As part of your diet plan, you might be purchasing protein bars for your snacks. But, although it’s great that you’re upping your protein intake to help build – and rebuild – your muscles, there are a few downsides to purchasing protein snack bars. But, here’s a recipe that can help you not only avoid some of the pitfalls of purchasing protein bars, but you’ll also end up with your own home made bars that taste great too!
Downslides to purchasing protein bars
Yes, there is a certain convenience factor to purchasing your protein bars. But, there are also some downsides to doing that as well:
- Cost: A box of 5-6 bars an cost nearly $10.00! Why not make your own and save some money!
- Taste: Many of the protein bars on the market taste pretty bland, or have an off-taste to them. By making your own out of healthily ingredients, you not only end up with a better flavor, but you also can control the ingredients, allowing you to tweak the flavor, whether that’s from eliminating ingredients you don’t like, to adding new ones that you do like the taste of.
- Limited Protein Content: Many energy bars out there actually don’t have that much protein, so if you’re trying to get a certain amount of protein during your snack, you may end up eating more bars than you should, and in turn, taking in too many calories. Making your own protein bars allows you to up the amount of protein to keep your overall protein intake up, while minimizing the amount of calories you are eating.
- Unhealthy Ingredients: Many energy and protein bars on the market use ingredients that may be processed, which isn’t nearly as healthy for you as fresh, organic ingredients. Making your own bars allows you to make fresh, healthy snacks!
Homemade Protein Bars
- Nonstick spray
- 1 cup protein powder
- 1/2 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
- 2 cups rolled oats
- 1/2 cup flax seed meal
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 to 2/3 cup (packed) brown sugar
- 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
- 1-1/2 cups plain or vanilla yogurt
- 1/4 cup canola oil
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- (Optional for extra protein) – 2 to 3 tablespoons powdered egg whites.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (325 degrees F for a glass pan). Lightly spray a 9- by 13- inch baking pan and a baking tray with nonstick spray.
Mix together the protein powder, flour, oats, flax seed meal, cinnamon, and salt in a large bowl. Crumble in the brown sugar, rubbing it with your fingers to break up any clumps. Stir in the chocolate chips. Measure the yogurt, oil, and vanilla into a second bowl, stirring until well combined.
Mix the wet mixture into the dry ingredients, and mix until blended. Fold the mixture to the prepared pan, patting it evenly into place with your hands. Bake in the center of the oven for 15 minutes, then remove from the oven and cut into bars of any size or shape. Place the bars on the prepared baking tray and bake for another 15 minutes, or until golden around the edges. Remove the bars from the oven, and place them on a rack to cool.
Yield: About 20 medium-sized bars
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