I’ve been trying to reduce the amount of plastic I buy and something I realised I could easily cut down on was buying protein snack bars…as they’re usually wrapped in that foil-like plastic that can’t be recycled. WHY!?!?
Anyway, I shared a photo of my first attempt at a homemade version on my Instagram story last week and a few people asked for the recipe. I’ve finally got around to typing it up, so here you go…
Although I usually focus on making healthier versions of desserts or sweet treat snacks, these are more of an everyday protein snack. But don’t worry, I’ll go back to making my usual healthy sweet treats again (just with a few other recipes thrown in occasionally).
These are gluten-free (like all of my recipes) and vegan…and each one contains just under 10 grams of protein. Which I think is pretty good considering the size of them!
Quick and Easy Protein Snack Bars
Makes 16 small square bars
300g Medjool dates – pits removed
100g cashew nuts
100g pecan nuts
35g desiccated coconut
40g pumpkin seeds
2tsp vanilla extract
Line a brownie tin with baking paper
Soak the dates in a bowl of boiling water for 10 minutes to soften
Meanwhile, put all other ingredients in a food processor and blitz so all nuts are broken down (if you want the bars to have bigger nutty chunks this will take less time than if you prefer the nuts to be tiny)
Strain the dates and throw away the water, then add the dates to the food processor mixture
Blitz until combined
Scoop the mixture into the lined brownie tin and flatten (with your hands or a spatula) so it’s level and meets the edges of the tin
Place in the fridge for one hour to firm up, then remove from the tin and slice into 16 squares
If you want to make these sweeter you could add maple syrup or agave nectar, but as I eat one of these every day before training I didn’t want to use any added sugar.
As much as I’d like to eat all 16 in one go, I keep a few of these in the fridge to eat within a couple of days and put the rest in the freezer.
They defrost easily in a few hours, so minimal faff. Yay! And no plastic packaging (especially if you buy the nuts, etc from a refill store)!
Macros (per bar):
Kcals – 173
Carbs – 14.2g (only 0.7g of which sugars)
Fat – 10.1g (almost all good fats)
Protein – 9.6g
Fibre – 2.9g
If you’re looking for something sweeter, check these out: