• No-Bake Protein Bars For The Lazy And Cheap Herbivore

    I’ve mentioned before my strange tummy issues, in that a lot of plant fibers put me in tons of gastrointestinal distress in terms of pain and bloat (WHEEE!) and so I have to 1) Avoid a lot of raw plant fiber and 2) Cook the crap out of the ones I do eat. While there is a level of predictability as to what will bother me and what won’t, there are a few gray areas and also sometimes I just like to try new foods even though I often regret it.

    Take this “special” dietary situation, combine it with my desire to eat a plant-based diet, and you have what is a definite struggle to feed me. As I’ve been doing a lot of driving and living in Knoxville (where I live out of a bedroom and try to eat things that don’t need refrigeration or anything more than a microwave to prepare), I’ve come to really rely on granola bars. Over the last three months I’ve been trying to find ones that don’t upset my stomach, but that are also supplemented with protein so that they keep me full for awhile on a long drive. Since I try to live plant based, I prefer that protein to be “plant protein” instead of whey. I’ve really had a tough time finding something that fits all of these criteria AND that doesn’t cost $1.25 or more a bar.

    SO! I decided to try to make my own!

    WHAT?!?!?!?!

    I KNOW!

    Remember when I used to cook?

    Well this doesn’t even require cooking!

    Note: This is NOT a cooking blog. This entry is for FUNCTION AND INSTRUCTION ONLY. These pictures are terrible in terms of “Recipe Blog” pictures. There’s no good lighting. We wrote all over the containers to log price and to remind everyone NOT TO EAT MY GRANOLA BAR INGREDIENTS. And a bonus? In the back of the ingredients photo, if you look, you’ll see Donnie’s medicine for his foot infection! YUM!

    Now! Carry on!

    INGREDIENTS

    – 3 cups quick oats (my tummy can’t handle whole oats)
    – 4 scoops chocolate plant-based protein powder (The one in the photo is generic from Target)
    – 1 cup peanut butter (you could use other nut butters but they upset my stomach)
    – 1 cup Agave Syrup
    – Just a splash of almond milk or water to add a little moisture to the mix if you struggle with making it a workable batter.

    INSTRUCTIONS

    – Line a casserole dish with parchment paper

    – Mix dry ingredients and set aside.

    – Combine Peanut Butter and Agave in a bowl and heat for twenty seconds in microwave to make for easier mixing

    – Add your wet to dry and then – if needed – add almond milk to make it a batter easier to spread in the dish.

    – Pour into dish, smooth/smoosh/flatten with more parchment paper refrigerate for 30 minutes, cut in bars (we did 16)

    This works out to be about 200 calories a bar with 10 grams of protein which is standard when you are looking for good plant-based protein snack bars. These do NOT pack the punch of “meal replacement” bars but that’s not what I was looking for. I just wanted a snack that would help me survive my drive. In terms of cost, I think they cost NO MORE than 75 cents a bar, and it may even be as low as 65 cents a bar. Either way, if you’ve ever shopped for PLANT BASED protein bars you know this is WAY cheaper.

    AND ALSO DELICIOUS.

    Wesley let me put this on my instagram story yesterday. I had to IMMEDIATELY initiate a rule: THESE ARE NOT COOKIES. These are PROTEIN BARS. They are not as cheap as cookies so they are to be eaten CONSERVATIVELY. I can not afford for you all to eat these all in one sitting like they’re Oreos.

    (Yes. My family eats an entire bag of Oreos in one sitting. Doesn’t yours?)

    Bonus? These bars create WAY LESS WASTE than buying granola bars that come individually wrapped in non-biodegradable packaging. We used parchment paper which IS biodegradable so that’s just a little less trash we’re throwing in the world.

    Anyway! If you do any other variations of flavors (I think I want to try vanilla protein powder and add craisins as filling!) with success let me know!