Saturday, January 30, 2010

Energy Bars - A recipe

I have been experimenting with an energy bar recipe. This one isn't necessarily "bariatric friendly" as it is is designed as a workout food and has a fair amount of sugar if you make it with dried fruit as I do. But it's tasty and has more protein than something like Powerbar's Energy Bites.

After lots of tinkering, I think I finally got it -- my "bars" came out the best I've tasted and I think I'm done fiddling. So here you go:

Home-made Energy Bars

3 cups stone cut oats
3/4 cup PB2 (a powdered peanut butter with 85% less fat than peanut butter)
1 cup protein powder – any flavor will work – I use Whey Gourmet PB and Chocolate or Chike Vanilla
1-1/2 cups nonfat dry milk
1/3 cup sugar substitute – I used Splenda Granular
1 tbsp cinnamon
2 egg whites
1/2 cup orange juice
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1.5 cup chopped stuff (dried fruit, nuts, coconut – whatever you like)

Thoroughly mix all dry ingredients in a large bowl. Mix all wet ingredients in another bowl. Add the wet stuff to the dry stuff and mix together thoroughly.

Making bars:
There are a number of techniques for this. The most aesthetically appealing and most like a commercial bar is to form bars on a cookie sheet. Divide the mixture into about 16 balls spoonfuls on waxed paper (or just use non-stick spray on cookie sheets if you prefer) and form into bars with a knife.

The quick and dirty way is to mush the mixture into a shallow pan and cut into bars when you take it out of the oven.

A compromise is to put the mixture into muffin tins. It’s aesthetically more like bars but it’s a lot faster than shaping each one.

Bake at 325°F for approximately 15 minutes or until the bottoms of your bars are golden brown.

When they’re done, take them out of the oven and let them cool.  (Note: the bars will be a bit soft when you remove them from the oven; when they cool they’ll firm up.)

Nutritional info:
It depends on which sugar substitute and protein powder you use, but should be approximately:

Calories: 208
Protein: 11 g
Carbs: 24 g
Sugar: 11 g
Fat: 6 g
Fiber: 3 g
Sodium: 143 g
Potassium: 236 g
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