Packaged nut free granola bars can be hard to find so why not make your own? These granola bars are free of the top 8 allergens, easy to make, nutritious, and delicious!
Granola bars are convenient, portable, and can be very nutritious, too! While there are some allergy friendly packaged granola bars available, many bars have common allergens or cross contact with common allergens.
Bars that are allergy friendly can be hard to find at the regular grocery store. I also found that my son could eat two or three of them before he would feel full making them fairly expensive.
So, why not make your own?
To make these granola bars, you'll need a few special ingredients but they are usually easy to find at the regular grocery store or online.
You can choose whichever protein powder works for you - there are so many to choose from these days! Rice, hemp, and pea proteins are the one I see the most that are dairy free.
Nutribiotic rice protein powder
When I first made these granola bars, I used the plain variety of Nutribiotic Rice Protein powder. It doesn't have much flavor which I like because I would rather have the flavors of the other ingredients come through.
Orgain plant-based protein powder
Another option that I recently tried and really like is Orgain plant-based protein powder. This one is made with pea protein and comes in chocolate, vanilla, and natural unsweetened flavors. I have made these bars with both the vanilla and the unsweetened varieties and liked both but we prefer the unsweetened.
📣 If you want to give Orgain's products a try, follow this link and enter the code KRISTI30 for 30% off your first purchase!
I try to use the natural varieties without added sugar (like this one) for these bars because there's already sugar in the recipe. If you only have a variety with sugar added, you can reduce the amount of brown sugar to 1/3 cup instead of 1/2 cup.
These add a nice "nutty" texture to the bars without actually adding nuts. With that said, seeds might be susceptible to cross-contact with peanuts and tree nuts during processing. Be sure to choose a sunflower seed variety that does not have cross contact with peanuts and tree nuts.
If you can't have sunflower seeds or don't like them, you could also try pumpkin seeds!
And if you just don't want seeds at all, you can omit the seeds and the bars will still be delicious!
Ground flaxseed (aka flaxseed meal)
Ground flax adds fiber and essential fatty acids (omega-3's) to the mix. It also works as a binder (I use flax eggs often in baking for that reason).
You can find ground flaxseed at most grocery stores. Be sure to store ground flax in the refrigerator to retain the omega-3's in them.
Oats are naturally free of the top 8 allergens but may be susceptible to cross-contact with wheat and other grains containing gluten (barley and rye). If you are very sensitive to wheat/gluten, be sure to find certified gluten free oats.
These nut free granola bars have a bit more protein than many of the "allergy friendly" granola bars out there. To boost the protein content, I used sunflower butter, sunflower seeds (also great sources of healthy fats!), and protein powder.
The rolled oats and flax seed meal add some healthy carbohydrates for quick energy as well as some fiber. This is a snack that is free of the top 8 allergens and is nutritious, too!
More allergy friendly snack ideas
Nut Free Granola Bars
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/3 cup oil canola, vegetable, grapeseed, etc
- 2 tablespoons molasses
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/3 cup flax seed meal
- 2/3 cup sunflower butter
- 1/3 cup allergy friendly protein powder (for example, rice, hemp, or pea)
- 1/3 cup sunflower seeds
- 3 cups rolled oats gluten free
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9 x 13 pan with safe cooking spray.
- In a mixing bowl, combine the brown sugar, oil and molasses; mix well. Add the salt, vanilla, water, sunflower butter, protein powder and flax seed meal; mix well. Mix in the oats and sunflower seeds. Pour mixture into prepared baking pan and press firmly into the bottom of the pan. Tip: I find that hands that have a little water on them work well for pressing the mixture into the pan (no sticking!)
- Bake at 350 degrees for 18-20 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely. When completely cooled, cut into squares and serve or keep in an airtight container (they'll keep for 5-7 days).
Did you try this recipe?
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