Date, Almond & Cashew Energy Bars Recipe with Egg White Protein

I need snacks. I can’t physically make it from breakfast to lunch without one. Maybe that means I’m eating the wrong thing for breakfast, or maybe it’s just my body, but I have to eat every 3-4 hours otherwise I feel queasy and shaky.

So I’ve been buying bars. Energy bars in every size and shape and flavor. Some are better than others, but they all have one thing in common: they are expensive. And often full of sugar and other shtuff that I don’t necessarily want to be eating.

The RX bars are some of my favorites, namely the chocolate sea salt flavor. I figured, since the recipe is written right there on the package, why not try a homemade version?

These are the result.

Homemade Protein Bars: Paleo, gluten-free, refined-sugar free, and no-bake!

They’re not identical to the original, I find the flavor much nuttier with a slightly grittier texture not unlike almond butter. So I won’t call them a copycat recipe, but rather ‘inspired by’ the RX brand. The ingredients are the same, the nutrition is pretty darn similar (according to my calculations these might actually have a bit more protein per bar, 14 grams worth) but I assume because of the limits of home equipment, I’m not able to get the same smooth, dense consistency as the commercial ones.

Homemade Chocolate Sea Salt RX Bars Recipe

You’ll find these bars much softer, which I like (since they won’t rip out your husband’s temporary fillings… oops). But the softer texture does mean they need to be refrigerated, which means they are better for at-home snacking and not the kind of the you want to pack in your purse for a long, hot day outside.

Homemade Energy Bars Recipe: Nutty Chocolate and Sea Salt

I found a food processor worked best here, first grinding the nuts to almost the consistency of almond butter, then adding the dates (my attempts to do this in a blender were less than successful, it’s simply too thick).

I added cocoa powder for flavor and topped the bars with a sprinkle of sea salt and some cocoa nibs for crunch. I also think shredded coconut would be a nice addition, or maybe some dried fruit or dark chocolate chunks.

Homemade RX Bars Recipe - Copycat Chocolate Sea Salt Flavor

Dates, Nuts, and Cocoa combine with natural egg white protein for a delicious and energy-packed bar!

While not vegan, these bars are paleo and gluten, dairy, and refined sugar free (all the sugar and sweetness here comes from the dates).

I used egg white protein powder (actual egg whites would add too much liquid and result in a too-soft consistency). I like the Trader Joe’s brand, but any unflavored egg white protein powder should work here. I can’t say what would happen if you used another type of protein powder; I feel the egg white protein gives the bars much of their structure and substance, without it the bars might not hold their shape.

(If you’re at Trader Joe’s anyway picking up protein powder, be sure you check out their pitted Deglet Noor dates in the nut/dried fruit section. They are seriously the best value for the money and a huge time-saver being that they are already pitted.)

Chocolate Sea Salt Protein Bars

Chocolate Sea Salt Protein Bars

Yield: 8 bars

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Using the same simple ingredient list as your favorite brand, these homemade energy bars are paleo, gluten free, and refined sugar free (all the sweetness comes from the dates!)

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup whole almonds, plus more for topping if desired
  • 1 cup raw cashews
  • 1 cup (6 ounces) pitted dates
  • 3/4 cup egg white protein powder
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2-4 tablespoons water, as needed
  • cacao nibs, for topping
  • flake sea salt, for topping

Directions:

  1. Combine almonds and cashews in a food processor. Process on high until nuts are finely ground and begin to turn into butter, 3 to 5 minutes.
  2. Add dates, a few at a time, and process until well incorporated, then add egg white powder, cocoa powder, and 2 tablespoons of water and process until mixture forms a crumbly dough. You should be able to pinch some of the mixture between your fingers and have it hold its shape. If it is still crunbly, add another tablespoon or two of water (this will depend mainly on how dry/soft your dates are).
  3. Pour into an 8-by-8-inch baking sheet lined with foil or parchment paper. Press firmly (use a tart tamper if you have one, or the base of a sturdy glass or flat-bottomed measuring cup) to press into an even layer in the bottom of the pan. The more you can compact the mixture the more sturdy they will be.
  4. Sprinkle with chopped almonds, cacao nibs, and sea salt; press toppings into dough.
  5. Refrigerate for 30 minutes or until firm. Remove bars from pan and cut into 8 bars. Wrap individually in waxed paper and refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 1 month (in an airtight bag).

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21 Comments Leave a Comment »

  1. Very in need of good snacks over here, too, although I have a much harder time between lunch and dinner than between breakfast and lunch. I can’t wait to try this recipe! Love the photos and the way you wrapped the bars.

  2. I’m allergic to tree nuts (but peanuts and seeds are fine) any suggestion to adjust the recipe? Thanks they look great!!

    • I haven’t tried it personally, but since you are essentially making homemade nut butters as the first step (almond + cashew) I would think it’d work with peanuts and maybe sunflower butter? Give it a try… I’m sure it’ll taste great even if the texture isn’t quite right.

  3. I’m at TJ’s about….oh 5 to 7 times a week. Whoops. But I have never seen those dates! Going to check those out.

    The bars look great and that sea salt on top…that is just the best I bet!

  4. Hi Lindsay! Thanks for sharing this recipe. I’m wondering if you have tried this with another type of protein powder? If not, do you think it would work with whey protein?

    • I have not, no. As I mentioned above, I do think the egg white specifically helps contribute to the structure/consistency of the bars. Without it I’m not sure they’d hold together quite as well? Do let me know if you try it though!

    • Sorry I missed that! Thanks for replying :)

  5. Hi Lindsay! Your Chocolate Sea Salt Protein Bars look and sound fantastic! I love that they are paleo, gluten-free and – most importantly – naturally sweetened! I find packaged bars have SO much processed sugar in them, I feel like sometimes I am better off just eating a candy bar, lol! Great work!! :)

  6. I can’t make it without snacks either, and being pregnant has made it so much worse! I have to have snacks all the time to not be hangry. I LOVE protein bars but I can’t buy them a lot because my husband eats the whole box in a day, and you’re right; they’re expensive. I’m not a fan of refined sugars and the nice protein bars cost more :/ I usually have whey protein powder on hand so it’ll be interesting to see how these turn out. Thanks for the recipe!

  7. I get the queasy and shaky too, though i seem to be able to go slightly longer the older i get, as a kid i had to be fed every four hours (or asleep) or i would throw up stomach acid. Protein and complex carbs help a lot, i think maybe our blood sugar drops too much. I carry nuts or other long lasting foods in my purse for emergency snacks

  8. The RX bars are some of my favorites too!

  9. Wow, these are so delicious!!!!

  10. These look so awesome! Any chance you have a calorie count per bar?
    Thank you!!

  11. We tried the recipe and the bars are delicious!!! Thanks for this!

  12. I just made these yesterday, they are so good! RX bars are the only ones so far that don’t bother my stomach, these are as good if not better tasting than the RX bars. I am glad I found this recipe! Thank you!!

  13. Super excited to make these. My question is, what is the difference between egg white protein powder and dried egg whites? Can I use dried egg whites?

  14. If you bake them would it remove the moisture and give you something more stable?

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