How to Make Energy Bars

Store-bought varieties are often high in sugar and unhealthy oils. Follow these homemade energy-bar recipes to create nutritious versions.

Energy Bars



Mix and match ingredients within each category to reach the total measurement.

Base Ingredients: 1 cup rolled oats or coconut flakes

Nuts and Seeds: 1 cup almonds, pecans, walnuts, hazelnuts, pepitas, sunflower seeds, or cashews

Flour: 1/3 cup almond flour, oat flour, hazelnut flour, coconut flour, or allpurpose flour

Ground Spices and Flavorings: 2–3 tsp. cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, nutmeg, ginger, citrus zest, cocoa powder, or espresso powder

Dried Fruits and Other Flavors: 1/2 cup dried cranberries, raisins, currants, dried figs, dried blueberries, cacao nibs, or crystallized ginger

Purées and Spreads: 1/4 cup nut butter, mashed banana, pumpkin purée, or unsweetened applesauce

Extracts and Juices: 1 tbs. citrus juice, vanilla extract, almond extract, or coconut extract

Liquid Sweetener: 1 tbs. maple syrup, honey, agave, molasses, or brown-rice syrup

Salt: 1/2 tsp.

Dates: 1/2 cup


Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Line a 13-x-9-inch baking dish with parchment paper, allowing it to overhang the sides an inch or two.

  1. Place base ingredients and nuts or seeds in the bowl of a food processor and pulse several times until chopped into pebble-size pieces. Scrape nut mixture into a bowl.
  2. Add flour, spices or flavorings, and sea salt to nut mixture and stir until combined.
  3. Place dates in the bowl of the food processor and process until they form a paste.
  4. Add dried fruits, purées or spreads, extracts or juices, and liquid sweetener to dates and process until combined.
  5. Add half of the nut mixture to the food processor and process until combined. Add remaining nut mixture and process again.
  6. Scrape mixture into prepared baking dish. Place a second sheet of parchment paper over the mixture and press down firmly until the mixture forms one tightly packed layer.
  7. Bake 25 to 30 minutes, until slightly golden at the edges.
  8. Let dish cool for 10 minutes, then use the parchment-paper edges to lift the uncut bars out of the dish. Place on a wire rack and cool completely before slicing into bars.
  9. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for one week or in the refrigerator for up to two weeks. Freeze for up to three months and thaw before enjoying.

is an Experience Life senior editor.

Photography by: John Mowers

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