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Peanut Butter Energy Bites (Gluten Free + Vegan!)

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Peanut Butter Energy Bites – These 5-ingredient energy bites are SO easy to put together and they’re a big hit with kids and grown-ups. Try the optional chocolate drizzle for a fun twist! (Gluten-free & Vegan)

Back today with another tasty snack idea that’s easy to make with kids–Peanut Butter Energy Bites!

These little bites of goodness are made from a short, sweet ingredient list and they feel like getting away with cookie dough. My kids LOVE them as part of snack (paired with apple slices or grapes on the side), or as an addition to packed lunches (back when we packed school lunches–ha!).

This easy snack is ready in a snap and feels extra fun when you add the optional chocolate drizzle. (You only need 1-2 Tbsp. chocolate for the whole thing!)

Here are the 5 ingredients you need to make these energy bites (they’re all staples at my house!)…


NATURAL PEANUT BUTTER. I use natural peanut butter (JUST peanuts or just peanuts + salt) for my peanut butter energy bites because it has a drippy texture that blends well with the other ingredients. If you use peanut butter with added oils or sugars, you may need to play with the amounts a bit to get the texture just right.

ROLLED OATS. We’re gluten-free, so we use certified gluten-free rolled oats. Quick oats can also work, but you may need to decrease the amount slightly.

PURE MAPLE SYRUP. For a little sweetness + some binding power, we use pure maple syrup. Honey or agave also work, if that’s a better fit for you!

VANILLA. A tiny bit of vanilla makes these taste AMAZING. Don’t’ skip it!

SALT. Lastly, a tiny pinch of salt balances the flavors perfectly. HIGHLY recommend!

BONUS: A LITTLE CHOCOLATE DRIZZLE. If you’re feeling fun or fancy, a tiny drizzle of chocolate goes a long way on these energy bites. My kids love it! You only need 1 1/2-2 Tbsp. of chocolate chips (these and these are allergy-friendly!) and 1/4 tsp. coconut oil.


Peanut butter energy bites are a GREAT recipe to make with kids. They taste amazing, only take a few ingredients, and a food processor does most of the heavy lifting.


  • As always, supervise your child in the kitchen. Keep an eye out for hot items (like melted chocolate), sharp items (like the food processor blade), and general safety (like washing hands and having kids stand on sturdy surfaces).
  • Demonstrate how a food processor works, explaining that the blade is sharp & can cut
  • Insert and remove the blade before allowing kids to help
  • Try to keep the mood light–don’t criticize spills, encourage your child’s successes, and stay calm when explaining steps. It’s easier to learn and have fun when you feel free to do so!


  • For extra little ones, I recommend you pre-measure ingredients, then let your child add or pour them into the food processor
  • Let bigger kids do the measuring. It’s a great way to practice counting, measuring, and leveling. You can even use a 1/4 cup and count out 4 instead of using a 1-cup measuring cup, for instance)
  • Push the buttons on the food processor and check the texture (is it holding together? Does it need to be mixed more finely?)
  • Count out 20-30 seconds while you’re blending.
  • Use a cookie scoop to measure out the balls
  • Roll the energy bites between your hands to smooth them out
  • Count how many energy bites you make
  • Help melt the chocolate
  • Drizzle the chocolate
  • Taste test! 

Related: 20+ Easy Recipes to Cook with Kids


TRY A COOKIE SCOOP! I love using a small cookie scoop to measure equal-sized energy bites. It’s easy to keep them consistent and makes them easier to roll out.

A TRICK FOR DRIZZLING THE CHOCOLATE. If you’re adding the chocolate drizzle, I find it’s easiest to put all the energy bites in your container, then use a fork or small spatula to do the drizzling. Any spills will just drip onto neighboring energy bites!

DON’T WANT TO DRIZZLE THE CHOCOLATE? STIR IN THE CHOCOLATE CHIPS! If the drizzle sounds like too much work, feel free to fold in the chocolate chips at the end before you scoop them into balls.

HOW LONG WILL PEANUT BUTTER ENERGY BITES STAY GOOD? Energy bites like these will keep in the fridge for about 1 week. They typically start drying out a bit around day 5, but we usually devour them before then!

WHAT’S THE BEST WAY TO STORE ENERGY BITES? I recommend an airtight container. We use these or these almost every single time, but a reusable airtight bag like this also works well!

WE HAVE A PEANUT ALLERGY–CAN I USE SOMETHING ELSE? I think so! Natural almond and cashew butter work well, or I’m sure you could swap in sunflower seed butter. You may need to play around with the recipe depending on how thick or thing your nut or seed butter is, adding more oats if they’re wet or more syrup or peanut butter if they’re dry.

CAN I USE SOMETHING BESIDES OATS? If you’re avoiding oats, have run out, or just want another option, you can use about 1/4 cup coconut flour instead. I don’t recommend regular flour for this recipe.



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Peanut Butter Energy Bites (Gluten Free + Vegan!)

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  • Author: One Lovely Life
  • Total Time: 15-20 minutes
  • Yield: 20-22 Energy Bites 1x
  • Diet: Gluten Free


Peanut Butter Energy Bites – These 5 ingredient energy bites are SO easy to put together and they’re a big hit with kids and grown-ups. Try the optional chocolate drizzle for a fun twist! (Gluten free & vegan)



For Peanut Butter Energy Bites:

  • 1 cup creamy or chunky natural peanut butter (just peanuts or just peanuts + salt)
  • 1 cup rolled oats, certified gluten-free if needed
  • 1/3 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/8 tsp. salt

For Optional Chocolate Drizzle:

  • 2 Tbsp. chocolate chips
  • 1/4 tsp. coconut oil.


  1. Pour peanut butter, oats, syrup, vanilla, and salt into your food processor.
  2. Cover with the lid and pulse or blend 20-30 seconds until the mixture is cohesive. (I recommend stirring the sides and bottom after about 20 seconds to make sure you’re not missing any syrup).
  3. Continue mixing, if needed until the “dough” comes together. You should be able to pinch the dough with your fingers and have it easily stick together.*
  4. Use a cookie scoop or Tablespoon to measure out balls of dough.
  5. Roll energy bites between the palms of your hands to smooth out the edges.
  6. Place energy bites in an airtight container in a single layer.
  7. If drizzling with chocolate, gently melt chocolate chips and coconut oil together in a small saucepan or in the microwave in 10-15 second bursts, stirring in between until the chocolate mixture is smooth and glossy.
  8. Use a small spatula, fork, or spoon to lightly drizzle the energy bites with chocolate. (Tip: keep your hand constantly moving so the chocolate doesn’t fall in large dollops)
  9. Cover and chill the energy bites until ready to enjoy.


*If your mixture seems a bit wet, add 1 Tbsp. oats and blend until it comes together. If the mixture seems a bit dry,

  • Prep Time: 15-20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 Minutes
  • Category: Snack
  • Method: Food Processor
  • Cuisine: American

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