These easy no bake peanut butter muesli bars are thick and chewy and are filled with good for you ingredients designed to keep you full until your next meal. These taste so good, you’ll never want to buy store bought again!
While I am always excited to share every recipe with you, today I am super excited because when I first decided to try and make muesli bars at home I didn’t have the highest of expectations, but these completely blew me away. They are so full of peanut butter flavour, thick and chewy, a bit sweet but not overpowering with just the right amount of crunch.
Once you’ve made muesli bars at home, nothing from the supermarket is ever going to taste the same. Plus once you stock up your pantry with your favourite seeds and nuts, these become quite an easy recipe to whip up on a Sunday morning in prep for the week ahead.
I love the convenience of muesli bars, but I am always a bit put off by all the ingredients in those off the shelf. Once I eliminate the ones that contain hidden nasties, and the ones that contain dairy through chocolate or yoghurt, I am not left with much of a range to choose from, and they are usually quite lacking in flavour.
My absolute favourites though are Clif Bars. They are thick and chewy and full of good for me ingredients that actually keep me full and give me energy when I need it. I love having a stash of these when I travel for times when I can’t get to food I can eat but want to avoid getting hangry. And my favourite flavour is off course peanut butter.
While I didn’t set out to recreate these bars I couldn’t help but notice some similarities in texture and that rich peanut butter flavour. This is exactly what a muesli bar should be to me.
Muesli vs Granola
Muesli bars are often also referred to as granola bars, but is there a difference? Muesli is a mix of oats, nuts, seeds and fruits and is served raw. While granola contains similar ingredients, it also contains a sweetener and then the mixture is baked.
While to make these bars a sweetener is added, the ingredients in the bars remain raw and therefore to me, they remain muesli bars.
Ingredients for peanut butter muesli bars
These bars are pretty forgiving with the ingredients you use so you can play around with the specifics that you use, as long as the ratios and the process remains the same.
- Nuts. I use a combination of raw almonds and cashews, but use any nuts here that you have on hand or prefer.
- Oats. Rolled oats are preferred for that extra chew texture, but this will also work just fine with quick oats.
- Seeds. I like pepitas, or pumpkin seeds for their crunch. You might use sunflower seeds, or replace with additional nuts or fruit.
- Dried fruit. Personally I am not the biggest fan of dried fruit in muesli bars however I do like the subtle sweetness that dried cranberries give these bars. It’s perfect when combined with the salty flavour of the peanut butter.
- Salt. For my personal taste preference, I like to add in salt to give these bars a delicious salty/sweet combo. If you prefer your bars on the sweeter side, simply reduce the amount or omit all together.
- Honey. I love the flavour of honey and peanut butter together so this is my sweetener of choice, but if you’re vegan, maple syrup would work as well.
- Peanut butter. Anything goes here. Use your favourite. I used a crunchy dark roast peanut butter for extra flavour.
- Coconut oil. This ingredient will keep everything together, without it your bars will fall apart so I don’t recommend any substitution.
- Dark chocolate. Finally the little bit extra and completely optional part is a small drizzle of chocolate over the top. You can omit, or add some dark chocolate chips to the mix instead if you want.
How to make no-bake muesli bars
Start by adding the almonds, cashews, and 1/2 cup of the oats to a food processor and pulse until lightly chopped. This will give you a solid base for your bars and help ensure that they stay together and don’t fall apart. You can choose how chopped you like your nuts, but you still want to have little pieces rather than a fine crumb.
Add this mixture to a large bowl and add in the remaining dry ingredients.
In a small saucepan, heat together the peanut butter, honey, and coconut oil until melted. If you don’t want to turn on your stove, you can also do this in your microwave in 20 second bursts, stirring well between until the mixture is smooth and creamy.
Add the peanut butter mixture to the dry ingredients and mix until combined. The mixture will be quite sticky.
Transfer it to a 8 or 9 inch square baking pan that has been lined with baking paper. Make sure to leave some paper overhanging the edges as this will help you remove the bars from the tray.
Press the mixture firmly into the pan then set aside in the fridge for about an hour to set.
While the bars are chilling, you can melt your chocolate and coconut oil together for the drizzle. Once the bars are firm, cut them into rectangles or squares, depending on how big you want each one, and then drizzle with the chocolate. Allow to set before storing.
How to store the bars?
Depending on how warm your kitchen is, you can store these on the bench however if it does get too warm, they may melt a little bit so I suggest keeping them in an airtight container in the fridge. They will keep for up to 2 weeks.
These homemade muesli bars are perfect for a snack to keep you full between meals, or a quick and easy breakfast on the go.
Once you’ve made one batch, I guarantee you will want to make sure you always have some on hand, particularly for those busy times when you need to grab something delicious that’s also going to be healthy.
Also a note on labeling these as healthy. That is such a subjective term. For me, these are healthy because they do not contain any refined sugars and are filled with good for me nuts and oats. However the amount of sugar in the honey may be too much for some diets.
As written these bars are dairy-free but can also be gluten free if using gluten free oats.
If you do make this recipe, please be sure to leave a comment and rating below! And tag any of your creations on Instagram with #eightforestlane as I would love to see.
No-Bake Peanut Butter Muesli Bars
- ½ cup almonds
- ½ cup cashews
- 1 ½ cups rolled oats
- ½ cup dried cranberries
- ¼ cup pepitas
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup honey
- ¾ cup peanut butter
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil + 1 teaspoon extra
- 25 grams dark chocolate
- Line the bottom and sides of an 8-inch square baking pan with baking paper. Set aside.
- Add the almonds, cashews, and 1/2 cup of the oats to a food processor and pulse until lightly chopped. Add mixture to a large bowl with the remaining oats, pepitas, dried cranberries and salt. Stir to combine.
- In a small saucepan over medium heat or in a microwave safe bowl, melt the peanut butter, honey, and 2 tablespoons coconut oil together. Mix until creamy and then pour into the dry ingredients. Using a spatula, mix until everything is combined.
- Transfer mixture to prepared pan and using the back of a spatula, press firmly to compact. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour until set.
- Melt the chocolate with the extra teaspoon of coconut oil in the microwave in 30 second bursts until drizzly in consistency.
- Remove the pan from the fridge and slice into bars. Drizzle the bars with the melted chocolate and set aside to set. Cover and store the bars at room temperature or in the fridge if it's too warm, for up to a week.