After several posts of incredibly delicious brunch and out-of-this-world Dutch apple pie, it seemed only fair I brought you a healthy recipe. Judging by all of my food posts, you’re probably well aware that I’m a sweet tooth kind of girl. Although I’ve recently rekindled my love for pilates and improved my daily exercise routine and diet considerably, truth is I often find myself craving sweet treats after a workout. Maintaining a healthy diet can be tricky – especially when it comes to choosing snacks that will keep us both satisfied and healthy. Let me just say that the temptation is real.
Protein bars seem to do the trick and help you get through to the end of the day. However, I’ve found that store bought protein bars aren’t only pricey, but they tend to be calorific and quite surprisingly, aren’t always that nutritious. They often come packed with processed and unnatural ingredients including sugars, additives and preservatives which isn’t what your body needs to be happy. Therefore, I’ve decided to share my newfound love – these easy and healthy homemade protein bars! They’re tasty, filling and have no added sugar as their rich sweetness comes from the natural sugars found in dates. And the best bit? These are no-bake protein bars so require no baking at all! Can this get any better?
- How easy is this recipe? Very easy!
- This recipe serves: 9
- Recipe preparation time: 15 min
- Recipe cooking time: 10 min
- Suitable for freezing? Yes
- 1 Cup unsalted raw cashew nuts
- 1 Cup dates
- 1 Cup whey protein powder of your choice – we used Vanilla Ice Cream, but we also love them with Cookies & Cream! (Optional: wheat-free/gluten-free protein powder)
- ½ Cup rolled oats (Optional: gluten-free)
- 2 tbsp roasted unsweetened almond milk
- 1 tsp Cinnamon
- A pinch of salt
- Start by de-stoning the dates (unless already pitted) and cut them in half. Mix them with the cashew nuts in a blender and…you guessed it! Blend for about 3 minutes until you obtain and sticky light brown mixture.
- Using your hands or a spoon, break the mixture and add the protein powder, cinnamon and salt. Blend until well combined, pausing to stir if needed.
- Add in the oats and blend once again, making sure these have chopped up completely and no big chunks are left in your protein bar mixture.
- Transfer your protein mixture to a large bowl and add in the unsweetened almond milk. Mix it with your hands until all the ingredients are together and you’re left with a thick and smooth base. You can add a splash more milk if the protein mix doesn’t stick together.
- Place some baking paper or cling film on a 8×8 baking tray and spoon in your protein bar mixture, pressing and leveling the top evenly.
- Place your homemade protein bars in the freezer and allow to cool for about 15 min.
- Remove from the freezer and cut into 8-12 squares, depending on how big you’d like your protein bars to be (I went for 9)! Put in a container and keep cool in the fridge.
- Optional – drizzle some melted chocolate or honey on top of your homemade protein bars for an even sweeter taste!
If stored correctly, your homemade protein bars can last for up to one month. Although in my case, they don’t really last longer than a week! You can have them as a healthy snack at any time of the day as part of a balanced diet and, as they don’t fall apart, they’re perfect to keep one wrapped up in your bag in case hunger strikes! Also there aren’t any overpowering flavours, meaning you can find lovely alternatives by switching your protein powder. For this protein bar recipe in particular, we used Vanilla Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard Whey Powder but I would totally recommend trying their cookies and cream flavour, which was also a total winner! If you’re vegan, simply use pea protein instead; and if you’re looking for a gluten-free protein bars, just switch the oats for gluten-free ones (remember to always check your protein powder before!).
Now it’s your turn to have a go at my no-bake protein bars recipe. Let me know how it turns out for you in the comments below and on social media! I hope these homemade protein bars become a favourite snack of yours too.
Do you love cooking as much as us? Then check:
- How to Make: Healthy Banana and Oat Pancake Recipe
- How to Make: Easy Lemon Drizzle Cake Recipe
- How to Make: Gooey Chocolate Brownie Recipe
- How to Make: Healthy Satay Turkey Salad Recipe