This healthy no bake granola bars recipe for baby led weaning is completely vegan, made with no added sugar, and is also a toddler friendly snack.
I don’t know about you, but I get super overwhelmed in the grocery store when I get to the granola bar aisle. Endless choices, and a majority of the time they’re packed with sugar and very little nutrition. So I set out to create my very own toddler friendly no bake granola bar recipe. These bars make the perfect healthy snack for your little one without spending hours in the grocery store aisle trying to pick a healthy option.
Table of contents
Why This Recipe Works
This baby led weaning recipe not only tastes, looks, and feels like a granola bar but it is way healthier than any store-bought version and is surprisingly easy to make! Once you get this recipe in the books, you’ll save so much time and money in the grocery store aisle (you can thank me later).
This no bake granola bar recipe is great for baby led weaning because they are packed with nutrition for your little one. One square provides 9 grams of protein, 4 grams of fibre, and 2 mg of iron. Ha! I’d like to see store-bought granola bars do that!
Not only that – but if your babe is dealing with constipation troubles, this no bake granola bar recipe will help to speed things along.
Ripe banana – to make this no bake granola bar recipe with no added sugar, we use ripe banana’s instead as they add some natural sweetness.
Natural peanut butter – the peanut butter will help to hold everything together while also adding in some tasty nutty flavour and protein.
Prunes – While I normally use dates for granola bar recipes like this one, here we are switching things up and using prunes instead. Prunes are a natural laxative so they are great to use in baby led weaning to help with baby constipation.
Flaxmeal – Flax not only bumps up the omega 3 fats of this healthy no bake granola bar recipe, but they will also help to bump up the fibre content as well. One square provides around 4 grams of fibre!
Old fashioned rolled oats – I like to use large flake rolled oats for this recipe but you can use any rolled oat you prefer. If you want to make this recipe gluten free, you can also use gluten free oats.
Iron fortified baby cereal – these healthy no bake granola bars are a great opportunity to bump up the iron for baby led weaning. So I like to throw in some iron-fortified baby cereal like rice, ancient grains, or oat. If you are just making these for yourself, you can omit this step (obviously).
Toppings – I use freeze dried raspberries and hemp hearts to top these off because those are my personal favs. But the world is your oyster here! You can top off with chia seed, shredded coconut, drizzled chocolate, etc!
How to Make This Recipe
Step 1: To a food processor, puree the banana, peanut butter, coconut oil, prunes, and vanilla until smooth.
Step 2: To a bowl, mix the cinnamon, flax, hemp, oats, cereal, and coconut.
Step 3: Add the wet ingredients to the dry until incorporated.
Step 4: Line a 9×9″ pan with parchment paper in both directions and press mixture into the bottom of the pan.
Step 5: To a food processor, or blender, pulse the freeze dried raspberries until they turn into a fruity powder.
Step 6: Sprinkle on top of the mixture, along with the hemp hearts. Pack down tight. Freeze for one hour before cutting into bars.
I’d suggest using ripe bananas for this recipe (you know, the ones that are starting to get brown spots). These bananas will not only be softer and easier to work with, but they are sweeter than bananas that are less ripe.
I prefer to use all natural peanut butter for this recipe but if you have not yet introduced peanuts to your little one (or they are allergic), you can use an allergy friendly nut butter like sun butter, instead.
Oh YES! The secret ingredient in these toddler homemade granola bars are…. PRUNES. The prunes in this recipe are a great alternative to dates because they’re naturally sweet while helping promote regularity and reduce baby constipation.
I buy my freeze dried fruit online, and we go through a lot of it. It’s a great way to add a ton of flavour and pretty colour without added sugar (aka. no food colourings, and no sprinkles/candies). You can find all sorts of flavours, so buy a few (check out my amazon affiliate link here) and you can mix and match.
Yep. That’s how I roll. I like to make a lot of ANYTHING I’m cooking, and then I have these in the freezer in a freezer bag to pull out when Baby E needs an on the go snack. They thaw out in moments, so by the time you bring them wherever you’re headed, they’re ready for snacking.
More BLW Recipes You Might Like
Here are a few of my favourite baby led weaning recipes from the blog!
- Baby Led Weaning Homemade Popsicles
- BLW Chickpea Peanut Butter Baby Biscuits
- BLW Peanut Butter Banana Mini Muffins
- Cherry Almond Baked Oatmeal Finger Food
So now mamas and dads, what are some of your baby’s favorite on the go snacks? Let me know in the comments below!
Healthy No Bake Granola Bars (Kid & Toddler Friendly)
- 1/2 cup mashed ripe banana
- 1 cup creamy natural peanut butter
- 3 tbsp melted virgin coconut oil
- 1/2 cup prunes chopped
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/3 cup flaxmeal
- 1/3 cup hemp hearts
- 1/2 cup old fashioned rolled oats gluten free if desired
- 1/2 cup iron fortified baby cereal rice, ancient grains, or oat
- 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
- To a food processor, puree the banana, peanut butter, coconut oil, prunes, and vanilla until smooth.
- To a bowl, mix the cinnamon, flax, hemp, oats, cereal, and coconut. Add the wet ingredients to the dry until incorporated.
- Line a 9×9″ pan with parchment paper in both directions and press into the bottom of the pan.
- To a food processor, or blender, pulse the freeze dried raspberries until they turn into a fruity powder. Sprinkle on top of the mixture, along with the hemp hearts. Pack down tight. Freeze for one hour before cutting into bars.
Have you tried making this healthy no bake granola bar recipe for your little one? Let me know your thoughts!
Abbey Sharp is a Registered Dietitian (RD), regulated by the Ontario College of Dietitians. She is a mom, YouTuber, Blogger, award winning cookbook author, media coach specializing in food and nutrition influencers, and a frequent contributor to national publications like Healthline and on national broadcast TV shows.