Chocolate Quinoa Bars are full of rich dark chocolate, tender puffed quinoa, oats, raisins, coconut, and sweet honey or maple syrup. Not only are they easy to make in 1 bowl in 20 minutes, but they're absolutely delicious! A healthier alternative to traditional desserts.
Indulge in the heavenly combination of rich dark chocolate, raisins, delicate puffed quinoa, oats, and the delightful sweetness of honey or maple syrup with these Chocolate Quinoa Bars.
Not only are they incredibly delicious, but they also come together effortlessly in just one bowl within a mere 20 minutes.
With their wholesome ingredients, these bars offer a healthier option that will satisfy your sweet cravings without the guilt of traditional desserts.
I've used puffed quinoa, which is available in larger supermarkets and health food shops. If you can't find any, then substitute extra oats, puffed wheat or rice krispies cereal.
This recipe was originally posted on 17 July 2017, and updated with new text, instructions and images on 11 July 2023.
Why Should You Make This Recipe
- These squares are a fantastic way to incorporate nutrient-rich ingredients into your diet. Quinoa, oats, dark chocolate, and coconut oil all offer various health benefits. Quinoa is a complete protein, oats are a great source of fiber, dark chocolate is rich in antioxidants, and coconut oil provides healthy fats.
- By using puffed quinoa instead of wheat or rice cereal, this recipe becomes a gluten-free delight that can be enjoyed by individuals with dietary restrictions or sensitivities.
- This recipe is incredibly simple and requires minimal time and effort. With just a few steps, you'll have a batch of delicious squares ready to enjoy.
- You can easily customize these squares to suit your taste preferences. Add in your favorite nuts, dried fruits, or even a sprinkle of sea salt to elevate the flavors.
- Make it vegan by using maple syrup or agave instead of honey.
What is Puffed Quinoa?
Puffed quinoa is a delightful and versatile grain that has been expanded through a process called puffing.
Quinoa itself is a highly nutritious seed that is often considered a grain due to its culinary uses.
Puffed quinoa (also called popped quinoa) is created by subjecting the raw quinoa seeds to high heat and pressure, causing them to expand and form a light and airy texture.
Puffed quinoa has a delicate and crisp texture with a slightly nutty flavor. It adds a satisfying crunch to various dishes and is commonly used in breakfast cereals, granola bars, trail mixes, and baked goods.
Puffed quinoa is also a popular choice for those following a gluten-free diet, as it is naturally free from gluten.
- Puffed Quinoa: Puffed quinoa adds a delightful crispy texture to the squares. If you can't find it at the grocery store or health food store, you can easily substitute it with puffed wheat or rice cereal.
- Oats: Oats are a staple in this recipe, providing a chewy texture and added fiber. If you have a gluten intolerance, make sure to use certified gluten-free oats.
- Dark Chocolate: Choose a high-quality dark chocolate with a cocoa content of at least 70%. You can also experiment with different percentages to find the perfect balance of sweetness and richness.
- Honey or Maple Syrup: These natural sweeteners add a touch of sweetness to the squares. Opt for raw honey or pure maple syrup for the best flavor.
- Raisins: Raisins contribute a natural sweetness and a hint of chewiness to the squares. If you're not a fan of raisins, you can substitute them with dried cranberries, chopped dates, or any other dried fruit of your choice. Or just leave them out!
- Coconut Oil: Melted coconut oil binds the ingredients together and adds a subtle tropical flavor. If you prefer, you can use melted butter or a neutral oil like grapeseed or canola oil.
- Desiccated/Shredded Coconut: This ingredient adds a lovely coconutty aroma and a hint of tropical flavor. If you're not a fan of coconut, you can omit it or replace it with finely chopped nuts or seeds.
- Peanut Butter: Creamy peanut butter not only enhances the taste but also helps bind the ingredients together. If you have a nut allergy or prefer a different flavor, feel free to use almond butter, cashew butter, or any other nut or seed butter of your choice.
How to Make Puffed Quinoa Bars
Preheat oven to 180C/350F. Line a 8x8’ square baking pan with baking paper.
In a large bowl, mix all ingredients together well.
Spread out into the prepared pan and pat down with the back of a spoon.
Bake for 15 minutes, then allow to cool slightly in the tray. Cut into bars and enjoy.
Scroll down for the full recipe and list of ingredients.
- Try adding chopped nuts, such as almonds, walnuts, pecans or cashews for an extra crunch.
- For an extra chocolatey flavor, add a few tablespoons of unsweetened cocoa powder to the mixture, or drizzle the cooled chocolate quinoa bars with melted dark chocolate.
- Drizzle the bars with salted caramel sauce and sprinkle with a little sea salt.
- Swap the raisins for dried cranberries or dried blueberries.
To keep your Chocolate Quinoa Squares fresh and delicious, store them in an airtight container at room temperature for up to one week.
- Make sure to line your baking pan with parchment paper. This will make it easier to remove the squares once they're baked and cooled.
- Be sure to cool the squares in the pan before cutting them into bars. This will help them hold their shape better.
- If the chocolate chunks are too big for your liking, you can chop them into smaller pieces using a sharp knife or a food processor. Or swap to chocolate chips.
- Feel free to adjust the sweetness level according to your taste. You can add more honey or maple syrup if you prefer a sweeter treat or reduce the amount for a more subtle sweetness.
While dark chocolate offers a more intense flavor and is generally healthier, you can substitute it with milk or white chocolate if you prefer a milder taste.
Absolutely! You can swap out the peanut butter for almond butter, cashew butter, sunflower seed butter, or any other nut or seed butter that you enjoy.
If you make this recipe, please tag it with #veggiedesserts on Instagram or other social media. I LOVE seeing your recreations of my recipes.
Chocolate Quinoa Bars
- 2 ¾ cups puffed quinoa or substitute puffed wheat or rice cereal (50g)
- 2 ¼ cups oats (225g)
- 3 ½ ouces dark chocolate (100g) chopped into chunks, or use chocolate chips
- ½ cup honey or maple syrup (150g)
- ⅓ cup raisins (55g)
- ½ cup coconut oil melted (100g)
- 3 tablespoons desiccated (shredded) coconut
- 2 tablespoons peanut butter
- Preheat oven to 180C/350F. Line a 8x8’ square baking pan with baking paper.
- In a large bowl, mix all ingredients together well.
- Spread out into the prepared pan and pat down with the back of a spoon.
- Bake for 15 minutes, then allow to cool slightly in the tray. Cut into bars and enjoy.
The nutritional information provided is approximate and can vary depending on several factors, so is not guaranteed to be accurate. Please see a registered dietician for special diet advice.