For years I’ve attempted to make my own home made protein bar that actually tasted good, travelled well and had healthy ingredients. I have failed many times. Finally, I thought what the heck I’m going to share my failures with the world and use it as a way of educating if I can.
Today I found a “Protein” Ball recipe that was made with nuts and Medjool dates. I’ve been hoping to include Medjool dates in my final product as it’s a natural sweeter that is also a pretty good binder. I’m sure there are tons of other health benefits since they are so popular these days but I am choosing not to digress into that bottomless pit (you know how nerdy I am about nutrition) and instead stick to the topic at hand. “Protein” balls.
Some of the more astute of you might be wondering…why the heck is she putting protein in “”? Here is why: IM SO TIRED OF EVERYONE CALLING THEM PROTEIN BALLS!!!! While this recipe is tasty and they do have some protein…THESE ARE NOT PROTEIN BALLS. These are healthy snack balls or some other similar name that doesn’t imply they are mostly protein.
The same mistake happens with KIND bars (which I love BTW). KIND bars are not protein bars! If you check the label you will notice they have 5-7 grams of protein and 8-12 grams of fat, depending on the type of bar. With fat being twice as dense as protein and allotting for twice the calories as protein, we should more accurately call them fat bars! Haha I have a feeling that wouldn’t go over to well.
My point is not for you to stop eating KIND bars or not to make these delicious homemade fat balls either. It’s just important – and here is that ever sought after teachable moment – that you know what the heck is in the foods you are eating. You wouldn’t eat pizza and say it was your daily vegetable would you? (Ok some people might – including Janet, Julie and probably Mike G who all might even read this). Just do me a favor and when you eat or cook something, take a moment to asses what the macro ratio’s (macronutrients : CHO, FAT, PRO) are so you know how to balance yours throughout the day and according to your training demand. In other words – pizza is not a vegetable guys!
All that being said, if you are looking for a healthy snack that is tasty, satiating, has some protein and mostly healthy fats, you should try this. It’s easy to make, stores well and has all healthy ingredients (recipe listed below). As previously mentioned, most of the calories in this snack come from fat – which is not a crime – it’s the lack of awareness of what is in the food you eat that can potentially sabotage your efforts.
- Medjool Dates (pitted) – 1 cup chopped
- Cashews – 1 1/2 cup
- Coconut oil – 1 Tbl
- Chia Seeds – 1 Tbl
- Cacao Powder – 1.5 Tbl
- Hemp Protein Powder – 2 Tbl
*You can also use other protein powders if you like.
- Fire up the food processor
- Add all ingredients to the food processor, probably should add the nuts first
- Process away until well mixed
- If too dry add like 1 Tbl of water
- Roll into balls and store for later 🙂
Here are the nutrition facts if you want them! Enjoy!