No-Bake Vegan Peanut Butter and Jelly Bars

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These No-Bake Vegan Peanut Butter & Jelly Bars taste exactly like a PB&J sandwich but even better! Made with just 6 ingredients, these healthy peanut butter jelly bars are vegan, gluten-free, oil-free, and soy-free and make great healthy snack bars or breakfast bars.
Prep Time: 20 mins
Cook Time: 30 mins
Total Time: 50 mins
5 from 9 votes

Since you guys absolutely love my No-Bake Cookie Dough Bars, I figured it was time to remix them a little bit! Now introducing these No-Bake Vegan Peanut Butter and Jelly Bars!

They are basically your childhood favorite peanut butter and jelly sandwich in a cookie bar formAnd they’re made with just 6 ingredients and require no baking, so they’re incredibly simple to make.

Best of all, they are so insanely delicious that you and your kids will fall in love with them!

Why you’re going to like these vegan peanut butter and jelly bars

6 main ingredients. Yep, that’s it! This recipe is easy and accessible.

No baking required. If baking (especially vegan baking) intimidates you or you just want a quick, easy, and foolproof treat, this is the recipe for you! The food processor does most of the work for you and it couldn’t be simpler.

Delightfully chewy. If you’re like most people, you like chewy cookies. These cookie bars are incredibly chewy and utterly addictive.

Wholesome. These are cookie bars you can feel good about! They’re made with ingredients that are perfectly acceptable for breakfast (dates, peanut butter, oats, jam), which means you can happily eat cookie bars for breakfast (if you want) They’re vegan, gluten-free, oil-free, and soy-free.

Indulgent. Despite being made with wholesome ingredients, these vegan peanut butter and jelly bars are surprisingly rich so just a few bites are enough to satisfy your sweet tooth.

Easy to customize. If you are allergic to peanut butter or are avoiding refined sugars, these bars are very easy to customize (keep on reading for tips)!

Ingredient Rundown

Medjool dates

These sweet and sticky gems are going to help sweeten the dough and also bring it together. The stickiness of the dates, in part, makes the addition of oil unnecessary. Be sure to use soft Medjool dates though.

If your dates are not very soft, soak them in hot water for 5 minutes, then drain and pat dry. If you can’t find Medjool dates, the smaller, drier Deglet dates would be your next best bet, but the dough won’t come together as smoothly. I recommend soaking those for longer, about 15-20 minutes.

Rolled oats

If you can believe it, oats are actually the primary ingredient! You can certainly use store-bought oat flour if you have it, but it takes 2 minutes to make your own oat flour using traditional rolled oats (as you’ll see in the animation below).

Be sure to buy certified gluten-free rolled oats if you or someone you are making these for has a severe gluten intolerance or allergy.

Peanut Butter

Okay, captain obvious, but these are peanut butter and jelly bars, so we gotta use peanut butter! I typically don’t bake with peanut butter because it has such a distinctive taste that can overwhelm other flavors, but for PB&J bars, we gotta use the real deal.

I recommend using creamy peanut butter that is smooth and drippy. If yours is not smooth, stir well and/or heat it in the microwave for a few seconds to loosen up. The peanut butter is the primary source of fat here, making the use of oil unnecessary.

Of course, if you are allergic to peanut butter but still love the idea of these cookie bars, feel free to substitute with almond butter or cashew butter, or for a nut-free alternative, use tahini (as in the original cookie dough bar recipe) or sunflower seed butter.

Maple syrup

Using a liquid sweetener such as maple syrup helps the dough come together in a way that obviates the use of oil.

Vanilla

Any cookie-type recipe needs a good-quality pure vanilla extract.

Raspberry or Strawberry Jam

I am partial to raspberry jam, but if you are not, feel free to use any flavor you like. You have a lot of options here.

  • You can use regular store-bought raspberry or strawberry jam.

  • You can use store-bought low-sugar raspberry or strawberry jam.

  • You can use store bought preserves that are sweetened with just fruit (if doing this, you may want to consider adding 1 additional tablespoon maple syrup to the cookie dough bars).

I like these bars to be drippy and thick with jam, so I use the full 6 ounces of jam called for in the recipe. But if you are limiting your sugar intake, use the lower end of the amount of jam called for in the recipe (4 ounces).

If you want to keep these bars refined sugar-free but can’t find store-bought jam that fits the bill, you can try using my four-ingredient Raspberry Chia Jam or even something like my three-ingredient Berry Compote.

How to Make No-Bake Vegan Peanut Butter and Jelly Bars

To make these bars, start by pulverizing the rolled oats in your food processor until they turn into a fine flour. This should only take 1-2 minutes with a high-powered food processor. If you’re using store-bought oat flour, skip this step.

If your Medjool dates aren’t very soft, soak them in hot water for 5 minutes, then drain well and pat dry. If using Deglet dates, be sure to soak for a bit longer (15-20 minutes).

Then add in the dates, peanut butter, maple syrup, vanilla, and salt and pulse together until a sticky dough comes together

Transfer the dough to a parchment paper-lined loaf pan, using your fingers to smush it into every corner. If you don’t have a loaf pan, you can also use a similar-sized Tupperware or glass storage container. If you only have a square baking pan, you can use that too, but the bars won’t be as tall/thick as they are in these photos.

Freeze the cookie dough for 30 minutes to set it. Before taking them out of the freezer, warm your jam in a saucepan until slightly runny – it should take just a few minutes.

Use a silicone spatula to spread the jam across the surface of the bars. Pop the bars back in the freezer to set, and once they’re set, you can devour them!

Watch! How to Make Peanut Butter and Jelly Bars

This recipe is really easy to make, so there’s not much else you need to know! If you give this recipe a try, be sure to tag me on Instagram with your recreations and please comment with your feedback below!

No-Bake Vegan Peanut Butter and Jelly Bars

5 from 9 votes
These No-Bake Vegan Peanut Butter & Jelly Bars taste exactly like a PB&J sandwich but even better! Made with just 6 ingredients, these healthy peanut butter jelly bars are vegan, gluten-free, oil-free, and soy-free and make great healthy snack bars or breakfast bars.
Prep Time: 20 mins
Cook Time: 30 mins
Total Time: 50 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Baking
Diet Vegan
Keyword: gluten-free, no added oil, no-bake, pb&j, peanut butter, soy-free
Serving size: 16

Ingredients

  • 1 packed cup of soft Medjool dates, pitted*
  • 2 3/4 cups (265-280g) rolled oats**, certified gluten-free if needed
  • 1/2 cup (128g) smooth, drippy peanut butter (no-sugar-added)
  • 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 4-6 ounces (114g-170g) raspberry or strawberry jam of choice***

Instructions

  • If the Medjool dates are not very soft, cover them with hot water for 5 minutes, then drain and pat dry. If using Deglet dates, soak for 15-20 minutes.
  • Place the oats in the bowl of the food processor and pulverize them until you have a fine oat flour.
  • Add the pitted dates, peanut butter, maple syrup, vanilla, and salt to the oat flour. Pulse until the mixture forms into a sticky dough. If it feels too dry, add a spoon of plant-based milk (or more maple syrup), a teaspoon at a time until the dough just sticks together when pressed.
    1. NOTE: If the dough is too sticky to handle with your hands (this is more likely if your kitchen is warm), place the dough in the fridge for 20 minutes to firm it up a bit.
  • Line a 8x4- or 9x5-inch loaf pan (20x10 cm or 23x13 cm) with parchment paper, letting the excess hang over the long sides to form a sling. Spread the dough into pan and smooth the top out evenly, pressing all the way into corners with your fingers. Use a flat-bottomed glass to get the mixture even on top. Place the pan in the freezer for 30 minutes (or longer) to set.
  • Before removing from the freezer, warm the jam up in a saucepan over medium-low heat to make it a bit runny (if using homemade chia jam, this step should not be necessary). Pour the warm jam on top of the dough in the pan, spreading out with a silicone spatula. Add more jam as desired.
  • Return to the freezer to set. Then slice into 8 thick bars or into small squares, and serve immediately. Store leftovers in the freezer.

Notes

* After pitting the dates and packing them into a 1 cup measuring cup, you should have about 7 ounces or 200g of dates.
** You can also use store-bought oat flour - about 2 1/4 cups worth.
*** See notes above on raspberry jam for home-made substitutes and advice on amount to use.

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18 comments on No-Bake Vegan Peanut Butter and Jelly Bars

  1. Jeanne

    5 stars
    Very, very good! I appreciate your efforts in creating recipes. I can always trust that your recipe will be well thought out. You are my go-to chef whenever I’m looking to make anything healthy and delicious!

    1. Support @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Wow! Thanks for the awesome review, Jeanne. We are so glad you love the recipes on our page!

  2. Kati

    5 stars
    These were so fun to make with my kids! They ended up loving them so much that we will have to make more next week. Really fun find for picky eaters.

  3. Amy

    5 stars
    My kids, myself, my mom and my mil LOVE these! I end up making 2 pans every weekend now and they are all accounted for before we eat them. I just recently bought 4 pounds of dates through Amazon just to keep up. One patch I used almond butter instead of peanut butter. Very yummy!

  4. Barbara Larpenter

    Plan on trying these next time I visit the grandkids! I’m sure we will have fun making them and the kids love peanut butter and jelly!

  5. Ritika

    5 stars
    I made this recipe last night and I love it so much! I’ve been trying to incorporate more plant based foods into my diet (I’m a vegetarian but trying to reduce my dairy consumption) and wanted to try out a few healthier dessert recipes. This one tastes so good, I’m a massive fan of PB&J so this sweet treat was a real winner for me.
    I wasn’t able to find medjool dates at my local supermarket so I had to buy a different kind. I soaked them for around 20 mins before adding them to the food processor but my food processor must not be powerful enough because after a lot of pulsing and mixing, there were still a few large pieces of dates in the dough mixture. For this reason, my dough didn’t bind properly and is quite crumbly.
    But nevertheless, it tastes really good so it’s still worth 5 stars from me. I ate some for breakfast with a cup of coffee; just scooped some out into a bowl and ate it with a spoon, so it still works without being completely set! It’s really filling and a guilt free way to eat something sweet for breakfast :)

  6. Gabriella

    5 stars
    I’m obsessed with all of Nisha’s recipes so I’m not surprised that these were also amazing! I made the chia jam this morning, let it sit all day, just so I could make these for a late night treat! <3

  7. Illalt

    These are delicious! Thank you for the recipe! Did a little tweaking and added some cardamon seeds, really amped the flavor, loved it 🤩

  8. Cara

    I made this recipe today. I didn’t put any fruit on top, but I did add vegan chocolate chips. It was very sweet for what I am used to, but I’m still very pleased. Next time I would just lighten the sweetness a bit, but will make again. Very good!

  9. Vicki Bender

    5 stars
    These are excellent! Just the right amount of sweetness that doesn’t make you feel deprived of a treat.

  10. Arielle Sternberg

    5 stars
    I LOVE THESE! I watched your videos of how to make these, the cookie dough, and the nutella. I decided to make this one first and was thrilled. The peanut butter flavor is on point and I love the jam topping. I will definitely make them again.

  11. Mona

    These were delicious! I also made your raspberry- chiajam, and it was really great! The bars were super easy to make and very tasty

  12. Jen

    Wow, these are amazing…and not to mention super easy to make! I wanted mine to have a slight savoryness to it, so I added 1/4 cup of tahini- I may add more next time. Also, I found this recipe to be just a pinch too sweet for me so I’ll probably do 3/4 cup of dates. I’m looking forward to making my next batch and making some for my mom. Thank you so much for this recipe.

    1. Barbara Larpenter

      These sound so good! Am going to try these with my 9 year old grandson the next time I babysit!

  13. Alex

    Have you tried this with coconut flour? I’m wondering if that would change the flavor at all.

    1. Nisha Vora

      Hi Alex, coconut flour is quite different from oat flour – it’s a lot denser, heavier, and it’s usually not a 1:1 sub for any other flours. So while I haven’t tried it, I can’t recommend it.

  14. Amy

    SOOO good!! Ate the entire tray with my family in one night. I added a layer of melted chocolate in between the crust and jam. It was the perfect dessert – so easy and quick. I will definitely be making them again!

  15. Aggie

    Ridiculously good! Tastes just like a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Kid approved! Thank you!

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