Low Carb Mocha Chip Protein Bars - Chocolate + Coffee = Love

The Homemade Keto Protein Bar Formula

Throughout the duration of this blog, I’ve posted a lot of homemade keto protein bar recipes. I tend to rely on protein bars, especially while traveling or for work. I like the portability factor, and it’s nice to be able to pack a protein bar in your bag for that “oh crap, I’m hungry and everything around me is made from sugar” moment that we’ve all had. Basically, I think protein bars are great.

Homemade Keto Protein Bar Formula - a super simple recipe for lots of low carb protein bars!

Protein bars are also something pretty divisive. People have their preferences, and defend their favorites pretty aggressively. My favorites for quite a while were Quest bars, until the cost became too much, and I decided I needed to start making some homemade keto protein bars.

So, I did a little recipe testing, and came up with a Quest protein bar substitute that was satisfactory. There’s a pretty basic formula for making these at home, so we’ll take a look at that here!

Homemade Keto Protein Bar Formula

6 tablespoons nut butter + 6 tablespoons cream cheese +~90g sugar free protein powder

That’s it. Super simple. Now, obviously, not every type of cream cheese will be exactly the same, and different brands of nut butter have different amounts of oil, but this is a good place to start. You can adjust the amount of nut butter or cream cheese by 2 tablespoons, but make sure that you have 12 tablespoons total. So, you could have 8 tablespoons of cream cheese, and 4 tablespoons of nut butter, and the recipe should still be fine.

Homemade Keto Protein Bar Ingredients

For protein powder, I tend to use a stevia sweetened brand with flavor already added, as this makes life so much easier.

The cream cheese is generally whatever I’ve got lying around. Regular cream cheese, light cream cheese, Neufchatel and mascarpone all tend to work the same way in this formula, so whatever you’ve got lying around should work.

As for nut butters, I often like to use peanut butter (so tasty!), and will just buy whatever (unsweetened) brand is most cost effective at the market. For bars that have a dominant flavor other than peanut butter, I love using coconut manna. The coconut taste isn’t really there once extracts are added, and you’re just left with a lovely flavor. Using coconut butter also means that a lot of these recipes are for nut free protein bars, which are kind of a unicorn in the protein bar world.

Homemade Keto Protein Bar Recipes

Below, I’ve linked to the recipes on this blog that utilize this basic formula:


  • Low Carb Mocha Chip Protein Bars - Meat Free Keto May 1, 2016 at 1:40 pm

    […] carb protein bars follow the same formula as a few others on this blog. That little recipe key is discussed in-depth here, in case you want to make your own […]

  • LindainCO May 23, 2016 at 4:35 pm

    Can you give the nutritional info for the bars? Fats, Proteins, Carbs and Calories?
    Thank you!

    • LindainCO May 23, 2016 at 4:37 pm

      Ugh. I just found it, disregard!
      I can’t wait to try these recipes!

      • Liz May 24, 2016 at 7:01 pm

        I hope you enjoy them!! I really like making homemade protein bars!

  • Mary September 8, 2016 at 9:12 pm

    I can’t seem to find the nutritional values either. Can you direct me please? Also would I use the coconut mana instead of nut butters? I have sun butter I wonder if that would work?

    • Liz September 11, 2016 at 8:00 am

      Hi there, Mary – thanks for commenting! The nutritional values are included in each individual recipe link, as they differ depending on which specific ingredients were used.

      Sun butter would definitely work. 😀

  • Beverly March 26, 2017 at 1:34 pm

    What is coconut manna?, thank you!

    • Liz March 27, 2017 at 10:25 am

      Hi Beverly – this is a great question! Coconut manna is the same as coconut butter. It’s basically blended up dried coconut. 🙂

      • Beverly March 27, 2017 at 11:36 am

        Fantastic! Thank you Liz. I have some dried coconut at home so I can make some and try it this week. Can’t wait to make these bars. My food list is very limited, being vegan, keto and soy free. Protein bars are a main meal for me. So glad to find your site

        • Liz March 27, 2017 at 12:25 pm

          I hope they turn out well! Which protein powder are you using? I’ve found good results with Vega for this, but am curious how others work!

          • Beverly March 30, 2017 at 4:39 pm

            Sorry I didn’t see this sooner. I got a sample of Garden of Life so starting a very mini version later today. Quick question, what could I use to replace the cream cheese. Although I love it, my body doesn’t handle most dairy well. I don’t do soy either. Any ideas? Double the coconut manna ot nut butter? I also just found some coffee flour from Trader Joe’s. Will be experimenting with that also.

          • Liz March 31, 2017 at 5:40 pm

            Coffee flour sounds fascinating!! There are a few brands of vegan cream cheese that don’t contain soy (Daiya makes one that is soy free, though it’s a bit high in carbs). It would be an interesting experiment to double the nut butter! The coconut butter is too hard to work on its own, I think.

            I would love to hear how your experiments turn out!! 😀

  • Vera December 26, 2017 at 12:54 pm

    Can these be frozen? Or would it change the texture too much?

    • Liz December 28, 2017 at 3:55 pm

      I have frozen them to set them up on super hot days in the summer and they seemed fine to me! 🙂

  • Pablo January 22, 2018 at 2:58 pm

    Hello, do you just mix the ingredients and then shape them or is there something else involved? I am very happy to have found this blog as I am hoping to move into a meat-free diet soon.


    • Liz January 22, 2018 at 4:04 pm

      Hi Pablo! This is an excellent question. It really is that easy – mix, and shape. The mixing definitely requires a little effort though – it can be really thick!

      I’m so glad you’re finding this blog helpful! Please feel to reach out with any questions 🙂

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