Homemade Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Larabars

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Oh, homemade Larabars. It’s been too long. Really though, I can’t say I’ve had a good reason to make energy bars. Let me tell you, my energy is in zero danger of plummeting any time soon. With all the recipe testing going down, my only challenge is trying not to pop the button off my pants from all this good food. The freezer is bursting at the seams; one wrong move and I’m pummeled in the face by a 10-pound solid chunk of homemade pasta sauce or chocolate pie. The last thing I need is an energy bar.

Eric, on the other hand, could use a portable snack. He plays in a volleyball league which meets for a few hours around dinnertime and he’s usually famished by the time he sits down to eat dinner at 9 or 10 pm. Since I can’t play in the league myself (I have a torn meniscus in my knee), I support him in the best way I know how – homemade snacks.

Of course, I enjoyed a couple bars (ok, ok and some dough!) – all in the name of taste-testing purposes of course. It’s amazing how much of an appetite I can work up hovering over a food processor. Tell me I’m not alone.

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Homemade Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Larabars

Email, text, or print this recipe

Adapted from my 2008 recipe.

Yield: 10-12 bars (shown in photos – 12 servings)

Ingredients:

  • 1.5 cups raw cashews (230 grams)
  • 1/4-1/2 tsp fine grain sea salt (I used 1/2 tsp)
  • 1 cup tightly packed pitted dates* (roughly 190 grams)
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 3 tbsp mini dark chocolate chips (or simply chop larger pieces of chocolate)

 

1. If your dates are stiff or dry, soak the dates in a bowl of water for 30-60 minutes before beginning. Drain well and pat dry before use.

2. Add cashews and salt into a food processor and process the until the cashew crumbs are just smaller than peas, for about 3-4 seconds.

3. Now add in the pitted dates and process until the mixture comes together, for about 15 seconds, or longer if needed. The mixture should stick together easily when you squeeze it between your fingers. If it doesn’t stick or it’s still a bit crumbly, add a very small amount of water (1 tsp at a time) and process it again. I added 1 tsp of water and it was perfect.

4. Add the vanilla and process until combined. Finally, pulse in the chocolate or simply stir in by hand.

5. Line an 8-inch square pan with 2 pieces of parchment paper, one going each way (this makes it easier to lift out). Scoop mixture into pan and smooth out with hand until it’s level. Beginning at the centre, push down firmly all over the mixture. The more you pack it down the better the bars will hold together. Roll out with a pastry roller if you have one (you know I was all over that!).

6. Freeze for at least 15 minutes and then slice into 10-12 bars. The bars are a bit fragile and can break apart, so just handle them carefully. For on-the-go, wrap bars in plastic wrap or tin foil and store in the fridge or freezer. Or just store them all in an air-tight container if enjoying at home. Most importantly of all, hide from other members of the family.

Note: You can use Medjool or honey dates here. Just be sure they are nice and soft.

See nutritional info based on 12 and 10 servings.

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If you are looking for another tasty energy bar/ball recipe, check out my Dark Chocolate Cherry Energy Bites. Love those!

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What’s your favourite Larabar flavour of all time?

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{ 174 comments… read them below or add one }

Kelly Z. January 16, 2013

We have nut allergies at our house. Any suggestions on what to replace the cashews with?
Thanks!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) January 17, 2013

Hi Kelly, Someone asked this in the comments above – see my reply. Thanks and goodluck!

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Belinda January 16, 2013

I want to make these tonight, but I don’t have cashews. Have you tried making these with any other kinds of nuts or seeds?

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Angela (Oh She Glows) January 17, 2013

Not yet but I think many nuts would work, like almonds. goodluck!

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Belinda January 17, 2013

Thanks. I just made two batches. The first one I made with almonds and they are really good. The next batch I made were with 1 cup of pumpkin seeds and half a cup of sunflower seeds. I made them into balls and rolled them into a mixture of cocoa and oat bran. They are very delicious. Thank you so much for this recipe.

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Angela (Oh She Glows) January 17, 2013

That’s great! Thanks for sharing with me, and everyone else :) Enjoy

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De'Etta January 16, 2013

I will try these soon. I love Chocolate Peanut Butter Lara Bars.

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Katie January 16, 2013

I have never eaten a Larabar, but I’m excited to make these to take on my long run next weekend. I love the short list of what I consider to be “real food” ingredients. Cashews are my favourite nut as well, so I’m sure to love these!

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Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin January 16, 2013

I love making homemade Larabars (with almonds instead of cashews/walnuts so that I can actually eat them)! I’ve only made coconut flavoured ones before, but these ones look delicious too!

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Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat January 16, 2013

Oh my gosh, these MUST be made!!! They look and sound amazing! I haven’t really eaten a ton of Larabars to be honest (I need more volume to fill me up!) but I really liked the apple pie one!

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Alina January 16, 2013

My favorite are the banana bread or lemon ones. I’m not too into nutrition bars though, unless they are homemade. These look really nice, though!

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Rose January 16, 2013

Oh girl, you are NOT alone. Give me a Cuisinart bowl of nut/date dough, and I will demolish it. Super dangerous.

You’re not alone with the pants issue, either :) It’s that time of year.

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Hannah @ CleanEatingVeggieGirl January 16, 2013

Wow, these look amazing!! And the fact that they only contain 5 ingredients is incredible. That is one of the things that I truly appreciate about Larabars. I am sure this homemade version is even tastier!

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Alex @ Raw Recovery January 16, 2013

Eric is so lucky to have such an amazing chef as a wife!!

The chocolate cherry Larabar is my favorite! I need to try your version! Another recipe that I forgot to make!

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Butterfingers January 16, 2013

Ths is going to sound really wired but I had a dream about this exact flavour and was contemplating making this today….can’t tell you how happy I am to see this post!!!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) January 17, 2013

It’s a sign!

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Vegan RAdhika SArohia January 17, 2013

“It’s amazing how much of an appetite I can work up hovering over a food processor. Tell me I’m not alone.”

^ Nope nooooo not alone!
I actually make myself a huge snack to have while cooking and waiting for something to cook…otherwise I start eating whatever I’m cooking before it’s even done (it’s so weird!! haha)

“With all the recipe testing going down, my only challenge is trying not to pop the button off my pants from all this good food.”

^ I’m imagining someone flying around a kitchen like Vegan Wonder Woman with buttons popping off everywhere while trying to man a hot stove…like a vegan super-hero (super-heroine?) contending with wardrobe malfunction while bravely preparing recipe hahaha

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Vegan RAdhika SArohia January 17, 2013

Oh gawd why didn’t I leave that comment in my head…plz feel free to delete, no prob

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Angela (Oh She Glows) January 17, 2013

haha….this is so funny! Now I will have to start thinking of myself as a vegan wonder woman. ;)

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Jennifer @ Peanut Butter and Peppers January 17, 2013

Yum! I love homemade larabars way better then store bought. Homemade has such a better taste. Fabulous recipe!!

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Stephen@HappyHeart January 17, 2013

Love these! We don’t have Larabars in Ireland, we have others which are similar called Nakd bars but so much better making your own!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) January 17, 2013

My friend Leah gave me some Nakd bars before and they are SO good!!!

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Fit Missy January 17, 2013

I’ve been trying to perfect these balls for a long time but I think I’ve been adding too many dates.

Thanks for sharing this recipe. I added it to my Evernote. :)

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Nicole @ Fruit 'N' Fitness January 17, 2013

Yum! These sound pretty easy to make to. My favorite flavors are cashew cookie and coconut cream pie!

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Lindsey McClennahan January 17, 2013

HAH I know hoe you feel about your freezer! These look dangerous! I’m hungry already just looking at them!

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Joann @ Woman in Real Life January 17, 2013

I love the cherry Larabar. This homemade recipe sounds wonderful. Chocolate chips are always a plus. I wonder if I could get my kids to eat these bars…hmmm. They need some good snacks to keep them dancing, playing basketball, etc. I sit on my butt a lot so I’m not much in need of calories. ;)

Joann
womaninreallife.blogspot.ca/

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lynn @ the actor's diet January 17, 2013

excited to make these now that i have a blendtec blender – i can make these in there, right?!?

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Christy January 17, 2013

Made these last night and had one for lunch today. Awesome! I forgot the salt so just sprinkled some on before freezing. Tasted great.

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Angela (Oh She Glows) January 17, 2013

Glad to hear that Christy!

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Janina Locascio January 17, 2013

Larabars truly are one of the greatest snacks of all time – natural, raw, healthy, quick and easy to make – love it. Yours look delicious! The pics actually look like they have Chia Seeds in them, which would be a wonderful addition either way!

yummmm

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Cara January 17, 2013

I’m so excited to try these! How will it affect the dough to use roasted instead of raw cashews?

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Angela (Oh She Glows) January 17, 2013

I think it will be the flavour that’s impacted the most – raw cashews have more of a cookie dough flavour than roasted.

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Christine @ Shot Bun January 17, 2013

I always have Larabars stuffed in my purse or in my desk at work. Such a great snack and energy booster!

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Lori January 17, 2013

I can’t wait to try this one. Looks delicious!

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Amber @ Slim Pickin's Kitchen January 17, 2013

I love how beautifully you cut these bars!!! Mine would look like they were attacked by a hacksaw. I love Lara bars and the homemade version ones too, so I’m totally going to make these…and then make my super patient husband cut them ;)

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Denise @ pink-vegan.blogspot.com January 17, 2013

These look REALLY look… I need to make these!!!! THANKS for the recipe.

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Alex @ Healthy Life Happy Wife January 17, 2013

Omigosh! The chocolate chip cookie dough are by far my favorite larabars! I cant wait to try these!!

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Anna @ the Guiltless Life January 17, 2013

OOh love the idea of homemade LARABARs! My favourite flavour is the Cocoa Coconut… soooo good! (I think that’s its name – the brown wrapper, in any case!)

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{Moni} @ Moni Meals January 17, 2013

Amazing recipe here! I remember these too! I would eat these every morning. :) Can’t wait to make em Ang. I love your photos too.

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Jody January 17, 2013

Have I told you how much I love your header? And have I told you how much I love you for this recipe?! I LOVE Larabars, but have recently noticed that not all of them are vegan….I thought they were…anywho, thanks for this recipe!

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Kristine January 17, 2013

How marvelous! This just happens to be my favorite flavor of Lara Bar. I’ll definitely be trying this recipe. Thanks!

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Christin January 18, 2013

Thanks for the recipe, can’t wait to try it. My favorite Larabar is the blueberry muffin. It is very hard to find though.

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Olga January 18, 2013

This is amazing! I was just buying these today, thinking to my self ..it would be good to learn to make these.. and here they are, THANK YOU!

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Bek @ Crave January 18, 2013

These look so good, especially since us Aussies don’t even get LaraBars over here :( I bet you could sub cashews for peanuts and it’d taste like a peanut butter choc chip cookie dough- couldn’t get any better!

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Allie January 18, 2013

I just made these and they are so yummy! I rounded them out into little ‘energy balls’ and they were devoured in a day. I am pretty sure that I just found a new staple in my house.

Thanks Angela!

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Eliana January 19, 2013

I am buying a food processor today!

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cristina January 19, 2013

hi
just saw thay u have a knee problem :(
sorry to hear that ..i also have the same problem with my knee .do u do any tyoe of exercisse ? my doctor said an operation will be needed but im trying to avoid that and postpone as much as possible because i cant stand the thought of not doing any exercisse for a whille

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Robyn January 20, 2013

These were great little bars but they did not hold together for me. I added extra water as suggested and pressed down firmly on the dough with the back of a metal measuring cup (I didn’t have a pastry roller) but after freezing them, they fell apart when I tried to get them out of the pan. Perhaps the pastry roller makes all the difference?

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Angela (Oh She Glows) January 21, 2013

My guess is that the mixture just needed more moisture or more dates. The dates have to be soft and not dry. It`s also important to use a PACKED cup of dates, anything less and it might not hold together. Hope this helps!

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Sandy January 20, 2013

Oh.my.goodness. I just made both of these today, and I am hard pressed to choose a favourite. I am at this very moment eating one of the chocolate cherry energy balls… yes, okay, I think these are my favourite, but then again, the chocolate chip cookie dough ones are so vanilla-y good… lol. Wow. Thank-you for two amazing recipes. I am a breastfeeding mom, and so I frequently need quick, substantial, nutrient-rich energy-boosting snacks. I discovered your site because my baby has a cow’s milk protein allergy and as that protein transfers through breastmilk, we both need to be dairy-free. Your site has given us a lot of yummy options. These are incredible. Thank-you again so much! Happy New Year!

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Jen Broyles January 21, 2013

I love Larabars (the mint chocolate is my favorite), and now I can’t wait to make my own! This recipe sounds amazing! Thanks!

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