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.
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?
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
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