DIY Protein Bars (Allergy-Free!)

Nut or Allergy-Free Seedy Energy Bars in Skinny Dish!

Nut or Allergy-Free Seedy Energy Bars in Skinny Dish!

Ever thought about making your own bars? Eventhough Larabars and the like come pretty close to home cookin’, this recipe will energize your soul, and help you achieve your lifelong goal of turning your kitchen into a food factory. This is an upgraded version of the one in Skinny Dish with hot-off-the-press chia seeds and hemp hearts for superfood power. Use gluten-free oats and sunflower seed butter to impress even your most allergic friends, and enjoy one while you reread why the world is being taken over by food allergies.

Energy Bars

Makes 12 bars
Prep time: 5 minutes
Hands-off cooking time: 15 minutes plus 45 minutes to chill
Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Nut-free

1 Tbsp ground flax seed meal or chia seeds, soaked in 3 Tbsp warm filtered water for 10 minutes until a gel forms
1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats (or gluten-free rolled oats)
½ cup unsweetened shredded coconut (optional)
1 cup hemp hearts, pepitas, or other seeds or crushed nuts
¼ cup packed raisins
1 ripe banana
½ cup sunflower seed butter, peanut butter, or other seed or nut butter
¼ cup agave nectar
1 tsp vanilla

1. Preheat oven to 350° F.

2. In a large mixing bowl, combine oats, coconut (if using), hemp hearts, and raisins.

3. In a separate small microwave-safe bowl, microwave sunflower seed butter, agave, and vanilla for 30 seconds. Stir together until well-mixed. Add ripe banana and crush with a fork to combine. Stir in gelatinized flax or chia mixture.

4. Press firmly into a lightly greased 9-inch by 9-inch baking dish, and bake for 15 minutes. Chill in the fridge for 45 minutes before slicing.

5. Store leftovers in the fridge for up to 5 days, or in individually wrapped bags in the freezer for up to 2 months.

NUTRITION SNAPSHOT with HEMP HEARTS & SUNFLOWER SEED BUTTER
Per bar: 210 calories, 12 g total fat, 1.5 g saturated fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 42 mg sodium, 18.5 g carbohydrates, 4 g fiber, 10 g sugar, 8 g protein, 18.5% iron

50 Sweet and Salty 100-Calorie Snacks

100Need something but don’t want to totally blow it? Here are 50 sweet and salty snack ideas adapted from and added to a list on Greatist.com. These little minis just might take the edge off until the next meal.

SWEET ACTION

    1. Larabar or Pure Energy Organic bar of choice: Half the bar, or 1 Larabar mini-bar
    2. Grapes: 1 cup, fresh or frozen. Freezing makes you eat them more slowly
    3. Chocolate Banana: 1/2 frozen banana dipped in 1 square melted dark chocolate
    4. Latte Love: 8 ounces steamed vanilla almond milk with 1 shot espresso
    5. PB Apple: 1 small organic gala apple, sliced and dipped in 2 teaspoons peanut butter
    6. Shredded Frosted Mini Wheats: 20 of ’em
    7. Barbara’s Cinnamon Puffins cereal: 50 (a little less than 1 cup)
    8. Mini PB&F: One fig newton with 1 teaspoon peanut butter
    9. Spiced Orange: One orange— about the size of a tennis ball— sprinkled with cinnamon
    10. Grilled Pineapple: 2 ¼-inch thick pineapple rounds (about 1 cup), grilled (or sautéed) for two minutes or until golden
    11. Berries n’ Cream: 1 cup blueberries with 2 tablespoons non-dairy whipped topping
    12. Oats n’ Berries: ⅓ cup rolled oats (cooked with water), topped with cinnamon and ¼ cup fresh berries
    13. Dark Chocolate: One block, or three squares
    14. Chocolate Chia Pudding: 1/2 serving
    15. Nut-Stuffed Date: One Medjool Date filled with one teaspoon natural unsalted almond butter
    16. Cinnamon Applesauce: 1 cup unsweetened
    17. Grapefruit: 1 large, sprinkled with Truvia if needed
    18. Milk n’ Cookies: 6 animal crackers with ½ cup vanilla almond milk
    19. Shamrock Smoothie: 1 cup
    20. Jelly Beans: 25 of ‘em! Although reserved only for the worst sugar-craving moments
    21. Apple Chips: ¾ cup
    22. PB Graham: 1 large graham cracker smeared with 1 teaspoon peanut butter
    23. Just Mango: 1 oz dried mango snack bag from Just Tomatoes, etc!
    24. Clementines: THREE!
    25. Strawberries: 25 medium ones, sliced & sprinkled with Truvia for extra sweetness

SALTY DOG

  1. Trader Joe’s Mesquite Smoked Seasoned Almonds: 15
  2. Carrots n’ Hummus: About 10 baby carrots with 2 tablespoons hummus.
  3. Pistachios: A couple handfuls— about 25
  4. “Cheesy” Breaded Tomatoes: 3 roasted plum tomatoes sliced and topped with 3 tablespoons breadcrumbs and a sprinkle of nutritional yeast.
  5. Curried Sweet Potato: One medium sweet potato cooked for 6 minutes in the microwave, mashed with 1 teaspoon curry powder, & a sprinkle of salt and pepper
  6. “Cheesy” Popcorn: 2 cups air-popped popcorn with 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast— tastes like real cheese!
  7. Soy Edamame: 1/2 cup boiled Edamame with 1 teaspoon soy sauce
  8. Dijon Pretzels: 2 ½ pretzel rods with 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  9. Kale Chips: 1 cup raw kale— stems removed— baked with 1 teaspoon olive oil at 400° until crisp
  10. Sweet Potato Fries: 1 medium sweet potato sliced, sprinkled with 1 tsp olive oil, & baked at 400° for 10 minutes
  11. Cucumber Sandwich: ½ English muffin with 2 tablespoons olive hummus & three slices of cucumber
  12. Mixed Olives: About 8
  13. Toasted Pumpkin Seeds: 2 tablespoons pumpkin seeds, sprayed with oil (just a spritz!) & baked at for 400° for 15 minutes or until brown. Sprinkle with kosher salt
  14. Balsamic Veggies: 3 cups raw peppers (any color!) dipped in 2 tablespoons low-fat balsamic vinaigrette
  15. Cucumber Salad: One large cucumber (sliced) with 2 tablespoons chopped red onion and 2 tablespoons apple-cider vinegar
  16. Crunchy Raw Kale Salad: 1 cup kale leaves chopped with 2 tablespoons balsamic vinaigrette
  17. TJ’s Roasted Seaweed Snack: 1 1/2 packages!
  18. Chick Pea Salad: 1/3 cup chickpeas (garbanzo beans) with 1 tablespoon sliced scallions, a squeeze of lemon juice, and ¼ cup diced tomatoes
  19. Grilled Garlic Corn on the Cob: One small-sized ear brushed with 1 teaspoon sautéed minced garlic & 1 teaspoon olive oil, grilled until tender
  20. Chips n’ Salsa: 10 baked tortilla chips with ¼ cup salsa
  21. PB & Celery: 1 medium celery stalk with 1 tablespoon peanut butter
  22. Rice Cake & Almond Butter: 1 lightly salted rice cake with 2 teaspoons almond butter
  23. Old Bay Beans: 1/3 cup chick peas baked for 10 minutes at 350° with Old Bay Seasoning
  24. Goddess Veggies: Countless raw veggies dipped in 2 tablespoons Goddess Dressing
  25. Popchips: 1 snack-size bag of the plain potato variety

Cheers until the next feeding!

Superbowl Pant Survival

Of course YOU will survive the Superbowl, but what about your pants? Will they have to take a temporary hiatus in the back of the closet after tonight? To the snackinizer! Here are consumptionaries that will keep your lower half in it’s post-holiday / pre-Superbowl position:

1. Polenta Stuffed Mini Peppers (gluten-free)

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2. Guacamame (gluten-free)

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3. Fiery Cashew Dip  (gluten-free)

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4. Veggie Pupusas (gluten-free)

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5. Any of these Meatless Meats, given high marks by meat lovers

6. No Fant Pants Nachos (gluten-free)

7. Hot Pants Cornbread

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8. Vegan Hot Wings

9. Quick & Easy Veggie Chili

10. Creamy Spinach Dip (video)

Happy chowing!