One of the challenges of healthy living is getting cravable snacks that give us energy and taste great. We can purchase energy bars and bites but often times those are loaded with sugar and are very expensive. It’s not uncommon for an energy bar to be over $2 just for one bar and to have as much sugar as most candybars. I personally also find most of these powders and bars to have a weird aftertaste and to not taste very good. One solution to these problems is to make your own energy bars and bites. It can be easily done and allows you to customize a recipe to your taste and dietary needs. We looked at a bunch of recipes online and found 2 which are our favorites. Let us know your favorites in the comments section!
From Five Heart Home
Oatmeal Peanut Butter Bars
- 1 cup nuts, such as pecans, walnuts, cashews, almonds, etc.
- 1 cup old-fashioned oats
- ½ cup raisins, OR dried cranberries
- 2 tablespoons chia seeds
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Pinch of ground nutmeg
- ½ cup peanut butter, OR alternative nut butter
- ¼ cup honey
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
In the bowl of a large food processor, pulse the nuts until finely ground (but stop before they start turning to nut butter!). Add the oats, raisins, chia seeds, cinnamon, and nutmeg to the nuts; pulse five (1-second) pulses to combine. Add the peanut butter, honey, and vanilla to the mixture; pulse until all of the ingredients are well blended, scraping the sides of the bowl as necessary.
Scrape the mixture into an 8- by 8-inch baking dish; firmly press into an even layer. Cover and chill for two hours or until firm. Use a knife to slice into bars. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
The nice thing about this recipe is it is a no-bake so it doesn’t heat up your oven and it is so easy to customize. You can pick whatever nuts you like. If you don’t like chia seeds put in sesame. Don’t like raisins? Put in any dried fruit you want. It’s a great recipe to have at your disposal.
But we don’t stop at energy bars. You can also make bite-sized energy balls. Perfect for an on-the-go healthy snack.
From Well Plated:
- 1 1/4 cups-Rolled Oats — you can also swap quick oats or a blend of half quick, half old fashioned
- 2 tablespoons “power mix-ins” — chia seeds, flaxseeds, hemp seeds, or additional rolled oats
- 1/2 cup nut butter of choice — peanut butter is my go-to
- 1/3 cup sticky liquid sweetener of choice — honey or maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 cup mix-ins
And then the recipe gives tons of different variations from chocolate chip using a nut butter and chocolate chips to almond joy with coconut added.
Place all of the ingredients in a large mixing bowl: oats, power mix-ins, nut butter, sweetener, vanilla extract, salt, mix-ins, and any other spices you’d like to add. Stir to combine. If the mixture seems too wet, add a bit more oats. If it’s too dry, add a bit more nut butter. It should resemble a somewhat sticky dough that holds together when lightly squeezed. Place the bowl in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to set (this will make the balls easier to roll later on).
Remove the bowl from the refrigerator and portion the dough into balls of desired size. (I use a cookie scoop to make mine approximately 1 inch in diameter). Enjoy!
What about you? Do you have any recipes for healthy snacks you love? Please share with us in the comments section.