Easy homemade Banana Protein Bars naturally sweetened with banana make the perfect nourishing snack to fuel you all all week!
Hi, I'm a new mom and now I can never have enough bars.
I go to pump and I MUST HAVE thirty seven snacks. The bedside table is bursting at the seams with portable sustenance.
If you're a Hummusapien regular, you may already love my Cookie Dough Protein Bars and Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Bars. There is no shortage of snack recipes around here.
How to make homemade protein bars
Making homemade protein bars is crazy easy and super affordable versus buying store bought! Pssst--they're quicker to make than you'd think.
- Blend oats, protein, coconut flour, hemp seeds, walnuts, salt and cinnamon in a food processor.
- Add banana, honey and vanilla and process until a sticky dough forms.
- Press into a loaf pan and top press in chocolate chips.
- Freeze, slice, EAT!
Ingredient tips and substitutions
With almost five grams of fiber, eight grams of protein, and less than ten grams of protein per bar, we're killin' the nutrition game! I love that these bad boys aren't super sweet. Cuz you know a brownie or three is happening later.
- Old fashioned oats: Lotsa oats for texture, nutrition, and toasty flavor. Use certified gluten free if needed. Don't use instant or steel cut here! Great for milk production, too.
- Walnuts: Super nutty and loaded with brain-boosting omega-3 fatty acids. Here for it!
- Vanilla plant protein: For a protein boost and extra sweetness. My favorites are blends of brown rice and pea protein like this or this. I have not tried these with whey. If you don't have protein powder, you should be able to sub any combo of oats, ground flax or almond flour, but they will be a lot less sweet. These bars are not super sweet as it is.
- Coconut flour: I love this stuff because it's so high in fiber. It's crazy absorbent, like a sponge. Since it's so unlike any other flour, I don't recommend subbing it out. Readers have said ground flax works, too!
- Hemp seeds: A complete protein with all nine essential amino acids. If you don't have hemp seeds, you could try chia seeds or coconut.
- Honey: For a hint of extra sweetness. Maple syrup or agave will also work, but I like that honey is thicker and a bit sticky. Totally optional.
- Banana: Very necessary for banana bread protein bars! Use extra ripe ones since they're the main sweetening agent.
- Vanilla extract + cinnamon: For authentic banana bread flavor!
- Chocolate chips: I never make banana bread without chocolate chips. Do you?? Chocolate is a must. You can drizzle or just dot with the chips if you're going for easy breezy.
Which protein powder is best?
I always go with plant-based protein powder so I can't vouch for how they'd taste with whey. If you try it, holler in the comments! This and this are my favorite plant-based protein powders.
You want one that's sweetened versus unflavored, as that contributes to the overall taste of these bars. If less sweet bars are your jam, feel free to try unsweetened protein.
If you don’t have protein powder, you can try swapping it out for more oats, or even throw some ground flaxseed in there!
How to store bars
I like to store these banana protein bars in the freezer because I think the texture is amazing. If they're too hard right out of the freezer, let them sit for a bit at room temp to soften up.
You can store a few at a time in the fridge, but know that they'll get more brown since the banana will oxidize.
You can also roll these into balls if ya like! The sky is the limit, frands.
Craving more snack greatness? Don't miss my other go-to recipes:
- Cookie Dough Protein Bars
- Matcha Cookie Bites
- Salted Chocolate Covered Oatmeal Bites
- Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Bars
- Mint Chocolate Protein Bites
Banana Bread Protein Bars
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 0 minutes
- Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
- Yield: 8-10 bars 1x
- Category: Snack
- Method: No Bake
- Cuisine: American
- Diet: Gluten Free
Easy no-bake Banana Protein Bars naturally sweetened with banana and a bit of honey make the perfect nourishing snack to fuel you all all week. Like banana bread in bar form, with almost 5g of fiber and 8g of protein!
- 1 cup walnuts (can sub almonds, pecans, or cashews)
- 1 ½ cups old fashioned oats
- ⅓ cup vanilla plant protein powder
- ¼ cup coconut flour* (can sub ground flax)
- ¼ cup hemp seeds
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- heaping ¼ tsp fine sea salt
- 1 cup mashed overripe banana (2 medium bananas)
- 2 tbsp honey (optional)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tbsp chocolate chips
- ½ tsp coconut oil
- Line a 9x5 inch loaf pan with parchment paper hanging over the sides and set aside. To help the parchment paper stick, you can spray the pan with cooking spray first.
- Place walnuts, oats, protein, coconut flour, hemp seeds, cinnamon and salt in the food processor and blend until the walnuts are broken down into small pieces. Add banana, honey and vanilla and process until a dough forms, scraping down the sides as needed. It will be very thick and slightly sticky and may seem wet at first but the coconut flour and oats will quickly thicken it. Press mixture evenly into prepared pan.
- If desired, you can press a handful of chocolate chips into the bars like the photos, or make a chocolate drizzle. Make drizzle by placing chocolate chips and oil in a small bowl. Melt in 20 second increments, stirring in between, until smooth. Use a fork to drizzle chocolate on top of bars.
- Freeze for 1-2 hours, or until set, before slicing into 8-10 bars. Store in the freezer and let them sit a bit at room temperature before eating to soften up if needed.
*Do not substitute coconut flour for another flour---it is very unique and absorbent and not a 1:1 sub. This is what helps thicken the bars. If you don't have coconut flour, readers have said ground flaxseed works. I have not tested this recipe with whey protein.
This recipe was originally posted on April 6, 2014 and updated on March 2, 2021. Original recipe: ½ cup pitted dates, ½ cup mashed banana, ½ cup walnuts, ½ cup almonds, 1 cup oats, ½ cup protein powder, 2 tbsp ground flaxseed, 1 tsp vanilla extract, ¼ tsp salt, ¼ tsp cinnamon. Directions: Blend dates, banana, and vanilla in food processor until very smooth. Add the rest of the ingredients and proceed with the directions above.
Keywords: banana protein bars, banana bread protein bars
Just made these and they are sooo yummy and easy! I ate one straight out of the freezer and it thaws out perfectly while you eat it haha. I subbed chocolate collagen for the protein and cashews for the walnuts and it turned out great. Tastes like chocolate banana cookie dough. Added bonus they're cheaper than store bought bars!
Alexis Joseph says
Yayyy love this, Allyson!!
I have made just about every no-bake ball and bar recipe on this website, and this is one of my favorites! The cinnamon takes these to another level, and they truly taste like banana bread. So worth whipping out the food processor.
Alexis Joseph says
You made my day! Thank you SO much, Giovonne!
So good! A great snack to have on hand, and not overly sweet 🙂
Alexis Joseph says
Thanks SO much, Dylan!!
So delicious! Made with pecans instead of walnuts and they turned out great! Perfect morning snack!
Alexis Joseph says
AMAZING thank you, Jessie! So glad they worked with walnuts 🙂
Didn’t have coconut flour or walnuts on hand, but subbed sliced almonds + ground flaxseed and it turned out great! Big hit even with my pickiest eater. He was sneaking them from the freezer 😉. Thank you!
Alexis Joseph says
Amazing, thank you tons Abby!!
Just made these and they are so good! The perfect afternoon snack 🙂
Alexis Joseph says
Heck yes!! Thank you tons, profesh recipe tester of mine 🙂
NAZNIN LILA says
Can you substitute the Protein power with something else ?
Alexis Joseph says
You could try oat or almond flour, but since protein powder is sweet and adds flavor, you may need to add sweetener and vanilla!
Karis Jin says
I was just wondering if I don't want to add the protein powder, will that make a big difference in the texture of the bar?
Alexis Joseph says
Hey there, yep--the half cup of dry ingredient (protein) would need to be replaced so they hold up. I have not tried this recipe without protein powder so I cannot verify the results, though. The protein also adds flavor and sweetness. I would guess you could try oat flour instead? LMK if you try!
Delicious. Would love to adapt for a sports team with a nut allergy. Any suggestions?
Alexis Joseph says
Hi! Hmmmmm, sunflower seeds?
I tried making these a couple of times and besides them being absolutely delicious I just can't get the consistency right - they are always too soft and sticky. Do you have any tips to harden them a bit without losing the great flavor?
How many days do they last?
Keep them in the fridge/freezer and you’ll be good.
How to get rid of Acne Scars says
Looks really nice and delicious, em gonna try on this weekened...
Best protein bars that I've made, I was worried they would be too banana-y but it was much more subtle, like banana bread for sure. Will have to make a double batch of these next time!
where is the nutritional label for these? Calories, fat, protein, etc...
Hi Alexis,my mum and i are new to your website.These bars are AWESOME! Thanks for the share!They really help when out and about on very busy days.Btw we didn't have protein powder so wacked in some bran flakes and cornflakes to substitute,turned out fine....? x
Awesome! Thanks so much for reporting back!
Thanks for sharing. How do the bananas not spoil if left out? I never use commercial protein powder, but am about to try making egg white powder. Do you think that would work?
Well, I broke my food processor making these but the mix tasted amazing. They are currently in the freezer waiting to be cut. I didn't add the protein powder and thought better to leave them plain even though I had chocolate chips on hand. It tastes exactly like banana bread. Yum!
is there any difference flavor wise if I forgo the protein powder?
They'll be less sweet since most protein powders are sweetened with stevia. I would add some oats or something to make up for it so they hold together!
Hey Alexis! I am still following all of your blog posts! I would love to make this recipe but I do not have protein powder and don't plan on buying any. Any recommendations of what I could substitute with?
Hi Jessie! Awww I'm so glad! The protein powder gives these bars a lot of sweetness, so I don't think you'd want to go with this recipe sans the protein. Maybe you could do ground oats and then add some dry sweetener or stevia?
I'm curious to find out wgat blog system you have been using?
I'm having some minor security issues with my
latest blog and I would like to find something
more risk-free. Do you have any recommendations?
After gastric bypass surgery almost 19 years ago, I am forever looking for quick & easy high protein snacks. Making my own bars never occurred to me. This seems so easy and delic!!!
Few questions: 1) how do they hold up when thawed in refrig? 2) will they hold up at room temp? 3) don't have food processor, can I use blender?
Good for you, Etta! Unfortunately, you need a food proccesor to break up the dates for this recipe and combine everything. I use mine alllll the time (nut and date bars, black bean brownies, veggie burgers, etc). They will be perfectly fine in the fridge. They'll be softer at room temp, but they'll still hold together!
Thanks so much for this yummy recipe! I could live off these! 🙂
Made them without the protein powder though.
You can check out my results on my blog if you like 🙂
I also linked your side for the original recipe.
Glad you liked them!
Angela @ Protein Companion says
Wow, these banana nut protein bars look so delicious. I can’t wait to make a batch and start eating. I especially like the way you have a) found a use for overripe bananas and b) used protein powder in the recipe.
Overripe nanners are the key!
Hi Alexis! Thank you for all these delicious recipes. At one time you had given me a website where you can look up calories in a recipe....can you remind me what that site was. I accidentally deleted it. Thank you so much! Tracy
You're so welcome, Tracy! I think the site I told you about was sparkrecipes.com 🙂
Thanks for sharing this recipe. Most of all I like that it's gluten free 🙂
You may want to reduce the size of your profile picture though. It's over 3 MB and really slows down the site. I just noticed when I loaded your page.
Glad you like the recipe! Thanks for the tip!
Seriously need to try adding banana to my energy bites/bars! Do you eat them straight out of the freezer or let them thaw?
Oh, and cheers to no boyfriends haha.
Brittany @ Delights and Delectables says
mmm!! LOVE it! Love that they are no bake... kinda like no bake cookies....but better!
Definitely! I'm all about the no-bake treats these days. Easy peasy!
Mary @ Fit and Fed says
Nice! I like the fact that you used a fresh banana in these. And I agree that energy bars are the one place to use protein powder as an ingredient--- makes sense when you are out and about and want a snack that isn't just fruit and/or fats.
Lots of times my snacks are fruits and fats (nuts, apple and nut butter, etc) so it's definitely nice to have a little boost. Your apricot almond chia energy bars sound amazing!
Danica @ It's Progression says
These look awesome. The ingredients list looks a lot like Larabars, which are my favorite!
They do look like Larabars but they actually taste way better 🙂
Rachel Cooks says
Oh my gosh -- my husband would love these!!
They're awesome! I need to make another batch because the first one was gone in like three days...eeeek!
Do you eat these frozen? Or do you thaw when you want one?
Yep--I eat them straight from the freezer, no need to thaw! They're pretty soft so they don't taste frozen.
THX that's a great anrsew!
Dana @ Conscious Kitchen Blog says
These totally remind me of Lara bars, but better because they're homemade. Nice work!
They're way better than larabars...I think because of the oats and bananas!
These bars look so good! I love that they're no-bake. =)
No-bake is my jam these days!
I've been looking at different bar recipes for about a week now and this is my new favorite! I love that these are no-bake and I always have overripe bananas that are looking for a new home. I'm the ultimate hangry type and have learned that not having a healthy option on me at all times can lead to bad decisions!! Thanks for the recipe!
You're welcome! Hope you love them.
gah! these look so good! banana, oats & cinnamon! can't wait to make these.
Alllll the best foods 🙂
Matt @ Runner Savvy says
Drool! I need to make this with my SFH whey (the best).
She Rocks Fitness says
Passed this along to my client, who is about to start making her own bars, because she is looking for new snack options. This will be perfect for her and really hoping she'll share some with me. 😉 Thanks for sharing! XOXO
That's so sweet of you, girl! Thanks!
chelcie @ chelcie's food files says
these look delicious I definitely want to give them a try. Overall i'm not a huge fan of protein powder either but these look like they are mainly made up of yummy whole foods! yay for no boyfriends..definitely in that club with ya 🙂 I was also laughing at people at work commenting on you eating weird stuff because at my job this summer as a waitress that happened to me all the time haha girls gotta eat!
Single ladies and protein bars unite!!!
I'm so excited to make these! Could I use vanilla Vega One? Or would it change the taste too much? Thanks!! 🙂
Definitely! I think any vanilla protein powder (sweetened) would be just fine!
Hannah @ CleanEatingVeggieGirl says
These sound fantastic and I LOVE that they are no-bake. These truly will be perfect once the 100 degree weather hits...if it ever does 😉
I want 100 degree weather right now!!!
I've already made the decision that men are easily replaced by food (<- does that make me sound jaded), so I'm WAAAAAY on board with these naner nut bars! I've never made a protein bar but have been meaning to, considering I'm in the same banana boat as you when it comes to getting ravenous mid-day. LOVE these! They look absolutely perfect.
Food > men. 100%. Thanks my sweet 🙂
Davida @ The Healthy Maven says
YES PUHHHHLEASE. I am on my third batch of the cinnamon roll bars but these will be next! One benefit to Curt being kidnapped by work is he isn't home to eat all my food. Not that the bars last longer than 2 days anyway.
P.s. have you ever tried sundried red bananas? If not I WILL SEND YOU SOME. we use them in Kewaza and I legit have an O when I eat them.
Sundried red nanners?? Whaaaa? I'm a nanner virgin!!!!
Amanda @ .running with spoons. says
My only beef with this recipe is that chocolate chips are NEVER optional 😛 Banana bread anything is amazing, but chocolate chip banana bread anything is even more win 😀
You're so right. When is chocolate ever optional?! I should have written "required." And doubled the amount.
Holly @ EatGreatBEGreat says
These so remind me of larabars, but I'm sure they're much better! They look amazing and I'd love them to bring to work for a morning snack.
The oats and nanner make them WAY yummier than larabars 🙂
Arman @ thebigmansworld says
What is with you and Davs whipping the damn food processor for everything? I NEED ONE.
Also the cinnamon roll bars AND these ones too. Banana bread- Have you ever tried the GNU bars? I tried one in america which claimed to taste like banana bread in a bar. It tasted like lies.
Davida @ The Healthy Maven says
you taste like LIES.
Now I want to make both of these bars and am also without a food processor. Wahhhhhh. Next paycheck, I know what I'm getting.
OMG you need a food processor. Life changing. Get a big one, not the mini one!
Can I used pecan instead of walnut for this recipe?
Liez with burgerz and friez.
Ya they're alright...kinda weird and crunchy-ish. You NEED a food processor. Life changing purchase, mah dude.