Nutty Crunchy Fudgy Protein Bars (grain-free, refined sugar-free)

Many of my clients have a hard time giving up their beloved protein bars. But when I show them how packed they are with chemicals, preservatives, and refined sugar, and explain to them how these ingredients lead to systemic inflammation, blood sugar dysregulation, weight imbalance, and decreased cognitive and coronary function, they’re usually pretty open to suggestion. Especially when I give them a much healthier alternative! The nut, seed and coconut base provides a serious dose of essential fatty acids, and by adding a little bit of a minimally processed, high quality protein power, you’re getting that post-workout protein for optimal muscle regeneration and development. And of course, that decadent chocolatey-fudge topping not only makes you feel good, but provides a bit of an energy boost for your fatigued body. Like the Raw Fruit + Nut Bars, I suggest making a batch at the beginning of the week to enjoy as a quick and easy snack.

 

Nutty Crunchy Fudgy Protein Bars (grain-free, refined sugar-free)

Prep time: 10 minutes

Setting time: 1 hour in fridge

Makes about 15-20 small-medium squares

 

Ingredients

Base

  • 2 cups of nuts or seeds (almonds, sunflower, pumpkin, or macadamia. Mixing several kinds is fine too. Soak and dry these if at all possible.)
  • ½ cup protein powder (pumpkin seed, grass-fed whey, sprouted brown rice if you tolerate grains)
  • ½ cup shredded coconut (unsweetened and organic if possible)
  • ½ cup seed or nut butter (again, made from soaked and dried nuts is preferable)
  • 1/4-1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ cup coconut oil, melted
  • 2 tbsp raw honey or natural maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Topping

  • 225g dark chocolate chips (organic and 75%+ if possible)
  • 1/4 cup nut or seed butter
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil

Directions

  1. Place nuts/seeds in a food processor, and process until the nuts or seeds are ground into a coarse meal
  2. Pulse in protein powder and sea salt.
  3. Add nut/seed butter, coconut oil, honey/maple syrup and vanilla and process until well combined to form a thick, yet crunchy paste.
  4. Press the mixture into an 8x8 square pan (or any similar size depending on the thickness of bar you desire).
  5. To make the topping melt the chocolate chips in a double boiler, and once melted add the nut/seed butter and coconut oil.
  6. Mix until well combined and pour over protein bar bottom.
  7. Place in refrigerator and cool for about an hour, or overnight.
  8. Cut into squares and serve.
  9. Store in refrigerator.