Firmly press the dough into the pan, taking a few minutes to really press it down, especially along the sides and corners.
Step 4: Freeze the bars for 30-60 minutes to firm, then lift them out of the pan and slice into 14 bars.
Enjoy your homemade energy bars or stash ’em in the freezer for a yummy snack whenever you need it.
Notes & Tips
Serving Size: I like to cut my bars in to 14 portions, then cut each in half so I have 28 mini bars. That way I can have a small one for a treat or grab a couple if I want a bigger serving.
Feel free to cut them into as many portions as you’d like. 16 squares also works well.
Seeds & Coconut: Use any combination up to 2 cups of sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, raw pumpkin seeds (pepitas), hemp seeds and coconut. You can also substitute nuts for any of the seeds. The coconut can be substituted with nuts, seeds or oats.
Additional Ingredients: Try up to 1/3 cup cacao nibs, dairy-free chocolate chips, chopped dark chocolate, dried cranberries or chopped dried fruit like apricots.
This can happen if you use overly dry nut/seed butter or dates. It’s important to use soft, moist dates in no-bake recipes like this.
If you think your dates are too dry, soak them pitted in hot water for 15 minutes then drain well before using in the recipe.
If you blend unsoaked dates and the dough seems to crumbly, add 1-2 tbsp warm water and process again until you can squeeze the dough into a little ball.
I wouldn’t recommend these two in this particular recipe but if you’d like to try them in a similar recipe, here are some options:
• Hemp & Chia Bars – with pepitas, oats and walnuts
• Chocolate Chip Chia Seed Bars – with oats and coconut oil
• Chocolate Superfood Bars – with flax, chia seeds and almonds
- These are best kept chilled but they’re okay to room temperature for a day or two if taking to-go (or longer but they’ll get a bit soft).
- Fridge: Store in a sealed container for up to 2 weeks.
- Freezer (Recommended): Store in a sealed container for up to 3 months and can be enjoyed straight from the freezer as they do no freeze solid.
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- 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 tahini, peanut butter or almond butter (120 g)
- 1/2 tsp sea salt (optional for a salted flavour, omit if nut/seed butter has added salt)
- Add the seeds and coconut to a food processor and process into a flaky consistency.
- Add the dates, peanut butter and sea salt, if using and process until you have a thick, sticky dough you can easily press together between your fingers. If it seems too crumbly, add 1-2 tbsp warm water and process again.
- Line an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper so it sticks out over at least 2 sides of the pan (this will help you easily lift the bars out once set). Firmly press the dough firmly into the pan, taking a few minutes to really work it in there until it’s flat and firm.
- Place the pan in the fridge for 30-60 minutes to firm up. This is not totally necessary but help them firm into a more solid bar.
- Lift the bars out of the pan and cut into 14 bars, 16 squares or any other portion size you like.
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.
Store the bars in a sealed container 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.
The seeds and coconut can be mixed and matched up to 2 cups from sunflower seeds, pepitas, hemp seeds, coconut and sesame seeds. If you can’t do coconut, use an additional 1/2 cup of seeds. For nut-free bars, be sure to use tahini or sunflower seed butter.
- Serving Size: 1 bar
- Calories: 239
- Fat: 14 g
- Carbohydrates: 26 g
- Fiber: 5 g
- Protein: 6 g
Keywords: sesame seed bars, seed bars, nut-free energy bars
Originally published March 19, 2018.