BROWNIE CHIP PROTEIN BARS
One of my missions is to start creating more recipes that don’t require “special order” or hard-to-find ingredients. I realized that, if I can’t find it at Walmart, then there’s a good chance some of YOU won’t be able to make my recipes! And that bums me out because more than wanting to “wow” you with jaw dropping creations, I want you to be able to actually make them with as little effort and ingredient-hunting as possible. Which brings me to these brownie chip protein bars: they’re only 6 ingredients (with a couple optional), no-bake, high-protein, and downright delicious! They’re called “brownie” protein bars because that’s just what they taste like 😉
Did you know? More important than the amount of sugar in your diet, is the ratio of sugar to fiber! Eating too much sugar spikes blood glucose and insulin levels, but consuming dietary fiber reduces blood sugar levels after a meal (source). In other words, consuming sugar isn’t such a big deal, so long as you’re also getting fiber (and healthy fats and protein) along with it. Fiber helps prevent blood sugar and insulin spikes that can lead to energy crashes and/or fat storage.
For these protein bars, you can use whey, whey-casein blend, casein, or vegan protein powder. The only thing you’ll need to adjust is the amount of water. Casein and plant-based blends tend to be more absorbent, so you may need more water to achieve a crumbly mixture that sticks to itself.
Now for the flour, I used oat flour, simply because all you need is some rolled oats and a blender to make oat flour! Just blend and blend until you get a fine powder. Two-thirds cup of rolled oats should yield about half a cup of oat flour (use gluten-free oats if needed). For a lower carb version, use half as much (one quarter cup) coconut flour! You can also use twice as much almond flour.
Next, you’ll need some unsweetened cocoa powder (I used Hershey’s Special Dark, but any brand will do), a little sea salt (optional), creamy almond butter (cashew butter or even peanut butter works too), water, maple syrup (can use honey, sugar free pancake syrup, fiber syrup, or any other syrup), vanilla extract (optional), and of course, chocolate chips. I like Tollhouse Simply Delicious which are allergy-friendly and available at Walmart!
Making the bars
Just mix everything together until it’s still a little crumbly but moist enough to stick to itself, then press into the bottom of a parchment-line loaf pan. Parchment paper is possibly the best thing I never purchased until a couple years ago (LIFE CHANGER for easy cleanup). Press some chocolate chips on top and cut into fourths! Easy, peasy brownie chip protein bars.
Here’s the printable recipe for these Brownie Chip Protein Bars! I hope you’ll rate and/or comment below if you try them 🙂
Created in collaboration with TransformNation.
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Brownie Chip Protein Bars
- 2/3 cup (70g) chocolate protein powder* whey, casein, or vegan
- 1/2 cup oat flour* or 1/4 cup coconut flour
- 2 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/4 tsp. salt optional
- 1/4 cup creamy almond butter* or any nut or seed butter
- 1/4 cup water* adjust as needed
- 2 tbsp. maple syrup* or honey, sugar-free pancake syrup
- 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract optional
- 2 tbsp. dark chocolate chips
*See above for substitutions.
- Combine all ingredients (except chocolate chips) in a small mixing bowl.
- Mix with a fork until no dry clumps remain and mixture sticks to itself (if it’s too crumbly, add water a tablespoon at a time).
- Line a loaf pan or 7″x 5″ dish with parchment paper and spread mixture over bottom evenly. Lay another sheet of parchment over top and press down until even and compact.
- Press chocolate chips in evenly over top, then chill in the fridge for 20 minutes.
- Cut into four squares and enjoy! Leftovers will keep in the fridge in an airtight container for up to one week.
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