Chocolate Chip Protein Bars Recipe

These Chocolate Chip Protein Bars are a fantastic snack you make in batches at home!

I don’t know about you, but paying $4 for a single protein bar puts a bit of a strain on my wallet. Especially when I like eating them on a regular basis. That’s why I love making my own bars. Specifically, this clean eating chocolate chip protein bar recipe. It uses simple ingredients that are easy to find, and I love the flavor.

A tray filled with Chocolate Chip Protein Bar batter sits ready to go into the oven for baking.

I came across an article on eHow.com, on how to make your own protein bars. It just gave a general outline, so I printed it out and got to work. I tried several different methods and many different ingredients.

The main thing I found is that the oats you use make all the difference. And it really comes down to personal preference.

If you like a harder, chewier bar, use old-fashioned oats (not the quick-cook kind). But if you use these, be prepared to let the bars sit for a few days in an airtight container before you eat them. Otherwise, it’s very similar to chewing hay (not that I chew a lot of hay, mind you; it’s just the image that came to mind when I tried these bars with the rougher oats).

If you like a softer bar (which I do), then use quick-cook oats (the 3-minute kind).

Other than that, the recipe is pretty basic and very easy.

How Many Protein Bars A Day?

The number of protein bars you can eat a day will depend on your macros and calorie limits. Keep in mind that protein bars were never meant to be a sweet and tasty snack, but that’s how most of us use them these days. However, that’s a great way to get more calories than intended because protein bars are really meant to be a quick meal replacement bar. Not a dessert after you’ve had a full meal.

Clean Eating Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Protein Bars Recipe

When Should You Eat A Protein Bar?

The best time to eat a protein bar is when you don’t have time to squeeze in a full meal. This is often in the afternoon when we are in the midst of our work days and just cannot get away for lunch.

How Much Is Too Much Protein?

This will depend on how active you are. Very active people need more protein than those who are more sedentary.

According to the Mayo Clinic:

More than 2 grams per kilogram of body weight each day is excessive.

Mayo Clinic

If this is a concern for you, your best bet is to talk to a registered dietician. While there are plenty of macro calculators online, a dietician will be able to give you the most accurate advice tailored to your own individual needs.

Are Protein Chocolate Bars Good For You?

Store-bought protein bars are rarely healthy. I’m not saying they don’t exist, just that a truly healthy one is hard to find. My best advice to to read the ingredient list.

Can I Use A Different Protein Powder?

Yep! Use any protein powder you are comfortable with. Some folks who are plant-based or vegan will prefer something like pea protein or soy protein. Plant-based protein powder is fine. You can also use brown rice protein powder, but I find that it sometimes has a funny texture that I don’t like. So choose carefully.

Clean Eating Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Protein Bars

About The Ingredients

Oats – Use plain, quick-cooking oats.

Peanut butter – All natural, no sugar added. You can also use almond butter or cashew butter if you prefer. Any nut butter or seed butter (if you are nut-free) will work. Sunflower seed butter is also a good choice.

Honey – Any type you want. You can use maple syrup, but the bars won’t be as sweet.

Apple sauce – Unsweetened.

Dark chocolate chips – Grain-sweetened is best.

Whey protein powderMore info here. Make sure it’s an unsweetened protein powder.

Ground cinnamon – Not cinnamon sugar. Just plain cinnamon.

Chia seeds

How To Make Chocolate Chip Protein Bars

An oven display set to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.  Roast the oats in the oven on a cookie sheet, without oil, for 10-15 minutes. Cool completely.

IMPORTANT: BE SURE your oats have cooled down completely from being roasted, or they will totally melt your chocolate chips.

Clean Eating Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Protein Bars Recipe

Knead all ingredients in a large mixing bowl until well combined.

Clean Eating Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Protein Bars Recipe

Spread out the batter on a cookie sheet or other baking dish (I used a quarter sheet). Press dough down evenly over the pan.

Clean Eating Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Protein Bars Recipe

Bake at 350F. for 15-20 minutes or until the bars are a nice golden brown color.

Clean Eating Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Protein Bars

Cut and allow to cool. Store in a zipper-top plastic bag or food storage container.

Storing Chocolate Chip Protein Bars

Store these in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

Freezing Chocolate Chip Protein Bars

These freeze well. Wrap them well and store them in the freezer for up to 6 months. Thaw in the fridge for 24 hours before eating.

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Chocolate Chip Protein Bars Recipe Card

Clean Eating Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Protein Bars

Chocolate Chip Protein Bars Recipe

Need a healthy snack on the go? These cinnamon chocolate chip protein bars are great to keep on hand for those “hangry” moments.
4.34 from 3 votes
Print Pin Rate Add to Collection
Course: Snack
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 15 bars
Calories: 230kcal

Ingredients

  • 2 cups oats
  • 1 cup peanut butter (no sugar added)
  • ½ cup honey
  • ½ cup apple sauce (unsweetened)
  • 2 tbsp. dark chocolate chips (grain sweetened is best)
  • 1 cup whey protein powder (see link above)
  • 1 tbsp. ground cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp. chia seeds

Instructions

  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Roast the oats in the oven on a cookie sheet, without oil, for 10-15 minutes. Cool completely.
    IMPORTANT: BE SURE your oats have cooled down completely from being roasted, or they will totally melt your chocolate chips.
    An oven display set to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Knead all ingredients in a large mixing bowl until well combined.
    Clean Eating Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Protein Bars Recipe
  • Spread out the batter on a cookie sheet or other baking dish (I used a quarter sheet here).
    Clean Eating Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Protein Bars Recipe
  • Bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes or until the bars are a nice golden brown color.
    Cut and allow to cool. Store in a zipper-top plastic bag or food storage container.
    Clean Eating Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Protein Bars Recipe

Notes

Please note that the nutrition data below is a ballpark figure. Exact data is not possible.

Nutrition

Serving: 1bar | Calories: 230kcal | Carbohydrates: 24g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 105mg | Potassium: 265mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 12g | Vitamin A: 175IU | Vitamin C: 2.2mg | Calcium: 77mg | Iron: 1.7mg

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313 Comments

  1. graciouspantry says:

    You have to click on the stuff you don’t want to print. Works okay for me. Maybe some sort of security setting on your computer?

  2. graciouspantry says:

    Awesome! I hope you enjoy them!

  3. graciouspantry says:

    PB2 isn’t clean, is it? Just curious. I hope you enjoy them!

  4. graciouspantry says:

    Glad you enjoyed them!

  5. graciouspantry says:

    I couldn’t follow your link, so I’m not sure if the three items you listed are the entire ingredient list. I would imagine that at the very least, they are a better option, yes. But again, I’m not sure if that’s the complete list. Sorry.

  6. Nicoletrujillo28 says:

    This is our go-to for healthy car snacks! I sometimes add raisins in addition to all of the above ingredients. These are really good!

  7. I’m adopting a clean diet as my resolution this year, and because of my limited budget as a grad student, I’m doing it two to four items per week, but I am super excited about getting everything together and making these so I have snacks on hand during the day!

  8. Jeanny Sateler says:

    I absolutely love these, I would love to make them, but..hehehe, unfortunately I don’t like either peanut or almond butter, is there anything else I can sub it with?? thank you so much!

    1. graciouspantry says:

      Cashew butter? The flavor is not predominant….

  9. graciouspantry says:

    You can find both at most health food stores or on line at Amazon.com

  10. At what temperature do you have to roast the oats in the over before you start?

  11. I am allergic to apples. Do you have any suggestions for alternatives? Thank you!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      You could try 1/3 cup oil.

  12. My husband is deployed right now and I’d like to make something healthy for him. It takes my packages a week to get to him. Which type of oats should I use so that they are chewy when they get to him?

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      I’m not sure these are the best choice. But if you want to try it, I would just follow the recipe as is.

  13. Can’t do whey. Would pea protein work?

  14. I am *OBSESSED* with these bars! I added raisins to the batter then drizzled the bars with dark chocolate… they taste amazinggg! However, I initially halved the recipe and it came out super liquidy so I ended up having to add almost 1/2 cup more oats and 1/4 cup more protein to thicken it a bit to where it was somewhat similar to your picture. Luckily they came out very delicious anyway and I will definitely be making them again! Thank you!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      My pleasure! Glad it worked out. 🙂

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      They aren’t necessarily 3 minute oats. If they are, they will say so on the package.

  15. I am making these with chocolate flavored whey (thats all I had), 3 tbsp of raw cacao powder, and chopped almonds (no choco chips) They are in the oven now! The batter tasted great, so I hope the bars are just as good :)) thanks for the recipe!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      My pleasure! I’m sure they’ll turn out fine. This is a very versatile recipe. People have done tons of variations.

  16. Are these a chewy or a crunchier bar? Id prefer chewy.

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Not crunchy at all. Soft and sort of chewy. Kinda like an oatmeal cookie.

  17. Just made the cinnamon chocolate chip bars. Do I store them in the fridge? Oh long is the “shelf” life?

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Yes, store them in the fridge for up to 5 days. They keep much longer in the freezer. Up to 6 months.

  18. Dumb question. Do you eat them cold?

  19. Thank you for this recipe!! I have been wanting to make my own bars for a LONG time and this recipe was perfect! I used carob chips instead of the chocolate chips (couldn’t find the grain sweetened chips, even at Sprouts). Despite being such a healthy bar, they were tasty! I have been giving a few to my friends and they are liking them, too! Your website is just what I need to change how we eat.

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Sharon – Fantastic! Glad you enjoyed them!