Peas over nuts [Cinnamon Chickpea Crunch Protein Bars]

Quick, easy, nutritious and delicious: A one-bowl vegan and protein bar reminiscent of  a slice of soft vanilla cake. Free from gluten, refined sugars or weird additives.

Protein Bars 8

Chances are that if you’ve been around the blog world for any time yet you’ll have noticed two trends: 1) a fondness of bars and 2) protein as many bloggers’ favourite macronutrient.  Me, however? That’s where I’m not like your average blogger. I’m not fond of bars in general [at this point I expect some people gasping for breath in shock]. Me and protein bars?  Much less. I’ve always considered these a) exclusive to body builders or b) anybody doing strength training. The way I see it I don’t fall in either category. Unless you’d count lugging around [way too] heavy bags every day weight-lifting. Hmmm …

Protein bar

Which didn’t bug me much because the protein bars available at stores around here are nasty. The only one I ever bought years ago – I can actually recall the time, brand and flavour of the bar – wasn’t awful in terms of taste. But it was a candy bar disguised as a healthy snack.  The ingredient list: Sugar. Sugar.  More sugar. Oh, and some protein. Processed soy-derived. Aren’t you getting hungry reading that?!

Protein Bars 1

These? Are the opposite. Granted, that other bar won the award for appearance – how hard is it with a thick chocolate?! coating – but we already know it’s the inner values that count.  Protein not only from the powder but the peanut flour and even in the chickpeas, too. A funny story or realization about those: I had my mind set on using salted peanuts here. -But-: you haven’t seen my overflowing cupboards yet. No unneccessary purchases for me.

Protein bars 3

So I went for the closest sub and – chickpeas. Before you turn up your nose or click away: Think about it. Chickpeas are legumes – as are peanuts.  There isn’t much of a difference with that in mind. Clearly a case where peas [won] over nuts. And I’m nuts about those peas – my stash is dwindling by the day. If you’re still doubtful just let me tell you about the great texture and crunch they add to these bars …

Protein bars 4_neu

A realization and my only regret about this recipe is my habit of preparing small batches. The one I prepared Saturday was meant to last me for the week. Yet there I was whipping up another pan a day later. I’m officially addicted. But it’s a good one.

Cinnamon Chickpea Crunch Protein Bars [about four generously-sized bars or more smaller ones]

  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder (20 g) [I used SunWarrior]
  • 1/8 cup peanut flour [15 g]
  • 1/8 cup coconut flour [15 g]
  • 1 tbsp ground flaxseed
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon + additional for sprinkling on top
  • 1/8 cup NuNaturals oat fibre OR psyllium husks* [15 g] OR oat bran*
  • a pinch of salt [generous for me and any other fans of sweet-and-salty combinations]
  • 1 tbsp NuNaturals Simple Syrup (could sub agave or honey)
  • 1/4 cup roughly chopped dry-roasted salted chickpeas [20 g]
  • about 1/2 cup non-dairy milk [I used coconut]
  • 1/4 cup dried mulberries
  • Optional [but actually mandatory] raw or 99% dark chocolate, chopped**

 

  1. Combine all dry ingredients.
  2. Stir in milk and syrup to combine.  You’ll want to reach a slightly drier cookie dough texture.
  3. Put the mixture into a greased 8 x 8 inch baking dish and press down firmly.
  4. Bake for about 10 to 12 minutes or until the top feels firm but not dried out.
  5. Take out of the oven and dust the top with additional cinnamon inmediately.
  6. Let cool before slicing into bars. These keep best in the fridge.

Notes:

* These are gluten-free if using either psyllium husk or gluten-free oat bran. The texture is most cake-like with the oat fibre but still fine elsewise.

** This will add some sugar so omit if opting to stay all sugar-free.

Protein bars 2

One more note on the Simply Syrup in this recipe: it’s a new product by NuNaturals and this was my first time trying it. There may or may not be a giveaway coming up soon …

Because everybody – now even me – likes protein, bars and protein bars I’m sharing these with Gluten-Free Tuesdays, Strange but good, RecipeFriday, Gluten-Free Wednesdays, Recipe of the Week, Allergy-Free Wednesdays, Real Food RecipesTasty Tuesdays, Healthy Vegan Friday and #glutenfreefridays.

 

Happiness-inducing today: An e-mail from a friend I hadn’t heard of in a while.

Stay in touch!

Twitter: @MissPolkadot21
Pinterest: MissPolkadot21
Bloglovin’: Let’s get living

 

What’s your favourite kind of protein bar?

Chickpeas instead of nuts: Strange or awesome?

Have you made your own protein bars before?

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Double-desserting [Peanut Butter & Jelly Crumble]

If it wasn’t for Davida’s Valentine’s Day Bake-Off I may or may not have pretended today was like any other ordinary Friday. Given how many other bloggers will address the fact that it’s the day of love [okay, I kind of did yesterday, too] you might not even have noticed. Or maybe I’m making things up here. I’ll have to admit I’ve never given Valentine’s Day too much of a thought – it would still catch me by surprise every year if it wasn’t for giant advertisements all around the blog and ‘real’ world.

Strawberry crumble

Simply because I’m a member of a family where Valentine’s Day  has always been considered a consumeristic holiday made up by the chocolate and florist industry. Thanks to my parents for not making me appreciate it ;). While I still can’t get all excited about the day itself by now I can get excited about desserts. More specifically: single-serving desserts. Technically, yes, this makes two single-servings. But it could also serve you, times two. Why not?!

Crumble_X

After seeing everybody else’s creations for the Bake-Off so far and knowing the day-dreaming around desserts I’d done before posting this: no, it’s not a real dessert. More like the well-behaved little sister of the sugar-filled amazingness around. Yes, I like sugar. Long story short: this crumble is perfect for when you want to double-dessert – not to be confused with double-dating. My idea of the former is: having my chocolate as the more indulgent ‘real’ dessert and these as a healthier treat. Bingo!

Rummaging through my mum’s cupboards for decorating materials I came up with those adorable homemade pompons and several tea  lights in just the right colours. I know I’ll miss these secret hidden gems once I’m back at my apartment.

Crumble_V

Calling these “Peanut Butter & Jelly” might be a bit of a stretch. But can you really blame me considering anything that combines some kind of berries and peanut butter a PB & J anything? I’m German after all :D.

 Peanut Butter & Jelly Crumble

The “Jelly” part:

  • 1.25 cups [180 g] frozen strawberries, thawed
  • 1 tbsp honey [for vegan option see below*]
  • 1 tsp vanilla powder
  1. Add the thawed strawberries to a small pot with the honey and let melt together on medium heat, stirring occasionally. The honey will make the mixture thicken without the need of any additional thickening agent.
  2. Stir in the vanilla and divide the mixture into two single-serving ramekins.

Topping:

  • ¼ cup [30 g] of peanut flour
  • 1 tbsp rolled oats
  • 1 tbsp peanut butter
  • about 1/4 of a small banana, not too ripe
  • Salt [to taste – amount depending on your preference]
  1. Mix the peanut flour, oats and salt.
  2. Stir in the peanut butter and knead in the banana to for crumbles.
  3. Top the strawberry mixture with the crumbles and bake for 15 minutes at 320 °F/160 °C.
  4. Serve with a dollop of soy yogurt, [vegan] whipped cream or ice cream.

Crumble_II

*Note: To turn this into a vegan dish you may sub maple syrup or brown rice syrup [stickier] for the honey.

For breakfast, a snack or at whichever time you’re feeling like a sweet little something: There’s really no wrong way to eat a crumble. Did I mention these reheat well, too? Only there might be nothing left to reheat.

Whether on Valentine’s Day or any time, really, crumble is delicious so I’m linking up Healthy Vegan Fridays, RecipeFriday, Wellness Weekends and Strange but good. 

Happiness inducing today: Working on the puzzle with my mum and a walk.

Stay in touch!

Twitter: @MissPolkadot21
Pinterest: MissPolkadot21
Bloglovin’: Let’s get living

What’s your favourite single-serving dessert? Leave a link if you know of any awesome recipes worth trying.

Are you a fan of double-desserting, too?