There are many kinds of “healthy” sweet snacks and protein bars. Unfortunately, we all know that many foods promoted to be healthy are actually not. I’ve never found what I was looking for. Either I didn’t like the consistency, the artificial ingredients or simply they didn’t taste good. Many of them contain too much sugar and saturated fats, which can do more harm than good. Luckily, you can easily prepare your own protein bars and say goodbye to all of the junk contained in store-bought snacks. They will be tasty, healthy and definitely cheaper, than anything you can buy in the store.
Here’s one of my ideas. No-bake coconut protein bars are easy to make, healthy and they taste amazing. I love the combo of chocolate and coconut. They will not only satisfy your sweet cravings but boost your energy as well. Believe me, you’ll love them.
If you don’t have protein powder, you can replace it with cocoa powder. I add it to many desserts and other meals for two reasons. Sometimes I have low protein daily intake (because I don’t eat meat or legumes every day) so I give my body what it needs with this little helper. Another time I add protein powder to my smoothie after a tough workout. It helps the muscles to recover more quickly and it contains many essential nutrients as well. But I believe that most of protein should come from meat, legumes and eggs. Protein powder is only the supplement in your diet, it shouldn’t replace the real food. Nowadays you can find many different types of protein on the market (hemp, soya, whey, casein…) and you can choose whatever you want.
- 100g/ 3.5 oz pitted dates
- 1 1/4 cup rolled oats
- 10-15 tbsp protein powder (optionally you can replace it with 5 tbsp of unsweetened cocoa powder)
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 1/4 cup water
- 100g/ 3.5 oz nuts of your choice (I used cashews)
- 1 cup dry shredded coconut
- 1/2 cup rolled oats
- 5 tbsp coconut oil
- 3 tbsp agave syrup (or maple syrup, agave, stevia…)
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 tsp vanilla essence (or vanilla bean, vanilla sugar)
- 100g/ 3.5 oz good quality dark chocolate
- In a food processor, grind oats until they resemble a fine powder. Then add protein powder, chopped dates, coconut oil, water and mix all the ingredients until it forms up like a ball. Line a baking tray with a sheet of parchment paper and put the oat mixture on it. Use your palm to flatten it out into one thin layer (which is approximately 8×10 inch/ 20x 25cm big). Pressing the mixture into layer can be tricky so I recommend you keep your hands wet when working with the mixture. Then place the baking tray in the fridge for one hour.
- Place cashews, oats and coconut in a food processor and grind them into a flour. In a big bowl, whisk together melted coconut oil, agave syrup and water. Add dry ground ingredients and vanilla into wet ones and combine together. Press the cashew mixture on the bottom layer the same way as you did the step before with the oat mixture. Place the baking tray in the fridge again for one hour.
- Melt 70g/ 2.5 oz of chocolate over a hot water-bath, stirring occasionally. Chop 30g/ 1.1 oz of chocolate into small pieces.
- Take the baking tray out from the fridge and cut the cooled mixture into 10-15 equal pieces. Then transfer the bars on a tray or plates. Be carreful as they can be stuck to parchment paper (I do this with a big sharp knife). Pour the melted chocolate over the bars and sprinkle them with the choppes chocolate. Store the bars in an airtight container in the fridge.