Cake Batter Protein Bars!

YUM, a protein bar that tastes like cake, yes please! I’ve talked about the nasty additives that are usually included in store bought protein bars. It is very hard to find a high protein bar that is not high in sugar and preservatives. These bars are so easy, you don’t even have to turn on the oven, and they taste awesome!

Cake Batter

*If you don’t have oat flour, it’s easy to make! Just grind some steel cut or old fashioned oats in a food processor until they are a flour-like texture.

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These bars would also taste fantastic with coconut shavings on top or chocolate chips added in (of course!) You can substitute peanut butter, or almond butter for the sunflower seed butter, but I think that would make them taste less like cake batter. Cashew butter is also a great idea! 

P1090574I store these in the fridge for up to a week, and just grab one when I’m headed to the gym. You can also keep them in the freezer and they will thaw by the time you have finished your workout. Enjoy! 

 

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Homemade Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Bars

I am always on the look out for an easy post workout snack that is high in protein, but not in sugar and calories. Now add that I don’t want any nasty additives, fake colors, or ingredients I can’t pronounce and there aren’t very many options left. So I decided to take matters into my own hands and make my own! This recipe is easily adaptable and you can add, swap, or leave out ingredients. This just happens to be one recipe that I liked the flavor and nutritional value. Alright, here we go!

Serves 12
Bake 350 for 15 minutes

Ingredients:P1080855 Edited

Wet-

2 egg whites
3/4 cup plain greek yogurt
1/4 cup almond milk
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 cup cooked quinoa
1/8 cup honey

Dry-

2 1/4 cup steel cut oats
1 3/4 cup rice cereal
3/4 cup powdered milk
3 scoops whey protein powder-any kind you like!
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup PB2-or regular peanut butter!
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder

First Preheat the oven to 350 degrees! In a large bowl combine the dry ingredients.

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Mix everything together well, and set that aside.

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Then in a mixing bowl with a whisk type attachment whip your egg whites together until they are frothy. I don’t know if this is too important, if you don’t have a whisky thing then don’t worry about whipping the egg whites, it’s not too crucial.P1080856 EditedP1080858 Edited

Whip until the egg whites look like this…then add the rest of the wet ingredients to the mixing bowl. Once the wet ingredients are added slowly add in the bowl of dry ingredients. The mixture should look something like this…P1080865 Edited

Spread the entire mixture in a sprayed or greased 9×13 pan and pack it down slightly, it will be pretty sticky so this is a little tricky.

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Pop them in the oven for about 15 minutes, or the ‘ol until a toothpick comes out clean trick. I then drizzled them with 1 tablespoon of peanut butter for a little extra flavor. Yum!

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I keep them in the fridge for 2 or 3 weeks and just bring one with me to the gym for a perfect pick-me-up or after workout snack. Enjoy!

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Calories.       Carbs.        Fat.       Protein

Total: 1893 271 31 151
Per Serving: 158 23 3 13

What is your favorite post workout snack?

What is in this protein bar?!

Yesterday I was running a bit late, as I scurried out the door I grabbed a protein bar to munch on after Cross FIT. After I scarfed it down I turned the package over to look at the ingredients, (I should have done this before I ate it, but whatever) There were 33 ingredients, not counting the healthy vitamins and minerals which were given there own separate ingredient list. I couldn’t believe it! Granted, most of these ingredients were “real” foods, the ones that I could pronounce and probably pick up at a grocery store, but there were quite a few that seemed a little iffy. I also noticed that there was quite a bit of sugar. This particular protein bar also listed “natural flavors” as an ingredient…what does that actually mean?!

Natural flavors is a widely used all-encompassing term for some pretty disgusting stuff. The FDA states that, “The term natural flavor or natural flavoring means the essential oil, oleoresin, essence or extractive, protein hydrolysate, distillate, or any product of roasting, heating or enzymolysis, which contains the flavoring constituents derived from a spice, fruit or fruit juice, vegetable or vegetable juice, edible yeast, herb, bark, bud, root, leaf or similar plant material, meat, seafood, poultry, eggs, dairy products, or fermentation products thereof, whose significant function in food is flavoring rather than nutritional.

The problem is…that is so incredibly vague!!

This is what I have found. Just because the origin of the flavoring had a natural plant or animal source it can be altered in a biotech lab where they are changed using enzymatic, fermentation, or other processes.

Also, natural is not always what the common consumer considers natural. 60 minutes highlighted the notorious natural flavor additive shellac which is used to make the frosting on doughnuts and other products shiny. It is also the main ingredient in the waxy covering on some lemons and limes. Are you ready to hear where shellac comes from? The raw material is found on insect nests on branches of trees in Thailand. These lack beetles excrete their waste onto the tree and make a hard nest, pickers scrape of the nest (living and dead insects included) to make the shellac. Gross!!

Natural flavors have also been found to include:

Human hair, or duck feathers- called cysteine in many processed foods

Beaver Anal glands- also known as castoreum, used in both food and beverages, usually as vanilla or raspberry flavors.

This makes my stomach hurt. Of course, no one that I know would buy a product that has beetle juice, hair, feathers, or beaver butt listed as an ingredient…but by law all of these ingredients can be under the umbrella listing of “natural flavors”

DISGUSTING.

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One of the best store bought options I have found is the CLIF protein bars. They use 70% certified organic ingredients, no artificial colors, and no genetically modified ingredients. However, CLIF bars still have “natural flavors” listed as an ingredient, contain quite a bit of sugar, and the calorie to protein ratio isn’t the best.

The best bet is to call the company and ask where their “natural flavoring” is coming from. And that is just what I did! They said, “the natural flavors found in CLIF BARs are sourced from all-natural spices or fruit juices and are used to add nuances of complementary flavor.” Ok..so why not just tell us what you are actually adding?

So…of course I thought, Welp…I can do better than that! And I accepted the challenge of creating a protein bar with all real ingredients, not too much sugar, and a low calorie-high protein ratio…I will have the recipe out soon, I’m still perfecting the flavor and ingredients.

What is your favorite protein bar? Have you found a favorite bar that has “real” ingredients?