These cinnamon cake bars taste just like coffee cake. They’re high in protein, low cal, low sugar with no oils or butter and perfect for a healthy snack.

*This post for high protein cinnamon cake bars first appeared on April 1, 2012. The post, pictures and recipe have been updated and I added a video to the recipe card (scroll down) on how to make these easy, healthy treats.
These cinnamon cake bars taste just like coffee cake. They're high in protein, low cal, low sugar with no oils or butter and perfect for a healthy snack.

Five years ago when this post was first published it was about 3 months before I first stepped foot into a CrossFit gym.

I was bouncing back and forth between HIIT workouts online, NROLFW and Jamie Eason’s LiveFit Trainer program desperately trying to find something that would help me build muscle.

Honestly, nothing really worked too well (sorry, but 15# dumbbells don’t really do much for muscle growth) and it wasn’t until July of that year when my CrossFit gym opened right down the road that progress finally started to happen.

If there’s one positive that came out of those few months of workout ambiguity though, it was this recipe for high protein cinnamon cake bars inspired by Jamie Eason’s recipe for cinnamon swirl bread I stumbled upon on her site one day.

Chocolate protein cake bars were another recipe from that era and I love those too!

This recipe also inspired by chocolate baked oats which is basically like cake but justified for breakfast!

These high protein cinnamon cake bars are a great healthy snack before or after your workout.
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These cinnamon cake bars taste just like coffee cake except with a healthy protein boost!

Often times, people are hesitant to bake with protein powder saying the chalky taste can linger in the final product.

And while that can definitely be true, I’ll say this: it doesn’t happen as much with quality protein powder.

I didn’t always know this and I didn’t always care as much as I should about the sourcing of my whey protein.

These days, I use SFH Pure (their churro flavored whey protein is literally perfect for this recipe making the cinnamon flavor even more robust) or Vital Proteins almost exclusively as they’re both quality products whose standards live up to mine now.

A healthy snack that tastes like coffee cake! You can't go wrong with these high protein cinnamon cake bars.

While my workouts have changed quite a bit over the last 5 years since this was originally posted, my high protein post-workout snacking really hasn’t and these protein cinnamon cake bars are still a really great one I love to grab either right before or after my workouts.

They’re packed with protein, very low fat (like none really), gluten-free and a great source of healthy carbs to fuel you through whatever way you like to sweat.

Oh, and they seriously taste like coffee cake too.

Are you sold yet?

If you love this recipe for high protein cinnamon cake bars, try one of these high protein recipes too:

Chocolate Protein Pancakes
Perfect Protein Pancakes
Almond cherry protein cookies

Don’t miss these healthier zucchini bars or gluten-free pumpkin bars too – a bit more like dessert but lightened up and packed with flavor!

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4.75 from 4 votes

Cinnamon Cake Bars

Servings: 9 servings
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 25 minutes
Total: 35 minutes
These high protein cinnamon cake bars taste just like coffee cake. They’re high in protein, low cal, low sugar, with no oils or butter.


  • 1 cup oat flour
  • 1/2 cup buckwheat flour
  • 2 scoops whey protein powder, I use vanilla or churro flavored whey usually
  • 1/4 cup coconut sugar, *see note
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/4 cup plain greek yogurt
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons sugar + 1 teaspoon cinnamon, set aside


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease an 8×8 pyrex or cake pan.
  • Combine oat flour, buckwheat flour, protein powder, coconut sugar, baking powder, salt and cinnamon in a large bowl.
  • Whisk together egg, applesauce, yogurt, almond milk and vanilla extract in a small bowl.
  • Pour wet ingredients into dry and mix until fully incorporated.
  • Pour batter into the prepared baking dish.
  • Combine sugar + cinnamon and sprinkle over the batter, swirl into the entire surface of the batter using a knife or toothpick.
  • Bake for about 25-30 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
  • Let cool in pan for 10-15 minutes before slicing.
  • Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container.



-Oat and buckwheat flour can be ground in a food processor or blender from rolled oats and buckwheat groats, respectively.
-Original recipe called for turbinado (raw) sugar, I used coconut sugar in this updated version. Either will work.
-Adapted from Jamie Eason’s Cinnamon Swirl Bread


Serving: 1SERVINGCalories: 150kcalCarbohydrates: 24gProtein: 10gFat: 2gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 22mgSodium: 306mgFiber: 2gSugar: 10g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Baked Goods
Cuisine: American
Founder and Writer at Running to the Kitchen | About

Gina Matsoukas is an AP syndicated writer. She is the founder, photographer and recipe developer of Running to the Kitchen — a food website focused on providing healthy, wholesome recipes using fresh and seasonal ingredients. Her work has been featured in numerous media outlets both digital and print, including MSN, Huffington post, Buzzfeed, Women’s Health and Food Network.

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Recipe Rating


  1. These sound amazing! Love that you added protein powder for an extra special boost.

  2. I am looking forward to making these, but the quantity for applesauce is a ‘?’ on my screen rather than a number. What’s the amount supposed to be?

    1. Hi Rachel- sorry about that. I switched recipe card formats recently and some things didn’t carry over. It’s edited now. Applesauce amount is 1/3 cup. Hope you like them!

    1. I don’t calculate/post the nutritional value for my recipes. If you want the full breakdown just plug the recipe into one of the many online calculators. I’ve used in the past for one.

  3. I just tried this recipe, and like everyone else, I am thrilled with it! The texture is wonderful, very moist and light. I used brown rice flour instead of oats as I don’t eat gluten, and flavoured my bread with lemon and poppy seeds, and it is lovely. Thank you!

  4. i have vanilla ice cream true mass by bsn. do you think it would really change the taste if i used that? the vanilla ice cream taste alot better then the vanilla, taste just like milk.

    1. I assume vanilla ice cream is a protein powder flavor? If so, yes, I’m sure you could use that instead.

  5. Thank you so much for the information about the whey protein scoop volume! I was delighted to see that I’d guessed pretty accurately at 1/4 cup.
    I am loving a variety of protein bars as, without meat, eggs, or cheese, I seem to need a little extra protein. I work out twice a day and feel hungry often! I made a batch of lemon protein bars (think the recipe may’ve been from another site), but am making these cinnamon bars w/ my homemade, home-grown organic applesauce and homemade Greek yogurt. I am thoroughly enjoying your site and inspirations! Thanks again.
    P.S. I love weimeraners, too :)