Friday, May 18, 2012

Paleo Protein Bars

With CrossFit Regionals fully underway, you athletes may be looking for a great snack that is easy to take on the go. Well, here it is! This bar is the closest I've come to making a crunchy paleo granola bar. The texture is kind of a cross between a crunchy and chewy granola bar. This recipe contains pure whey protein from grass-fed cows, which is not paleo but a product that many CrossFitters include in their diet anyway. We use the Dr. Mercola brand, which contains only pure whey. I may seek out some egg protein powder to see how that works, but for now, this is the whey it is (hee hee). You can substitute almond flour for the protein if you'd like. You can also used flavored protein powder, but that introduces other additives, so I stay with the unflavored. The mix-ins are optional. Leave them out for a cleaner bar, add them in for a treat. The chocolate chips taste really good though! I'd love to hear your feedback on this one. Enjoy!

I also want to give a shout out to CrossFit Freedom, CrossFit Carbon, and CrossFit VisOne. Looking forward to a great showing at North Central Regionals this weekend! Best of luck to you! I'll be there Saturday and Sunday cheering and hanging out around the WODHOPPER booth. Stop by and say hello!


Adapted from www.thepaleomom.com.


Makes 28 bars.

Ingredients
1 Tbsp ground flax seeds (flax meal)
1 1/2 Tbsp water
1 1/2 cups slivered almonds
2 cups shredded unsweetened coconut
1/3 cup raw sunflower seeds
1/3 cup raw pepitas (hulled pumpkin seeds)
1 Tbsp sesame seeds
2 tsp cinnamon
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/2 cup plain protein powder (or almond flour)
1/3 cup extra virgin coconut oil, liquified
1/4 cup unsweetened natural almond butter
1/4 cup raw honey, liquified
1 egg
1 Tbsp pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup dark chocolate chips or dried fruit (optional)

Preparation
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
  2. Prepare a 9x13 baking dish by lightly coating it with coconut oil.
  3. Combine flax meal and water in a small bowl and set aside.
  4. Place flax mixture, coconut oil, almond butter, honey, egg, and vanilla in a large bowl. Use a fork or whisk to combine.
  5. In another large bowl, combine almonds, coconut, sunflower seeds, pepitas, sesame seeds, cinnamon, baking soda, sea salt, and protein powder.
  6. Transfer dry mixture into the large bowl with the wet ingredients. Stir thoroughly with a spoon until well combined. The mixture will be somewhat dry. Take your time with it to make sure everything is well mixed.
  7. Fold chocolate chips or dried fruit in to batter, if desired.
  8. Press mixture firmly into the baking dish. (Mixture will be sticky.)
  9. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the top is lightly browned. Remove from oven and press top down with a spatula or your hands to remove any puffiness.
  10. Cool on the stovetop, then transfer the dish to the refrigerator to cool completely.
    NOTE: Bars do not hold together well if you try to cut them before cooling.
  11. Cut into 28 bars and wrap individually in plastic, parchment, or waxed paper, if desired. Store in the refrigerator for a grab-and-go snack.





21 comments:

  1. How long do these stay good ( shelf life)?

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    1. I have kept them for up to three weeks in the refrigerator with good results. I haven't tried freezing them, but I think they would freeze well.

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  2. Made these and they were easy and so delish. A few friends have tasted and agree. If the coconut is shredded very fine (like my co-op does) is seemed to really help with binding everything. The pressing down part seemed like a smart idea and my bars were very firm and, well, protein bar like! Thank you so much!

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    1. Yes, I have also made these with chunkier coconut flakes and I prefer them with the finer shreds. The first time I made them they required pressing, but subsequent batches haven't risen as much. Not sure why, but I'm glad they turned out well for you! Thanks for the nice comments!

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  3. I made a batch a couple weeks back, half with cranberries and half with dark choco-chips...very tasty. However they didn't bind very well for me, pretty much fell apart when cut them out of the pan (after hours of cooling in the fridge).

    Any suggestions to make them hold together better? I notice others are saying that pressing helps.

    Gonna try the cashew cheesecake minis this weekend!

    Thanks!

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    1. Hi, Sean! This is definitely a drier mix--more like a granola bar, but mine do stay firm when I cut the cooled bars. You could add a little more coconut oil to help bind them together. And definitely press the top down to compress the bars. The cheesecake is yummy--hope you like it. A silicone baking pan will definitely help release them from the pan more easily. That's the only tricky part. Thanks for the note!

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  4. Hello Pam, and thanks for all your lovely recipes! :-)
    Have a question for you: I can´t eat coconut, so what do you think I could substitute on this recipe?
    Thanks in advance!
    Greetings from Germany :-)

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    1. Greetings, Weisserose! This recipe might be tough without the coconut since it is such a large amount. You could try using almond meal instead to see how it turns out. You might want to try modifying this recipe instead: http://www.paleotable.com/2011/07/paleo-date-nut-bars.html. Instead of the 1/2 cup shredded coconut, try 1/4 cup whey and 1/4 cup almond meal or additional seeds or chopped nuts. Replace the coconut oil with palm oil. If you give it a go, I'd love to hear how it turns out. Thanks for the post!

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  5. This recipe looks great! Thanks for sharing.

    Home made paleo friendly bars are a great idea but if you find yourself occasionally too lazy to make them and want a quick option consider trying these:


    http://www.paleobars.net

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    1. Thanks, Rob--and good luck on your new venture!

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  6. These were easy to make and I did not have any trouble with them crumbling. Great to have on hand for a quick snack. Thanks!

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    1. I'm glad to hear that Nicole. I haven't had any problems with them crumbling either. I'm happy you like them. Thanks for the note!

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  7. Hi I was wondering where I could find the nutritional breakdown of these? (Protein, fat, carb grams) Thanks! Jane

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    1. Hi, Jane! While I provide recipes, there are other sites that focus on the nutritional information you want. If you Google "recipe nutrition calculator" several options show up that should be able to help.

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  8. OMG these bars are so amazing!!!! Im finding it hard not to eat them all, my husband on the other hand keeps eating them, going to have make another batch! I have only just started paleo this week and have found the recipes on your site so helpmful, thank you!

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    1. Thanks so much, Jen! These bars are a great replacement for granola bars. I'm glad you and and your husband like them. Congratulations on starting paleo--hope to hear from you again! Best of luck!

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  9. Awesome - I have been trying to replace junky snacks for my kids and these are a big hit - thank you!!

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    1. Hi, Anon! These are a great snack for the kids. I have a hard time getting my kids to eat enough protein--these really help. Thanks for the nice comments!

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  10. I did some rough calculation. These bars are approximately 120 per bar.

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    1. Thanks, Lisa! Would that 120 be be calories?

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  11. Wow Pam! I tried these a couple of days ago and they are delicious!!! I'm having them for breakfast :)

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