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Cookie Dough Protein Bites

January 15, 2022
Cookie dough protein bites are the perfect pre-workout snack containing 5 grams of protein per ball! They're also vegan and gluten-free!
Prep Time 20 mins
Total Time 20 mins
Jump to Recipe Print Recipe
a plate of cookie dough balls

Recently I’ve been trying to increase my protein intake and am loving adding protein powder to smoothies, baked oats and tasty treats like these cookie dough protein bites. They’re vegan, gluten-free and made with just 8 good-for-you ingredients. And best of all, each protein ball contains 5 grams of protein!

I love enjoying a few of these as a pre-workout snack or a healthy dessert. I like to prepare a batch on the weekend and store in the fridge in a container to enjoy throughout the week. They’re also super customisable – make sure to check out my suggestions for ingredient swaps below!

overheat photo of some protein balls and a bowl of cacao nibs

Why do we need protein in our diet?

Without getting too technical here, protein is a vital component of every cell and it utilised in many bodily processess including building muscle, hormone regulation, and maintaining healthy nails, hair and skin. Increasing protein intake in your diet also helps you to stay fuller for longer!

What are some healthy vegan protein sources?

A common misconception is that vegans get no protein in their diet, but many vegan-friendly foods are in fact great protein sources! Some healthy vegan protein sources include lentils, beans, tofu, nuts, and seeds.

These cookie dough balls get their protein from hemp seeds, almond butter, oats and protein powder.

a close up of a protein bite

What ingredients will I need to make cookie dough protein bites?

These vegan protein balls are made with just 8 good for you ingredients! You will need:

  • Oats. You can use rolled oats or porridge oats here – either will work as we will be blending them into an oat flour. Be sure to use certified gluten-free oats if you are GF.
  • Hemp seeds. These tiny seeds are packed with protein and also add healthy fats to our protein bites. If you cannot find hemp seeds, you can omit them or swap for ground flaxseeds.
  • Protein powder. I use an unflavoured soy protein isolate (I get mine from Bulk Powders) as there’s no artifical flavourings or colour in it. However, you can use any protein powder of your choosing! I suspect vanilla protein powder would work excellently in this recipe.
  • Almond butter. Feel free to swap for your favourite nut butter or tahini/sunbutter to keep things nut-free. Try to buy a nut butter which is 100% nuts to avoid extra added sugars and oils. You could even make your own!
  • Honey. Can be subbed with agave syrup or maple syrup.
  • Vanilla extract. For giving our cookie dough bites a delicious cookie flavour!
  • Oat milk. To help form a dough – sub for your favourite plant-based milk.
  • Cacao nibs. These chocolaty morsels are the perfect healthy alternative to chocolate chips in this recipe. However, if you can’t find cacao nibs or are feeling a little decadent, you can swap them for dark chocolate chips 🙂

And that’s it! With just 8 simple ingredients we can make the most amazing healthy pre-workout snack.

overhead photo of some protein balls and ingredients

How to make protein bites

  1. Add the oats to a blender and blend into a fine powder (this is oat flour!). You can also use a food processor for this.
  2. Add the oat flour to a bowl along with the hemp seeds and protein powder. Mix the dry ingredients to combine.
  3. Add in the wet ingredients: almond butter, honey and vanilla extract. Stir to combine – at this point the mixture will be quite powdery! Now we’re going to gradually add oat milk and keep mixing until we have a cookie-dough consistency. The amount of milk you need will depend on what protein powder you use – some are more absorbent than others – so ensure to add it little-by-little! If you accidentally add too much milk, you can add more oat flour to form a dough texture.
  4. Stir in the cacao nibs until they’re well incorporated in the dough.
  5. Roll the mixture into balls – take a generous tablespoon of mixture in your hands and squeeze it together before rolling into a ball between your palms. If you’re finding you can’t roll the balls easily at this stage, adjust the consistency of the dough as needed by adding extra milk or oat flour.
  6. Store the balls in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week. Enjoy!
some vegan protein balls on a plate

Variations on this recipe

These cookie dough protein bites are delicious alone, but why not try one of these variations?

  • Substitute 1 tbsp of oat flour for 1 tbsp cocoa powder and swap the almond butter for peanut butter to make double chocolate protein balls (I can’t wait to try this variation!)
  • Substitute 1 tsp oat flour for 1 tsp matcha powder to make matcha protein balls – if you like matcha, I know you’ll love my matcha smoothie bowl recipe!
  • If you’re feeling extra decadent, coat the protein balls in a layer of melted chocolate. Mmmmm.
  • Make mini protein bites using 1/2 tsp of dough at a time. Because everything’s cuter in mini version.

I hope you enjoy this recipe friends! As always, leave a comment below of your thoughts and tag me on Instagram if you make it 🙂

a plate of cookie dough balls
Print Recipe
5 from 5 votes

Cookie Dough Protein Bites

Cookie dough protein bites are the perfect pre-workout snack containing 5 grams of protein per ball! They're also vegan and gluten-free!
Prep Time20 mins
Total Time20 mins
Course: Snack
Cuisine: vegan
Servings: 14 balls
Author: Shivani Raja

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup Oats
  • 1/8 cup Hemp Seeds
  • 2 scoops Protein Powder I use a soy protein isolate from Bulk Powders
  • 1/4 cup Almond Butter sub your favourite nut butter or tahini/sunbutter to make it nut free
  • 1/4 cup Honey or maple syrup/agave
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 1/4 cup Oat Milk or any plant-based milk
  • 1/8 cup Cacao Nibs or mini dark chocolate chips

Instructions

  • Add the oats to a blender and blend into a fine powder (this is oat flour!). You can also use a food processor for this.
  • Add the oat flour to a bowl along with the hemp seeds and protein powder. Mix the dry ingredients to combine.
  • Add in the wet ingredients: almond butter, honey and vanilla extract. Stir to combine. Gradually add the oat milk and keep mixing until you have a cookie-dough consistency. The amount of milk you need will depend on what protein powder you use – some are more absorbent than others – so ensure to add it little-by-little! If you accidentally add too much milk, you can add more oat flour to form a dough texture.
  • Stir in the cacao nibs until they’re well incorporated in the dough.
  • Roll the mixture into balls – take a generous tablespoon of mixture in your hands and squeeze it together before rolling into a ball between your palms. If you’re finding you can’t roll the balls easily at this stage, adjust the consistency of the dough as needed by adding extra milk or oat flour.
  • Store the balls in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week. Enjoy!

Shivani’s Tips

  • Coat the protein balls in melted dark chocolate for a tasty treat!
  • To make chocolate protein balls, sub 1 tbsp of the oats with 1 tbsp of cocoa powder.
  • These protein balls last in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 1 week.   

 

NUTRITION

Serving size: 2 protein balls
Calories: 149kcal | Fat: 4.3g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 18mg | Sodium: 21mg | Carbohydrates: 19g | Fiber: 2.5g | Sugar: 10.7g | Protein: 9.6g 

Did you make this recipe?

Tag me on Instagram @shivani.lovesfood and use the hashtag #shivanilovesfood!

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