Before I became a nutritionist, I had a pretty serious love affair going on with protein bars, which turned out to be rather one-sided. Instead of feeling nourished and energized, I often felt depleted and still hungry after eating them.
When I started studying nutrition and began reading food labels, I realized most protein bars are made with far too much sugar, artificial ingredients, and denatured protein from both whey and soy sources.
Most bars on the market are more like glorified candy bars than nutrient-dense protein bars. Yes, even the organic ones.
Instead of continuing to search for a healthy brand, I decided to create my own recipe.
These are vegan, free of refined sugars, and are gluten- and dairy-free. The best part? They taste like fudge. No, I’m not lying. Give them a try.
Matcha Chip Protein Squares
- 1 ½ cups gluten-free rolled oats, processed to a flour
- ½ cup vegan protein powder
- 3 tablespoons matcha powder
- ¼ teaspoon Himalayan sea salt
- ¼ cup raw cocoa nibs
- ½ cup almond butter
- 3 tablespoons of chia seeds
- 1/3 cup almond milk
- ¼ cup high quality maple syrup
- ¼ cup almond milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
1. Soak the chia seeds in 1/3 cup almond milk and place in the fridge for about 10 minutes. Line an 8x8 square pan with parchment paper.
2. Process your oats in a food processor until you get close to a flour-like texture and place in a large mixing bowl.
3. Mix the oat flour, protein powder, matcha, sea salt, and cocoa nibs together.
4. Add in the almond butter, soaked chia seeds, maple syrup, almond milk, and vanilla and stir well to combine. Don’t be afraid to get in with your hands!
5. Press the mixture into the pan evenly. If necessary, use a pastry roller to smooth out the top. Place pan in the freezer for 10-15 minutes.
6. Cut the bars into squares. Store them in an airtight glass container for up to a week in the fridge. Enjoy!
Photo courtesy of the author