Ever spent hours scouring the healthy section of the grocery store for a protein bar that would not only taste great but actually be good for you? I know I have, and one thing I’ve learned is that few, if any, exist. You might find natural ingredients, but the bars are usually high in fat and calories, or you’ll find low-carb and low-sugar options, but they are typically laden with chemicals.
With so many disappointing products out there, I’ve taken to the kitchen to create my own. One of my favorite varieties, a lemon protein bar, is also one of the most simple to make. I combine vanilla protein powder with a naturally sweetened lemon-drink mix, ground oats and a few other ingredients, and in less time than it takes to get to and from the grocery store, I’ve made a tasty protein bar that packs well when I’m on the run and tastes amazing.
For a slight variation of this recipe, consider using quick oats in place of the ground oats and replacing half applesauce with a quarter cup of lowfat cottage cheese. That will not only increase the protein content of the bars but also cut down on prep time and add some cheesy goodness.
Lemon Protein Bars
1 cup oat flour
2 scoops vanilla whey protein
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2-quart package Crystal Light mix (preferably without aspartame)
4 egg whites
1/2 cup Splenda, Truvia or Ideal
8 ounces baby applesauce
4 ounces water
Preheat the oven to 350.
Mix the oat flour, vanilla whey protein, salt, baking soda and Crystal Light, in a large bowl.
Mix the egg whites, sweetener, applesauce and water in another bowl.
Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, and mix together.
Spray an 8×8-inch glass baking dish with nonstick butter spray.
Pour the ingredients into the dish.
Bake for 23 minutes. Makes 16 squares.
Each serving, 2 squares: calories, 86; fat, 1 gram; carbs, 10 grams; protein, 9 grams