A big thanks to client Anthea Blackburn for helping with this recipe. The ingredients listed are all natural and a far cry from the processed kinds you would normally find in commercially manufactured protein bars. Below is the mouth-watering recipe. Don’t eat them all at once – the presence of dates in these bars means they are best consumed after intense workouts when the fast acting carbs will be better absorbed by your muscles (instead of contributing to your waistline).
1 cup Medjool dates (deseeded)
1 cup raw cashews
1 cup natural Whey Protein Isolate
¼ cup cacao powder
½ teaspoon Peppermint extract
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
2 tablespoons unsweetened almond milk
¼ teaspoon sea salt
¼ cup cacao nibs (plus extra to decorate the top of the bars)
½ cup puffed brown rice (place on a baking sheet and place in the oven for 15 minutes at 150 degrees. This helps the puffed brown rice to be nice and crispy in the bars)
- Place Medjool dates in a food processor and pulse until they are broken up into small pieces.
- Add raw cashews and process until the dates and cashews are finely ground.
- Add protein powder, cacao powder, peppermint extract, vanilla bean paste, unsweetened almond milk and sea salt. Process until a well-combined and slightly sticky ball is formed.
- Remove from food processor and place in a bowl. Add in puffed brown rice and cacao nibs. Mix the puffed brown rice and cacao nibs through the date mixture using your hands or a palette knife.
- Take a 20 centimetre square cake tin and line with plastic cling wrap.
- Place bar mixture into cake tin and flatten down with your hands so that the top is even. Sprinkle with extra cacao nibs to decorate. Cover the top with plastic cling wrap.
- Place into the freezer for an hour.
- Remove from freezer and remove plastic wrap. Place on a large chopping board.
- Cut into 16 bars – each bar contains 12g of protein
- These can be kept in the fridge for up to seven days, or in the freezer for up to three months.