Recipes

Easy Homemade Gluten-Free Energy Bars

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As a big fan of hiking, I am always on the lookout for different grab-and-go snacks that I can take with me on trips. Usually energy bars can get pricey. Then I found out that you can make something just as tasty, at home, without cooking, for much less. No kidding! As little as three ingredients can provide you with your very own customized energy bar. Dates, dried fruit, and nuts make up a gluten-free energy bar packed with flavor.

How to Make Homemade Energy Bars- these gluten-free energy bars are awesome! So much better than the store-bought ones.
Serving Size
1 bar
Calories/Serving
345

How to Make Homemade Energy Bars- these gluten-free energy bars are awesome! So much better than the store-bought ones.


I am a big fan of chewy energy bars, such as to Lärabars. But you can make them yourself instead, with your favorite alterations. They provide the boost of energy that needed to make it over the river and through the woods. They are not only grain-free but also satisfying.

Feel free to play with the ratios, but definitely keep the dates, which help everything bind together. I used almonds and dried cranberries, but any dried fruit or nut will substitute. I also added a little bit of unsweetened coconut flakes, because I can’t get enough, and some dark chocolate chips, because I know that I won’t eat an energy bar without chocolate. You could also try adding chia seeds, pumpkin seeds, cinnamon, nutmeg, you name it.

ingredients
in the blender

I was very pleasantly surprised by how little time these took to make. Step one. Blend ingredients. Step two. Form into a square bar and refrigerate. Wait? What? The only question you’ll have to worry about is what to do with your extra time. Maybe go for a hike.

berry energy bar
paleo energy bars


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Ingredients

  • Ingredients
    • 1 cup almonds
    • 1 cup dried cranberries
    • 1 cup pitted dates
    • 1 tbsp unsweetened coconut flakes
    • 1/4 cup mini dark chocolate chips

Directions

  1. Combine all of the ingredients in a blender or food processor. Pulse a few times to break everything up. Then blend continuously until the ingredients have broken down and start to clump together into a ball.
  2. Using a spatula to scrape down the sides, turn out the mixture onto a piece of wax paper or plastic wrap. Press into an even square and chill, wrapped, for at least an hour. Cut into desired size of bars, wrapping each bar in plastic wrap to store in the fridge.

Servings

Serving Size

1 bar

Servings/Recipe

6

Nutrition Information

Calories

345

Carbohydrates

54.7 g

Fat

15 g

Sugar

43.1 g

Protein

6.1 g

Fiber

7.2 g

Calories 345 kcal
Potassium 474.9 mg
Vitamin A 2.6 µg
Vitamin C 0.1 mg
Folic Acid (B9) 17.1 µg
Sodium 2.3 mg

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  1. I am DEATHLY allergic to nuts (almonds, tree nuts, peanuts, you name it; I’m allergic to it) but this cite has so many tasty recipes! Many of which include nuts or nut-based flour (almond flour.) What could I use as alternatives for many of these recipes? Please advise!

    • You could try using seeds in a recipe like this and coconut flour for baked goods (as long as you aren’t allergic to coconuts, which is pretty rare). Be careful though because you can’t directly sub coconut flour for almond flour. You will need less coconut flour because it absorbs a lot of liquid. It would probably be best to find coconut flour recipes until you get the hang of cooking with it. I find I prefer a coconut flour/tapioca flour mix more than nut flours in baking because first of all the texture is better but also nuts are high in polyunsaturated fats and omega 6’s. I read heating them can be bad. Nuts also have phytic acid.

    • My Processor does not chop nuts or dates.
      I put about a tablespoon of water in with the dates and warmed them for about 20 seconds in the microwave and then could along with the rest the processor could handle the mix. I replaced the nuts with a cup of coconut.
      I did the mix as a slice the 1st time and the 2nd I rolled the mixture into balls and then rolled them in desiccated coconut and presented them in the mini cup cake papers.
      I got 13 balls. The 3rd time I used a half cup of dates and half cup of apricots.
      I have had nice remarks about them.

    • My problem is I’m not allowed dried fruit, pitted fruit or coconut oil! Hmmm. This isn’t going well for me. I’m on dialysis and have to watch my phosphorus and potassium. Might have to do paleo my way. :-/

  2. I found mine had quite a bit of oil the first time i made them. I actually put them on a paper towel for a bit to soak some up. Have you had this issue? I used dates, almonds, dried plums and chocolate chips.

    Thanks!

    • I had the same problem. Fun part: I added my green protein mix, so the grease is green! I didn’t think of putting them on paper towels, but may do that now.
      I think it was from the prunes (dried plums), as I’ve made them without before and didn’t have the same problem. Still delicious, I just make sure to have a napkin nearby when I’m handling them.

    • You used both dried plumbs and dates? I didn’t see both in the recipe. Maybe that added too much moisture? I assume you were substituting the plums for cranberries…

  3. I love these kinds of bars! Do you have a source for dried cranberries without added sugar? I’d love to use dried cherries or cranberries but they’re already high in sugar, plus those dried fruits always seem to have added sugar.
    Thanks!

    • That’s a good question, they are really hard to find. The only place I know of is Steve’s Paleogoods, where you can buy them online.

    • Nuts.com carries juice infused with no sugar added dried cranberries. Great company to order from. Everything is very fresh and quick shipping. I’ve placed an order on a Monday morning and received my stuff Tuesday afternoon.

  4. I tried making these today, they’re in the fridge right now but they didnt end up looking like they have the consistency of what yours look like in the picture. They seem more dry/flaky. I even tried to put some more cranberries and dates in them…..

    also, how well do they stay together when taken out of the fridge for a few hours? if taken for a lunch snack, will they hold together during the day ?

    • I’m not sure what exactly would cause that, just make sure that you are pressing the mixture into a tight square after blending. Perhaps adding couple drops of water into the blender would also help moisten the mixture. For taking them out of the refrigerator, I’ve had the bars a couple hours after taking them out of the refrigerator and they were just fine.

    • For me the difference between dry/crumbly bars and soft/chewy bars is the dates. Dates with the seeds already removed tend to be dryer and less sticky versus date that you have to remove the pit yourself. When I use the latter the cars stay together, and when I use pre-potted dates they crumble apart.

      • I agree, and make sure the dates are fresh. If they sit in the fridge a while they will be dried up and the bars won’t come out moist.

    • Hi Eva, perhaps try sprinkling in a few drops of water to help the mixture stick together. Otherwise I would suggest adding more dates. Hope that helps!

    • Great question! As a diabetic, I had to figure out the carbs which came out around 26 grams per bar. Since my snack allowance is 15 carbs, I have decided to make 16 bars at 13 grams per serving. As always, I will check my blood sugar before and after I eat them.

      Great recipe!

  5. I’m wondering if you know how long these might keep if not redrigerated. Have you tried packaging them in Food-Saver/Seal-a-Meal type vacuum sealed packages? I’m thinking they’d be great to take on a camping trip but refrigeration might not be an option. Don’t dates and dried fruits keep pretty well or does grinding them change that? Thanks!

  6. I made these yesterday for my long weekend bike rides. The mixture wasn’t sticky enough to bind everything together so I put the mix in the over for 10 mins on 200oC. It melted the chocolate and softened everything enough to flatten. That then went into the freezer. All I need to do tonight is chop them and wrap in greaseproof paper. Thanks for the idea and inspiration.

    • That is an interesting way to do it, glad it worked out! I usually drizzle in some water if the mixture is not sticking to help it moisten.

  7. Made these tonight and they are delicious! Only issue is too dry and not sticky enough. Will add more dates next time. Any other suggestions?

  8. My daughter has convinced me with a uk made paleo health bar.. Delicious, no food cravings. Fantastic blog, brilliant. Will make these bars tomorrow. So thank you

  9. I love these! I use raisins instead of cranberries (since they are easier to find with no sugar added) and I roll them up into little balls instead for a quick and easy treat for me and my son. They never stay around long and I find it satisfies my sweet tooth. Thank you!

  10. I wonder how these would work out if dehydrated, rather than frozen. Think they would stick together better if taken for a run or bike ride?

  11. What type of food processor did you use to make these? I have a vitamix, but I have a hard time getting the nuts to always reach the blade as opposed to sticking to the walls of the pitcher. Any tips?

  12. My 9 yr old son & I made these Thanksgiving day. Our coconut and cranberries were a bit less than fresh, and while about 2 Tbsp of water while running the food processor seemed to cover the necessary moisture, we couldn’t resist adding about 1 Tbsp of maple syrup. We also dropped in 1 tsp of maple pepper. Awesome! The pepper adds this great little bite just at the end, and it helps to keep us from eating too many!!

    Future add-ins/ons:
    Sea salt – would be lovely with cashews, ginger & apricots
    Figs – additional spices too like nutmeg & allspice

    And the mind just wanders…… 😉

  13. I made these a few days ago and loved them. They looked exactly like your picture and the texture and flavor was great. I will try using raw cashews next time for a change. I was not hungry at all for hours after eating one. Thanks for this recipe.

  14. I’ve now made my second batch of this tasty snack. It’s another home run with my 14 year old son. Love these bars!

  15. I made these in a Vitamix with almonds and coconut going in first. Also changed things up a bit. Did 1/2 cup apricots 1/2 cup dried blueberries instead of cranberries and substituted sugar-free organic cacao nibs for chocolate chips. Delicious and perfect but it did overheat the Vitamix at the end! Next time I would add more coconut for the health benefits and maybe press in a few pumpkin seeds on top!

  16. How about an energy bar that is truly low glycemic, unlike the one that has lots of dates and cranberries? More like not-sweet but higher protein?

  17. I find most dried cranberries are soaked in sugar ……which kind do you use Paleogrubs fans?
    Looking for your suggestions

  18. I tried this today, it’s taste so good. My girls 21 and 19 years old couldn’t believe it, one of them said it taste better than it looks. I’m allergic to nut, instead of almond I used sunflower seeds. For those who are allergic to nuts, sunflower seeds taste good too.

  19. Made thes today with half almond half cashews. Turned out perfectly. Not that they will last, but how long do they keep for in the fridge or can they be frozen?

  20. These are great tasting and so easy to make, thank you for sharing! I’m always looking for the perfect gluten free snacks that I can bring on road trips as I’m celiac and cannot eat gluten. Many shops in Ireland and UK sell “gluten free” products that are full of unhealthy chemicals and high in sugar so it becomes essential to make your own.

  21. I’ve made these twice so far and my kids even like them. I used my bullet with the muller blade with almonds, dried cranberries and prunes, coconut flakes and 3 squares of 90% cacao….so good!!!

  22. 2 hours, 3 different stores for ingredients, maay have burned out my montel blender…the the kitchen aide blender attachment didn’t cut the mustard, nor did the food processor attachment. All night, huge mess, and nothing to show for it. This recipe is not for me. I got the message.

    • Sorry to hear that these didn’t work out for you, These are such a good snack! you do need a good food processor, worth the investment

  23. I discovered that dried cherries are gooey enough to hold the ingredients together. Some ingredient variations I tried were dried mango, which were wonderful. I made a lot of these bars to take with me to a wk-long conference and have something to eat going and coming on the long drive. Worked perfectly along with paleo muffins to have something satisfying and healthy to chow down on. Thanks so much for sharing.

  24. Made a batch today and ended up too dry at first. I added about a Tbsp of coconut oil and it came together nicely.

  25. I’ve made these a couple of times and absoulutely loved them! Will be going to the shops shortly to buy ingredients to make it again! 🙂

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