Healthy Snacks for Kids: Homemade Energy Bite Recipe Kids Can Make

I can’t justify spending over $1 each on brand name fruit and nut bars when it’s so easy to make them at home. Here are 2 varieties of nutrient-dense, enzyme-rich bars that are easy to pack, easy to eat, and fairly painless to put together.

These quick and easy homemade energy bites can be formed into balls or pressed and cut into bars. As long as your child is comfortable using a food processor, they can make them all by themselves! It’s my 8 year old demonstrating in the video!

FREE DOWNLOAD: 10 Snacks Kids can Make

Healthy Snacks for Kids

These energy bites have simple ingredients and are naturally gluten, dairy, and egg-free. We’ve also included a nut-free version!

Homemade energy bars

Easy Homemade Energy Bites Recipe

PB&J Energy Bites Ingredients

  • 2/3 c. peanuts
  • 1 c. dates (or raisins)
  • 1/2 c. dried cherries
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1-2 tsp. water

Sunny Vacation (Nut-Free) Energy Bites Ingredients

  • 1/2 c. sunflower seeds
  • 1 c. dates
  • 1/2 c. dried apricots
  • 1/2 c. coconut
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1-2 tsp. water


  1. In a food processor, pulse or process nuts or seeds until chopped finely, a “meal” consistency at the smallest. Be sure not to end up with nut butter by accident!
  2. Add dried fruit and process until everything is sticky and there are no large chunks. (i.e., When the food processor stops jumping around, move on to step 3.)
  3. Add any other mix-ins (like coconut) and pulse briefly until combined.
  4. While the food processor is running, stream in spices and vanilla.
  5. If the mixture doesn’t come together in a ball easily, add water while the food processor is running, ¼ tsp. at a time. When the mixture just starts to swish around in a blob instead of being crumbly, that’s enough. I used to be worried about adding too much water and suggested “one drop at a time.” Worry less. A little moisture won’t hurt, and they really do stick together better. Just don’t add a Tbs. at a time!
  6. Form the final product. Either:
    1. Scrape mixture into any type of square or rectangular container and press firmly; cutting bar shapes is easier after refrigeration. You can line the dish with waxed paper for simpler removal, and I recommend using a piece of waxed paper to help you press everything as solidly packed as possible.
    2. Form individual bars with waxed paper, one at a time.
    3. Roll the mixture into balls, ½”-1” wide.  My favorite for easy serving to kids!
  7. Store in the refrigerator for the best quality and firm bars, however, room temperature doesn’t hurt any of these ingredients (unless you’re using sunflower seeds, which should be refrigerated anyway).

Once you get the process down and understand the ratios of dried fruit to nuts, you can
play around with new varieties on your own!

Makes 10-12 1 ½” x 3” bars or about a dozen 1-inch balls.

Find more cooking videos for kids here!

If you had fun with this recipe, check out our online cooking course!

homemade energy bar recipe (copycat larabars)

I interview experts about kids' health every week.


Subscribe to be notified each time a new one is posted!

Disclosure: As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases.