When I was kid I loved to bake. One of my favourite things to bake were chocolate chip cookies. Then I learned about cookie dough, raw! It was probably better tasting than cooked! At least it was when I was a kid. Another favourite of mine growing up was cookie dough ice cream. I loved the flavour and the unique texture of the frozen dough, chocolate chunks, and cold ice cream.

Now I’m an old fart and I still act and behave like a kid sometimes, but cookie dough munching is left to the real kids. Also, my views regarding milk and dairy products have been rewritten by observing none other than nature herself.

Today it seems we are in a perpetual busy mode. Pressed for time; need convenience; muscles are screaming for protein; grab something quick like a protein bar.

Protein bars can definitely fill that need but maybe in not so healthy ways. Sure we get the boost in protein that we look for in a candy bar, but in some bars we get a ton of filler and sweeteners to mask the actual flavour of a protein source. In essence, the benefits are heavily outweighed by junk.

I bit into a Clif Builder Peanut Butter and Chocolate Bar and was floored! It was so good! It did not taste anything like all the other protein bars I’ve eaten. Too damn good to be true? Bet my damn ass it was! That whopping goodness had over 20 grams of sugar in various forms. Don’t get me wrong, I live on sugar, in fact I can get hypoglycaemic and get blackouts and dizzy spells when my sugar levels reach critical. But 20 grams of sugar in a single bar? A bit overkill even to my standards (which are pretty high), and a bit too much still as an energy bar.

I’m an anti-milk/dairy guy because its consumption defies everything in that nature shows, illustrates, demonstrates to us about dairy in the animal world. The thing about the protein supplement industry is a lot of companies go for whey protein because it is accessible and easy to process and it is cheap. But it still has milk in it. Most protein bars are made with whey and I can’t and won’t eat dairy or any of it’s derivatives.

My solution was to make my own protein bars using almost the next best thing: plant based protein. My top choice would have been to use egg protein, but I wanted to try something vegetarian. My recipe uses honey so it ain’t vegan. Oh, and you don’t want my thoughts regarding vegans and their veganism religion. Let’s just say it is categorized as as an -ism and we all know what that means, right? If not, just think “extremism” and all the words that have that suffix and you will see that anything extreme carries dangers and risks.

Below is my recipe for what I consider “not-bad-tasting” but it’s not because of the homemade nature of the bar, but because I used an ingredient that I find disgusting and it almost ruined my batch. However, that’s just me and my relationship with dark chocolate. I’m sure my recipe as it is would be great for people who like the taste of dark chocolate.

Peanut Butter and Choclate Chip Cookie Dough Protein Bars:

Makes 9 bars.

4 scoops Vegan Vanilla Protein Powder

4 Tablespoons Coconut Flour

2-3 Tablespoons Peanut Butter

125-150 mls Free Ranged Raised Almond Milk

1 Teaspoon Cinnamon

2-3 Tablespoons Raw Canadian Honey

1 Bar of 85% Chocolate

Tools:

Medium mixing bowl

Mixer or some muscle and a fork

Baking sheet or dish

Measuring cups and spoons

Cellophane

Freezer

Instructions:

  1. Mix together the protein powder, coconut flour, peanut butter, and almond milk well. Dough should be stiff and almost crumbly.
  2. If the mixture is too dry, add some almond milk. If the mixture is too wet, add a small teaspoon of coconut flour and mix well. Coconut flour is an efficient sponge, use a little.
  3. Add the cinnamon and honey. The honey may need to be warmed up slightly to be able to mix.
  4. Take half the chocolate bar and break into small pieces and mix into dough.
  5. Dig into the dough and make some bars. Line the bars on the baking sheet or dish.
  6. Melt the remaining chocolate by breaking into small bits and putting them in a small bowl. Take a slightly bigger bowl and add some hot water. Place the small bowl with chocolate into the larger bowl with hot water. Mix the chocolate to melt.
  7. Drizzle chocolate on bars. Or dip the bars in the chocolate.
  8. Put the bars in the freezer for about an hour to set.

Wrap the bars in cellophane and store in the fridge or freezer.

Things I will do differently next batch:

I hate dark chocolate. It’s disgusting. So I’ll be seeing what sort of alternatives there are, perhaps I might be able to find vegan/vegetarian white chocolate chips or something.

The bars are very doughy, so I might add something as a medium fill, kinda like gravel is a binder to cement. I am leaning towards rice crisps or a healthy cereal.

The recipe I used could benefit with another tablespoon or two of honey. Sure it seems like a lot of honey, but keep in mind, this recipe will yield 9 bars. It may not be a lot in the end. Although, I may be thinking I need more honey because of the bitterness of the chocolate screwing everything up.

Overall, I’m happy with this DIY project. Despite the bitter aftertaste of the chocolate, the bars are really quite good.

I don’t know exactly how much protein is in a single bar, but from my estimates it is some where between 12-15 grams. It isn’t 20 grams like the commercial brands, but it is cheaper, convenient, and a lot better in terms of the amount of sugars added like the Clif Builder.

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