Desserts & Ice Creams

Protein Bars with Oats, Chia and Dark Chocolate

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Do you ever get sick of the protein bars they sell at the store? I sure do.  Especially considering that many of the protein bars out there contain more sugar than protein (super annoying, and more on that in a couple weeks….).  It’s funny, I tell clients to make their own protein bars and I often get these blank stares, and I know what they are thinking;

 “Is this women nuts? I don’t have time to make my own protein bars! I’ll go through them in a week and then I’ll just have to make more”.

Sure this might be true, but that’s why you make double or triple batches, right?!  Or you can use that as motivation to not eat them as fast. Either way, I’m telling you it’s typically better to make protein bars from scratch, because check out the ingredients, do you notice anything? Yep, you guessed it, you can actually pronounce all the words, and actually picture the ingredients. Glorious.

4.7 from 3 reviews

Protein Bars with Oats, Chia and Dark Chocolate

Ingredients

  • 1 mashed banana
  • 1½ cups dry old fashioned oats
  • 2 Tbsp. chia seeds
  • 3 scoops protein powder (unsweetened, ~20 grams protein per scoop) **
  • ¼ cup peanut butter
  • ¼ cup shredded unsweetened coconut **
  • ¼ cup coconut oil, or butter, melted
  • ¼ cup water
  • 5 squares of a good dark chocolate (at least 55% cacao)

Instructions

  1. Mix all ingredients but the chocolate together in a bowl. Line an 8 x 8 inch pan with foil and spread the mixture evenly in the pan. Melt chocolate on the stove or in the microwave. Drizzle melted chocolate over mixture in the pan and spread it out evenly.
  2. Place the pan in the freezer for at least 2 hours. Cut into 12 bars and wrap in plastic or foil and store in freezer. Before serving, thaw for about 5 minutes.

Notes

** If you are following a low FODMAPs diet these are likely safe to eat. Keep in mind; I would recommend using a soy protein powder if you are very sensitive to lactose. Also, if you are in the elimination phase of the diet do not use the shredded coconut, and definitely use a soy protein powder (coconut only contains FODMAPs when consumed in amounts greater than ½ cup, but in the elimination phase it’s best not to have it at all).

Nutrition Information

Serving size: 1/12th of pan Calories: 210 Fat: 11 g Saturated fat: 6.5 g Carbohydrates: 19.5 g Sugar: 4 g Sodium: 56 mg Fiber: 3.5 g Protein: 10 g Cholesterol: 13 mg

Nutrition Highlights:  Under 250 calories (not bad for a granola bar like this, it’s very hearty!), only 4 grams of sugar (only half of which is “added sugar”), excellent source of protein and good source of fiber.  The nutrition facts are based on 12 servings per recipe. You could always make them smaller and make 16 (I did this the first time I made these and they were still a great size and very filling!)

Once I took them out of the freezer to cut, I took a bite. They softened gently in my mouth and the flavors just coated my taste buds.  Oh my gosh, better than anything I could buy at the store.  After I cut them up I put them in a freezer bag to keep for later in the week, and the following week (I made a double batch).  I noticed that they do freeze and turn almost solid.  However, once you take them out of the freezer it only takes about 3-4 minutes for them to defrost enough for a soft and chewy bite.

So long Quaker!  Hello homemade.  And if you, or your children (or husband, in my case) prefer milk chocolate over dark, I say go for it. I’m a freak and use 90% dark. Yes, 90%. Like I said, I’m a freak (I’m obviously not a super taster).  You could also choose a dark chocolate that is 55% dark, which is still dark enough to provide some phytonutrient benefits.  So, go ahead, make these bars, and feel good knowing you will have something to help you “Detox” after Thanksgiving.  You’re welcome.

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