Paleo Protein Bars

Lately, I’ve had a hankering for protein bars.  I used to eat store-bought bars frequently but gosh they’re expensive!  Not to mention, many popular brands have questionable ingredients.  Another downside of many protein bars is that they contain whey.  I have nothing against whey protein, but my body doesn’t like it.  Whey protein gives me bloating, cramps, gas and just throws off my digestion so if I ever eat it I’m very aware of the quantity I intake and realize I’ll be suffering the consequences afterwards.

Paleo Protein Bar (5)

Since I’m talking about protein bars, I figure I’ll share my top 5 favorite bars.  Keep in mind that I haven’t tried every bar on the market and not all of these are super high in protein; but out of all the bars I’ve tried these listed are my top 5 based on ingredients, taste and sugar content.

  1. Raw Rev Glo – I sampled these bars years ago and have purchased my favorite flavor since (the Peanut Butter & Dark Chocolate Sea Salt).  All of their flavors are delicious and I really like the ingredients (Vegan, high protein, low sugar).
  2. Truth Bar – These bars are designed for gut health.  They contain both probiotics and prebiotics and come in 5 different flavors.  I prefer their Vegan flavors (the Chocolate Coconut and Chocolate Raspberry) since they don’t contain whey and they simply taste better IMO.  These bars have a good fat content (mostly from coconut) and relatively low sugar content.
  3. No Cow Bars – These No Cow Bars are a top favorite because they are very high in protein and quite low in sugar (they use mostly sugar alcohols to sweeten their bars), plus they are dairy-free (hence the name).  I haven’t had all of their flavors and they’ve slightly changed their ingredients since I last tried them, but my past favorite flavor was the Blueberry Cobbler.
  4. RXBAR – RXBAR has really taken off within the last year and I can see why: they are found in most grocery and convenience stores (even Costco), they have simple ingredients, they have a large variety of flavors and they have a great taste and texture.  My biggest complaint is the amount of sugar.  RXBARs contain dates and dates are like ALL sugar…so although I don’t think these are “unhealthy” I wouldn’t consume an RXBAR every day unless I was eating it as dessert.
  5. Perfect Bars – I consider Perfect Bars “healthy candy bars” because they contain quite a bit of sugar (mostly from honey).  That being said, I think they have a great list of ingredients and their bars contain a lot of monounsaturated fat and dried whole foods (like kale, rose hips, alfalfa…); providing an excellent omega-3 to omega-6 ratio and many micronutrients.  I do wish they had more plant based flavors, as I’m not too thrilled that they use nonfat dry milk.

My recipe for Paleo Protein Bars remind me a bit of RXBARs, only because of their chewy texture, but their ingredients are quite different.  These whey-free, Paleo Protein Bars are extremely easy to make and contain three different sources of protein: bone broth protein, hemp protein and collagen peptides.  They have just 1 gram of sugar (from the almonds) per bar and pack in 8 grams of protein, plus a healthy serving of fat.  And yes, I shared a couple bites with my kids, as they couldn’t keep their hands off 😉

Paleo Protein Bar (7)

Paleo Protein Bars

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. In food processor, blend almonds to a course flour.
  2. Add in remaining ingredients except water.  Blend well.
  3. Add in water, 1 Tbsp at a time, until dough starts to clump together.
  4. Firmly press dough into an 8″ x 4″ lined baking pan.
  5. Place bars in freezer for 2-3 hours to set (or overnight in the fridge).
  6. Remove from freezer and cut into 8 even pieces.
  7. Store bars in fridge or freezer.

*Any protein powder should work, but the brand linked is what I recommend.

**Add 1 Tbsp water at a time because (depending on the brand of ingredients you use) the quantity of water needed may vary.

When making these protein bars, I lined my pan with stretch-tite plastic food wrap (also known as saran wrap).  I simply cut a long piece of plastic wrap, folded it in half (to make it thicker) and then placed it in the pan.  Next, I added the dough and evenly spread it out with a spatula.  Then I folded the plastic wrap over the dough and used that as a barrier between my hands and the dough to press down the bars.  After freezing, removal of the bars was easy and the plastic wrap peeled off perfectly.

Paleo Protein Bar (6)

I didn’t make these to share with my children, but they were more than eager to try them so I let them each have a few bites.  I think the ingredients are perfectly healthy for a child to consume, but I find it unnecessary to give kids extra protein.

Paleo Protein Bar (8)

I stored the first batch of these in the fridge, but froze the second batch and OMG!  For some reason I liked them even better that way.  They do not get rock hard in the freezer, just slightly firmer.  I’ve also tried making a batch with raw almonds (instead of dry roasted) and they turned out delicious too.

If you make this recipe tag @realfoodrabbit on Instagram and hashtag it #realfoodrabbit

Paleo Protein Bars.jpg

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