Chocolate Chunk Protein Bars

A quick and nutritious snack that’s packed with plant protein

Chocolate protein bar

These easy and nutritious no-bake granola bars are packed with protein from sunflower seeds, sunflower seed butter and hemp hearts. They’re also gluten-free, vegan and sweetened with dates. No protein powder needed. One small serving packs over 7 g of protein and a good dose of healthy unsaturated fats.

Prep Time – 15 minutes
Total Time – 15 minutes

Serves 8


• 1 1⁄2 cup rolled oats

• 1 cup Medjool dates, pitted

• 1⁄2 cup sunflower seeds

• 1⁄4 cup hemp hearts

• 1⁄4 cup sunflower seed butter, smooth

• 3 Tbsp. water (or melted coconut oil)

• 1 tsp. vanilla extract

• 1⁄4 cup vegan dark chocolate, chopped


1. Add the oats, dates, sunflower seeds, hemp hearts, sunflower seed butter and vanilla to a food processor. Process until combined. The mixture will be crumbly.

2. Add water (or coconut oil), one tablespoon at a time and process until the mixture sticks together when pressed. You might not need all three tablespoons if your dates are softer and stickier.

3. Chop your chocolate into small-medium chunks and add to the food processor. Pulse a few times to incorporate into the mixture.

4. Press the mixture at the bottom of a small dish. Keep covered in the fridge or freezer. They’re great when eaten straight out of the freezer!


The bars will crumble a little if you try to cut them when warm. If you have the time, it’s best to chill the bars for at least one hour before cutting, but this is not necessary. Make sure to use vegan chocolate to make this recipe completely vegan. You can chop a chocolate bar or use chocolate chips if preferred.

Feel free to substitute the sunflower seeds in this recipe with pumpkin seeds. If you don’t have a nut allergy, you can also use cashews, walnuts or other nuts of choice.

You can substitute the hemp hearts for ground flax seeds or chia seeds. However, hemp hearts will have a bit more protein.

I use original Sunbutter, which is a little sweet and adds a nice flavour. Unsweetened sunflower seed butter will have more of a bitter taste. If you don’t have sunflower seed butter, you can use other nut and seed butter. Keep in mind that it will change the flavour of these bars, so make sure to use a nut or seed butter that you enjoy.

Nutrition facts per serving
Calories 384; protein 7 g; fat 20 g; carbs 49 g.

You may also like: Dark Chocolate Almond Freezer Fudge

IMPACT Fall Fitness & Food Issue

Read This Story in Our 2023 Fall Fitness & Food Issue
Featuring this year’s winners of the Amazing Race Canada, Ty Smith and Kat Kastner on our cover. Inside our latest issue, you’ll find all the inspiration you need to carry you through the autumn season. From delicious high-protein recipes and how to resist the crunch of potato chips to running through the high peaks of the Colorado Rockies and the latest in nutrition and fitness, these pages are packed with expert knowledge and advice.