These low carb Birthday Cake Protein Bars are a great recipe if you're looking for a simple, quick and energy dense snack. These bars are perfect post-workout, eaten for snack or packed in your lunch. In addition, this healthy birthday cake protein bar recipe is Paleo, dairy free, grain free and low in sugar.
I don't know why, but I've been in the mood for birthday cake flavored treats lately. From energy bites, to cookies and cupcakes (recipes in the works), I've been testing out all the birthday cake flavored goods.
These healthy, low carb Birthday Cake Protein Bars were first on my list! They're made with my favorite pea protein; which is Paleo, Vegan and allergy friendly. In addition, these bars are:
- low carb
- easily made Vegan
- low in sugar
- dairy free
- egg free
- grain free
- no bake
I'm a fan of grabbing one (or two) of these healthy protein bars after a morning workout or as an afternoon snack. They help fuel that breastfeeding hunger that I've been experiencing lately. (I'm still pretty much exclusively nursing my 8 month old daughter.)
These bars provide sufficient energy, nutrients and are low in sugar! Everything I look for in a nutritious protein bar.
Ingredients in Healthy Birthday Cake Protein Bars
These bars are made with the following ingredients:
- blanched almond butter
- cacao butter
- vanilla extract
- vanilla pea protein
Now, let's dive into the main ingredients and why I chose them.
Blanched Almond Butter
Any almond butter will work for this recipe. Heck, any nut or seed butter can be used in place of the blanched almond butter.
However, I chose blanched almond butter because of it's color. Blanched almond butter is made from almonds that have had their skins removed. It gives these bars a lighter color than a typical almond butter would.
Cacao butter comes from cacao beans and is packed with antioxidants, healthy fats and vitamins. It is Paleo, Keto and Vegan friendly and is often used in food and skincare products.
I chose to use this ingredient because cacao butter is solid at room temperature. It helps these protein bars hold their shape. In addition, cacao butter is what gives these bars a smooth, silky texture that melts in your mouth. I highly recommend using it!
All that being said, an alternative to the cacao butter would be coconut butter (you will need 4 Tbsp coconut butter). This swap will slightly change the protein bar texture and consistency, but will work in a similar manner.
Sweetener is optional. However, honey adds a nice flavor (I definitely recommend using it) and is loaded with health benefits. For a Vegan option, I recommend using maple syrup.
Vanilla Pea Protein
I haven't tested this recipe using anything but pea protein, however most protein powders should work as a replacement. The protein powder flavor does come out in these bars, so if you don't like the taste of the protein powder you are using, then you probably won't like the way these bars turn out. (Just being honest!)
Personally, I love the taste of the pea protein that I use in my recipes. I think the vanilla pairs perfectly with these birthday cake bars. But the flavor isn't for everyone.
The sprinkles I used are not completely Paleo because they contain regular sugar. However, I think they're perfectly acceptable to consume from time to time. They are gluten free, soy free and don't contain any artificial dyes. So, fairly healthy as far as sprinkles are concerned.
You may use any sprinkles you want. If you're super motivated you could even make your own! Another option is to omit them. However, birthday cake protein bars without sprinkles just seems wrong 😉
How to Make Protein Bars
These easy to make protein bars are made in one bowl and set in the fridge to firm. They literally take 10 minutes to make, you just have to wait a while for them to set. Here's what you need to do:
First, melt the cacao butter. It can be melted on the stove top, over low heat, or in the microwave. Personally, I prefer melting it on the stove top.
Then, grab a medium-sized mixing bowl and combine the melted cacao butter, almond butter, vanilla and honey. Mix well.
Next, mix in the protein powder and salt until batter is smooth.
Fold the sprinkles into the batter. Be sure to leave about ½ tablespoon of the sprinkles for the topping.
Lastly, pour the batter into a lined 8" x 4" baking dish (I recommend using foil to line the dish). Top with the last bit of sprinkles and then place in the fridge to set. These bars should firm up in about half an hour and be ready to cut.
These bars cut easily, but can crumble. If you want smooth edges, I suggest setting the protein bars out at room temperature for 20-ish minutes. This will slightly soften them.
These homemade Paleo protein bars are best stored in the fridge. They can be kept at room temperature for a few hours, so taking them in a lunch or as a portable snack is a-okay. For longer storage, keep in the freezer.
More Paleo Protein Bar Recipes
For more healthy, gluten free and Paleo protein bar recipes check these out:
- Hazelnut Collagen Protein Bars
- Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Protein Bars
- Chocolate Chunk Bone Broth Protein Bars
Birthday Cake Protein Bars
- Prep Time: 40 minutes
- Cook Time: 0 minutes
- Total Time: 40 minutes
- Yield: 8 bars 1x
This healthy protein bar recipe is low carb, Keto, Paleo and easily made Vegan. Perfect for a quick snack, pre or post workout fuel or eaten as a healthy dessert.
- ½ cup blanched almond butter*
- 3 Tbsp melted cacao butter (42g)**
- 1 tsp honey (or maple syrup)
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- ½ cup vanilla pea protein (55g)***
- ⅛ tsp salt
- 2 Tbsp sprinkles
- Melt cacao butter on stove top over low heat (or in the microwave). Once fully melted, combine with almond butter vanilla and honey in a medium-sized mixing bowl.
- Mix in protein powder and salt.
- Fold sprinkles into batter, leaving a few extra for the topping.
- Pour batter into a foil lined 8" x 4" baking pan.
- Top with remaining sprinkles.
- Place in fridge for at least 30 minutes (or until bars are firm).
- Remove from foil and cut into 8 rectangular pieces.
- Best stored in fridge.
*Any almond butter will work, but blanched almond butter makes these bars lighter in color (for a more realistic birthday cake look). Feel free to substitute with any creamy nut or seed butter (like cashew butter or sunflower seed butter).
**Cacao butter is what makes these bars harden at room temperature. You may substitute the 3 Tbsp cacao butter with 4 Tbsp coconut butter, but the texture will be slightly different.
***Use my affiliate discount code "bakeitpaleo" for 15% off any Nuzest purchase
Keywords: birthday cake, protein bar, Paleo, Keto, Vegan, snack, high protein
Bonnie Wiley says
I made with recipe with 2 slight variations. I put in 1/2 tsp more honey and left out the sprinkles (didn’t have any!). It was super easy and turned out wonderful! I cut mine into bite sized pieces. I found them very filling/satisfying.
I will make these again!
I did these with some hemp protein instead of the pea protein, and they turned out great, they are absolutely delicious.
Oh good! I'm so happy the hemp protein worked. Thank you for taking the time to leave a review 🙂