Healthy Peanut Butter Crispy Treats

Whoa Nelly, these are really good. These little treats are a little higher in sugar than what I normally make but they are great for pre or post workout. Hey, did you know that after a workout is quite possibly the best time to consume sugar? I usually add fruit in my post workout shake to restore that depleted glycogen (my husband sometimes consumes gummy worms with his but I really just think he uses that as an excuse to eat candy). Puffed millet can be found in most cereal/health food aisles of the grocery store. It’s not as crispy as puffed rice but I like its chewy texture. Feel free to substitute and get creative.

crispy2

If you don’t want to add the protein powder just leave it out and you’ve got yourself some healthy rice crispy treats (but honestly, you can’t taste it at all). You can do this recipe two ways – make into bars or roll into balls (which I think were cuter).

balls

  • 4 cups Puffed Millet (or puffed rice or quinoa)
  • 1/2 cup Crunchy peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup Honey
  • 1/2 cup Vanilla protein powder (this can be omitted)
  • 1/2 tsp Vanilla extract
  • Pinch of salt
  • Optional: 1/2 Dark chocolate bar (I used 1 serving Green & Black 70% chocolate)

Add honey and peanut butter in a bowl and microwave 30-45 seconds until peanut butter is easier to work with. Pour into a larger dish with the rest of the ingredients (except for the chocolate). Mix well. To make bars: pour mixture into an 8×8 pan coated in non-stick spray. To make balls: coat your hands in a little cooking spray to avoid it sticking to your hands. Roll into 13-18 balls and place on a pan covered with wax paper or foil. For a chocolate drizzle topping, melt dark chocolate in the microwave stirring often. Drizzle with a spoon. Freeze for 20 minutes until they are firm then move them to the fridge. (You can cut the bars into 9 individually and wrap them so they’re ready to roll when you are. Serves 9.

Nutrition Stats:

Cals: 209

Protein: 9 grams

Carbs: 26 grams

Fat: 10 grams

Sugar: 19 grams

 

 

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Baked Berry Oatmeal

I’ve been on the road quite a bit for work lately and leave tomorrow for a few days in Eastern Oregon. I try to prep a little food to bring because I tend to make better food choices when I’ve got options other than staring at the aisle of Cheetos and Little Debbie Snacks in a gas station mini mart. I’ve got this packed along with some apple slices, peanut butter, Quest Bars, baby carrots, and snap peas. I figure this way I can afford to indulge a little at a fancy dinner tomorrow.

bakedoatmeal

I add protein powder to this so I don’t have to worry about packing hard boiled eggs, protein bars, or stuff to make a shake for a protein source. Also, I’ve been sick of eggs lately and its nice to just grab a slice of this and not have to heat up the stove. It taste great cold but you can also pour a little extra milk on top and reheat in the microwave. If you don’t want to add in protein powder, you can leave it out but keep the milk to 1 cup.

breakfast

  • 2 cups Old fashioned oats
  • 2 scoops Vanilla protein powder
  • 3 Egg whites
  • 2 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp Cinnamon
  • Pinch of Salt
  • 1 tsp Baking Powder
  • 1 1/2 cups Milk (I used almond but you can use cow’s milk to bump up the protein)
  • 1/2 cup Applesauce (no sugar added)
  • 1/2 cup Sweetener (optional)
  • 2/3 cup Fresh or frozen Berries (you could also add sliced banana)
  • Optional: Nuts (I use 3 tbs sliced almonds) or Coconut Flakes

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mix all ingredients except for berries. Pour into an 8×8 pan (or round) with non-stick spray and top with berries (and nuts if you’re into that). Bake for 35-40 minutes until golden brown and set in the middle. Store any leftovers in the fridge. Serves 4.

Nutrition Stats: (for 1 serving with nuts)

Cals: 300

Protein: 23 grams

Carbs: 36 grams

Fat: 7 grams

Sugar: 6 grams

 

Chocolate Chia Pudding

DSC01770These little seeds are a nutritional powerhouse. I usually throw them in overnight oatmeal but once in awhile like to make pudding with them for a super good for you dessert. If you’ve never used chia seeds before, they absorb 10 times their weight in water, making a tapioca-like gel that can thicken sauces or jams, and even help you feel full longer. If you really need an excuse to eat dessert, check out how good these are for you:

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  • 1 1/2 tbs Chia seeds
  • 1 tbs Unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tbs sweetener (I used stevia, but you can sub maple syrup)
  • 2/3 cup Milk of choice (I used almond)
  • 1/2 tsp Vanilla extract

Mix all ingredients together and leave in the refrigerator 30 minutes or overnight. Leave as is or top with berries, coconut, or chopped dark chocolate. Serves 1. Enjoy!

Nutrition Stats:

Cals: 140

Protein: 7 grams

Carbs: 11 grams

Fat: 8 grams

Sugar: 0 grams

Fiber: 10 grams

Paleo Brownies

I don’t follow a paleo diet (although I tried it a few years ago to see if cutting dairy out would affect my allergies – it didn’t). I just love my oatmeal, greek yogurt, and all things with gluten in them too much to give it all up.

brownie2

 

I like to try paleo baked goods once in a while and have been browsing recipes for paleo brownies. Most of what I found had combinations of almond butter, coconut oil, grass fed butter, and fancy ingredients that I didn’t have on hand. Additionally, the recipes had lots of healthy fats but you definitely would want to limit yourself to one brownie. These are free of refined sugar and flour, are super fudgy, and aren’t 300 calories a piece.

brownie

  • 1 cup Almond Flour
  • 1 Egg
  • 1/3 cup Pure maple syrup
  • 1/3 cup Unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/3 cup Applesauce (no sugar added)
  • 1 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp Sea salt
  • 1 tsp Baking powder

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Whisk all the ingredients together in a bowl and pour into an 8×8 greased pan. Bake for 20 minutes. Let cool completely before cutting into squares. Serves 9.

Nutrition Stats: (for 1 brownie)

Cals: 128

Protein: 4 grams

Carbs: 15 grams

Fat: 7 grams

Sugar: 11 grams

ProYo

I make this recipe when I either want frozen yogurt or I have one of those days where nothing seems to fill me up.  My go to toppings lately have been PB2 Crackers, Peanut Butter, Hersheys SF Syrup, Fruit, Mini Chocolate Chips within a reasonable portion.

chocProYo

The best thing about this is that there are endless options of flavors.

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I just got Cellucor’s new Chocolate Chip Mint whey powder in the mail – I’m can’t wait to make a delicious bowl of proyo with that!

PBProyo

Recipe for Chocolate ProYo:

  • 1 scoop Protein, casein or whey
  • 2 tbs Unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 cup Unsweetened almond milk
  • 2 packets (or 1 tbs) Stevia or sweetener of choice
  • 3/4 cup Nonfat greek yogurt
  • 1/2 tsp Xantham gum (this helps thicken it, if you don’t have it, cut down the almond milk to 1/2 cup)

Peanut Butter Flavor Option: Sub 1 tbs nut butter or 2 tbs peanut flour for cocoa powder.

Cheesecake Flavor Option: Sub 1-2 tbs Cheesecake pudding mix for cocoa powder.

Mix ingredients in a blender. Stick in the freezer for an hour (if you do longer, let it sit at room temp for about 15 minutes as it will be pretty hardened. Go crazy with toppings! This recipe makes a HUGE serving, so feel free to cut it in half for a snack size.

Nutrition Stats:

Cals: 255

Protein: 41 grams

Carbs: 15 grams

Fat: 6 grams

Sugar: 9 grams

Crispy Chicken Strips & Honey Mustard Dipping Sauce

These photos aren’t pretty; I’m really not a food photographer but I promise these taste amazing. I love these with homemade sweet potato chips (I might share that recipe soon). It tastes just as good as a basket of deep fried gluttony.

chicken strips

  • 1 lb or less Chicken breasts, cut into strips
  • 2 egg whites  (or one whole egg)
  • 1 cup Panko Crumbs (or almond meal for a paleo take)
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan Cheese (grated)
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1  tsp Garlic Powder
  • 1 tsp Onion Powder
  • 1 tsp Paprika
  • 2 tsp Dried parsley (optional)

For the sauce:

  • 1/4 cup Plain greek yogurt
  • 1 Tablespoon grainy Dijon mustard
  • 1 Tablespoons Honey

rack

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Whisk the egg whites in a bowl and mix the remaining ingredients together on a plate. Dip chicken strips into the egg whites and then roll them in the crumb mixture. Bake on a baking sheet with a cooling rack (this prevents you from having to flip them to get the other side crispy. Bake for about 15 minutes, depending on the thickness of the meat. Meanwhile, mix the Honey Mustard sauce ingredients together. Then dunk to your heart’s content. Serves 4

Nutrition Stats: For 3-4 strips and 2 tbs of sauce

Cals: 254

Protein: 33 grams

Carbs: 21 grams

Fat: 3 grams

Sugar: 5 grams

 

 

Coconut Cashew Butter

Cashew butter is divine. The only problem is that it is hard to find and expensive. I found a jar the other day for $14.89…what?! So, I paid a visit to the bulk section of the grocery store to get cashews and make it myself. It was so easy that I’m already planning to experiment with Hazelnut and Walnut butters next. You don’t have to add the coconut, or even toast the cashews. Feel free to put your own spin on it.

CashewButta

  •  2 cups Cashews (raw and unsalted)
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp Sea salt

Toast the cashews and coconut in the oven for 5 minutes at 425 degrees. Let cool a few minutes and add to a food processor with the vanilla and salt. Mix in food processor for at least 10 minutes (make sure to give your food processor a break every few minutes). The mixture will look like it needs more liquid at first but the more you mix, the more the oil comes out to make it smooth. At first it will look grainy, then like a hard dough, then more liquidy smooth. Store in the fridge. Serves about 9.

Nutrition Stats: (for 2 tbs)

Cals: 183

Protein: 5 grams

Carbs: 10 grams

Fat: 15 grams

Sugar: 2 grams

Strawberry Protein Crepes

 

crepe

For crepes:

  • 1/4 cup Oats
  • 4 Egg whites
  • 2 heaping tbs Unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 tbs Vanilla protein powder
  • 1/2 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp Baking Powder
  • 1 packet of Stevia (or 1 tbs sweetener of choice)

For filling:

  • 1/3 cup Fat free greek yogurt
  • 1 tbs stevia
  • 2 tbs Strawberry jam (I used wonderful sugary freezer jam but the macros below reflect using a low sugar jam)
  • Optional garnish with berries and whipped cream

Blend all of the crepe ingredients together in a blender (I used a magic bullet) until smooth. Heat a pan to medium and spray generously with cooking spray (or a little melted coconut oil). Pour on the batter and flip when the crepe looks bubbly and somewhat firm. (Don’t worry if they don’t come out in one piece or looking pretty – they still taste good and look alright when you roll them up with the filling)

For the filling, mix all of the ingredients together and add to the middle of each crepe. Roll them up and add berries or whipped cream. Oui Oui! This recipe makes one giant serving, I almost couldn’t finish it all.

Nutrition Stats: (for entire recipe, excluding garnishes)

Cals: 305

Protein: 38 grams

Carbs: 31 grams

Fat: 3 grams

Sugar: 14 grams

Oatmeal Cookie Protein Pancakes

Yay for Saturday morning pancakes! My mom makes the most delicious oatmeal pancakes and I was thinking about them when I decided to get a little creative this morning. These would be a great post workout meal (or post couch and Netflix binge session, I won’t judge).

oatmealpancakes

  • 1/2 cup Old fashioned oats
  • 1 Ripe banana, mashed
  • 4 egg whites
  • 1 tbs Stevia (or sweetener of choice)
  • 1 scoop Vanilla protein powder (If you don’t want to use protein powder sub 1/4 cup oat flour and a little extra sweetener)
  • 1 tsp Baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp Vanilla extract
  • Pinch of Salt and Cinnamon
  • 2 tbs Mini chocolate chips

Mix mashed banana and liquid ingredients. Whisk in dry ingredients. Pour onto heated griddle sprayed with cooking spray, add chocolate chips to each pancake before flipping. Makes about 6 pancakes, Serves 3.

Nutrition Stats: (for 2 pancakes)

Cals: 208

Protein: 18 grams

Carbs: 26 grams

Fat: 4 grams

Sugar: 11 grams

 

 

Protein Peanut Butter Cups

I saw Reese’s Eggs in the store yesterday and couldn’t get them off my mind. Why are they so much better than regular Reese’s peanut butter cups? I think it’s probably the higher peanut butter to chocolate ratio. Anyways, I whipped these up to kill my craving. Hope you like them!

  • 1 scoop Chocolate protein powder (I used BSN)
  • 2 tbs Unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tbs Stevia (or honey)
  • 1/4 cup Greek yogurt (If you don’t do dairy or have this on hand, you could probably skip this ingredient, I just added it for more volume)
  • 1/3 cup Almond or skim milk
  • 2 1/2 tbs Creamy peanut butter

Variations: If you want a lower calorie treat, substitute 4-5 tbs of peanut flour mixed with 2 tbs water for the regular peanut butter. You can also use a mini muffin tray to make smaller cups.

Whisk together everything but the peanut butter until you have a pudding consistency. Pour half of the chocolate mixture into muffin tins with paper liners (about 1 heaping tablespoon into each). Leave in the freezer about 20 minutes or until hardened. Spread 1/2 tablespoon of peanut butter into each cup then top with the rest of the chocolate mixture. Freeze 1-2 hours before eating. Store any uneaten treats in a zip lock in the freezer.

Makes 5 Peanut Butter Cups.

Nutrition Stats: (for 1 cup)

Cals: 94

Protein: 8 grams

Carbs: 5 grams

Fat: 5 grams

Sugar: 2 grams