Chocolate Protein Bars

DSC_0027I was eating one of my fave packaged protein bars the other day, thinking it was kind of expensive and there must be a way to recreate it and make it for less. Of course there was. Where there’s a will there’s a way, right?!!

Voila, chocolate protein bars. The protein is coming from hemp seeds, chia seeds and walnuts (which are all fantastic sources of omega-3 fatty acids!). They taste so good that I ate them up way to quick the first time round. Now they stay in the freezer until I need them. Needing them means I am on the go and need to take something with me. Not something to mindlessly snack on when I’m sitting in front of the computer, haha. Okay, fine, I might just have one now and again as a treat after supper! That is how good I think they are 🙂

Ingredients

  • 1 cup hemp seeds (hemp hearts)
  • ½ cup chia seeds
  • ½ cup walnuts
  • 1 cup raw cocoa powder
  • 2½ cups rice crisps
  • 2 scoops unflavoured whey isolate (OPTIONAL)
  • 6 medjool dates
  • ¼ cup honey
  • ¼ cup pumpkin seed butter
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • ¼ cup coconut
  • ½ cup rice crisps
  • ½ a bar (50g) of dark chocolate (I use 9 squares of Cuisine Camino dark baking chocolate)
  • ½ tsp coconut oil

Directions

  1. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a food processor, combine the hemp seeds, chia seeds, walnuts, cocoa powder and and rice crisps and process until ground. Remove the mix from the processor and place in a large bowl.
  3. Add the dates, honey, pumpkin seed butter and maple syrup to the food processor. Process until smooth.
  4. Add the seed/nut/cocoa mix to the date mix and process briefly until combined. It will be stiff and may not combine well. When you’ve done as much as you can in the processor, remove the mix and place in the large bowl. Add the coconut. Finish mixing by kneading with your hands.
  5. Add the rice crisps and carefully knead in until just scattered throughout.
  6. Pour the mixture out onto the parchment paper lined baking sheet. Pat down until about 1.5 cm thick. Place a piece of parchment paper over the bar mix and then using a rolling pin, roll flat until the same height as the cookie sheet ridge (or about 1 cm thick).
  7. In a small bowl or saucepan, heat the chocolate, milk and oil until just melted. Spread the mixture over the bars.
  8. Place the bars in the fridge and allow to cool for 15-20 minutes. Then, while not yet completely hard, but the chocolate has set, cut them into 12 to 16 bars.

Makes 12 bars (11 grams protein per bar OR 16 grams protein per bar with whey isolate) or 16 bars (8 grams protein per bar OR 12 grams protein per bar with whey isolate).

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