Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Bars are a fudgy, delectable delight boasting 9 grams of plant-based protein without the use of soy. So nutritious they make a great breakfast or snack, but so delicious you’ll want to serve them for dessert!
I love chickpeas (aka garbanzo beans). If you’re familiar with my recipes you know that they are one of those great ingredients that taste delicious in both savory and sweet worlds. My Roasted Chipotle Chickpeas are a great zesty little snack, and my Chocolate Chickpea Bark is a chocolate bar as healthy as it is heavenly! Chickpeas are packed with plant-based protein, fiber, iron, potassium, calcium, and vitamins A, B-6 and C. That’s not even an exhaustive list, just the heavy hitters. Naturally, the next logical step would be to create a recipe with garbanzo bean flour. I did this several years ago and it was a flopper! I made biscuits with this flour and they tasted terrible, too earthy for my palate. Especially for biscuits, which I associate with a flavor that incorporates a creamy, buttery richness. I also found chickpea flour to have a little bit of that bitterness much like in quinoa flour. I was scarred for many years from the biscuit incident. But my desire to incorporate this nutritional powerhouse gave me the courage to overcome my fear and try again. 🙂 I am so happy I did!
The base ingredients for these Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Bars are almond flour, garbanzo bean flour, cocoa powder and peanut butter. A great compilation of plant-based protein and fiber. Sweetened with unrefined sugars maple syrup and coconut palm sugar, they bake into a creamy, fudgy, brownie-like bar with a balanced-but-not-overwhelming hint of peanut butter. I am pleased to report the chickpea flour was a complete success in this recipe, with no earthiness or bitterness to be found–or tasted!
Hints and Substitutions
You can make these bars with or without the dollop of peanut butter in the middle. If you choose to incorporate the dollop, I have provided directions below on how to use a straw to make the holes. In the dough, I used regular (creamy) jarred peanut butter. For the dollops, I used a peanut butter powder mixed with water to make a consistency that is easier to spoon into the holes. If you want to use jarred peanut butter for the filling dollops, and you find it to be too thick, simply stir it together with a small amount of melted coconut oil.
Although I have not tried it, I believe that almond or cashew butters would be viable substitutions for the peanut butter.
(1) Using a straw, mark sixteen evenly spaced holes. (2) Rotate straw in a circular motion to make each hole about 3/4 inch. (3) Fill each hole with peanut butter.