Oil-free Carrot Cake Protein Bars

Kevin and I had such a great time camping this weekend. It’s exactly what we needed.

There were many good eats to be had (including these high protein, gluten-free, homemade protein bars) naps, and long, long roads to venture down.

We had planned to stay at the campsite until this morning, but decided to head home a day early to beat the long weekend rush. There’s nothing worse than closing off a relaxing trip by being stuck in a 300km traffic jam with every other camper and their dog… literally. We enjoyed a warm dinner by the fire last night, then leisurely made our way home.

Today, we have every intention to nurture our relaxed mood until we head back into the office tomorrow morning. A big pancake breakfast is definitely in our future, followed by a long walk with the puppies, and perhaps; in keeping with camping tradition, we may treat ourselves to a nice long nap this afternoon. Sure sounds a lot better than trudging through traffic!

One of the items I prepared in advance for our trip were these protein bars. As much Kevin would love to live on a diet of hot dogs, roasted marshmallows and potato chips while we’re camping, that just wont fly with this girl!

In planning this recipe, I wanted to create a snack for us that:

  • could be squished in a cooler and still taste good
  • portable
  • mess-free
  • low in sugar
  • high in protein

Kevin’s version was raisin-free, mine was raisin packed. We make a good team he and I!

print, email or text this recipe

4.0 from 6 reviews
Oil-free Carrot Cake Protein Bars
Recipe type: Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Refined sugar-free, Yeast-free, Corn-free, Grain-free, Nut-free
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8 bars, 8 servings
Gluten-free protein bars filled with carrot cake flavor! Less than 250 calories with over 13 grams of protein.
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup mashed banana or ¾ cup unsweetened apple sauce *see note
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoon non-dairy milk
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract or flesh from 1 vanilla bean
  • ¾ cup shredded carrots
  • ¼ cup raisins
  1. Preheat oven to 375F and line an baking sheet with a silicon baking mat or parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. Combine wet ingredients in a large bowl with a hand or stand mixer.
  3. Whisk dry ingredients in a small bowl. Once incorporated, add to the wet mix and mix until smooth.
  4. Add shredded carrots and raisins. Allow to sit for 1-2 minutes to thicken up.
  5. Scoop approximately ⅓ cup at a time into your hand. Shape into a bar and place on prepared baking sheet. You can also shape the bars on the baking sheet, I found that was easiest.
  6. Bake bars for 22-25 minutes, or until toothpick inserted comes out clean, the bottoms of the bars or golden, and the tops are cracking slightly.
  7. Remove from oven and allow to cool on the pan for 5 minutes before removing to a cooling rack
  8. Once cooled completely, top with a drizzle of coconut butter.
I tried one batch with banana and the other with apple sauce. Both yield a similar bar, but Kevin and I liked the banana one a bit more. We found that the banana made the bar sweeter, naturally. Any type of rice protein or combined vegan protein should do the trick. If you use hemp protein, you may have to reduce the amount as hemp protein is quite dry. To keep grain-free and paleo, choose a protein powder that’s not made from rice. If you don’t want to use protein powder, you could try almond flour instead. STORING INSTRUCTIONS - The bars will keep in the fridge for about 5 days. They also freeze well. Wait until the bars are completely cooled and coated with coconut butter. Place them in an air-tight container and stick in the freezer. No wrapping of individual bars needed. When you want to eat, just take out of the freezer and allow to thaw for 30 minutes or so.

Begin by lining up your ingredients.

In two separate bowls, combined wet ingredients in one, and dry in the other. Be sure to give the dry ingredients a good whisk so that everything is fully combined.

Add dry to wet and blend with a hand blender or spatula. Allow the mixture to sit for a couple of minutes to thicken up. Don’t be concerned if the mix is too wet at first, coconut flour will do it’s magic if left for just a couple of moments.

Add your carrots and raisins…

Stir until combined, then start shaping into bars!

Throw in the oven, clean up your messy kitchen… and await the awesomeness that is about to be your favorite homemade protein creation!

Do you enjoy camping?

If so, do you find it challenging to eat healthy when you’re camping?

Pin It
The Keto Bundle upgraded and expanded

Comments | Leave Your Comment

  1. Do you think instead of banana I could try pumpkin and just add a little maple syrup to sweeten?

  2. I made them and they turned out great! I used bananas and whey protein (I know, not paleo) and they were a bit more liquid than the pics but turned out nice and cakey and moist! Thanks! I plan to try apple or another flavor soon….

    • Hi Angela – coconut butter is to coconut as peanut butter is to peanuts. Coconut oil is to coconut as peanut oil is to peanuts. Unfortunately they cannot be substituted… but I’m sure that you could use another type of seed or nut butter for this recipe!

  3. Leanne,

    By the grace of God, I stumbled on your site early this morning. This recipe jumped started my day. These are downright delicious!!!! Thank you :)

  4. This is a great recipe! My sig-o hates raisins too (while I love them) so I used your raisin vs no raisin strategy :) so glad I’ve found your blog!

    • What’s up with the raisin hate? I don’t get it! haha they are truly missing out. I’m happy that you found me, too!

  5. I am so thankful to have found your website. I made these tonight and subbed the protein powder with almond flour & the raisins with dried cranberries because that’s what I had on hand.Delicious!! Can’t wait to have another for breakfast. Thanks for a great recipe

    • Wow, so great to know that the portions worked well. I’m so happy that you found me!

  6. So, I have this habit of coming home after working out and baking/cooking up a storm. It’s hilarious, though, because I’m usually quite “endorphin drunk”. My friends that have observed this hilarious activity have encouraged me to do an online cooking show in the vein of “My Drunk Kitchen” and I think I’m going to use this as my first recipe. I’m really excited to try these, but a couple of quick questions:

    Do I need to do anything to mask the flavour of hemp protein, if I were to use it?
    Can anything be substituted for the maple syrup? (Brown rice syrup, for instance?)
    Want a link to this smashingly hilarious video once I’ve made it?

    And to answer your question:

    I love camping, but I haven’t been in eons. I don’t usually worry too much about healthy eating when camping. Generally, if I’m going camping it’s part of a multiday back country backpacking trip, and burning thousands of additional calories every day alleviates most calorie concerns.

    • haha I would LOVE to link to the video once I’ve taken a look at it. That sounds too fun. This recipe is pretty fragile, so I’m not sure hemp protein powder would work. If you were to do hemp protein, I’d remove the maple syrup and use all bananas to mask the taste of the hemp. The color isn’t going to be the best if you use hemp either. Can’t wait to see this video!

Leave a Reply to Leanne Vogel Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Rate this recipe: