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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These are a few of my favorite things…

The following products are staples in my kitchen that make life easier, healthier, and tastier. 

Quest Bars – I’ve been part of the Quest cult for about 4 years. I really can’t get enough of their flavor or find a protein bar with cleaner ingredients for 20-21 grams of protein. I’ve tried every single flavor and there was only one I didn’t care for. My favorites are: Cookie Dough, White Chocolate Raspberry, and Cinnamon Roll. Though these are being sold more and more places, its still cheapest to buy online at the Quest website, or Netrition.com. (Sports Nutrition Center in Tigard, OR also has great prices)

Xantham Gum –  This is used by people who are allergic to gluten to add volume and viscosity to bread and other gluten-free baked goods. While I don’t have a gluten intolerance, I use 1/2 tsp of Xantham Gum in all of my protein shakes. It thickens them up to give the best milkshake consistency. It can be found in a lot of health and gluten free sections of grocery stores.

Peanut Flour –  Peanut Flour is a dry powder formed after the partial extraction of oil from the roasted peanut seed.  Typically, instructions are to add 1 tablespoon of water to 2 tablespoons of flour to make a peanut butter substitute or you can just use the flour for baking or thickening soups/sauces. There are several brands that sell peanut flour, both plain and flavored. I love PB2 for baking and topping for pancakes and waffles but PB Lean is probably my new favorite. Peanut flour is reasonable (usually 2.99 for a jar online) and is starting to pop up in most grocery stores.

Biotest Metabolic Drive & Cellucor Cor-Fetti Protein Powder – These have been my go-to whey protein powders lately. I love Biotest’s flavor and quality but Cellulor Cor-Fetti (yes, like cake batter) has been a fun flavor to mix it up lately. It’s not a strong cake batter taste – but still makes a good shake. Lately, I love mixing little Cor-Fetti with greek yogurt and stevia as a “frosting” for my Funfetti protein bars (see below). I buy these online.

corfetti2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nunaturals Stevia – I’ve tried several stevia brands and this is my favorite. It doesn’t leave a bitter after taste. I buy the box of individual packs at my local grocery store but you can also find it on Amazon.

Maple Sugar Flakes – For those who don’t like artificial sweeteners and find stevia too bitter, Maple Sugar Flakes are a great substitute. Per teaspoon, it has only half the calories of white sugar and about one-third the calories of honey. I haven’t tried it with baking but its a great on oatmeal, yogurt, and in marinades. You can find it on Amazon or in Whole Foods or Williams-Sonoma.

Ezekiel 4:9 Bread –  Whole wheat bread is a fine option (I still love having Dave’s Killer Bread once and awhile) but Ezekiel’s ingredients are far superior.  Its made from a mix of sprouted whole grains (such as barley, millet and spelt), and legumes (such as lentils and soybeans). Unlike whole wheat bread, it contains no flour or added sugar and is a complete protein. It does taste a bit different than wheat bread and can take a little while to get used to but I love its nutty flavor. I used this mostly for toast, make breadcrumbs with it for meatballs, and love making french toast with the cinnamon raisin kind.  You can kind it in the freezer section or health section of most grocery stores. I stock up when its on sale.

Nature’s Hollow Jam – Personally, I’d rather lick the bottom of a shoe than eat Smucker’s Sugar Free Jams. Nature’s Hollow is SO good and is naturally sweetened. I mix it with greek yogurt as a topping for pancakes/filling for crepes. (It’s still not as good as mom’s freezer jam though) 

Funfetti Protein Bars

I love Funfetti so much I that I considered having it as my wedding cake flavor.  I rely on protein bars during busy work weeks and as much as I love my Quest bars, they are a little spendy.  I turned a cupcake craving into these when I was food prepping for the week. Hope you love them as much as I do! 

Funfetti!

P.S. These are amazing in cupcake form too! Just make sure you use silicon or foil cupcake liners as the paper ones will stick. Top them with light whipped cream or Protein Frosting (Mix 2 tbs vanilla protein powder, 1 tbs greek yogurt, 1 tbs almond milk or milk of choice and a little stevia to taste.

cupycake

  • 1 Cup Oat Flour (I ground 1 1/4 cup oats in a Magic Bullet to make 1 Cup of Oat Flour)
  • 2 Scoops of Vanilla Protein Powder
  • 1/2 Cup Stevia (or sweetener of your choice)
  • 1/2 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 4 Egg Whites
  • 1 Cup No Sugar Added Applesauce
  • 1/2 Cup Almond Milk (or skim)
  • 1 tsp Butter Extract
  • 1 tsp Almond Extract
  • 1 Tbs Sprinkles

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix dry ingredients together. Whisk the egg whites, almond milk, extracts, and applesauce together in a separate dish. Mix the dry and wet ingredients and pour into an 8×8 Pyrex pan sprayed with cooking spray. Pour sprinkles over the batter and stick in the oven. Bake for 23-25 minutes or until center looks firm. Cool completely before cutting into 9 bars. These have zero preservatives in them so store in the fridge. Serves 9.

Nutrition Stats: (for one bar)

Cals: 93

Protein: 8 gams

Carbs: 12 grams

Fat: 2 grams

Sugar: 3 grams

 

 


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