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Chocolate Vegan Granola Bars
Chocolate Vegan Granola Bars

Gluten Free Chocolate Vegan Granola Bars

Have you ever tried my recipe for Maple Almond Granola? Oh, it’s good. I make it — a lot. And usually, I hoard it.

Hey, a girl’s gotta eat, and my children and my husband eat, like, everything else. The granola is mostly for dear ol’ mom.

Gluten Free Chocolate Vegan Granola Bars

But then I realized something. I make lots and lots of granola bar type creations for my kids. They’re a fabulous grab-n-go breakfast, especially for those days that I get a bit of a late start and I just can’t manage much of anything else for them.

And I’m a lunatic about the kids not leaving the house without having breakfast. You gotta have a good breakfast.

When I was a latchkey kid (*sob.story.alert*), nobody made sure I ate anything at all before I trotted off to school. You could have scraped me off the floor by lunchtime. Oh the learning opportunities missed!!

Gluten Free Chocolate Vegan Granola Bars

Okay, save the drama for your mama. I know. But breakfast is a must around Casa Hunn.

If vegan isn’t your thing, try this slightly sweeter, dairy-containing variety of Gluten-Free Granola Bars.

Here’s how you & your kids can be sure to have a good breakfast every weekday – and pronto (betcha didn’t know I spoke Spanish).

Melt some no-stir natural nut butter in a small saucepan.

Puree some prunes. Or I guess they call them “dried plums” now, since prunes sounds grody. But just puree them with a splash of water.

Add that — and some cocoa powder — to all of the Maple Almond Granola ingredients.

Line a rimmed 10 inch x 15 inch(or thereabouts) baking sheet with unbleached parchment paper.

Here’s a tip: See the corners? A nice way to get the paper into the corners of the baking sheet without crumbling them and making for some craggy corners in your baked granola bars is to cut a slit right into the paper at the point. Like so. I know. Bonus, right? You heard it here first. (say you did, even if you didn’t?)

Gluten Free Chocolate Vegan Granola Bars

Then press the granola into the prepared baking sheet. Press it hard! In one even layer.

Gluten Free Chocolate Vegan Granola Bars

Then bake it. I know I know it totally looks the same baked as it did before it was baked. Except it kind of doesn’t. It gets a little puffy when you bake it, and even though it has no eggs and is held together with l-o-v-e, prunes and oil, it sets up really nicely when it’s baked.

Then cool completely, slice and serve. I even freeze it a bit to make slicing easier.

Chocolate Vegan Granola Bars
Recipe Type: Breakfast
Author: Nicole @ Gluten-Free on a Shoestring.com
Prep time: 5 mins
Cook time: 25 mins
Total time: 30 mins
Serves: 20
Gluten-free vegan chocolate granola bars for breakfast
  • Maple Almond Granola recipe (http://bit.ly/wsyBec)
  • 1/2 cup (40g) unsweetened natural cocoa powder
  • 3/4 cup (120g) pitted dried plums (prunes)
  • 3/4 cup (192g) no-stir smooth natural almond butter (can substitute any no-stir smooth natural nut butter)
  1. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees F. Line a 10 inch x 15 inch rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper that overhangs the edges of the pan, and set it aside.
  2. Follow instructions 1 and 2 in the Maple Almond Granola recipe. Add in the cocoa powder, and mix to combine.
  3. In the bowl of a blender or food processor, puree the prunes with about 1 teaspoon of water until smooth (see photo). Add the pureed prunes to the rest of the mixture.
  4. Place the almond butter in a small saucepan, and place over medium-low heat, stirring frequently, until melted. Pour the melted almond butter into the bowl, and mix to combine well. The mixture should be thick and sticky.
  5. Scrape the granola mixture into the prepared baking sheet, and press it firmly into an even layer in the baking sheet.
  6. Remove the baking sheet from the freezer and place in the center of the preheated oven and bake until firm, slightly puffed and beginning to brown on top and around the edges, about 25 minutes. Rotate once during baking.
  7. Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the pan for about 10 minutes or until mostly firm. Place the entire baking sheet in the freezer until firm, about 10 minutes. Remove from the freezer. Lift the granola bars out of the pan by holding onto the overhung parchment paper, and place on a cutting board. With a large, sharp knife, slice into bars.
  8. Store completely cooled bars in an airtight container at room temperature, with a small sheet of parchment paper between layers of bars to avoid bars’ sticking to one another.


P.S. If you haven’t yet, please pick up a copy of My Cookbooks! I can’t keep the blog going without your support!


  • http://www.glutenfreecanteen.com Lisa @ GF Canteen

    Awesome. I have not even finished that first cup of coffee and I want to go make these. I love that granola. I’ve made it already and it is delicious and so much more economical than buying stale stuff at the store.

    And wasn’t I surprised that last time I reached for a prune container only to find them called dried plums? Do they think renaming it makes them sound like fruit rather than something you’d find on grandpa’s shopping list? Ah, those marketing wizards, aren’t they clever.

    • http://glutenfreeonashoestring.com/ Nicole

      So glad you love this granola, Lisa. Wish I could make you some bars…
      Yeah, I don’t think anybody is buying the whole dried plums thing. We don’t call raisins “dried grapes,” and we’re not about to. ;)
      xoxo Nicole

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Pam-Thomas/100000038594523 Pam Thomas on Facebook

    Nicole Thank you for all that you do. I am about to have a FUN day makeing lots of good things from your cookbook and converting some of my recipes to GF!

  • http://www.facebook.com/gfshoestring Gluten Free on a Shoestring on Facebook

    You’re so welcome, Pam. Enjoy the day!

  • Jenna

    Perfect timing (seriously starting to wonder if you have been hiding in the kitchen pantry. On the off chance… just nudge Bunnicula off your foot if she gets overly friendly, she’s a sweet cat but can get a bit needy and the good chocolate is hiding in the tin marked “Dried Prunes” over in the top corner. Help yourself.) as my husband just spent a frustrated morning lecturing me on not having remembered to eat breakfast all week. Or, actually, lunch. Ever since the celiac diagnosis… some days it’s just tough to remember to eat! These look like the perfect answer to get him off my back. Thanks so much. Now I just need to fiddle with the granola recipe to replace the almonds and almond oil. Dratted weird allergies! But this looks tasty enough to tackle.

    • http://glutenfreeonashoestring.com/ Nicole

      Hi, Jenna,
      I’ve been waiting in here, trying to be patient, staring at the good chocolate. I never thought you’d offer. ;)
      And the almonds and almond oil can easily be replaced with another nut and oil by weight (not by volume). I’m not sure if you can have them, but chopped pecans work really well, and the almond oil can easily be substituted with extra virgin olive oil.
      xoxo Nicole

      • Jenna

        Alas, the pecans will do the same thing as the almonds (celiac means if I slip and eat gluten, I’ll get sick – which sucks and is inconvenient. Most nuts… it’s less of an inconvenience and more of an “Air. Air would be good right now. Crap!” kind of thing). I’m going to run to the store today and see if it would work with the subs I can have (weirdly – cashews, peanuts, and all the seeds. Bodies are strange.) and the olive oil – which is a great tip. Nut oil has such a strong flavor, I was kinda hesitant it what could work to sub for it. Thanks!

        • http://glutenfreeonashoestring.com/ Nicole

          Hi, Jenna,
          I would try a mix of chopped raw cashews and peanuts, then. Cashews alone are kind of soft, but mixed with peanuts they would be very tasty and the texture should be great. Enjoy – and stay safe!
          xoxo Nicole

  • Peggy

    I usually grab a “Think Thin” protein bar which is Gluten-free on those days I’m off & running to a quilt class or meeting friends at a quilt shop to spend the day sewing but this would be a much better alternative…healthier because I assembled all the ingredients myself & so much cheaper for the same reason!!! I can add or substitute my favorite foods! Thanks again, Nicole, for giving us exactly what we need when we need it!

    • http://glutenfreeonashoestring.com/ Nicole

      You know, Peggy, I’ve really really tried to like those Think Thin bars. I just .. can’t seem to. I like the idea of them, but not so much the actual bar. Maybe I just haven’t tried the right kind?
      These bars are really lovely, though. And I prefer them to Think Thin. So does my wallet. ;)
      xoxo Nicole

  • Peggy

    Oh, and this is the first time I’ve seen the corners clipped like that!!! Also love the way you packaged them!!!

    • http://glutenfreeonashoestring.com/ Nicole

      So you really did see it here first, Peggy!
      Oh, and the bars are just wrapped in strips of parchment paper and tied with baker’s twine. Nothin’ fancy. ;)
      xoxo Nicole

  • http://glutenfreephilly.com Michael

    Nicole – These were great, as were the “other” treats! Thanks!! We will meet up one of these days!

    • http://glutenfreeonashoestring.com/ Nicole

      Hi, Michael! I’m so glad you enjoyed them. I assume by “other,” you mean the super secret no one else has had them Gluten-Free Thin Mints? Very sneaky…

    • http://glutenfreephilly.com Michael

      Well. since you let the cat out of the bag, yes!

      • http://glutenfreeonashoestring.com/ Nicole

        Oh. Did I do that?! I’m not very trustworthy. Never tell me your secrets again. :/

  • Pingback: Weekly Gluten-Free Roundup – March 18, 2012 « Celiac Kitchen Witch()

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