No-bake peanut butter jelly bars that are super simple to make, use just eight ingredients and are packed with nutrition. Naturally, gluten-free + vegan too!
Today we are rediscovering a childhood favorite but in a fun and sophisticated way. These peanut butter and jelly bars combine these two epic flavors and turn them into a delicious and healthy snack.
If you've ever gotten into that afternoon slump and find yourself reaching for something sweet (hello chocolate bars!), these bars would be the perfect thing. Not only are they nutritionally balanced, with tons of fiber, healthy fats, carbs, and a little protein, but they are also flavorful and perfectly sweet. They'll trick your brain into thinking that you're eating dessert, when in fact you're kind of just eating a gussied up granola bar!
The base of these bars couldn't be easier. It's just oats, dates, coconut oil, peanut butter and powdered peanut butter (which I introduced in my Chocolate Peanut Butter Quinoa Breakfast Cookies). You whizz everything up in the food processor until it gets nice and sticky, then press it into your pan and let it firm up in the fridge for a few minutes.
What's great about this crust is that it has a ton of peanut butter flavor, without having to actually add that much peanut butter. The powdered peanut butter has all the flavor, but way less fat and calories, so it helps to keep the bars on the lighter side. Plus you're getting the fiber and complex carbs from the oats, and tons of vitamins and minerals from the dates!
For the next layer, it's all about the jelly.
I mentioned in my July Favorites video that I've been totally obsessed with St. Dalfour jam lately. It's a French company who makes jam without using any cane sugar. They sweeten their jams and jellies with fruit juice, but I swear you would never know. It's still every bit as sweet and delicious, AND they come in tons of different flavors.
For this recipe, I went with the black raspberry, but it also be delicious with strawberry, blueberry, raspberry or even peach! Whichever your favorite jelly/jam is, you can swap it in for that.
To finish these bars off, I made a quick peanut butter sauce by combining peanut butter powder and water. You just mix it up, pour it on top of the bars, sprinkle with a little sea salt and then let the bars set in the fridge/freezer.
They should be easy to remove and then slice into bars (you might just want to let them sit a room temp for a few minutes if they've been frozen).
My one tip for these bars is that you should definitely keep them in the fridge or freezer. Since they have coconut oil in them, if which softens and/or melts at room temp, they can get a little too soft if they're left out.
If you want to take them with you to the office, I would suggest wrapping them up in tinfoil and then storing them in a little zip lock bag in the fridge. And if you don't have a fridge at your office, I think buying a mini cooler is SUCH a good investment. I have one that I bring on road trips all the time and it's a lifesaver. You can keep drinks, snacks, etc. cold for hours. The one I have is from LL Bean and I really like it. (here's the link if you want to check it out)
And that's pretty much it! Peanut Butter + Jelly Snack Bars that use only 8 ingredients, are crazy simple to make and taste amazing. You're going to gobble these up and be swept back to memories of your school lunch and crustless PB+J sammies. (or was that just me…?)
More Healthy PB&J Snacks To Try:
Peanut Butter + Jelly Snack Bars
for the crust
for the filling
- 1 jar jam of choice I like St Dalfour
for the sauce
- 2 tablespoons powdered peanut butter
- 1 tablespoon water or coconut oil
- Coarse sea salt to garnish
- Add the all the crust ingredients to a food processor and process on high until combined. The mixture should be sticky.
- Transfer the crust to a parchment lined baking pan (or loaf pan) and press the mixture firmly down with a spatula or your hands. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
- Once the crust has set, remove it from the fridge and top with the jam. Spread it out in an even layer on top of the crust.
- Whisk together the powdered peanut butter and water and drizzle on top of the jam. Sprinkle with sea salt and place in the freezer for at least 30 minutes. Remove, slice into bars and enjoy!
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