Thursday, September 1, 2011

Banana Chickpea Energy Bars

Yes, more beans! Many people assume that vegans/vegetarians are wimpy, protein deficient sissies. This just isn’t the case. With so many different varieties to choose from, I never tire of legumes. We particularly love chickpeas at our house. With 15 grams of protein and 12 grams of fiber per 1 cup serving, these guys are money.

So many store bought energy bars are high in sugar and preservatives but low in fiber, quality fats and proteins. These bars provide us with a quick spike in blood sugar but ultimately leave us worse off an hour or so later. Let’s take back the energy bar! Beans, baby, are where it’s at.

These bars can be made in advanced and then stored in the freezer. They are great for a pre-workout snack or a 4:00 pick me up. Skip the Nature Valley bar and grab one of these bad boys.

I like to mix in the goodies with my hands. I also like to lick the goodness off when I'm done!


  • 1.5 cups chickpeas
  • ¼ cup ground flax
  • ¼ cup water
  • ¼ cup agave nectar
  • 1.5 cups oats
  • ½ cup hemp protein*
  • ½ cup cocoa powder
  • 1 small banana, mashed
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • dash of salt
  • ¼ cup pumpkin seeds
  • ¼ cup sunflower seeds
  • ½ cup dried unsweetened coconut
  • 2 Tbls chia seeds (optional)

Yummy, healthy, full of life!


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Mix together ground flax and water in a small bowl.
  • In the bowl of a food processor, combine chickpeas, flax mixture, agave, oats, hemp protein, cocoa, banana, vanilla, cinnamon, and salt.
  • Pulse until well mixed.
  • Put dough into large bowl and mix in pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, coconut, and chia seeds.
  • Press dough evenly into a 13x9 inch backing dish—lightly greased or lined with parchment paper (Using parchment paper to smash it does is also helpful).
  • Bake for 15 minutes.
  • Let cool and cut into squares.

Happy Eating!

* I was fresh out of hemp protein at the time of this post so I substituted with Vega Whole Food Health Optimizer. It’s a little pricy but I love to put it in my post-run smoothies to ensure I’m getting what my body needs. It was developed by Brendan Braizer, a vegan who also happens to be a professional ironman. He also has great bars I use when we’re traveling.

No hemp protein laying around? Get some. But in the mean time, replace hemp with 1/2 cup whole wheat flour.


  1. okay I'm curious because of the fiber and protein content.. how do they taste??

  2. I just ate one and it was great! Kind of clifbar-ish. Try it... they would be great to take on trips with you! And share them with your co-workers...haha...and when they like them direct them towards my blog :)

  3. OK, heading home from San Diego today. Looks like I've got some cooking to do. I love having energy bars around for that 3:30PM low. Will report back.