Raw Cacao Workout Bars

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These Raw Cacao Workout Bars provide an excellent alternative to your typical store-bought chocolate energy bars. I know there are a lot of ‘healthy’ chocolate bars out there these days, but lets face it, they’re bloody expensive! These babies, on the other hand are cost effective and provide long lasting energy, not to mention you get to keep the change in your pocket too!

The recipe is dairy-free, nut free, gluten-free and fruit-free with no added sugar other than rice malt syrup, which is low GI and low fructose too.

The recipe itself is the result of both experimental error and being time-poor. There is, however, no mistaking that the end result is an absolute winner!


Recipe evolution

I was trying to make my  Gluten Free Chocolate Energy Bars, when I realised I had barely any of the essential ingredients. I was out of puffed quinoa (or amaranth) which is pretty much the key ingredient and there wasn’t a pepita in sight.

So I recruited whatever I could find including flaked quinoa, black sesame seeds (suave, right?!), and hemp seeds. The flaked quinoa, however, absorbs more moisture than it’s puffed equivalent so the texture was all wrong….

I had no time to shop for the correct ingredients, so when I noted the difference in texture, I realised I’d stumbled upon a miracle, for this mixture was perfect as it was. It didn’t require baking and because I had little time for baking anyway, I simply pressed it into the tin and that was that- it was ready to serve!


Makes 16 bars



  • 20 x 30cm baking tray
  • 1 large mixing bowl
  • 1 small saucepan
  • wooden spoon
  • whisk

Dry Ingredients

  • 2 cup flaked (rolled) quinoa or amaranth
  • 3/4 cup black or white sesame seeds (even some hemp seeds too, if available)
  • 1 cup shredded coconut
  • ¼ cup raw cacao powder
  • ¼ cup raw cacao nibs (optional)

Wet Ingredients

  • ¾ cup tahini
  • ¾ cup rice malt syrup
  • 2 tsp vanilla


  1. Line a 20cm x 30cm baking tray with baking paper.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, add the dry ingredients, mixing with a wooden spoon to combine.
  3. In a small saucepan, add and warm the wet ingredients, stirring with a wooden spoon. Then use a whisk to work the tahini into the syrup – the end result should be of a caramel colour and consistency. The temperature should be hot, but do not let it begin to boil.
  4. Once warmed, pour the wet ingredients into the bowl of dry ingredients and mix with a wooden spoon until evenly combined. You’ll need to use your hands to really knead it and make sure it’s perfectly combined and rolled into a large, no-longer-sticky ball. If it’s still sticky, just add some more quinoa flakes. It needs to be perfect, neither sticky or dry to touch.
  5. Transfer the mixture/ball to the lined baking tray.
  6. Spread and press the mixture evenly into the tray, filling the corners and leveling the surface. This step does require some effort and it’s best to work quickly before it cools.
  7. Refrigerate for 30 minutes before slicing.


Serving Suggestions

Serve our Raw Cacao Workout Bars:

  • As an on-the-go snack
  • Before, during or after a workout
  • Cut into smaller squares, with tea or coffee
  • Crumbled over our Instant Soft-Serve Ice-Cream for dessert


Store in an airtight container either on your bench-top or in the refrigerator, which is my personal preference.

1 reply
  1. Frances
    Frances says:

    I have just found out about I love scratch and I am going through the recipe I like, My favorite so far is the chocolate raspberry cake. I cannot wait to give the workout bars a go. Thank you so much!!

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