By nutritional therapist Christine Bailey
Many traditional bars are full of sugars – whether in the form of added syrups or dried fruit. These bars are much lower in carbohydrate and higher in protein, thanks to the addition of vanilla protein powder. You can store these bars in the freezer for up to three months. A perfect grab and go option and ideal post exercise too.
(makes 12 bars)
60g coconut oil
1 heaping tbsp almond nut butter
2 tbsp xylitol or erythritol, finely ground
100g gluten-free oats
90g vanilla protein powder
30g raw cacao powder
1 tsp espresso ground coffee
1 tbsp vanilla extract
3-4 tbsp almond milk
4 tbsp mixed seeds
1 tbsp chia seeds
Line a 20cm/8in square baking pan with baking parchment. Put the oil, nut butter and xylitol in a saucepan over a medium-low heat and melt gently for one to two minutes until the oil has melted and the xylitol has dissolved.
Put the oats in a food processor or mixing bowl and add the protein powder, cacao powder, espresso coffee and vanilla. Pulse or stir to briefly mix. Add the oil mixture and stir to combine. Add enough almond milk to form a slightly soft dough. Stir in the seeds and mix well.
Spoon the mixture into the prepared pan, then spread out and smooth the surface. Put in the freezer for one hour to harden. Cut into 12 bars and store in the refrigerator for up to one week or freeze for up to three months.
Despite its bad press, coffee in moderate amounts can be healthy as it contains hundreds of biologically active compounds, including caffeine, chlorogenic acid, trigonelline, cafestol and kahweol. Various studies suggest that it might help to boost brain function, and reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease.
Recipes and images from The Brain Boost Diet Plan by Christine Bailey, coming out on 18th January 2018 and published by Nourish Books.