Peanut Butter Protein Balls (gluten-free, vegan options)

These 6-ingredient peanut butter protein balls only take a few minutes to throw together and are full of healthful ingredients! Naturally gluten-free, whole grain, dairy-free and with a vegan option.

Just basic ingredients

There’s loads of good stuff in these protein balls. Tons of natural peanut butter plus a bit of raw honey (or brown rice syrup for a vegan option), oats and coconut.

And of course, some mini chocolate chips because… why not? ;) Feel free to omit them if you want to limit your sugar.

Make sure to use the kind of peanut butter that just contains peanuts and salt. If you use a brand that has added fat and sugar, these peanut butter balls likely won’t turn out well. You’d also be adding a ton of fat (and probably not the healthy kind) and sugar!

So easy that kids can make them alone

To make these peanut butter protein balls, all you do is dump the ingredients into a bowl and roll the mixture into balls. It’s not an especially sticky mixture so you’ll have to squeeze them together to get the balls to hold together.

I’ve made these peanut butter protein balls a number of times with the exact same ingredients (as in from the same package) and the very small amount of water I needed to add to hold the mixture together varied each time (hence the range in the measurement given).

also discovered that instead of using additional water to bring together the mixture, vanilla extract’s a tasty alternative!

Prefer something more cookie-like but don’t want to turn on the oven? Try these no-bake oatmeal cookies! They’re also 100% whole grain and naturally gluten-free + vegan. And seriously – they’re one of my favorite recipes.

Peanut butter sub?

Wondering how to make peanut butter? All you need is 1 ingredient and a food processor!

But if you can’t have or don’t have peanut butter or peanuts on hand, you can experiment with other nut butters. I’ve tried today’s recipe with sunflower seed butter and it worked great. But I’m not sure about other nut butters.

They’re not always 100% interchangeable so I can’t say for sure if other types would work in these protein bites. That’s why I called it an experiment. ;) But I’m quite sure they’d be fine wth other types.

I can tell you that almond butter works amazingly well in these bliss balls, as does sunflower seed butter for a nut-free option. They’re like a chocolate version of this recipe and truly so delicious.

For a grain-free chocolate version, try these chocolate peanut butter protein balls. If you use cashew butter, then you’ve got youself some paleo protein balls. :)

Vegan option

Honey is quite a bit stickier and thicker than maple syrup and that’s why I only have brown rice syrup listed as a honey sub for this recipe.

I tried these balls with maple syrup but they fell apart more easily. So that’s why I recommend brown rice syrup.

If you give these peanut butter protein balls a try, I’d love to hear what you think!

And here are some resources if you’re new to the vegan or gluten-free diet:

Peanut Butter Protein Balls (gluten-free, vegan, whole grain, dairy-free)

Rated 5.0 by 36 readers
Peanut Butter Protein Balls (gluten-free, vegan options)
  • Prep Time:
  • Cook Time:
  • Ready in:
  • Yield: 24 1" balls


  • 1 cup (256 grams) natural peanut butter or sunflower seed butter for nut-free (the kind with just peanuts / seeds and salt)
  • 1/4 cup (80 grams) honey or 1/4 cup brown rice syrup for a vegan version
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups (135 grams) rolled oats (use gluten-free oats, if needed)
  • 1/2 cup (42 grams) unsweetened shredded coconut
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/3 cup (57 grams) mini chocolate chips (use vegan chocolate chips, if needed)
  • 2-4 teaspoons water or additional vanilla extract


  1. In a medium mixing bowl, stir together the peanut butter, brown rice syrup or honey and vanilla extract.
  2. Stir in the oats, coconut and salt until well combined and then add the chocolate chips. If the mixture doesn’t hold together well when pinched together, add the additional water or vanilla, a teaspoon at a time until the mixture holds together well when pinched.
  3. Form 1” balls by pressing about 1 tablespoon of the mixture together.
  4. Store at room temperature for up to 3 days or refrigerate for 1 week.

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255 comments on “Peanut Butter Protein Balls (gluten-free, vegan options)” — Add one!

15 comments are awaiting moderation!

  • Rimmy
    July 30, 2019 @ 4:06 pm

    These turned out wonderful – we made the coconut ones and the cinnamon raisin and loved them both!

    • Erin replies to Rimmy
      August 8, 2019 @ 6:40 pm

      Yay! I’m so glad to hear that! :) Thanks for your comment!

  • Kim says
    June 26, 2019 @ 1:19 am

    Can you supply the macronutrients for this recipe? They’re amazing but hard to track :(

    • Erin replies to Kim
      June 26, 2019 @ 9:04 am

      I don’t have that info but you could use this recipe analyzer for the nutritional profile.

  • Molly says
    June 13, 2019 @ 6:00 am

    This looks soooo good. I am on a weight loss journey as well and snacks is where I fall short sometimes. I have a 5 and 6 six year old so you can imagine the goodies I’m tempted with. I’ll try this recipe. Who know maybe the kiddies will like it too!

    • Erin replies to Molly
      June 17, 2019 @ 12:41 pm

      I hope that you and the kids will enjoy them! I think they’re pretty kid-friendly. :) Thanks for your comment!

  • Toroso Restaurant
    June 12, 2019 @ 5:38 pm

    Just made this. It looked beautiful, tasted great!

  • National Restaurant
    June 4, 2019 @ 3:07 pm

    Just made this. It looked beautiful, tasted great.

  • blog@lasesana says
    June 2, 2019 @ 7:55 pm

    With its benefits I can call it magic ball, great recipe and this easy make I can make some then keep it for week. Many thanks for sharing.

  • kathleen
    May 21, 2019 @ 6:36 pm

    I like that the first photo is of the finished product. Gave me the kick I needed to try it out. My kids love them. It’s their new favorite snack. Thanks Erin.

    • Erin replies to kathleen
      May 23, 2019 @ 1:03 pm

      I’m really happy that your kids liked them so much! Thanks for the feedback. :)

  • sally wood says
    May 20, 2019 @ 8:43 pm

    I use a recipe a lot like this one. I keep the balls in the freezer in a zip lock bag. They are delish when they are that cold.

    • Erin replies to sally wood
      May 23, 2019 @ 12:57 pm

      These are also great frozen! Thanks for the tip. :)

  • Anna says
    May 9, 2019 @ 4:24 pm

    Can you eat them right after you make them or do you have to wait 1 week – 3 days?

    • Erin replies to Anna
      May 12, 2019 @ 7:05 pm

      You can eat them right away. You can store them at room temperature for up to 3 days or refrigerate for 1 week. :)

  • Hannah says
    April 14, 2019 @ 1:17 pm

    Can I add another half cup of oats instead of coconut? I don’t like coconut

    • Erin replies to Hannah
      April 14, 2019 @ 8:22 pm

      Yes! You may need a little more or less than 1/2 cup. Just add a bit at a time until you like the consistency. :)

      • Hannah replies to Erin
        April 14, 2019 @ 8:38 pm

        Thanks so much, I can’t wait to try it

        • Erin replies to Hannah
          April 19, 2019 @ 8:55 pm

          You’re welcome! Enjoy. :)

  • Jessica Downing says
    April 10, 2019 @ 7:03 pm

    Do you have nutrition information? These are my new favorite snack but I would love to keep track of them in my food diary fitness app

    • Erin replies to Jessica Downing
      April 14, 2019 @ 9:12 pm

      I don’t have that info but you could use this recipe analyzer for the nutritional profile. :)

  • Merima says
    April 5, 2019 @ 3:59 am

    Love them! What is the nutritional value of one? Calories?

    • Erin replies to Merima
      April 5, 2019 @ 1:16 pm

      I’m glad you love them! I don’t have that info but you could use this recipe analyzer for the nutritional profile. :)

  • Alexis Rogers says
    April 2, 2019 @ 11:56 pm

    This is such a great snack! I made a batch today and made it with almond butter instead of peanut butter and it came out so amazing. Great recipe and can’t wait to keep making this one!

    • Erin replies to Alexis Rogers
      April 4, 2019 @ 8:12 pm

      Yay! I’m so glad to hear that. :) Thanks for your comment!

  • Polly
    March 30, 2019 @ 3:28 pm

    Erin, thank you for sharing this! I have made this so many times. Everyone that tries it, loves it!

    • Erin replies to Polly
      March 30, 2019 @ 7:52 pm

      You’re welcome! I’m so happy everyone loves it. Thanks for your comment! :)

  • SWchick says
    March 23, 2019 @ 6:32 pm

    I crew on sail boats and I made these one day for a race. At first no one was really interested in them. I thought wow I got all these balls I have to bring back home. After a couple of hrs, my container was handed back to me empty. They were asking were there any more left? haha. New snack for the crew!!

    • Erin replies to SWchick
      March 27, 2019 @ 8:02 pm

      Haha. This made me laugh. I’m so happy that the tupperware was returned empty! Thanks for your comment. :)

  • Linzie says
    March 18, 2019 @ 2:45 pm

    I love this recipe and my roommates are now obsessed with them. So I have to make them weekly.

    • Erin replies to Linzie
      March 20, 2019 @ 7:21 pm

      Haha. I’m glad that they’re obsessed. :) Thanks for your comment!

  • Ellery
    March 15, 2019 @ 1:15 pm

    Erin, this looks wonderful! I’ll try it today. Thank you for sharing!

    • Erin replies to Ellery
      March 16, 2019 @ 9:10 pm

      I hope you enjoyed them! Thanks for your comment. :)

  • Anna
    March 13, 2019 @ 8:15 pm

    Thanks! Made this last night so quick, easy and tasty!

    • Erin replies to Anna
      March 16, 2019 @ 9:07 pm

      I’m glad you enjoyed them! Thanks for your comment. :)

  • Lisa says
    February 25, 2019 @ 12:13 am

    Great recipe. You know, I really like it when in the beginning there is a small Preface and most importantly – a photo of the finished dish. When I saw what was going to happen, I immediately said to myself – “Lisa, you will do it!”. To be honest, I did it the second time, but look like the photo you have. Was lucky to order all integritty in one place!

    • Erin replies to Lisa
      March 2, 2019 @ 8:28 pm

      I’m so happy that you enjoyed them! :)

  • Alyssa
    February 22, 2019 @ 2:02 pm

    Erin, what a gorgeous peanut butter protein balls! Your directions make this seem like such an easy approach, too. I would love to make this soon!

    • Erin replies to Alyssa
      February 25, 2019 @ 2:48 pm

      Thanks a bunch. :) I hope you’ll like them as much as we did!

  • Olga
    February 21, 2019 @ 4:12 pm

    Erin, what a gorgeous idea! We absolutely love protein balls! Definitely need to try these!

    • Erin replies to Olga
      February 25, 2019 @ 7:38 pm

      Thanks so much! I hope you will. :)

  • jessica says
    February 9, 2019 @ 9:49 pm

    Hello Erin, awesome protein balls :) thanks for sharing.

    • Erin replies to jessica
      February 20, 2019 @ 8:23 pm

      Thank you! I’m glad you liked them. :)

  • M says
    February 6, 2019 @ 5:46 pm

    Has anyone tried freezing these?

    • Erin replies to M
      February 17, 2019 @ 7:10 pm

      I’m sorry for just now seeing this! Yes, it works fine. :)

  • Kara Mathys says
    February 4, 2019 @ 4:23 pm

    Hey there, I’m a huge fan of peanut butter and this peanut butter protein ballslook way awesome!

    • Erin replies to Kara Mathys
      February 10, 2019 @ 1:02 pm

      Thanks! I hope you’ll get to try them. :)

  • Christine
    January 29, 2019 @ 2:50 am

    Hi Erin ! You’re very skilled. awesome protein balls

    • Erin replies to Christine
      February 2, 2019 @ 1:13 pm

      Hello! Thank you very much. :) I’m happy you enjoyed them!

  • Keira
    January 26, 2019 @ 5:23 pm

    Love making these! Great recipe! ☺

    • Erin replies to Keira
      January 28, 2019 @ 8:14 pm

      Thanks so much! I appreciate the feedback. :)

  • Jennifer Osorno says
    January 18, 2019 @ 7:17 pm

    Can you substitute the PB with anything else? My daughter is allergic to peanuts – I use to enjoy these very much before having her.

  • Alec Taylor
    January 7, 2019 @ 12:10 pm

    The nutrition calculator came out with this:

    Nutrition Facts
    Servings: 18
    Amount per serving Calories 129
    % Daily Value*
    Total Fat 20g 26%
    Saturated Fat 2.5g 13%
    Cholesterol 0mg 0%
    Sodium 65mg 3%
    Total Carbohydrate 9.1g 3%
    Dietary Fiber 1.9g 7%
    Total Sugars 4.9g
    Protein 4.9g
    Vitamin D 0 mcg 0%
    Calcium 3mg 0%
    Iron 0mg 1%
    Potassium 31mg 1%

    • Alicia replies to Alec Taylor
      July 23, 2019 @ 12:57 pm

      Awesome! Thank you for sharing that info

  • Chirstine Hayden says
    December 16, 2018 @ 4:50 pm

    How much protein is in ball?

    • Erin replies to Chirstine Hayden
      December 17, 2018 @ 10:55 am

      I don’t have that info but you could use this recipe analyzer for the nutritional profile.

  • Lisa@eatfrysmith says
    December 13, 2018 @ 2:38 pm

    Awesome!I made it last weekend. The taste was wonderful. Thank for your recipe

  • Alicia says
    November 27, 2018 @ 7:06 pm

    Do we have to wait a week until we can eat them?

    • Erin replies to Alicia
      November 27, 2018 @ 8:44 pm

      Nope. You can store at room temperature for up to 3 days or refrigerate for up to 1 week.

  • Anthony Allen
    November 23, 2018 @ 9:19 am

    Thank you so much for a great recipe. I made these yesterday and they were super easy and tasty.

    • Erin replies to Anthony Allen
      November 25, 2018 @ 8:03 pm

      So happy to hear that! Thanks for your comment. :)

  • Rachel Cell says
    November 1, 2018 @ 3:04 pm

    what is the calorie, fat, protein and carb count in the original recipe?

  • Cory Dennis says
    October 27, 2018 @ 1:25 am

    How much protein per ball

  • Virginia Saucier says
    October 4, 2018 @ 5:52 am

    I calculated the calories of the ingredients listed and found that the calories per piece would be around 115.

    • Tammy replies to Virginia Saucier
      November 27, 2018 @ 10:33 pm

      What about carbs??

      • Erin replies to Tammy
        December 17, 2018 @ 2:42 pm

        I don’t have that info but you could use this recipe analyzer for the nutritional profile. :)

  • Sheryl Baugh says
    September 29, 2018 @ 4:40 pm

    Can these be made with powdered peanut butter, such as PB2?

    • Erin replies to Sheryl Baugh
      October 1, 2018 @ 9:37 pm

      I’ve never tried it so I really can’t say. Sorry about that!

    • Mike replies to Sheryl Baugh
      October 2, 2018 @ 4:38 pm

      You could, but you would need to add more liquid so they have moisture to stick together…

  • Dannielle Tucker says
    September 27, 2018 @ 10:36 pm

    These look very good, do you know nutritional value of them? protein and calories mainly? thank you

    • Erin replies to Dannielle Tucker
      October 2, 2018 @ 8:12 pm

      I don’t have that info but you could use this recipe analyzer for the nutritional profile.

  • Gloria says
    September 19, 2018 @ 3:09 pm

    How many balls do you think is a serving size? They are Delicious thank you for this recipe!!

    • Erin replies to Gloria
      September 24, 2018 @ 9:40 pm

      Sorry for just now seeing your question! I think 2-3 is a reasonable number. I’m so happy you liked them. :)

  • Daisy
    September 2, 2018 @ 5:29 pm

    I love this recipe! I really appreciate having the weight listed too as cups confuse me and put me off using a recipe. I add a scoop of vanilla protein powder too and eat one with some fruit when I need a snack after work before I go to the gym.

    • Erin replies to Daisy
      September 6, 2018 @ 9:10 pm

      I’m happy you find the grams useful! I’m from the US but hate using cups because they’re not accurate. Everyone packs a cup of flour differently. I’m happy you love the recipe! Thanks for your comment. :)

  • Tracey Evans says
    July 16, 2018 @ 10:33 pm

    I’ve been making this recipe for about 6 months and use most of the original recipe but use honey, dessicated coconut and Meridian peanut butter (which is pure peanut ie no salt, palm oil or sugar added) and sometimes add in dried raisins or cranberries. They always turn out delicious and Ive never needed to use any water. My 5 year old daughter takes one to school in her packed lunch instead of sweet treats. Thanks Tracey (UK)

    • Erin replies to Tracey Evans
      July 18, 2018 @ 9:00 pm

      Hi Tracey from the UK! :) Raisins and cranberries sound like great additions. I love that you pack your daughter one of these instead of a dessert! I hope she enjoys her not super sweet treats. Thanks a bunch for your feedback!

  • Pam says
    July 10, 2018 @ 3:16 pm

    Any idea of calorie content on these?

    • Erin replies to Pam
      July 10, 2018 @ 8:09 pm

      Hi! I don’t have that info but you can copy and paste the recipe here for the nutritional profile, if you’d like. :)

    • Chelsea Martinez replies to Pam
      July 14, 2018 @ 11:43 pm

      Pam did you ever find out the calorie content? I got a really hIgh number.

  • Bella Hardy @ Healthnerdy
    June 29, 2018 @ 2:34 pm

    These peanut butter protein balls look absolutely fantastic. Beautiful photos, too. I look forward to trying this.

  • Angie says
    June 12, 2018 @ 7:52 am

    I was wondering if you could substitute maple syrup for the honey. Any thoughts? I can’t wait to try these. What a perfect summertime snack!

    • Erin replies to Angie
      June 13, 2018 @ 8:32 pm

      That should work but my worry is that they might not be as sticky, and therefore more difficult to roll into balls. I would love to hear how they come out. :)

  • jessica ball says
    June 11, 2018 @ 3:44 am

    Do you cook the oats first?

    • Erin replies to jessica ball
      June 11, 2018 @ 8:38 pm

      Nope! Never cook oats first unless a recipe specifically says to. :)

  • M J Helms says
    June 6, 2018 @ 6:02 am

    What can you substitute for coconut? (lot of fat in coconut) Can handle the peanut butter and chocolate chips but would love a lighter fat sub for the coconut.

    • Erin replies to M J Helms
      June 7, 2018 @ 8:14 pm

      You could add more oats until the texture is how you’d like it. :)

      • Angela replies to Erin
        December 24, 2018 @ 2:43 pm

        So glad to hear there is a substitute for coconut. I have a tree nut allergy and was trying to think of something with a consistency similar to coconut that is still super tasty. Do you have any other suggestions than more oats? I might sprinkle some (well more than some for sure!) cinnamon into part of a batch. I love cinnamon!


        • Erin replies to Angela
          December 25, 2018 @ 8:27 pm

          Cinnamon sounds like a delicious addition! And no, I can’t really think of any other good shredded coconut subs. I just googled it and can’t find anything that would be a good sub in this recipe. Sorry about that! Happy holidays! :)

  • Dawna Boxwell says
    June 4, 2018 @ 10:17 pm

    Would this recipe still work if the oatmeal was replaced with almond flour?

    • Erin replies to Dawna Boxwell
      June 5, 2018 @ 8:39 pm

      The two aren’t interchangeable but you could mix everything except for the chocolate chips together and then add almond flour until it comes together. I’d love to hear how it goes!

  • Deborah says
    June 4, 2018 @ 1:03 pm

    Has anyone froze these? How well do they freeze and what’s the best length of time? Thanks.

    • Erin replies to Deborah
      June 5, 2018 @ 8:36 pm

      I’ve frozen them and it works well! What do you mean by best length of time? Like how long? I didn’t freeze them for super long but I’m guessing a few weeks would be fine.

    • Yansell replies to Deborah
      July 8, 2018 @ 7:42 am

      Put them in the fridge till the next day! Delicious and addicting

      • Erin replies to Yansell
        July 8, 2018 @ 9:29 pm

        Thanks for the tip! So happy you liked them. :)

  • Lori Yoder says
    May 29, 2018 @ 10:56 pm

    These are delicious! I ate two and satisfied my sweet tooth. One probably would have done it, but I just couldn’t help myself. So easy!

    • Erin replies to Lori Yoder
      June 2, 2018 @ 4:53 pm

      Haha. Two is still very reasonable. :) Thanks a bunch for your comment!

  • Julie says
    May 22, 2018 @ 4:13 am

    Just made these and they are delicious! And nutritional value wise, I’m sure they aren’t even that bad! Yum!

    • Erin replies to Julie
      May 23, 2018 @ 9:15 pm

      So happy you liked them! :)

  • Serena LeDuc says
    May 13, 2018 @ 8:01 pm

    Awesome recipe! I love it!

    • Erin replies to Serena LeDuc
      May 14, 2018 @ 8:18 pm

      So happy to hear that! Thanks for letting me know. :)


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