Five-ingredient cinnamon pecan chia bars are naturally-sweetened and easy to make in the food processor. They’re date-based, cinnamon-spiced, and make a healthy, vegan snack.
If there was ever a time for a hearty breakfast, pre-wedding venue touring would be it. Not that I’m getting crazy with anything wedding planning related (the closest thing I have to a theme is: relaxed), but after procrastinating for a few months, it’s kind of time to buck up and do it. So far we’ve decided for certain on a cake (or rather, cakes!) — because that’s what you do when you think about food all day long. 😂 But at some point I’m going to need to figure out where I’ll be eating it, what I’ll be wearing, and who will be eating it along with me.
Along with a million other details.
Enter: cinnamon pecan chia bars. They accomplished the rare task of keeping me full all morning while we walked around sightseeing (it’ll be a semi-destination wedding), venue touring, and flipping through a HEFTY binder of tablecloth swatches.
These cinnamon pecan chia bars are similar to my chocolate peanut butter chia bars and apple cinnamon chia bars in that the method and several base ingredients (dates, nuts) are the same. When I found myself with extra pecans, I knew exactly what was going down.
Five ingredients, a little bit of fridge space, and a food processor are all you need to prep a batch of these healthy and vegan snacks for the week. Dates, pecans, almond butter, ground cinnamon, and chia seeds get blended up and pressed into a pan to set in the refrigerator before slicing. The dates are all you need as far as sweetness goes! I used almond butter here because I’ve found it has a more mild flavor than, say, peanut butter does. And while you can taste the cinnamon in the finished product, if you’re a huge fan you can always add some more.
- I suggest using a creamy, no-stir almond butter to cut down on any “oiliness” in these bars. I typically love eating the all-natural almond butter varieties that are on the runnier side on my toast, but they won’t be the best option for these cinnamon pecan chia bars. I would shoot for an almond butter that has a consistency closest to standard peanut butter if you can find it (I did, one of the big brands at my grocery store). As a bonus these these tend to be on the cheaper side! Save the fancy kind for eating straight-up. 🙂
- Since all food processors are different, it’s hard to determine an exact amount of time the ingredients will require to process into the right consistency. The mixture will break down and first become crumbly, and with additional processing will resemble a cohesive, slightly-moist mixture that will clump together when you press on it. That’s what you’re aiming for. Try not to process too too much because then too much oil will release from the pecans and almond butter.
- I use my Ninja (<– affiliate link) to make all my date-based bars (and everything else that requires food processing) and it’s still going strong after several years.
- 12 pitted Medjool dates (roughly 1 cup)
- 1/2 cup pecan pieces
- 1/4 cup almond butter (see note)
- 2 tbsp chia seeds
- 3/4 tsp ground cinnamon
- Line a 9"x5" loaf pan with parchment paper and set aside. You'll want the parchment paper to overhang on two opposite sides so you'll be able to easily pull the bars out of the pan when it's time to slice.
- Add all ingredients to the bowl of a food processor.
- Process until all ingredients are just about evenly dispersed, stopping to scrape down the sides with a spatula several times throughout. It will be done when its consistency holds its shape when you press on it.
- Turn out mixture into the prepared loaf pan and press firmly into a block with about 1/2" thickness. The mixture won't take up the whole pan - just press into however much you'd like.
- Refrigerate pan for at least 45 minutes, or until the mixture has hardened some and will slice cleanly.
- Slice into 8 bars and store in the refrigerator. Bars will stay for several weeks.