Homemade Chocolate Energy Bars

Tired of overpriced energy bars that taste like cardboard? You can make your own energy bars in minutes using superfood chia and hemp seeds  — no baking required! Look for all these ingredients in natural foods stores. Learn more about hemp seeds here, and chia seeds here.

Makes: 8 bars

  • 6 dried dates, pitted
  • 1/2 cup hemp seeds
  • 1/4 cup chia seeds or sesame seeds
  • 1/4 cup sunflower seeds (see note)
  • 3/4 cup semi-sweet vegan chocolate chips
  • Generous pinch of cinnamon

Line the bottom of an 8 by 8-inch or 9- by 9-inch pan with baking parchment or wax paper.

Soak the dates in enough hot water to cover for 10 to 15 minutes, then drain and transfer to a food processor or mini-prep. Process until pureed.

Transfer the date puree to a small saucepan and add the remaining ingredients. Heat gently until the chocolate is melted, stirring often.

Pour the mixture into the prepared pan and smooth out until even. Refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours. Cut the into 9 more or less equal squares, or 8 bar-shaped pieces. Store any that aren’t eaten right away in the refrigerator, covered.

Note: Personally, I think toasted, salted sunflower seeds add the most flavor to these bars, but you can use raw or toasted sunflower seeds; salted or unsalted, as you prefer.

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