These Easy and Healthy No-Bake Chocolate Oat Bars are the perfect any-time of day snack. With only a handful of wholesome ingredients and minimal effort, you can enjoy a delicious gluten and refined sugar-free sweet treat that is also kinder on your blood sugars!
We are big fans of oats in this house. We eat them for breakfast, use them in snacks and even in my favourite dessert. The reason we love them so much is that not only are they incredibly nutritious but we have found them to be great on blood sugar levels.
However, one problem I do have is that I do tend to spend a small fortune on oat snack bars for convenience like the ones by Graze, (which I always stock up on when they are on promotion.) But as I said, it can get expensive. So it made sense to create a delicious homemade version and so the easy no-bake chocolate oat bars were created.
This no-bake chocolate oat bar recipe makes a delicious treat that not only satisfies your chocolate cravings but is also healthy! These delicious bars are crafted with simple ingredients, offering a healthy dessert option or a quick snack on the go. Packed with wholesome oats and a thick dark chocolate layer, these irresistible no bake bars are the perfect solution for those seeking a hassle-free indulgence.
Why I love these Chocolate Oat Bars
These beauties are packed with a winning flavour combination, which is one of my personal favourites, chocolate and peanut butter. The peanut butter acts as a tasty glue for the oats which means you can use less syrup. However, if you’re not a fan of peanut butter then why not try another nut or seed butter? Almond butter, Cashew butter, Sunflower seed butter and Pumpkin seed butter all work really well in this chocolate oatmeal bars recipe.
They contain less sugar than some shop-bought versions. By using wholesome ingredients that are fibre rich and replacing the sugar with a homemade sugar free syrup make them a healthier snack option.
These oat bars are a real slow burner on my daughter’s blood sugar levels. Oats have a low glycemic index which can be a really good option for diabetics and blood sugar management. But I appreciate what works for us may not be the same for you. However, we have found that choosing low GI options, such as oats and wholegrains means that your body will be slower in turning the carbohydrate to glucose resulting in a more delayed and potentially smaller rise in blood sugar levels.
If you would like to read more on how a whole food diet has helped with our diabetes management, then make sure to read this article.
Using Sugar-Free Syrup
I don’t know about you but we have tried a few of the sugar free syrups and they vary so much in their taste profile. Plus they are unbelievably expensive. However, one that has come pretty close to being platable is the Sukrin Gold Syrup.
Nevertheless, we have yet to find one that we truly love at a reasonable price. so now I just make my own.
In this recipe, I use homemade sugar free syrup.
What you will need for these easy no-bake chocolate oat bars
- A naturally gluten-free whole-grain, just make sure they are certified if you are celiac
- Oats are such a magnificent superfood; they are wholegrain, a great carbohydrate source, and full of fibre, essential vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
- I tend to avoid quick oats as they are ultra-processed and instead opt for old fashioned oats or rolled oats
- Chia seeds
- Loaded with antioxidants, fibre, protein, omega-3s and calcium. These tiny seeds have it all!
- A great swap if you’re looking to reduce the carb count as well
- Cacao nibs
- These are just crumbled bits of dried cacao beans.
- They have an intensely chocolatey and sour flavour
- Great for adding a little extra crunch to recipes
- Coconut oil
- This oil reportedly has a number of emerging benefits for your health.
- However, I always use a minimal amount as it is very high in saturated fats
- Try to choose organic, virgin coconut oil rather than refined versions.
- Peanut Butter
- Avoid peanut butter with added palm oil
- A great source of healthy fats
- Always read the labels, the best ones don’t have any added ingredients and are simply ground peanuts
- I use my homemade sugar-free syrup in this recipe to reduce the overall carb-count.
- You could also use a shop-bought sugar-free syrup, maple syrup, honey or agave. Use whatever you prefer the taste of.
- Dark chocolate
- Try and use chocolate that has a cocoa content 70% or above as this really makes the difference with the overall carb count
- The higher the cocoa content the lower the sugar!
Parchment / Baking paper
How to make these easy no-bake chocolate oat bars
These no-bake chocolate oat bars are incredibly easy to make! With just a few simple steps and minimal ingredients required, you can whip them up in no time. Simply mix the ingredients, press the mixture into a pan, refrigerate until firm, and voila! You’ll have delicious homemade bars ready to enjoy. It’s a hassle-free recipe that’s perfect for busy days when you’re craving a sweet treat without the fuss of baking.
First, you need to prepare your tin. Line a square tin (20cm x 20cm) with parchment paper so that the paper comes up on all sides.
Next, make the oaty layer – in a large bowl combine the rolled oats, chia seeds, flaxseeds and cocoa nibs in a bowl and mix.
Then in a separate bowl melt the coconut oil and creamy peanut butter in the microwave (for around 1 minute)
Add the melted oil and nut butter along with the sugar free syrup to the dry ingredients mixing well to ensure all the oats are well coated. You can always add a tbsp of water at a time if you feel the mixture is too dry.
Next, transfer the oaty mixture to the lined dish, spreading it out to make an even oat layer. You can lay a piece of grease-proof paper on top and use your hands to press down firmly to get it nice and smooth.
Finally, it’s time for the thick layer of chocolate. To melt the chocolate, combine the chocolate and coconut oil in a bowl and place it over some boiling water. Turn down to a low heat and stir continuously until shiny and smooth. Alternatively, you can use a microwave for 30-second increments stirring between each increment until melted.
Once beautifully shiny, pour the melted chocolate layer onto your oaty layer. Place in the fridge for an hour or two to set.
Then using a sharp knife score the lines into the chocolate before cutting them into 16 squares
Nut Butter – If you’re not a fan of peanut butter or have an allergy, then why not try another nut or seed butter. Almond, Sunflower and Pumpkin all work really well in this recipe.
Syrup – I use a homemade sugar-free syrup in this recipe to reduce the overall carb count. But you could also use maple syrup, honey or agave however this will increase the overall carb count so make sure to include it in your carb counting requirements.
Chocolate – Not a fan of dark chocolate or just prefer something sweeter? Then why not swap out the dark chocolate for milk or white? Just remember to adjust your carb counting as this will increase the overall carb count.
Storing your Chocolate Oat Bars
These Oat bars are best stored in the fridge in my opinion but you can store them at room temperature as well. Your chocolate may just be a little softer!
Store them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. Then you can enjoy them cold or at room temperature if you can wait that long!
Other Oaty Recipes to try:
If you’re an oat lover like we are then why not try these other delicious blood sugar friendly oat-based recipes:
Oats are a real superfood in my eyes, full of vitamins, minerals and fibre. They are fantastic as a slow-release carb snack that potentially can reduce blood sugar spikes.
The 85% dark chocolate used in this recipe gives these no bake chocolate oatmeal bars an extra delicious layer of loveliness. But it also has less sugar which again can be a healthier option for managing blood sugar levels.
The overall carb count for one easy no-bake chocolate oat bar based on the ingredients we would count for is:
- Oats = 250g – 151g of carbs
- Cocoa Nibs = 30g – 4.5g of carbs
- Dark Chocolate (Lidl 85%) = 200g – 43.2g of carbs
Now add all the carbs together – 151+4.5+4+55= 198.7g of carbs
Finally divide this by the serving size, 12 – 214.5/16 = 12g of carb per portion
Please note this carb count amount per portion is based on the standard ingredients listed above and may differ depending on what you use and how much you choose to eat.