Chocolate Mint Protein Bar Recipe
We’re big fans of protein bars around here. They’re quick, healthy, and tasty – all good things. What’s not so good is the fact that a lot of commercial protein bars aren’t really that great for you. Some of them have so much sugar, fat and calories, you’re practically eating a candy bar. They also tend to have a lot of strange unpronounceable ingredients that I’m not that comfortable putting in my body. And while there are healthy bars out there – my local Whole Foods has a ton of awesome ones – those tend to be pretty expensive.
So not too long ago, I started looking for recipes to make my own. Since then, I’ve made chocolate, peanut butter, cranberry almond, chocolate coconut chip, and a few other variations – all with pretty good results. While they maybe weren’t quite as delicious as a store-bought bar, they were generally cheaper and healthier and we ate them happily for breakfasts and snacks.
Then I had a Chocolate Mint Clif bar on a hike (one of my favorites when I used to buy bars regularly) and I knew I had to try making my own. I wasn’t able to find an existing recipe that I liked online, so I adapted one I’d previously used with good results.
The results were so good I knew I just had to share them! Rich, fudgy chocolate, and a cool peppermint bite – what’s not to like? These bars are filling and delicious, they have more protein and fewer calories and fat than the average store-bought bar, no crazy ingredients, and if you make them with stevia like I did, no added sugar (other than whatever’s in your protein).
A word about protein: depending on what protein you use, you may get different results. I used Pure Protein’s chocolate whey protein powder. It’s not my usual protein, but it’s what I had on hand, and it worked great in this recipe. My protein contains 160 calories and 18g of protein in 1 scoop. Other proteins will have different ratios of protein to calories, and may have different sized scoops, so your results and nutrition stats may vary.
I’ve made bars with a few different protein powders and have found that 4-6 scoops of protein is generally sufficient, since you also get a good amount of protein from the other ingredients. But if you’re bulking or trying to cut calories, you can adjust your protein ratio accordingly. Just add a little more or less of the other dry ingredients to your dough to get the right consistency.
I adapted the No-Bake Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Protein Bar recipe from Busy But Healthy, but added a few things to make them mint-chocolatey. I cut these bars into 12 squares, and while they look small, they’re surprisingly filling. Even the boyfriend can eat one of these for breakfast and be full until lunchtime!
No-Bake Chocolate Mint Protein Bars
Makes 9 or 12 bars (depending on how big you want your squares to be)
1 1/2 cups quick oats (not instant or old fashioned)
1/3 cup ground flax
6 scoops chocolate protein powder
1/2 cup almond butter
2 tbsp cocoa powder
1/2 cup cold water
1 tsp peppermint extract
3 tbsp semi-sweet chocolate chips
*Stevia drops to taste: I used 6 drops of Trader Joe’s liquid stevia. Depending on how sweet your protein powder is, you may want less or more. Start with less and taste the dough then add more sweetener accordingly. If using liquid stevia, go easy on it. That stuff is strong! Even a little too much and it’ll taste bitter. You could also skip the stevia and use 1/4 cup honey or other sweetener of choice.
Combine dry ingredients and almond butter in a bowl.
Add mint extract and a few drops stevia to cold water. Add water to dry ingredients and stir to combine. You may find it easier to just knead the mixture with your hands (I did).
Taste and add a few more drops stevia if necessary. Depending on your protein, the dough may seem too watery or too dry. Add a little more water or a little more flax or oats accordingly to get a dough that is not too wet or too crumbly. Mix in your chocolate chips.
Press into a 9×9 pan sprayed with cooking spray. Place in freezer for 20-30 minutes, cut into bars and wrap each bar in plastic wrap or waxed paper.
Store in fridge or freezer (I keep mine in the fridge because I usually eat one right away and don’t want to wait for it to thaw. However, if you need these to travel with you, stick with the freezer.)
Nutrition: (based on 12 bars in a 9×9 pan with ‘Pure Protein Frosty Chocolate’ and stevia)
Calories: 223 Fat: 10g Carbs: 17g Fiber: 4g Sugar: 4g Protein: 18g
*Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links, which means I might receive a few cents if you make a purchase using them. However, all recommendations are my own. I only recommend products I like and use myself, regardless of possible compensation.