Nut Free Homemade Energy Bars
Packed with pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, and dried fruit, these nut free energy bars provide a wholesome and satisfying snack when you’re on the go. These bars are softer than some of the nut-based bars you may be accustomed to. Be sure to allow them to cool completely after slicing so they can continue to firm up. If you prefer a stiffer texture, serve them straight from the refrigerator.
Recipe type: Snacks
Serves: 10
  • 3 ounces Medjool dates, pitted
  • ½ cup puffed millet
  • ¾ cup roasted unsalted pumpkin seeds, hulled
  • ½ cup roasted unsalted sunflower seeds, hulled
  • ¼ cup toasted sesame seeds
  • 5 ounces dried apricots (about ⅔ cup), chopped
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons sunflower seed butter
  • 2 tablespoons ground flaxseed
  1. Preheat an oven to 300ºF. Cut and fold a piece of aluminum foil to 16x8 inches. Use it to line the bottom of an 8x8-inch baking pan, leaving 2 inches of overhang on 2 opposing sides.
  2. Place pitted dates in a medium bowl. Cover the dates with 2 cups of hot water. Set aside until the dates are softened, 10 minutes. Drain the dates, reserving ¼ cup of the liquid. Place the dates and reserved liquid in the food processor and process until smooth and no flecks of date remain, about 2 minutes. Set aside.
  3. Spray a large bowl with nonstick cooking spray. Add the puffed millet, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, and apricots and stir to combine.
  4. Combine the pureed dates, honey, vanilla, orange zest, cinnamon, and salt in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Continue cooking for 1 minute, whisking constantly. Remove from the heat and whisk in the sunflower seed butter and ground flaxseed.
  5. Pour the date mixture over the dried fruit mixture and stir until evenly coated. Transfer to the prepared pan. Use an offset spatula sprayed with nonstick cooking spray to press the mixture firmly and evenly into the pan.
  6. Bake until the edges are lightly browned, the center is just set, and the edges of the bars start to pull away from the sides of the pan, about 22 to 25 minutes. Set the pan on a wire rack and let cool for 30 minutes.
  7. Holding the foil overhang, gently lift the bar mixture from the pan and transfer to a cutting board. Cut into 10 bars. Transfer the bars to a wire rack and let cool completely.
Recipe by Jennifer Tyler Lee at