No Bake Vegan Nougat Protein Bites are sneaky nutrient dense little energy balls with a few simple ingredients—but taste like you’re eating dessert! Gluten-free, refined sugar-free and completely vegan, these will be your new favourite healthy treat!
These little bites are super quick to whiz up in a food processor (there’s a blender method below if you don’t have a food processor!) and they literally taste like truffles or candy. SO GOOD!
If you’re looking for an uncomplicated dessert that’s easy to portion out, quick to make, and REALLY chocolaty, you’re going to love these vegan nougat protein bites!
They’re great to take on-the-go too, like on road trips or to school or work as a sweet treat. Use them after the gym to replenish your energy stores (they are loaded with protein!) or as an energy booster during an intense study session.
If you want to add even more healthy omega-3’s you can add in some common ingredients like ground flaxseed, hemp seeds, or chia seeds, but keep in mind this will make them more “seedy” and less like a cookie dough texture.
Why You’ll Love These No Bake Vegan Nougat Protein Bites
- No fuss. There’s no baking or complicated steps involved in these vegan nougat balls. All you have to do is blend up some ingredients and dip the bites in chocolate. I mean, it doesn’t get much easier than that!
- Wholesome ingredients. If you’re looking for a decadent dessert on the healthier side, you’ll love this vegan nougat recipe. With ingredients like oat flour, protein powder, banana, dates, and nut butter, this is a dessert or snack you can feel good about.
- Great for kids or picky eaters. These healthy vegan nougat bites are loaded with healthy ingredients—but they don’t taste healthy! Kids will love eating these and they may want to help make them too. It’s like working with edible play-dough!
Key Ingredients and Substitutions
- Oat Flour: If you can’t find oat flour, you can make it by blending up rolled oats until they become a fine powder. If you can’t have oats, try almond flour (you might need to adjust the wet to dry ingredients ratio). Do not use all purpose flour as it has to be cooked to consume.
- Chocolate Protein Powder: Use any chocolate protein powder you enjoy here. If you don’t want your vegan nougat bites to be super sweet, use an unsweetened protein powder.
- Cinnamon: This adds nice flavour to the bites.
- Salt: This brings out the flavour in the oats and chocolate.
- Banana: This adds sweetness and softness to the recipe. If you cannot have bananas, add a little more nut butter or 2 more dates.
- Dates: Pitted Medjool dates work best for this recipe but you could substitute 2 tablespoons of pure maple syrup instead.
- Nut or Seed Butter: Any nut or seed butter will work in this recipe. Experiment with different nut butters for different flavours. For extra deliciousness, try a vegan cookie butter!
- Vanilla Extract: Adds a nice “baked” flavour to the vegan nougat!
- Non-Dairy Milk: Any unflavoured plant-based milk will work well.
- Coconut Oil: This is for the chocolate coating.
- Dairy-Free Chocolate Chips: Any vegan chocolate chips will work for this recipe. You can also use a chopped dark chocolate bar (the equivalent of a half cup).
How to Make No Bake Vegan Nougat Protein Bites
- Prep: Line a baking tray with parchment paper.
- Make the dough: Blend all ingredients except coconut oil and chocolate chips in a small food processor (or alternatively blend the banana and dates with the milk first and then mix it all together by hand if you don’t have a mini food processor)!
- Make the vegan nougat bites: Roll into 12 balls then freeze the balls while you melt the chocolate and coconut oil.
- Dip in chocolate: Roll each ball in chocolate and place on a parchment paper lined tray. Add cacao nibs, nuts or sea salt if desired.
- Chill and store: Freeze again for about 20 mins. Store in the fridge for up to 1 week!
Ideas for Serving
These no bake vegan nougat protein bites are so delicious even on their own! They’d be excellent paired with fresh fruit like strawberries, too.
If you’re having guests over, try making a dessert charcuterie board with fresh fruit, these vegan nougat bites, Vegan Chocolates with Vanilla Cream, Birthday Cake Truffles with Cookie Crumbs, and these vegan cake pops!
I always think chocolate and coffee go well together. Try one of my fancy coffee drinks like Iced Brown Sugar Oat Milk Shaken Espresso Starbucks Copycat, Vegan Chocolate Cream Cold Brew, or Iced Toasted Vanilla Oat Milk Shaken Espresso.
How to Store
These vegan nougat balls store very well in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week, or in the freezer for up to 3 months (if they last that long in your house, because in mine they go fast).
When pulling them out of the freezer, I recommend letting them sit for 10-20 minutes before biting into them if you don’t want them to be too hard.
I don’t have oat flour—what can I do?
I just make my own oat flour! Simply blend 1 cup of rolled oats or quick oats until finely ground into a powdery flour consistency. If you need them gluten-free make sure you use certified gluten-free oats.
What if I don’t have a blender or a food processor?
You can still make these awesome vegan nougat bites! Simply mash the banana with the back of a fork until it becomes glossy and well mashed. Then use 2 tablespoons of pure maple syrup instead of the dates and mix everything together by hand.
Can I make these nut-free?
Yes. Simply sub the almond butter or peanut butter for sunflower seed butter (or other seed butter).
Can I substitute the dates?
You can substitute the dates for more banana (if you want a banana bread flavour!) or 2 tablespoons maple syrup (or my vegan honey) and you can do more or less depending on your preferred sweetness. However, I always have a box of dates in my pantry and I love throwing them into recipes like this when I want natural sweetener!
Are protein bites good for you?
These vegan protein bites are such a convenient and healthy little snack—especially when you make them yourself! With wholesome ingredients like oats, nut butter, banana, cinnamon and protein powder these little bites are a great pick me up when you need a quick snack or are craving something sweet and chocolatey. Watch out for store-bought protein balls or ones that contain a ton of sugar—they might actually spike your blood sugar and cause you to be even hungrier soon. However, ones with a good balance of carbs, fat, protein and fibre are a perfectly fine snack choice (or a healthier dessert!)
Are protein balls good before and/or after a workout?
I definitely think they could be—especially if you make some without the chocolate coating. The chocolate coating is amazing if you want these for a healthy dessert option, but if having them before or after a workout I think the plain nougat protein bite would be even better and avoid a large blood sugar spike and crash!
What vegan chocolate do you use for the outside?
I use dairy-free semi-sweet chocolate chips.
Looking for More Healthy Vegan Dessert Recipes?
- Healthy Vegan Blueberry Chocolate Chip Banana Bread
- Vegan Banana Date Muffins with Chocolate Chips
- Healthy Snickers Ice-Cream Bars
- Edible Vegan Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough
- Vegan Half-Baked Apple Pie Chia Pudding
- Vegan Frozen Yogurt in the KitchenAid Ice Cream Attachment