Festive Apple Protein Earth Bars
As the name might suggest these are good for you and they taste good for you. My first batch tasted a little too good for you. The second batch is much improved, less earthy, more tasty. These are still fairly dense, after all it is a protein bar.
So what possessed me to make these creations?
I need grab-and-go breakfasts. I am one of those people who do not function without breakfast, I am also one of those people who never have time for it! And …. more to the point Protein Shakes can get so, so, SO dull! I mean once you start to think that the hideous flavour combinations that you are starting to create taste good, for example my personal favourite at the moment of both berries and coffee mixed together with vanilla whey, you know that it is time to go back to the drawing board and create something else!
I am allergic to nuts so I made a nut free, slightly festive version but I am sure that switching tahini for peanut butter and adding some ground almonds would be lovely, if you are into that sort of thing!
So I am currently trying to keep my eating clean, my fitness consistent and my Yoga progressing. This all means that at the end of the day I need to be very aware of exactly what I am putting into my body. So, you may ask, how can such a sweet treat be healthy. Simple answer, there is no refined sugar and no butter. I am also going to give some swap options for a few food allergies and intolerances.
Main health Benefits of this Earth Bar:
- Refined Sugar Free, (there is honey)
- Protein rich
- Complex Carbohydrate rich, (allowing you to have prolonged energy, as opposed to an energy burst)
- Plenty of Fibre, making these great for your digestion
- Seed or Nut Butter boost brain function
- Coconut Oil boosts joint movement and skin health
Makes 12 Squares,
Takes 20 minutes preparation, 15 minutes cooking time.
I am going to give all the options alongside the ingredient list, however, if you are one of those rare Celiacs who cannot eat Oats, I am afraid there is no option for this one and this recipe is just not for you. Sorry!
The list also seems a little long, but quite a lot of it is made up of spices and most of the spices you will probably already have and its not the end of the world if you miss cloves or star anise.
- 4 Heaped Table Spoons of Coconut Oil
- 2.5 Heaped Table Spoons of Honey (approx half a normal jar)
- 3 Table Spoons of Tahini (Use Crunchy sugar-free Peanut Butter, if no nut allergy. If allergic to Sesame seeds, you can use Pumpkin Seed Butter BUT it produces a very dense bar)
- 6 x Bramley Apples or Cooking Apples
- Two handfuls of Raisins
- Half a Lemon, juiced and zested
- 300g Oats
- 50g Wheatgerm (swap for ground Flaxseed or ground Almonds for a Gluten free recipe)
- 20g Chia Seeds
- 2 teaspoon of cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon of ground cloves
- 1 teaspoon of mace / ground nutmeg
- 2 teaspoon of ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon of ground black pepper
- 1 star anise (find this later)
Extras That You Can Add:
- Ground Almond
- Ground Flaxseed
- Pumpkin Seeds
- Whole Sesame Seeds
- Chopped Nuts of choice
- Vanilla pod into the apples
- Any nut butter
- Chopped Dried Fruit
- You could try swapping the apples for another fruit like cherries, it won’t be as fibrous though or add blackberries to the apples. Add fresh ginger to the apples also.
- Anything else vaguely along the lines of ground nuts, seeds, dried fruit etc.
DO NOT ADD Mashed Banana, trust me on that one…. way too dense!!!
Preheat the oven to 180’C / 350’F / Gas Mark 4. Grease a square baking tin or pyrex dish with sides that are at least 4.5 cm / 2in tall, with approximately half a teaspoon of coconut oil. Peel and core all of the apples.
Grate one apple and hold it back. Add the remaining five into a saucepan, with a splash of water, half the cinnamon and ginger, all of the cloves, star anise and mace, the lemon juice and zest, all the raisins. Simmer gently, stirring regularly until the apple is soft mush and the raisins have become swollen. See if you can find and remove the star anise, don’t worry if you can’t, someone will just get a little surprise when they bite into it!
In a large saucepan, add the remaining coconut oil, all the honey and tahini (or nut butter). Stir until the mixture is a runny liquid and melted together. Add the oats, remaining spices, wheatgerm and chia seeds. Stir until the dry ingredients are coated with the melted. Add the grated apple, stir until well mixed. Finally add the cooked apple. Again stir until well mixed.
Tip mixture into your greased tray and pat down with the back of a spoon until it is flat. Bake for Fifteen minutes. Leave to cool and then cut into squares. Gently tip tray upside down until all squares have come loose. Keep in the fridge for up to two weeks.