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Pumpkin Protein Bars

Okay, when I first made these delicious treats I thought to myself, there is no FREAKING way these are good for you. They no Shakeology, but they do the trick! They give you protein, and kill that nasty sweet tooth.

  • ½ cup quick-cooking or old-fashioned oats
  • 1 cup naturally sweetened vanilla whey or raw vegan protein powder
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1-1/4 cups unsweetened pumpkin purée (not pie filling)
  • ½ cup plain, nonfat Greek yogurt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon liquid stevia (or sweetener of choice)
  • ¼ cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips

 

Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line an 8-inch square baking pan with foil or parchment; lightly spray with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a food processor, process the oats into a powder. Transfer to a medium bowl and stir in the protein powder, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, and salt.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk the pumpkin, yogurt, eggs, vanilla, and stevia until blended.
  4. Add the pumpkin mixture to the oat mixture, stirring until blended. Spread into prepared pan, smoothing top.
  5. Bake in preheated oven for 25 to 28 minutes or until just set at the center. Cool completely in pan, then remove using the liner. Melt the chocolate chips in microwave according to package directions and spread over cooled bars. Chill 10 minutes, then cut into 10 bars.

 

Notes
(1) Pumpkin Pie Spice: If you do not have pumpkin pie spice, use the following combination of spices: 2-1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon, 1 teaspoon ground ginger, ¾ teaspoon ground allspice, ¼ teaspoon ground cloves.
(2) Chocolate Chip Blondies: If you do not want to fuss with spreading the chocolate atop the bars, simply stir in ¼ cup miniature chocolate chips (if you have regular chocolate chips, give them a chop so they will be distributed throughout the blondies).
(3) Storage: These bars will keep in an airtight storage container for 1 week in the refrigerator or up to 1 month in the freezer (let defrost at room temperature). They keep well at room temperature when packed for lunches or in a gym bag.
(4) # of scoops: Most protein scoops are around 30-33 g which translates to about ¼+ cup; so you are looking at roughly 4 scoops of powder.
Credits to Powerhungry.com

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