I love eating these bars because I made them, and that means I know what's in them. :-) Sure, it's easy to grab any box of bars off the shelf at the store (and in a pinch I still do - but only certain brands), but how much better to know that you can pronounce and identify every ingredient in what you're eating because you made it yourself! These bars are great to bring to work, give to your kids as a quick snack, or just have on hand in your fridge. And they're no bake, so it's pretty simple! They are filling, tasty, and made with all super healthy ingredients... that taste good too!
First, start with a cup of natural peanut butter (smooth or chunky - your preference, or you can use almond butter as well), 3/4 cup of raw honey, and 1/4 cup of unrefined coconut oil. Add these ingredients to a medium size pot on your stove top and stir together on low heat until everything is melted and mixed smoothly.
Then add 1/3 cup of Bob's Red Mill whey protein powder.
I love using this because it is just pure whey protein; no other additives or other stuff I can't pronounce. Then add 3 TBSP Cacao powder (like this one) to add a chocolatey taste and get a little dose of awesomeness:
You can keep the stove top on very low heat the whole time you are adding ingredients just to blend them together well. Next, I like to add 1/4 cup ground flax seed like this one pictured below. Great source of fiber and omega 3's.
At this point, I usually turn the stove off and add remaining ingredients: 1 cup oats (not quick cooking), 1 -1.5 cups of unsweetened shredded coconut, 1/3 cup slivered raw almonds, and 1/4 cup Cacao nibs (see my amazon store for these!).
Mix all ingredients together well and scoop into a square baking pan. Smooth it all out until flat.
Place in fridge to harden for about 2 hours. Then remove from fridge and cut into 12 squares. I usually store these in a tupperware either in the fridge or freezer and use as needed. These will get too soft if left out. They are much better chilled, so I would leave them in the freezer if you are taking one out and not eating it right away (taking in a lunch bag or something), or leave in the fridge to eat immediately. I swear every time I make these they come out slightly different every time, but that's because I usually add a little more or a little less of something every time.... but I always like them! Play around with how much of each ingredient you like.... and enjoy!
Terri Wentzell is a registered nurse with more than 20 years of experience. She is also a certified personal trainer, wellness coach, fitness nutrition coach, and sport yoga instructor.