Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Elvis Protein Bars

A really healthy, high protein recipe on Dinner Plan-it? Here's Kimber!

Well, look who is back again. Me! I know, I know...another long hiatus, but I am back for a post...and you'll be seeing a bit more from me too here and there.

Life is ever changing, to say the least. No longer am I a Clevelander. Once again, Pittsburgh is my home. Yep, you got that right, I've moved back after many years to help with my Dad.

One thing he needs the most (besides a new heart) is good food packed with protein, so along with homecooked meals loaded with chicken, beef, beans and lean pork (he won't eat most of the hospital "food"), I've been experimenting with protein bars, protein breads and all sorts of stuff to pump up his protein level. Somme attempts have been epic fails, some turned out okay, but the one I will share with you today is top notch. I can attest to this because my dad really liked these protein bars, I liked them, but most surprising of all, my mom LOVED them!

So here is what I have for you. It's a nod to Elvis' favorite peanut butter, banana and bacon sandwich. The result is a little bit of rock n roll made up of a bit of smooth and crunchy peanuttiness, a little maple-y, banana-y sweetness, a punch of protein and the salty smokiness of bacon. Yes. Bacon. It's what I like to call Elvis Protein Bars!

For the protein, I used Muscle Pharm Combat Protein. It has an excellent nutrition profile and the taste is awesome. I purchase it through Bodybuilding.com or Musclepharm.com. You can certainly use other proteins, but of the ones I've tried I just found this to be the best tasting product for this particular recipe.

If you work out - like I do - or just need a pick-me-up during the day, this might be the rockin' recipe for you.

Elvis Protein Bars

  • 1 1/4 C dry-roasted unsalted peanuts
  • 1/4 t salt
  • 1 2/3 C Muscle Pharm Combat Protein, Banana flavor (4 scoops)
  • 2 C oats - I used certified gluten-free oats to make these GF (for my mom)
  • 1 very ripe banana
  • 1 heaping t cinnamon 
  • 1/3 C plus a smidge more of REAL maple syrup
  • 8 slices bacon, cooked very crisp (but not burned!), crumbled
  • 1/3 C dark chocolate chips - again, use gluten-free chips if you're making these GF

Put 1 cup of the peanuts and the salt into a food processor and process until it becomes peanut butter (this takes a few minutes - be patient...it will happen). 

Add protein powder, oats, banana, cinnamon and maple syrup to food processor and mix with short pulses until it comes together into a dough-like consistency. If it's too crumbly, add a bit more maple syrup, if it's too sticky, add a bit more oats (the size of the banana can be a factor in this part). Fold half of the bacon into the mixture until mixed in evenly.

Take an 8" X 8" baking pan and line with parchment paper. Press the protein bar mixture into the pan evenly.

Chop the 1/4 cup of remaining peanuts coarsely and sprinkle over top of the protein bars, then sprinkle remaining bacon on top of that. Gently press the peanuts and bacon into the top of the protein bars.

Melt chocolate chips in the microwave and drizzle over the protein bars. Place the pan in the fridge for 20 minutes to set. Once they are set, cut into 10 bars.

Nutrition Per Bar: 277 calories, 28 carbs, 12 g fat, 18 grams protein, 182 mg sodium, 11 g sugar Print this post

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