These Chocolate Sunflower Butter Bars are a great treat for school lunch boxes! Made with allergy-friendly sunflower butter layered onto a chocolate granola bar and coated with a layer of chocolate — these are sure to be a hit with everyone!
This is the second of my LIFE that I haven’t had to go back to school in September. I was in college and graduate school for 6 years after finishing high school, and then became a teacher!
I do feel a bit nostalgic that I am missing out on some of the excitement of going back to school, starting a new year fresh, meeting new friends and starting new routines.
It will only be a few short years before I have a whole new reason to celebrate “back to school” season.
My tiny one turned two recently.
He’s now my #1 cookie recipe tester.
Xander gives these bars two thumbs up.
He sure knows where to find the good stuff (mommy’s photography table).
Last year, I published a recipe for Irresistible Chewy Granola Bar Cookies around this time. They are also nut free, and a perfect healthy snack to send with your child to school. That post also has a discussion about food allergies in children, my own experience, and things to think about to be sensitive to this very serious health issue that affects so many children in America.
A lunchbox isn’t complete without a treat, and I love knowing my homemade treats are low in sugar, free of refined sugar, and filled with nutritious, whole-food ingredients.
Tips for Chocolate Sunflower Butter Bars
- These bars are best kept at cool room temperature or in the refrigerator (to keep the chocolate from melting!). They are great for packing in lunch boxes as long as the lunch boxes stay relatively cool and aren’t in sunlight which would result in a gooey mess 🙂
- Make is Gluten Free: All of my oatmeal baked goods recipes can be made gluten free by using Certified Gluten Free Oats. Brown rice cereal is always gluten free (that I have seen, at least!). Rice crispies do have gluten, so avoid using that as a sub if you need these bars to be strictly gluten free.
Chocolate Sunflower Butter Bars
A crispy chocolate granola bar layer is covered in creamy sunflower butter, and topped with a layer of dark chocolate, for an allergy friendly, low sugar treat everyone will love! These make the perfect after school snack.
Chocolate Cookie Layer
Sunflower Butter Layer
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line an 8x8 baking pan with parchment or baking paper.
In a bowl, mix together the oats, brown rice crisp, oat flour (this can be processed from whole oats in a blender, or store bought oat flour - i've tried both and it doesn't matter), cocoa power and sea salt.
In a microwave-safe bowl, add coconut oil and date syrup (or honey). Microwave the ingredients for 20-30 seconds until warmed enough to easily mix the two together, but not hot. (longer if your coconut oil needs to be melted from solid).
Mix the liquids into the dry ingredients, and mix well. Add the mixture to the prepared pan, and either press down evenly with wet hands or by using a pastry roller (see link below recipe for details).
Bake cookie layer for 12-14 minutes, then allow to cool, and then refrigerate until very cool.
To make the sunflower layer, mix all ingredients together in a bowl. If the sunflower butter is dry, you might need less coconut flour. When you first add the coconut flour, it won't make a big difference, but after sitting for 5 or 10 minutes, the mixture will thicken considerably.
Layer the thickened sunflower butter over the cookie layer.
Melt dark chocolate chips, and stir in sunflower butter. Cover the bars with the chocolate mixture in an even layer. Refrigerate to set before cutting the bars.
Store bars wrapped tightly (or in an air tight container) in the refrigerator or at a cool room temperature for up to a week, or longer in the freezer.
It's possible that these can be made with peanut or almond butters. The amount of sweetener or coconut flour might need to be adjusted. If you try it, let me know how it works! I've been wanting to make these with almond butter.
Other Nut Free Treat Recipes:
- Homemade Gluten Free Fig Newtons, by All Day I Dream About Food
- Banana Bread Muffin Tops, by OhSheGlows
- Toasted Coconut Protein Bars, by Vitamin Sunshine
- Irresistible Chewy Granola Cookies, by Vitamin Sunshine
Recommended for this Recipe
This handy pastry roller is less than $5, and is used weekly in my kitchen. It’s great for smoothing the tops of cookie bars, granola bars, and gluten free crusts.
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