Much as I love all the protein and nut snacks out there, it’s much cheaper to make your own version! They’re really easy to prepare, and you can add your choice of superfoods, dried fruits, seeds or nuts to make a nutritious snack that you really like. They’re also great for a quick breakfast with some fresh fruit when you’re running out the door.
I spent a very happy morning experimenting with several different additions, using goji berries, spirulina, cacao, lucuma, raisins, matcha, acai and ground seeds, and they’re all really good!
The base is always the same:
1 cup oats (gluten free if necessary)
1/2 cup almond, cashew or peanut butter
1/3 cup melted coconut oil
1 tbsp maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp cinnamon.
Melt the coconut oil over a gentle heat and then stir in the other ingredients.
Taste the mixture at this point to see if you need a little more sweetness, or cinnamon, and then get busy with the additions! If you’re adding dried fruit or chopped up nuts and seeds, then you should add a handful. If you’re using cacao, matcha, acai, spirulina or lucuma, then you only need a teaspoon or so. Keep tasting as you add, and you’ll soon have the perfect blend for you. You can see some of my experiments here:
Once you’re done, place the mixture into a lined small baking tray, or a lined dish. Lining it is important, as it will be much easier to remove it when it’s ready. Then place in the ‘fridge for a couple of hours. Slice and add fresh fruit.
This bar was made with powdered acai:
This one had bee pollen, a mixture of ground flax, chia and sunflower seeds and lucuma:
And this one was made with spirulina, which tasted great!
If you like, you can roll the mixture into balls before cooling, perhaps coating them in cacao powder or beetroot powder. Whether bars or balls, these bites of energy are a great addition to any lunch box, or a fantastic mid-afternoon snack to beat the 4pm slump and stop you reaching for the biscuit tin.