Five-ingredient Chocolate Peanut Butter Chia Bars are an easy, no-bake recipe for healthy snacking! These bars are vegan and naturally sweetened.
Well, I should have seen this one coming. Since giving dates an inaugural whirl in these no-bake coconut almond bars, I've been brainstorming different flavor combinations to mix up next.
These bars are made with five ingredients (dates, PB, peanuts, unsweetened cocoa powder, and ch-ch-ch-chia seeds) and are made in just a few minutes all thanks to your food processor.
Ultra quick snack-making for the week just so happens to allow you more time on a Saturday afternoon to watch Forensic Files and Google how to become a forensic pathologist.
Is it typical for weird obsessions to blossom in your mid-twenties?
Say yes, please.
One obsession (beyond that one) for me has become podcasts. Do you listen? I have a few different kinds on my Stitcher list depending on my mood. Blog ones get me excited about blog things, inspirational entrepreneurial ones to calm my anxieties when I stress out that I haven't gotten my career all figured out by now (see: my forensic pathology search history), and I geek out with the ladies of Stuff I Missed in History Class multiple times a week.
My favorites though are true crime ones, which despite my propensity for getting agita about lesser things, don't bother me one bit. Funny how the mind works.
I do my best podcast listening in the afternoons at work, which happens to be the time I start thinking about my afternoon snack. Lately I've been digging low-sodium roasted almonds (which I use in this crunchy dark chocolate almond bark), but these chocolate peanut butter chia bars have cut the line and become my #1.
As is the case with a lot of no-bake bars, these do better when they've been stored in the refrigerator, but can hold up several hours outside of the fridge for a few hours. They'll just be a little softer.
And for the taste? The cocoa powder and peanut butter shines through big time. Any time I can get my chocolate + PB fix in a healthier way than plowing into a Reese's or four is a snack time win!
- I suggest using a no-stir peanut butter variety in these bars. Even with a lot of stirring, I'm afraid the "natural" varieties would add too much oil.
Ways to Use Up Chia Seeds
Have a big bag of chia seeds and are looking for more recipes to use them up? Here are some of my personal favorites:
- Chia seeds are a really important part of my extra filling green smoothie. This smoothie will totally fill you up like a meal (and I don't take making claims like that likely!)
- They thicken blended chocolate chia pudding beautifully. Soaking them before blending ensures they become nice and smooth.
- Add them to protein overnight oats.
More Chia Bars
If you’ve enjoyed this recipe, I’d love for you to leave a star rating in the recipe card and/or a comment review below!
Chocolate Peanut Butter Chia Bars
- 1 cup pitted whole dates (about 12-13)
- ¼ cup plus 1 tablespoon peanut butter, I used creamy [see note]
- ¼ cup peanuts
- 2 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 ½ tablespoon chia seeds
- Add all ingredients to food processor and process until the ingredients break down and become a mostly cohesive mixture. You will still have little pieces of peanuts remaining, and the consistency of the mixture should hold together when you press it together.
- Line a rimmed dish with parchment paper and press mixture into it, leaving your desired thickness. I used only about half of an 8" x 8" baking dish as I didn't have a smaller dish available.
- Refrigerate for at least 45 minutes before slicing. Store bars in the refrigerator.
Nutritional information is provided as an estimate. As it can vary due to many factors (brands used, quantities, etc.), we cannot guarantee its accuracy.Food Safety and Nutrition Disclaimer
These are delicious (and so super easy)!! Thanks for giving me an alternative to cookies that actually tastes good.
Yay! So glad you like them, Lindsey. 🙂
I've been interested in using dates in desserts for a while and this was the first recipe I tried. All I can say is WOW! I can't believe I waited this long, they were absolutely delicious. I'm usually sensitive to texture and taste being 'off' in some way but this was like a decadent brownie. I also feel so much better about eating a dessert made with fruit rather than refined flour and sugar.
My daughter and I just made two batches! (We ate the first one with spoons, so I had to make another to try the whole recipe:) Delicious!!
Awesome! Glad to hear you enjoyed it, Wendy! I think these ingredients are delicious no matter the form. 🙂
These look so delicious!! I am planning on making them over the weekend. Do I need to soak the dates first or would they be ok to just chuck in?
Hi Em! I didn't soak the dates - I just threw them right in! Hope you enjoy. 🙂
Can I use cashews instead of peanuts?
Hi Liza, yes they would work!
Just made these this morning and they are delicious!! In my third trimester and trying to get dates into my diet daily without just eating them. Thanks for the inspo!
So glad you enjoyed these, Kiki! Hope it's smooth sailing for the remainder of your pregnancy!
Is there a way to make these without a food processor?
Hi Bethany, I'm not sure how these bars would fare if not using a food processor. My blender doesn't handle sticky dried fruit nearly as well as the food processor, and you'd probably be left with bigger date pieces that could throw off how well these bars stick together.
Gina Dwyer says
I just made them, mixing by hand with a wooden spoon worked for me! Bit more work, but worth it! Can't wait to try one after dinner!
Glad to hear it worked for you, Gina!
Super old comment, but if anyone else sees it and is currently wondering the same thing, I used a hand immersion blender and it worked perfectly.
Do you have the nutritional count for these bars?
Hi Patti, I haven't calculated the nutritional count for this recipe, but I know there are online calculators where you can input ingredients and it will determine the stats. I think the My Fitness Pal website has one. Hopefully that helps!
Just FYI - I entered this recipe into My Fitness Pal. Here is the closest nutrition I could come up with for one bar:
14 g carbs
9 g fat
5 g protein
64 mg sodium
7 g sugar
Oh, and also they DELICIOUS! Thanks for the great idea! It really did take 5 minutes and I'll absolutely make them again 🙂
Awesome! Thanks so much for sharing, Sara. And I'm so glad you like them! I'm due to make another batch myself. 🙂
Thanks for the recipe! Just when i finished and put the tray in the fridge, i realised that i forgot the cocoa powder! But they came out very well 🙂
Awesome, Tanja! Peanut butter chia bars sound delicious, too. 🙂
Kristi Rimkus says
I saw this recipe over on Pinterest and had to stop by and tell you that it looks delicious. A perfect pick-me-up before an afternoon run.
Thank you so much Kristi!
I have peanut allergies can I use a soy based product instead of peanuts?
Hi Camille, substitutions would work just fine. If other tree nuts are okay, I suspect almonds and almond butter can easily be subbed in for the peanut ingredients. I haven't had experience with soy based replacements, but I'd imagine soy nut butter and soy nuts will work (or your preferred alternatives). You'll just want the creaminess to be in there from the nut/soy butter.
These look so yummy, but I live a ketogenic diet... So the dates have far too many carbs in them. I wonder how the consistency would be without them? Any suggestion for a replacement? I'll sweeten it another way.
Hmmm I haven't experimented with date replacements so I'm not sure what to suggest. They do provide sweetness which I believe you can replace with your preferred sweetener, but they also help with holding these bars together. I'm not too familiar with the ketogenic diet, but would any other type of dried fruit be acceptable? Something that would have a chewy texture like dates. Please let me know if you end up experimenting!
Daniela celaya says
Fig is a good replacement
I love the lively show! That's my favorite right now since it's inspiring but I also don't get overwhelmed and feel like I need to be doing more and more after listening! Which is how I get sometimes after listening to food blogging ones! lol And these bars look like just the perfect snack!
Denise @ Sweet Peas & Saffron says
Oh my gosh I've been watching forensic files on TV since before CSI was on TV! I'm pretty sure I was way too young to be watching shows about murder investigations, but I always have found them so fascinating. I need to get on the true crime podcast bandwagon now! These bars look like perfection....so perfect for a work snack!
Natalie @ Tastes Lovely says
Oh how I love podcasts. Seems like lately I've been listening to so many mommy podcasts. So predictable of me! Guess what? I have all the ingredients for these chia bars right now! Woo hoo!
I love bars like this -- they're so great for snacks, breakfast, and just satisfying the old sweet tooth! I love that you added chia seeds too, and I just got a big bag. I need to get making some of these!
Thanks Marcie! I've been working my way through a bag of chia seeds for awhile now...still have a lot left to go!