Hemp Protein Bars may sound healthy but maybe you're thinking, a bit boring?
However, these bars are anything but boring. These are sweet, chocolatey, and delicious. And the healthy part is, yes, they are. Extremely healthy. These bars are sweet but have no refined sugar. Instead, I used dates as a natural, healthy sweetener.
Dates are naturally high in sugar, so they are unrefined, whole-food sweeteners. Dates are also naturally sticky, so they do double duty as a binder in bars like these hemp protein bars. They're also high in fibre and potassium, so they bring a lot more than sweetness to a recipe.
About Hemp Hearts
Hemp is a species of the Cannabis plant but is not the same as marijuana. Hemp seeds do not contain any real amount of THC, the compound in marijuana that makes people high.
The hemp species of plant is cultivated for its seeds, which are also called hemp hearts. They have a chewy texture and a mild, nutty flavour which makes them perfect for baking, salads, smoothies, and raw treats like these protein bars.
Hemp is a Super Food
Hemp hearts are very, very nutritious. Twenty-five percent of the total calories in hemp seed is protein. Compared to chia or flaxseed, hemp has double the protein and half the carbohydrates. This is saying a lot because both chia and flax are also nutritional superstars. (Try these Easy Chia Energy Balls)
Hemp seeds are also an excellent way to consume healthy fats, as well as a great source of Vitamin E, Calcium, Iron, Zinc, and other minerals. You can find more in-depth info on hemp seed nutrition here: Health Benefits of Hemp Seeds
Cacao Packs even more nutrition into these protein bars
The fact that dark chocolate is so good for us brings joy to my heart. Because chocolate makes everything better, like these hemp protein bars. Dark chocolate is rich in antioxidants and minerals.
About These Protein Bars
These bars are so yummy, you will feel like you are eating a decadent brownie treat. Until you remember everything that I said above and realize there's no need for guilt here.
These delicious bars make a perfect addition to a packed lunch for school or work, a protein hit for post-workout, and I even like them for breakfast. Try hemp seed in a delicious morning smoothie, too: Kiwi, Banana & Hemp Smoothie With Ginger and Lime
Hemp Protein Bars - Chocolate Cranberry
- 1 cup almond flour
- 2 cups dates pitted
- ½ cup almond butter
- ½ cup cacao or cocoa powder
- ½ cup hemp seeds
- ½ teaspoon salt sea salt or kosher
- ¼ cup cranberries dried
- Prepare a nine-inch square baking pan by lining with parchment paper
- Put all ingredients, except for the cranberries, into the food processor, and pulse until combined.
- Add cranberries and pulse a couple of times until they are incorporated
- Press mixture evenly into prepared pan
- Refrigerate uncovered, overnight
- Cut into bars
Oh these look like an awesome and healthy snack for my three year old! Trying these soon for sure. Thanks for a great recipe!
Kelly, these are really great snacks for little ones. They won't know it's healthy unless you tell them 🙂
They do not sound the least bit boring! I've never cooked with hemp and didn't realize that they were such nutrition powerhouses. I will definitely be trying this!
Katherine | Love In My Oven
These are an awesome treat!! I love the combo of chocolate and cranberry. So yummy! I'd love to pack these in my boys' lunchboxes for a healthier little treat.
Hi Katherine, that's the best thing about these, because they really are a treat, but they're healthy, too.
Dawn - Girl Heart Food
Nothing like homemade and these look like they're jam packed with goodness! Love the addition of cranberries for a pop of colour and sweetness! Pinned and can't wait to try 🙂
Hi Dawn, these are so good. I keep making them, and they keep disappearing. 🙂
Nicoletta De Angelis Nardelli
Nothing boring in these bars! Love all the ingredients, they would make me really happy to have as a snack.
Hope you give these a try, Nicoletta! I think you guys will love them!
I'm always looking for new snack bars to try, especially healthy, protein packed ones like these. And I have all the ingredients in my fridge and pantry to make them, so I'm pinning to make some time soon!
Leanne, you are going to love these! I can't make enough of them. They're so delicious and super nutritious at the same time.
I love cranberries in chocolate and it's nice that you added all of that nutrition info. Dates are the perfect binder/sweetener for this recipe, yummy and healthy!
Thanks, Joss! I am confident that you will love these!
Thanks for this recipe and for explaining how to use hemp seeds. I have never used them before but I'm now excited to try it!
Hi Tayo! Hemp seeds are so amazing. Hope you try them soon!
I wouldn't say they are boring because they are amazing! 🙂 It would be great to make a whole bunch of them in advance and enjoy throughout the week - really love how they look!
Thanks so much Elaine, because, these are so crazy good. I hope you make them!
I had not idea hemp was a super food! Loved learning that! Love that these are made with dates! Trying these ASAP!
Super glad that you were able to learn something new here, Suzy! Enjoy!
As soon as I saw the title for this recipe, I knew it was for me! So much yum here!
So Awesome, Cindy! These bars are really amazing!
I love the addition of cranberries in these protein bars. These are perfect for snacks and I will be trying a batch soon.
You're going to LOVE these, Stephanie!