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Protein Bars That I Made. In My Kitchen

It is pretty safe to say that we all know the importance of protein and our workouts, etc.

Right?

Well – protein bars are obviously a simple and convenient go-to source for a lot of us, but honestly, I struggle to find ones that I like (or that I can eat due to allergies).

I mean, there are so many out there it is almost ridiculous. Some taste horrible, a lot of them have things in them I cant eat. Most contain nuts, and there are a lot that contain a high amount of soy, which because of those annoying food allergies, I cant eat anything that has a high concentration of soy (a lot of protein powders are soy based). And frankly, a lot of them have some  ingredients that I cant pronounce or have ever heard of…which is scary.

So I find myself spending money on buying different types to test and wasting them, which I hate doing.

But duh, why don’t I try to make my own? That way I know exactly what is going into them – and it should be fairly simple right?

Right.

And as you can imagine there are a million “make it yourself recipes.” I found one that works for me and of course did a few customizations, but really – it works perfectly (and only takes a few minutes!)

I ended up going with this one (YouTube video).

I cant say I agree with the title completely (“Healthiest Homemade Protein Bar Yet”) as that is always debatable, and I’m sure there are others with a higher protein content – however, this one works perfectly for me. And surprisingly, it is really, really good.

bar3

Since you have to scroll through the comments to find the measurements on the ingredients, or if you are just too lazy to watch the video – I have decided to include it in a convenient little recipe format.

These end up being very soft and chewy, and I actually prefer to cut mine into large bite-sized squares rather than bars. It is easy to pop a couple of them into my mouth after my work out while I’m waiting for dinner to cook, etc.

bar2

Homemade Protein Bites

Yield: around 20 “bites”
Prep time: 5 minutes
Bake time: (none!) 20 minutes to set in fridge

Ingredients:

  • 1-1/2 cups quick oats
  • 1/3 cup of small dried fruit (I used Craisins)
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 cup whey protein powder (chocolate or vanilla would work!)
  • 1/4 cup of nuts (peanuts or almonds) this is optional and I do not include in mine.
  • 1/4 cup 70% cocoa dark chocolate, chopped into small chunks
  • 1/4 cup natural nut butter (I used almond)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup agave nectar (or natural honey)
  • 1/4 cup applesauce
  • 1/4 cup almond or coconut milk

Instructions:

  1. In large bowl, combine oats, fruit, cinnamon, protein powder, and nuts. Stir with fork and set aside.
  2. In another medium bowl, combine remaining ingredients and then put in microwave for about 40 seconds and stir. If chocolate is not melted enough to sit together continue heating for another 5 seconds at a time.
  3. Add wet ingredients to dry mixture and stir until well combined.
  4. Line bottom of a small square baking dish (8×8) or better yet a loaf pan – depending on the thickness you prefer the bites with wax paper. Lightly coat wax paper with nonstick spray.
  5. Spread and press mixture into bottom of pan. Place in fridge to set for at least 20 minutes before slicing and eating.

A couple notes:

Since I like mine in thick squares, I find a smaller pan like a loaf pan works best.
Also, these are easy to take with and to clarify they don’t have to be stored in the fridge all day.
My grocery store didn’t carry any dark chocolate at 70% or higher so I ended up with these, which I believe are pretty easy to find (in the baking isle).

bar1

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Enjoy! And let me know if you make them and what you thought, or other things you did to change/add to the recipe! Or if you have a homemade protein bar recipe of your own (share the link in comments!)

  • What do you typically eat after your workout to “refuel?"
  • Do you like protein bars? What type do you like/buy? What is your least favorite thing about them?
    Besides finding ones I can eat in general, sometimes I really don’t care for the texture!
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12 Comments Post a comment
  1. It’s not really to refuel, but my favorite thing to eat after a workout are frozen grapes!

    June 20, 2012
  2. depending on the workout, i use different things to refuel…usually chocolate milk or a banana, if its a long run, i usually have something more, like an egg sandwich with fruit, etc etc…i’m not a HUGE fan of protein bars bc i hate how fake so many of them taste,…i would totally be down to make my own :)

    June 20, 2012
  3. I hate it when protein bars (or anything) have tons of sugar!! Lol. I think making them at home is the way to go though. You REALLY know what’s in them!! :) I’m bad at refueling since I tned to start making dinner right away, but that generally takes at least an hour + after I’ve showered and everything!!!

    June 20, 2012
    • i know! and that is what made me want these…. my trainer pointed out that i was waiting too long to eat after workouts by the time I made dinner and he suggested something like at least half a protein bar or something
      i would never think of these things by myself haha

      June 20, 2012
  4. LOVE Craisins! :)

    June 20, 2012
  5. I like to drink a LOT of water usually. And protein balls or bites always work as well. These look really good I just might have to whip up a batch!

    June 20, 2012
  6. I often do a piece of toast with nut butter after a good workout. But I love that you made your own protein bars! Very impressive!

    June 20, 2012
  7. I try and refuel with a ton of H2O and a bagel w/egg since I’ve been working out more in the morning (of which I’m SO proud of as you can tell!) :)

    June 20, 2012
  8. Mmm those look great! I will definitely give them a try since I hate how many ingredients are in most protein bars (not to mention they are more expensive than making your own). I have a protein ball recipe that I like to have on hand after workouts – it’s protein powder, nut butter, oats, and a little almond milk (I think – I’m going on memory here).

    June 20, 2012
  9. Sidney Poston #

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    November 14, 2012

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