Entries in Chocolate (22)
And I've got a treat for you!
In the form of protein snack bars.
So what are these bars like, you ask?
Well, they're soft, thick, and they taste like maple-pecan bliss coated in a thin layer of extra dark chocolate. The texture and flavour is so good. And you know what else? To top it all off their really easy to make.
I added 1/2 a cup of North Coast Naturals vanilla iso whey protein powder to rev up the protein in these bars. This protein powder is truly one of the best I've tried in terms of taste and blend-ability. So creamy + smooth! You can substitute your favourite vanilla protein to veganize these bars of course. Just make sure that whichever protein powder you use, it tastes good, because you will taste it.
I actually made a double batch of these, pressed them into my trusty 7 x 5 baking dish, and cut the bars in half. That's why they look bigger in the above photo without the chocolate coating. The nutrition is the same as the single batch that makes 6 bars, but making the double batch this way gave the bars a nice height.
The combination of pecans and coconut sugar is out of this world. Plus it also provides your body with some good functional fuel.
These are perfect as a pre or post workout snack. They do best when stored in the fridge. They hold up pretty well for short periods of time when they've been out of the fridge, but they do tend to soften up a bit and get sticky.
Once you start making your own homemade energy/ protein bars you'll quickly realize how much better they taste than the store bought ones. Especially when you know 100% exactly how much of what ingredient went into them.
Adapted from Protein Pow
Maple Pecan Protein Bars
Keywords: food processor no-bake snack grain-free gluten-free vegan option soy-free protein low-sodium almond flour chocolate maple syrup almond milk bars
Ingredients (makes 6 bars)
In a food processor, mix together vanilla protein powder, pecan halves, ground almonds, coconut sugar, and lucuma powder until smooth. Add in the almond milk, maple extract, and maple syrup. Mix well to combine.
Shape the dough into 6 bars using your hands or firmly press into a 7 x 5 inch baking dish lined with parchment paper. Place the bars in the fridge for 1 hour to firm up. If using the baking dish method, slice into 6 bars. Place the individual bars on a baking tray lined with a sheet of tin foil or parchment.
Melt the dark chocolate in a small heat proof bowl set over a pot of water on low heat. Dunk the bars into the melted chocolate or spoon the chocolate over them to coat. Return the bars to the lined baking tray. Garnish with a pecan on top of each bar and place in the freezer to set.
Store in the freezer for a week or longer in an air-tight freezer bag or container.
Now bring on the weekend!
This is one of those dangerously delicious recipes. I warn you now that these bars are basically addictive. Addictive but oh so healthy.
I've been itching to get this recipe up and posted on the blog for like a month now. That's also how long I've had this draft open on my computer. Things have been a bit crazy but I wanted to make sure this recipe turned out just perfect. And the photos eye popping delicious of course. I must thank you all for the wonderful comments on my photography lately. I'm always working to improve and learn more, so thanks a bunch! It means a lot to me.
I'm super excited for these bars because they're totally sugar-free. The only sugar you'll find in this dessert is the natural sugar from the dates and whatever small amount that exists in the dark chocolate topping.
The caramel layer of these bars are made from just a few things:
- pitted dates
- cashews, soaked in water and drained
- almond milk
- sea salt
Soaking the cashews helps to make the caramel layer silky smooth and easy to blend. You can soak them overnight or at least 2 hours if you are short on time. Once everything is blended together you're left with a slightly sweet caramel like spread.
Holy friggin' delicious!
These dessert bars aren't too difficult to make. Trust me, the little bit of freezer time it takes for them to set is worth the wait!
Healthy Caramel Slice
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 15-20 minutes
Keywords: bake food processor blender dessert snack dairy-free sugar-free gluten-free grain-free cashews chocolate dates coconut flour bars
Ingredients (makes 8 large or 16 small squa)Base
- 2 tablespoons melted coconut oil
- 3 eggs + 1 egg white
- 1/3 cup coconut flour
- 1/4 cup arrowroot powder
- 1/4 cup almond milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- pinch of sea salt, to taste
- 1 1/2 cups dates, pitted
- 1 cup unsalted cashews, soaked in water overnight
- 2 tablespoons almond milk
- pinch of sea salt
- 145 grams dark chocolate
InstructionsTo make the base
Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line an 8-inch square pan with two pieces of parchment paper, one going each way. This makes it easy to lift out the bars later on.
Mix all of the base ingredients together until combined and batter is formed with no lumps. Pour the mixture into the bottom of prepared baking pan. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until golden. Remove from oven and set aside to cool.To make the caramel layer
Add all the middle layer ingredients into the processor and process until smooth. Spread evenly onto your base layer and smooth out. Place in the freezer for at least 1 hour to set, until the middle layer is very firm to the touch.To make the chocolate topping
When the middle layer is completely solid, prepare the topping. Melt the chocolate in a double broiler and spread evenly over top of the caramel layer. Return to the freezer until the chocolate is firm and the bars are solid.
Remove from the freezer 15 minutes before gently slicing. Serve with a sprinkle of sea salt on top if desired. Wrap leftovers and store in the fridge or freezer.