These No Bake Peanut Butter Oatmeal Bars are decadent, slightly fudgy, and are wonderful healthy snack made with just 8 natural ingredients! No oven is required, just one bowl and under 10 minutes prep.

no bake peanut butter oatmeal bars sprinkled with sea salt

I’ve already shared a no bake peanut butter pie and peanut butter protein balls recipe. Now it’s the turn of these no bake peanut butter oatmeal bars.

Unlike many no bake peanut butter bars recipes, this version has absolutely no powdered sugar, crushed cookies, or butter.

I’ve also added tested recipe with dark chocolate chips in the bars or thick ganache topping. I’ve included both options for the chocolate lovers out there. The results are a healthy snack reminiscent of Reese’s peanut butter cups that is delicious!

cut up no bake peanut butter oatmeal bars on parchment paper

Ingredients for No Bake Peanut Butter Oatmeal Bars

These no bake peanut butter oatmeal bars recipe require just 8 ingredients most of which are pantry staples.

  • Peanut Butter: Avoid peanut butter with tons of added sugars and additives in general. Instead, choose an all-natural peanut butter with a runny consistency, if possible. If it’s thick, then you can heat it up first.
  • Almonds: The almonds will be processed into almond flour, so feel free to use about 1 1/4 cups store-bought almond flour if you have it. For substitutions, check the FAQs.
  • Oats: Use rolled oats or quick oats, using certified gluten-free if needed. You could also use store-bought oat flour.
  • Sweetener: Honey, brown rice syrup, or date syrup will work best. You can also use maple syrup, though as it’s not quite as sticky, the peanut butter oatmeal bars may be slightly more fragile.
  • Chocolate Chips: I like to use either semi-sweet, dark, or even sugar-free chocolate chips.
  • Shredded coconut: I use unsweetened shredded coconut. You could lightly toast the coconut flakes in a pan until golden brown for extra flavor and crunch.
  • Flavorings: I used a combination of cinnamon, pure vanilla extract, and salt to flavor these no bake peanut butter oatmeal bars.
oats, coconut flakes, peanut butter, chocolate chips, maple syrup, almonds

Recipe Variations

  • Seeds: Feel free to add some ground flaxseed or chia seeds to boost the protein content further and add additional healthy fats and vitamins/minerals. I recommend adding 2-3 tablespoons and potentially removing a tablespoon or so of the oat flour to make up for them.
  • Dried fruit: Instead of, or alongside, the chocolate chips, you could add some finely chopped dried fruit to the no bake peanut butter oatmeal bars. I suggest raisins, craisins, or blueberries as my top picks.
  • Spices: Cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom, pumpkin spice, vanilla, ginger, etc.
  • Chocolate chips instead of ganache topping: You can also add 3/4 of chocolate chips to a dough and pulse a few times in a food processor. Sprinkle remaining chocolate chips on top and flatten more with spatula or using your hands, pressing chips into dough.

How to Make No Bake Peanut Butter Bars

Here is a quick overview how to make no bake peanut butter oatmeal bars. They can be prepped in around 10 minutes.

Process the almonds: Add the almonds to your food processor and process into a coarse flour (meal) texture. Then add the oats and process more until both ingredients are floury in texture.

Add the dry ingredients: Add the coconut flakes, cinnamon, salt, and vanilla extract. Process for a further 30 seconds.

Add the wet ingredients: Add the peanut butter, maple syrup, water and process until well combined into a dough.

You may need to pause your machine a few times to wipe down the sides of the jug to make sure everything is well combined.

Don’t pulse too much as it will break down the chips and possibly even cause them to melt from the machine’s heat.

Recipe Tip

If the batter seems a little too crumbly, you can add a little extra peanut butter depending on which type you use. Sometimes it doesn’t work as well to bind all the ingredients with the initial amount. Add 1 tablespoon to begin with and try again.

Shape the no bake peanut butter bars: First, prepare an 8×8-inch baking dish with parchment paper. Ensure the paper overlaps the dish’s edges, so it’ll be easy to lift out of the container later.

Then transfer the peanut butter dough to the dish and spread/flatten it well with hands and then spatula. Make sure to press on it so no bake peanut butter oatmeal bars stick!

Decorate and chill: In a small saucepan, add chocolate chips and coconut oil; melt over low heat, whisking constantly. Pour over dough all around and tilt pan to help melted chocolate coat bars evenly.

Then refrigerate the peanut butter oatmeal bars for at least 2 hours or freeze for around 30 minutes.  

Cut the no bake peanut butter oatmeal bars: Pull the parchment paper flaps to pull the bars out of the tray and cut into 16 slices. Enjoy the chocolate peanut butter squares immediately, with a sprinkle of sea salt, and/or store for later!

More Tips for Best Results

  • To easily slice the bars: Dip your knife in hot water for 10-15 seconds before cutting the bars.
  • Feel free to use a 9 x 9 inch pan: The bars will be slightly thinner.

How to Make Ahead, Store and Freeze

Make ahead: As these no bake peanut butter oatmeal bars require several hours of chilling, you can prepare them the night before to chill in the refrigerator overnight before slicing.

Storing: Store bars in a glass container in the refrigerator for between 7-10 days. You can use parchment paper in-between layers of the bars if needed.

Can I freeze the bars? These no bake peanut butter bars are super freezer friendly. Lay the bars in a single layer on a tray until frozen and then transfer to a freezer-safe container or bag. You can optionally individually wrap them to freeze too.

Remove the peanut butter oatmeal bars from the freezer as needed and allow them to thaw at room temperature for 20-25 minutes before enjoying.

FAQs

Can I omit coconut flakes in no bake peanut butter oatmeal bars?

Yes, if you’re not a massive fan of coconut, you can omit it and simply add a little more oat flour.

Can I replace the almonds?

Yes, you could replace the almonds with something similar like walnuts, hazelnuts, or sunflower seeds.
Just note that the flavor, nutritional values, and particularly the amount of protein will change based on which you use. Or use approximately 1 1/4 cups almond flour instead.

Are these no bake peanut butter oatmeal bars healthy?

While these no bake peanut butter bars may not be a low calorie snack, they’re full of protein, fiber, and healthy fats. Just one bar contains 7g protein!

As long as you enjoy these in moderation, then it will be more than enough to keep you going for a healthy breakfast between meals or helping to attack those sugar cravings.

More Peanut Butter Recipes to Try

More Bars Recipes to Try

stack of no bake peanut butter oatmeal bars with sea salt in a bowl behind
no bake peanut butter oatmeal bars

No Bake Peanut Butter Oatmeal Bars

These healthy No Bake Peanut Butter Oatmeal Bars are decadent, slightly fudgy, and a wonderful snack or dessert made with just 8 natural ingredients!
5 from 15 votes
Servings 16 bars
Calories 232
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes

Ingredients 
 

Instructions 

  • In a food processor, add almonds and process on High until finely ground. Add oats and process more until finely ground. Add coconut flakes, cinnamon, salt and vanilla extract; process for 30 seconds.
  • Add peanut butter, maple syrup and water; process until combined. You might have to stop a few times and scrape down the walls.
  • Line 8" x 8" square baking dish with parchment paper and transfer dough into it. Flatten using your fingers pressing onto dough well so bars don't crumble. Then level with spatula and hands.
  • In a small saucepan, add chocolate chips and coconut oil; melt over low heat, whisking constantly. Pour over dough all around and tilt pan to help melted chocolate coat bars evenly.
  • Refrigerate for a few hours of freeze for 30 minutes. Cut into 16 squares and enjoy chilled.

Notes

Recipe improved and updated Apr 2021.
  • Store: Refrigerate in a glass airtight container for up to 7 – 10 days.
  • Freeze: Up to 3 months. 
  • Peanut Butter: Avoid peanut butter with tons of added sugars and additives in general. Instead, choose an all-natural peanut butter with a runny consistency, if possible. If it’s thick, then you can heat it up first.
  • Almonds: The almonds will be processed into flour, so feel free to use approximately 1 1/4 cups store-bought almond flour if you have it.
  • Oats: Use rolled oats or quick oats, using certified gluten-free if needed. You could also use store-bought oat flour.
  • Sweetener: Honey (non-vegan), brown rice syrup (decreased GI), or date syrup will work best. You can also use maple syrup, though as it’s not quite as ‘sticky,’ the peanut butter oat bars may be slightly more fragile.
  • Chocolate Chips: I like to use either semi-sweet, dark, or even sugar-free chocolate chips.
  • Chocolate chips instead of ganache topping – older recipe without melting chocolate: You can also add 3/4 of chocolate chips to a dough and pulse a few times in a food processor. Sprinkle remaining chocolate chips on top and flatten more with spatula or using your hands, pressing chips into dough.

Nutrition

Serving: 1bar | Calories: 232kcal | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 44mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 7g
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Author: Olena Osipov
Did you make this recipe?Mention @ifoodreal or tag #ifoodreal!

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About Olena

Welcome! I grew up in Ukraine watching my grandma cook with simple ingredients. I have spent the last 11 years making it my mission to help you cook quick and easy meals for your family!

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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Made these last week. Was needing some healthy, yummy snacks for when I’m on the go. I substituted the honey with dates. I just soaked half a cup in hot water and blended them to make a paste.
    Absolutely loved these bars! So easy to make and really yummy. I put some in the freezer, and actually love them straight out of there for summer. They are chewy and sweet. Soooo good!

    1. You should be able to sub any neutral tasting oil although the recipe has not been tested with anything other than coconut oil.

  2. 5 stars
    Dear Olena
    I hope your relatives in Ukraine are safe.
    I absolutely love this recipe. And so do my family and friends.
    I double up on the chocolate! And I love adding different berries.
    I use almond flour so that I can use a hand mixer.
    Thank-you.
    With love and kindness always, Lisa
    Stay safe and stay hopeful1

  3. 5 stars
    I’ve made these a few times now, with and without the ganache, and they’re amazing- they’ve completely replaced those store bought bars. I don’t have a food processor so I use the oat and almond flour then just a hand mixer and it comes out great.

    This part you can post or not (it’s weird, I get it) – I started looking for something (and of course went straight to your website first) because I was eating a store bought protien bar and my dog was asking for food. I told him no and it wasn’t good for him then went WAIT! Why am I eating something that’s not healthy enough for my dog! (He does get a little bite of these now when I make them, just not with the ganache, so he says thanks too).

    1. Glad you and your furry loved one enjoy the recipe (w/out chocolate for him) πŸ™‚ And so true about your realization and feeding ourselves with wholesome, real food! Thanks for the review and glad to have you here!

  4. 5 stars
    Just found this recipe today. This is a winner two ways. For me because it is mostly healthy and I love natural unsweetened peanut butter, and my picky grandson because his two loves in life are peanut butter and chocolate.

    1. Hi Stephanie. You can certainly leave the coconut oil out. You process the whole almonds into almond flour…so if you already have almond flour, you can use that instead. Hope that helps.

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