I’ve been trying to reduce the amount of plastic I buy and something I realised I could easily cut down on was buying protein snack bars…as they’re usually wrapped in that foil-like plastic that can’t be recycled. WHY!?!?

Anyway, I shared a photo of my first attempt at a homemade version on my Instagram story last week and a few people asked for the recipe. I’ve finally got around to typing it up, so here you go…

Although I usually focus on making healthier versions of desserts or sweet treat snacks, these are more of an everyday protein snack. But don’t worry, I’ll go back to making my usual healthy sweet treats again (just with a few other recipes thrown in occasionally).

These are gluten-free (like all of my recipes) and vegan…and each one contains just under 10 grams of protein. Which I think is pretty good considering the size of them!

Protein snack bar

Quick and Easy Protein Snack Bars

Makes 16 small square bars


300g Medjool dates – pits removed

100g cashew nuts 

100g pecan nuts 

35g desiccated coconut

60g Nutristrength roasted cocoa pea protein powder 

40g pumpkin seeds

2tsp vanilla extract


Line a brownie tin with baking paper

Soak the dates in a bowl of boiling water for 10 minutes to soften

Meanwhile, put all other ingredients in a food processor and blitz so all nuts are broken down (if you want the bars to have bigger nutty chunks this will take less time than if you prefer the nuts to be tiny)

Strain the dates and throw away the water, then add the dates to the food processor mixture

Blitz until combined 

Scoop the mixture into the lined brownie tin and flatten (with your hands or a spatula) so it’s level and meets the edges of the tin

Place in the fridge for one hour to firm up, then remove from the tin and slice into 16 squares


Protein snack bar

If you want to make these sweeter you could add maple syrup or agave nectar, but as I eat one of these every day before training I didn’t want to use any added sugar.

As much as I’d like to eat all 16 in one go, I keep a few of these in the fridge to eat within a couple of days and put the rest in the freezer. 

They defrost easily in a few hours, so minimal faff. Yay! And no plastic packaging (especially if you buy the nuts, etc from a refill store)!

Protein snack bar

Macros (per bar):

Kcals – 173

Carbs – 14.2g (only 0.7g of which sugars)

Fat – 10.1g (almost all good fats)

Protein – 9.6g

Fibre – 2.9g

If you’re looking for something sweeter, check these out:

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