- Food and Cooking
Homemade Protein Bar Recipes
The commercial protein bars are mostly junk - simply candy bars with added protein and and sold at grossly inflated prices. These unhealthy protein bars are stuffed sugar, fat, processed flour, low quality protein, artificial colors and flavors. The good news is that you can easily make your own protein bars at home, using the fabulous homemade recipes shown below. They are very easy to make either as baked on non-baked bars. Because you make them at home you can determine exactly what's in them and satisfy your own likes and dislikes. Just like protein energy drinks and supplements you don't want any surprise weird ingredients. The simple criteria for a good protein bar are:
- quick and easy to make
- high protein
- slow release carbohydrates from whole foods such as rolled outs and low added sugar
- whole food ingredients, not processed foods
- taste good
- keep well in the refrigerator
Ingredients Required for Protein Bars
Protein powder - Use your favorite protein powder (whey powder) or make your own see:
Almond butter or other nut based butter - Boasting healthy fats and protein, almond butter tastes great and helps to bind the other ingredients together. You can also other nut (or seed) butters, such as sunflower or pumpkinseed, peanut, macadamia, cashew nut and hemp seed butter. Almond butter is the best
Rolled Oats - Choose the old-fashioned varieties (organic if preferred) - not the Fast Oats used for porridge.
Spices - Add flavor and turn good bars into great bars. This can include ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, garlic or whatever is your preference.
Ground flax seed - This is a wonderful ingredient, with a good dose of fiber, protein, lots of healthy nutrients and it provides a good texture to the finished bars.
Sweetener - Since the bars taste good without it, adding sweetener is optional. Use honey or molasses instead of sugar or corn syrup. You cans also use a non-sugar sweetener such as Stevia.
Almond Milk - This is optional, as you can just use water, but almond milk adds flavor.
Low fat Cheese such as cottage cheese
Peanut Butter, Shredded Coconut, Dried Fruit and Nuts
Below are a set of basic recipes which can be modified according to your preferences.
Basic Recipe 1 (uncooked)
4 tablespoons of high quality natural peanut butter
1 lb of no-fat cottage cheese
3 scoops of pain or choc-flavored pure, quality whey protein power
2 cups of whole rolled oats
- First add all the cottage cheese to the bowl and add the oats, protein powder and the natural peanut butter.
- Using a fork and mix all the ingredients together.
- Transfer to a container with a lid and store in the refrigerator.
- You can shape into bars or just eat as is with a spoon.
Nutrition content for a serving ( about one 6th of the total amount): Calories = 245; Fat = 8 g (Sat fat 2 g); Carbohydrate = 25 g; Sodium = 306 mg; Cholesterol = 23 mg; Fiber = 4 g; Sugar = 4 g; Protein = 27 g
Fruity Protein Bars (uncooked)
1 mashed banana
2 Tablespoons flax seed, ground
1 1/2 cups dry oatmeal
1/4 cup peanut butter
2-4 scoops protein powder
1/4 cup coconut oil or butter, melted
1/4 cup shredded coconut
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup raisins
1 large chocolate bar (organic dark chocolate) or 1/2 cup chocolate chips
- Mix all ingredients, except for the chocolate.
- Line an 8×8-inch (20cm x 20cm) pan with foil and press the mixture into the pan.
- Melt chocolate in a microwave or on the stove and spread over the mixture.
- Cool the pan down in the freezer for about 2 hours.
- Cut into about 9 bars, wrap in plastic wrap or foil and store in the freezer.
- Thaw slightly before serving.
Nutrients in each bar are: 358 calories; 13 mg sodium; 17 g total fat; 493 mg potassium 59 g total carbohydrates; 7.1 g of fiber); 11.3 g protein
Rich Pecan Protein Bars (Baked)
4 scoops of high quality Protein Powder
3 tablespoons of flax powder
3 tablespoons of almond butter
1/4 cup of Gogi berries or dried fruit
1/4 cup of pecans
1 tablespoon of pumpkin pie spice
1 tablespoon of ginger powder
1 tablespoon of cinnamon
1 teaspoon of stevia
1/2 cup of water ( more if needed)
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (218 degrees C).
- Mix everything in a bowl with a large spoon until the mixture forms a thick paste.
- Divide the mixture into 8 parts, then shape into bars.
- Place on flat baking sheets and bake for about 15 minutes.
Total Nutritions: Protein: 10 g; Carbohydrates: 9 g; Fat: 4 g
Rich Baked Homemade Protein Bars
3 cups raw old fashioned rolled oats
1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1/2 cup ground flax seeds
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 cups Greek style yogurt
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup agave nectar, honey or natural maple syrup
1 teaspoon organic vanilla extract
1/2 cup almond butter or high quality peanut butter
1/4 cup coconut oil
1 bar of chocolate, chopped or 1 cup dark chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped sultanas, dates, raisins, apricots, figs or other dried fruit
1 cup chopped nuts or seeds or nuts (various combinations)
1 cup vanilla or chocolate whey protein powder
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
- Spray a 9x12 inch (20 cm x 25 cm) baking dish with oil, or rub with butter.
- Mix all the dry ingredients in a large bowl.
- Mix all the wet ingredients together in separate bowl.
- Combine the wet and dry ingredients until thoroughly mixed and then add the chocolate pieces.
- Adjust the mixture for taste by adding more sweetener or peanut butter
- Add the nuts, dried fruit and protein powder and mix well using your hands.
- Spread the mixture evenly into the pan, press down lightly and bake for about 15 minutes.
- Take the pan out of the oven, cool for about an hour and then slice the bars.
© 2012 Dr. John Anderson