Store bought granola bars and protein bars and I don't get along. Most of them are full of sugar and I'm trying to be mindful of how much sugar I'm putting into my body. I also have a tree nut allergy and most of the more natural bars are full of nuts.
When I first saw this recipe it seemed too good to be true. It had minimal ingredients (I had all of them in my cupboard already) and seemed extremely easy to make. It was vegan,
gluten and refined sugar free. It was chocolatey, healthy AND a good
source of protein. I've experimented with most of these ingredients
enough to know that it seemed like they would taste good. One issue I
have with trying new bar recipes is it's usually hit or miss whether
they will stay as bars once cut.
I'm happy to report that these bars are delicious! They stayed in bar form nicely and I'm hoping they will help me curb my sweet tooth.
CHOCOLATE PEANUT BUTTER PROTEIN BARS
Recipe from What Molly Made with a few small changes
• ½ cup natural peanut butter
• ⅓ cup coconut oil
• ½ cup 100% pure maple syrup
• 1 tablespoon vanilla
• ½ cup chocolate protein powder
• ½ cup cocoa powder
• 4 cups organic rice puffs or rice cereal
• ½ cup dark chocolate chips, optional (I chose not to include them)
• ½ cup natural peanut butter, melted for topping
Cover a 9x9 pan with parchment paper and set aside.
In a large microwave safe bowl, combine the peanut butter, coconut oil
and maple syrup. Place in the microwave and heat on high for 30 seconds.
Stir the mixture then place it back in the microwave for another 30
seconds to melt completely. Whisk together until combined. Add the
vanilla and mix well.
Add the protein powder and cocoa powder and mix well.
Mixture should be thicker but still wet. Add the rice puffs and stir to
coat completely. Stir in chocolate chips, if desired.
Pour mixture into prepared pan and press gently to set the bars in
place. Place in the freezer for 15 minutes. While freezing, place the
peanut butter in a small microwave safe bowl and heat on high for 30
seconds until melted. When bars are set, drizzle peanut butter over top.
Place bars back in the freezer for 10 minutes. Cut into bars and enjoy!
You can keep them in the freezer for up to two weeks.
If I were to make any changes the next time I might up the amount of
coconut oil and lower the amount of peanut butter by just a little bit. I
think it'll help keep the bars firmer. I would also consider putting in
half the amount of protein powder and replacing it with some cacao
powder for the health benefits it would bring to the bars.I randomly had chocolate protein powder on hand but if I didn't I would just use cocoa and cacao.