I am crazy excited about these bars! They are fantastic and are the perfect snack for your childrens' lunch boxes. Or your breakfast and lunch and snack.
And maybe even dinner.
I love any type of make ahead snack. Or pretty much anything at all that I can make ahead. Sunday is always my meal prep day where I prep some meals for the week as well as make snacks for my kids and me.
It helps to keep me organized and with three busy kids, it also makes my life easier. I will take whatever I can get these days. Does anyone else feel like that? I feel like my kids are getting even busier and busier these days.
I try to tell everyone how important meal prep is for maintaining weight loss too. When you have healthy snacks and options in your house readily available, it will help to prevent you from eating snacks, junk or even the rest of your kids' grilled cheese. Or leftover goldfish. I completely get it.
One tip: make sure you freeze your bananas when they are too ripe. Do not throw them away! The minute you start seeing a lot of brown on the banana peel, simple unpeel them and store in a ziplock bag in your freezer. This way you are always repaired the next time you want to make these bars or banana bread!
Speaking of banana bread, here are some of my favorite banana bread recipes:
Both are delicious reasons not to throw away those over ripe bananas!
Banana Bread Protein Bars
- coconut oil
- 3 VERY ripe bananas mashed
- ¼ cup peanut butter almond butter or nut butter of your choice
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ¼ cup 100% maple syrup or raw honey
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- 2 ¼ cups oats I used Gluten Free Quick Rolled Oats
- ¼ cup ground flax
- 2 scoops protein powder
- 2 tablespoons chia seeds
- ¼ cup mini chocolate chips
- ¼ cup chocolate chips for drizzle *optional
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease an 8 x 8 baking pan with coconut oil. Place parchment paper on top and grease again with coconut oil leaving edges folded over the rim.
- In medium bowl, mix together the mashed bananas, peanut butter, vanilla and maple syrup until blended.
- In another medium bowl, mix together cinnamon, salt, oats, flax, protein powder and chia seeds until combined.
- Add ¼ cup chocolate chips and make sure they are mixed in. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and mix well.
- Pour into greased pan and press down.
- Bake in preheated oven for 40 minutes until edges are browned. Allow to cool before removing from the pan.
- After cooled for 5 minutes, slice into 16 bars.
- Melt remaining ¼ cup of chocolate chips in microwave and drizzle over top if desired.
These are so delicious and chewy you won't even believe how healthy they are. Who says granola bars and protein bars have to be filled with junk and 20 ingredients that you can't pronounce? The chocolate drizzle is optional. But everything tastes better with a little bit of melted chocolate on top, right?
My kids always want some type of bar in their lunch boxes. That doesn't mean I never give them a store-bought bar, it just means that I try my best to make homemade bars. Any other parent will know that all we can do is try our best, right? I will be able to sleep at night if my id has a store-bought bar.
Most of the bars that you can buy in the store are simply glorified candy bars marketed to the consumers to look healthy. There are a few that I like that only contain a few real ingredients, but the list of the ones I like is getting smaller and smaller these days. There are not a lot of healthy options, that's for sure.
Please remember not to only read the macros and calories on your ingredient label, PLEASE also read the ingredients! It's very important. You just might find that your "energy bar" contains up to 20 grams of sugar. Now that's even MORE than some candy bars!
You can use whatever protein powder you like, just make sure you read all the ingredients. I used Sunwarrior Classic Protein Powder. It’s raw, organic, gmo-free, and free of any artificial flavors or colors. I also like Vega Protein Powder Vega Protein Powder. It also is organic, gmo-free with all wholesome ingredients.
Just make sure you read the ingredients on your protein powder. Many of them have unnecessary additives and preservatives, as well as oils and sugars. And many of the ones that claim to be sugar free contain artificial sweeteners that have shown to be dangerous to your health. I wouldn't take a chance with any of them.
Some examples of artificial sweeteners are: Sucralose, saccharin, Acesulfame K and Aspartame. If you see any of of these artificial sweeteners in your ingredients of anything you are about to eat or drink, try to avoid it. And companies have become sneakier by trying to hide them under different names. Don't get fooled!
Serving Size 61 g
Amount Per Serving
Calories from Fat
% Daily Value*
*Nutrition information provided by caloriecount.com and not guaranteed 100% accurate.
Please check out these other snack bars that I think you will love:
Slow Cooker Cherry Vanilla Almond Bars from Lauren Kelly Nutrition
Oatmeal Raisin Bars from Lauren Kelly Nutrition
Apple Pie Lara Bars from Culinary Couture
White Chocolate Protein Bars from Lauren Kelly Nutrition
Low Carb Almond Butter Granola Bars from Sweet as Honey
Morning Maple Cranberry Pecan Bars from Skinnytaste
Five Ingredient Healthy Bars from Minimalist Baker
Let me know how much you love these! I am THAT confident 🙂 And please share any other easy snacks that you make on your meal prep days. I ma always looking for new recipes!
Thanks for stopping by!