Apple peanut butter snack bars

When I asked you what you wanted to see more of on Happy Healthy Mama, two of the most popular answers were “snacks” and “lunch box ideas”.  These healthy apple peanut butter snack bars fit the bill for both of those.

They are made with no flour, no oil, and no refined sugar, so you can feel good about feeding them to your children.  And if you decide you want to snack on one, you can feel good about that, too.

Like most things coming out of my kitchen these days, these healthy snack bars are quick and easy.  You only have to dirty up one pot when you make them.  If you’re a busy mom like me, you know how important that is!

The most important thing, though, is that Meghan loved them.  She called them “bery, bery delicious!”  She’s getting so big that I can’t help but love her words that still sound baby-ish.  Here’s a picture of her trying on my wedding veil recently.  Seriously?!  How did she get so big?

Sorry for the off-topic moment.  I don’t talk about Meghan around here as much as I used to.  On to the recipe!


This is the first time I’ve included peanut butter in a recipe in quite a while.  In case you are wondering, I have been re-introducing foods into my diet to see if Luke’s outgrown his intolerances.  He’s done well with nuts and peanuts!  I’ll tell you more about it when I finally get around to finishing his 10 month (and now 11 month!) post.

If you’d like a peanut-free snack bar, however, this could easily be made so by swapping out the peanut butter for sunflower seed butter.  Coconut oil would work, as well.  (Check out my Goodness Bars that are similar to these and made with coconut oil.)  As always, enjoy!Apple Peanut Butter Snack Bars--no flour, no oil, and no refined sugar.  Easy to make and perfect for a school lunch or after school snack.



  1. says

    Oooo… these sound sooo good! My baby boy has turned 8 weeks now and quick and easy snacks (for ME) are worth a million. Thanks yet again for a terrific recipe and Meghan is such a cutie! :)

    • Maryea says

      Congrats on your little boy! I look back and Luke being 8 weeks just seems like a blur. I can’t believe he’s going to be ONE soon!

  2. Sandra Prunty says

    Just made the recipe this morning. They were delicious! Maybe, I missed this but, do u have any idea about calories. They are so good I’m afraid I will eat too many.

        • Maryea says

          Sorry I didn’t get back to you yesterday–the day got away from me. :) Here are the approximate calculations, based on how big or small you cut the bars:

          For 9 servings:
          192 calories
          9 grams fat
          6 grams protein

          For 12 servings:
          144 calories
          7 grams fat
          4 grams protein

          For 16 servings:
          108 calories
          5 grams fat
          3 grams protein

          I hope this helps!

          • Kayla says

            I can not say how excited I am at finding such a great recipe- I can’t wait to it! My husband is always asking for healthy snacks. Looking forward to reading more of your posts. And btw- your daughter is adorable!

    • Maryea says

      I havne’t tried either of those substitutions so I can’t say for sure. These are just my guessed, but I don’t think the applesauce would hold these together that well. I think the 4 egg whites would work. You could also try substituting “flax eggs” in place of the eggs (1 flax egg=1 tablespoons ground flaxseed mixed with 3 tablespoons water, allow a few minutes to gel). Good luck and let me know if you give it a try!

  3. sarah says

    Tried these this morning…can’t figure it out but mine are not hardening. Went through recipe a number of times and positive I followed exactly….hmmmm. I just put them back in for an extra 10 minutes and still very mushy….please help!

    • Maryea says

      We’re you expecting these to be hard like a granola bar? They are more moist than a standard granola bar–almost like a nutri-grain type. Were yours that texture? When you say mushy, do you mean they fell apart or just that they weren’t quite as crunchy as you expected? I’m sorry I can’t be more helpful; I think I need to figure out exactly what yours were like before I can guess what may have gone wrong. Sorry the recipe wasn’t what you expected!

      • says

        I think I had the same problem…I didn’t expect them to be hard, but they are more crumblier than I expected. I’m at high altitude (4500 ft), so maybe that has something to do with it?

    • Tracie says

      They are when you buy gluten free oats. I have to buy gf oats. Trader Joe’d and Bob’s Red Mill are some options.

    • Maryea says

      Oats are naturally gluten-free, but often are processed in a way that can cause cross-contamination. If you are concerned, you can get certified gluten-free oats.

      • Lisa says

        Oats are not naturally gluten free. They have low gluten development and are confused with being gluten free. Gf certified varieties are available, but do not assume all oats are gluten free or else you may get some sick people on your hands.

        • Maryea says

          That’s interesting, and different from what I’ve read. I’ll have to do some more research to clarify. I definitely recommend GF oats for those who have serious problems with gluten! Thank you!

          • Carolyn says

            Hi Maryea,

            Just wanted to let you know that oats aren’t naturally gluten-free. My family has Coeliac disease and oats are definately off our list of foods which coeliacs can eat. I usually substitute the oats for crushed cornflakes when making Anzac biscuits etc so these would also work well in your slice if you want to share with followers, cheers :)

    • Maryea says

      Not silly at all! My food processor has a shredding attachment, so I use that the shred the apple into long pieces. (It looks like shredded cheese) You can do this by hand with a cheese grater as well.

  4. Carol says

    Hi. These look wonderful, but I was wondering about the “shredded apple” too and how you make it or where you buy it. Do you put apple in a food processor? I think that would end up as applesauce.

    • Maryea says

      My food processor has a shredding attachment, so I use that to shred the apple. You can also use a hand grater to grate the apple yourself.

  5. Lauren says

    Can’t wait to try these!! Found you on Pinterest!! I am going to substitute peanut butter with wowbutter. My 6 yr old daughter has a bad peanut allergy but I love how wowbutter tastes just like PB. Oh how I miss my PB!! :) always looking for recipes we can’t eat cause of her allergy! Thanks!!

    • Maryea says

      I had to cut out peanut butter for a few months because my little one was intolerant…I missed it oh so much so I feel for you! I’ve never heard of wowbutter. What is it made from? Hope you enjoy these!

      • Lauren says

        It’s made from soy. We used to use sun butter but my other kids didn’t like it too much then we found the wowbutter. I made buckeyes once with it and everyone that tried them said they tasted just like the PB ones. We buy it at Walmart or the health food store my mother in law works at. Gonna try your recipe today!! Can’t wait!!

  6. Candy says

    Just made these….they are cooling on my counter, waiting for my kids to come home from school. I tried a corner and it was yummy! i think this recipe would ge a good one to olay around with too. maybe add in some other dried fruits? or dark chocolate chips for a special treat. I have been gradually making improvements in our diet and am loving your site for whole foods and healthy foods! Thank you!

  7. Carol says

    I had a terrible chocolate craving last night, so I made these and stirred in some chocolate chips and I can tell you they make a very yummy oatmeal peanut butter chocolate chip pan cookie! And still much healthier than my regular cookie recipe. :-)

  8. Gabrielle says

    I just made these and my kids love them. I used quick oats because they’re what I had on hand and they turned out more cakey.

  9. Tracey says

    I have no lunch boxes in the house to fill anymore :( so, I guess I will make these for me! Thanks for making the printing link so easy….I find so many recipes don’t print well, mucho apprecioto :)

  10. Angel says

    hi! I just found you on Pinterest and I can’t wait to make these tomorrow! About how many does this recipe make? It looks so good I’m already wondering if I should double it! :)

    • Maryea says

      This recipe makes one 9×9 pan that you can cut into whatever size bars you prefer. I usually cut them into 9 bars. So, yes, I’d double it. :-)

  11. Barbara says

    Thanks for the recipe! They turned out great and i love having healthy, easy, go-to snack ideas for my kids that are homemade and not prepackaged. I added some flax seed meal for a little extra goodness. I passed this page onto some friends – looking forward to trying more of your recipes!

  12. says

    Maybe this is a silly question: Do you store these in the refrigerator or at room temperature? I am trying to find something like this that I can keep tightly sealed in the pantry.

    • Maryea says

      These will keep fine at room temperature in an air-tight container. They will keep longer in the fridge, but they don’t last that long around here anyway! :-)

  13. Kenda says

    Ran out of half the oats I needed! Ahh! But I substituted them for Rice Krispies and even though they weren’t as healthy, they turned out great! Since I was already taking a chance, I decided to throw in unsweetened, shredded coconut and sesame seeds and they’re great! Thanks!

  14. Sarah says

    Have you thought of lining the pan with parchment paper? Then you could take the whole sheet out with the parchment paper – no sticking!

  15. Jenny says

    My husband is diabetic. I’m wondering if it would be possible to replace part of the honey with Splenda to help reduce the sugar content? Any other ideas on reducing sugar? These sound terrific!

    • Maryea says

      What about using mashed banana in place of the honey? The flavor would change a bit, but it would add sweetness and keep the wet/dry ratio similar. You could definitely try to reduce the honey a bit and maybe add some stevia? I recommend stevia instead of Splenda as I don’t really care for artificial sweeteners. Good luck and let me know if some substitutions work for you!

    • Sarah says

      I added banana and left out the honey, also the nut butter and they turned out fine. Didn’t even taste the banana, which was good because I don’t like banana.

  16. Kristi says

    Is there any substitutions I can make in order to achieve a more crunchy texture? the taste is AMAZING, but I’m a chew/crunch nut :)

  17. Marie says

    These are the best replacement for expensive meal bars I usually buy at the store! Because I’m trying to avoid added sugar, I used 1 TBSP honey + 1 TBSP black-strap molasses and they ended up with the perfect sweetness. Also added some whey protein and flax seeds, and peeled the apple. Thanks for sharing this.

  18. Kelly S. says

    I just made these today. They came out beautifully and smell delicious! The flavor is great, not too sweet. Perfect for my children in the mornings! One thing I didn’t care too much for is the gummy texture that the bars get from the oatmeal. Do you think there is a way around that? Maybe if I ground the oats into a flour first? Thanks for the recipe and let me know if you have any suggestions :)

    • Maryea says

      I do think grinding the oats into flour would change the texture and it sounds like it might be a better texture for you. Let me know if you give that a try!

  19. Lynnsy says

    Has anyone tried freezing these? I’m expecting my second little munchkin in a couple months and want to make some easy, healthy snacks ahead of time for when the babe comes.

  20. Kendra says

    I made these and subbed “Better N’ Peanut Butter” and egg beaters to lower the calories and cholesterol. They’re great! Thanks! My boys love apple cereal bars and I hope they’ll love the homemade ones!

  21. Erin says

    Just finished making these. So yummy. I made them in mini muffin pans because my DIY granola bars always seem to fall apart when cutting. Decreased the baking time to about 13 minutes and they made perfect little granola bites. Thanks!

  22. Adele says

    Is there something I could substitute eggs for in the recipe? My daughter is highly allergic to eggs but I’m looking for an easy home made bar an these look delicious! Maybe flax? Thanks!

    • Maryea says

      I do think flax would work here. Try 1 tablespoon flax+3 tablespoons water mixed together for each egg. Let me know if you try it! :)

  23. Krista says

    Tried my first recipe today, these apple peanut butter ( or in our case almond butter) bars. We loved them! My daughter can be quite picky with oatmeal anything, but she ate this up! Thanks again. :-)

  24. Rian R says

    Wonderful recipe, thank you so much for sharing! I’m wondering if I could sneak in some shredded zucchini or possibly carrots because of their high water content! I think I’ll give it a whirl later today, thanks again!!

  25. Heather says

    Thanks so much for a healthy, kid friendly recipe! I made these today with almond butter, a little bit of flax seed meal, and raisins. I also only did about 1/4 cup honey and a touch of agave. They turned out great, and smelled so good baking! My 4 year old loves them. thanks!

  26. Janna says

    I made these yesterday and they turned out fantastic! I used my food processor to shred the apple (unpeeled) and also threw in a small handful of shredded carrots since I was shredding them for another recipe. I used 1/2 the amount of honey and also added 1/2 of a very ripe banana. The texture of these bars is wonderful, and I really love the sweetness that the apple adds! I’d never made granola bars, and this will definitely be my go-to recipe :) thanks!

    • Maryea says

      You’re welcome! I love the idea of using some mashed banana to sweeten it and less honey. Unfortunately my husband gets an upset stomach from bananas, so I purposely didn’t use them for this recipe. Love that you added carrots, too–never hurts to squeeze in some veggies! :-)

  27. Rachel says

    These are so yummy! I keep them on hand for my husband and toddler. I use part sunflower butter and part peanut butter. I’m not a fan of honey so I use a small amount, plus some applesauce. My husband loves when I add chocolate chips to these. I make them in double batches and they are always gone within days.

  28. Emma says

    I have just made these. Tried a little corner as they were cooling and yummy! I was expecting crunchy and thought I made them wrong…. But they are definately more like a nutrigrain bar ( which is no bad thing). I didn’t have honey so I used agave nectar and added raisins too. Was gonna add choc chips but I’m trying to be good! Luckily my friend lent me her “cup” measuring utensils! Live in the uk and we are all about the grams! Looking forward to breakfast tomorrow! Perfect for pre gym snack too! Thank you for the yummy recipe!

  29. Sarah says

    Hello! I just found this recipe on Pinterest, and I plan on making them tomorrow! If I substitute coconut oil for peanut butter, should I use the same amount or less? Thanks!

  30. says

    Made these today …. Amazing! Will be featuring on my blog tmr. as a pininterest item that worked. I will link back to you. Thank you for the healthy snack! Can’t wait to read more of your blog!

  31. says

    Hi Maryea! Thanks for sharing this recipe! I finally made them this weekend.
    I really like the Apple/Peanut Butter flavor of the bars. I did add a cup more of apple and pb than the recipe called for, so then added a few more flakes (barley/rye again) to compensate for the added liquid. They still came out a bit crumbly though. However, this might be because I was too impatient and went ahead and got them out of the pan before they’d cooled all the way? I might add in some flour next time to see if it holds better.
    I haven’t read through the other comments, anyone else have the crumbly issue?

  32. vicky says

    Deeelicious!! Just made them as I am also on a no sugar no flour diet, also did half the honey. How long will these be good? Would anyone know the calorie count? Thank you!

  33. jenny says

    I’m wondering if these should be stored in the fridge or if they’re alright to stay out on the counter?


  34. says

    When I initially commented I clicked the “Notify me when new comments are added”
    checkbox and now each time a comment is added I get four emails with the same comment.

    Is there any way you can remove me from that service? Thanks!

    • Maryea says

      Oh, my! I’m so sorry that is happening. I am not very tech savvy, but I’ll see what I can do. Is there no place at the bottom of the email that says, “Unsubscribe from comments”?

  35. says

    Just made this for my family for a before bed/watching a movie snack. Both my husband and daughter loved these (My daughter even yelled, “YUUUMMMMY!) and asked I make them again! How can I refuse when they are healthy AND yummy!
    An addition to the people who said they didn’t firm up; I don’t have a 9×9 pan so I used a 9×11 pan. They were a little thinner than the ones in your picture. I also added about 5 minutes to the cook time.

    • Maryea says

      I have not tried freezing them, but I imagine it would work fine. You can keep these on the counter, or they last a bit longer in the fridge.

  36. Kayla says

    I make these often and always add shredded coconut. Today I went crazy and also added dried cherries (1/8 of a cup). Made the bars taste totally different, and delicious ! I freeze them, and let them thaw to room temp before eating. :

  37. Sarah says

    Excited to try these! I ran out of my honey, which is a tragedy in itself! I read in an earlier comment that mashed banana can be substituted? This is a new one to me. Is it a 1:1 ratio? Should it be super ripe? Thanks!

  38. Natasha says

    Just made this recipe with steel cut oats and a little less honey!!! It was amazing :-) thank you for this wonderful recipe!


  1. [...] I love rolled oats…I have them for breakfast every morning and use them regularly in my baking. I’ll sometimes even cook up porridge for dessert in winter time…it’s warm, comforting and way healthier than pudding or cake. Having them cooked/prepared the same way every day can get a little boring though, so finding new ways of using oats is always awesome. I found a recipe for an apple peanut butter oat slice and decided to alter the recipe slightly and add some extra ingredients. (The original recipe is here: ) [...]

  2. [...] for some sort of peanut butter and apple bar and my friend, Elizabeth the Great, posted these Apple peanut butter snack bars. I’m excited to try. My friend Michelle also mentioned a yummy apple bundt cake recipe she [...]

  3. [...] In recompense, you can force-feed me some gluten-free bread or cookies…as long as it has sugar. Or even these “Gluten-free” Apple peanut butter snack bars! [...]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

CommentLuv badge