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chickpea protein bars 1

I am all for a crispy, crunchy granola bar, but sometimes a woman needs something fudgy. And since one of my favorite forms of fudge is peanut butter, why not make a power bar with a creamy, fudgy, peanut buttery texture and flavor?

Why not, indeed!

I am the person who like all sorts of stuff in her ice cream–nuts, chips, swirls, bubblegum, toffee, etc.–and I am the same way with energy bars. I added some toasted pepitas (just put raw ones in a skillet and move/shake–the pan, not you!–for a few minutes until they puff up) and dried cranberries. Hello, delicious.

This recipe spawns from a version of chickpea power bars in my Power Hungry book, but, since the heat is already in the 90s here, I designed the recipe to be a no-bake wonder. Chickpeas are key to this quick and easy recipe, contributing creaminess and nuttiness, as well as structure to hold the bars together.

These bars have vegan protein powder, which boosts the protein, of course, but also balances the moisture in the bars so that you end up with bars instead of fudge sauce. If you do not wish to use it, substitute an equal amount of finely ground oats (you may want to add a bit of stevia, too, to boost the sweetness).

Similarly, if using whey protein, you will need to add some finely ground oats to hold the bars together. Use the same amount of protein called for in the recipe, but also add 1/2 cup to 2/3 cup of the ground oats (it will vary by protein powder brand, so eyeball it).

These should definitely be stored in the refrigerator, and while they are great in a lunch bag (a cold-insulated one in summer), they are not the best for sticking into a fanny pack while running or cycling (I can attest!). Enjoy! 🙂

chickpea protein bars 2

Chickpea Protein Bars {Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, Vegan}

Chickpea Protein Bars {Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, Vegan}

Yield: 10


  • 1 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup packed, very soft dates (about 6-8)
  • 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter (or any creamy nut/seed butter, e.g., almond, sunflower seed, tahini)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 2/3 all-natural vegan, vanilla protein powder (like this, or use your favorite)
  • 1/3 cup pepitas (green pumpkin seeds), toasted
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries


  1. Line a 9x5-inch loaf pan (e.g. parchment paper, foil, plastic wrap)
  2. In a large food processor, process the chickpeas, dates, peanut butter, vanilla and salt until smooth, stopping and scraping the sides of processor bowl once or twice.
  3. Add the protein powder, pepitas and cranberries. Pulse until very well combined and mixture looks like a dough ball (if not, add a bit more protein powder).
  4. Press mixture evenly into prepared pan.
  5. Refrigerate at least 4 hours or freeze 1 hour until firm. Remove using pan liner and cut into bars, Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks (or freeze for up to 2 months).
Nutrition Information
Serving Size 1 bar
Amount Per Serving Calories 135Total Fat 4.8gSaturated Fat 0.8gCholesterol 0mgSodium 201mgCarbohydrates 12.7gFiber 2.7gSugar 3.9gProtein 10.8g

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About Camilla

I'm Camilla, food writer, author, runner, and spin instructor. PowerHungry® is where I share my easy, minimalist, plant-based recipes, designed for living a healthy, delicious, empowered life.

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  1. Dear Camilla,
    I am in love with your recipes for the chickpea tofu,feta cheese and cheddar cheese love it. I will practice more. Where did they find you with the tasty ideas. I tried vegatarian tofu with coconut milk and could not find Agar Agar to set it really well and it was a flop as i tried to up the tapioca flour to make it set. what a disastrous flop until i found you power hungry. A five star site!!!! yeah.

  2. Wow !! I’ve had this pinned for years and only just made it. Extremely moorish! I used normal Whey and I found it did stick to the parchment paper any tips to stop this for next time? 🙂

    1. Hi Chelsea! I am so glad you gave these a try 🙂 If it is not nonstick parchment, I would give it a light spritz of nonstick baking spray to prevent sticking.

  3. I just made these two days ago because I was going to attend Zumba classes for the first time. I always want to snack on something after I work out, and these are perfect! They are super yummy and easy to make and I know I am getting my protein. I am usually so hungry after a work out but I am careful in what I eat after working out.

    Thank you so much for this awesome recipe!

    1. I am so glad you love them, Annie!!! Thanks so much for taking the times to let me know. I am usually starving post-workout, too, so I stash homemade bars for the drive home.

  4. Dear Camilla,

    I just found your chickpea recipe, which looks marvelous, with the high fiber content listed at the end. Thank you again.