Better than a clif bar

I’m still feeling a bit under the weather, so I’m taking it easy this week. Tuesday’s breakfast included lots of nutrient-packed foods: yogurt (probiotics!), an orange (vitamin C!), and a slice of Eli Zabar’s health bread (flax seeds!) topped with peanut butter and raspberry preserves.

Eli Zabar's Health Bread

My stomach started to grumble mid-morning, so I sipped on a cappuccino and a few (big!) handfuls of peanuts.

Cappuccino

dry roasted peanuts

I brought my lunch from home and while it tasted delicious, it looked a bit ghetto. My large spinach container was about 1/4 full, so I used that as my salad bowl (enter strange looks from co-workers here). To the spinach, I added chopped red cabbage, cubed swiss cheese, homemade croutons, and a bit of leftover savory asparagus and mushroom bread pudding. The yellow tuperware contained my homemade salad dressing. To make the dressing, I whisked together 1 Tbs flaxseed oil, 1 Tbs dijon mustard, 2 Tbs garlic rice vinegar, and dash of salt. Yum!

spinach salad

My mid-afternoon snack was a cup of green tea and an Amazing Greens bar. I like that this energy bar is full of whole food ingredients (dates! nuts! greens!), but it tasted a little too sweet for me.

Green Super Foods Bar

After work I headed to the gym to attend a pilates class with Darien. I definitely would NOT go to pilates classes solo. I just don’t like them! However, I know I need to build up my core strength, so a workout buddy makes the 45 minutes bearable 🙂

I was wayyy hungry when I finished with the gym (some day I will get home before 8pm…), so I fixed a super quick dinner: healthy nachos!

I cut a whole wheat tortilla into wedges, misted them with cooking spray, and then baked at 350 F until crispy. Then I topped the tortilla chips with black beans, swiss cheese, a wedge of laughing cow, and salsa and popped the plate back into the oven until the cheese melted.

Healthy nachos

And then I started on a special baking project! I’m a pretty busy girl, so I rely on Clif bars and luna bars a lot for quick energy. I like the way they taste, but I’m not so thrilled about the long ingredient list (lots of soy derivatives). I decided to get creative in the kitchen and make my own energy bar!

Ingredients:

Directions:

  • Heat the oven to 350 degrees, lightly coat an 8″ x 8″ baking pan with cooking spray
  • Mix all ingredients together until combined
  • Press batter into the baking pan and bake for about 20-25 minutes or until lightly golden brown
  • Cool and cut into 9 squares

Nutritional information (per serving): 230 calories, 10 grams of fat, 30 grams of carbohydrates, 7 grams of protein, 3 grams of fiber, and plenty of vitamins and iron from the oats, eggs, and peanut butter!

Oatmeal bars

For dessert, I topped one of my oatmeal-chocolate chip bars with a little greek yogurt and peanut butter.

Oatmeal chocolate chip bar

Note: The Krema Company sent me a sample pack of 4 of their peanut butters. I’ve already devoured one of the crunchy varieties and the smooth variety worked well in this recipe. I love that the only ingredient is PEANUTS. Thanks Krema/Crazy Richard’s!

Krema Company Peanut Butter

In the News:

Check out the latest on Running Shorts – Imprisoned by a Garmin?

My favorite article of the week – 50 steps to simple happiness. I particularly like #’s 6, 16, 37, and 50!

Question: What’s your favorite brand/style of peanut butter? My go-to is Whole Foods 365 Organic Crunchy. Perfecto!

  • I have so many brands I love, but I have to go with PB&Co.
    I love those energy bars! They sound low sugar but still tasty. I’ll have to make a BIG batch before I go off back to college campus.
    And I love that chocolate amazing grass bar. It tastes very raw and bitter, in a good way

  • Jen

    I totally agree about being in Jail with the Garmin. I vote for free-spirited running! (within reason) 🙂

  • I’ve really been liking the grind your own PB. It’s nice and creamy with just a bit of crunch!

  • Right now I am totally loving the Maranatha Organic Almond Butter…the no stir kind….so yum!!

    Those homemade energy bars looks great! I too tend to rely on Protein bars (clif, powderbar, etc..) for quick snacks so I am definitely going to try these out! Hooray for being able to pronounce all the ingredients!

  • I agree with all. Looks great! Especially the oatmeal chocolate chip bars. I’ve always had a soft spot (literally) for stuff like this!

    Thanks for sharing!

  • THank you so much for the reminder that I can make my OWN energy bars! I’ve gotten so stuck on Clif bars lately but you’re right – the ingredients list are just tooooo long! Now I know what I’m doing this weekend 😉

  • Smucker’s natural variety of PB is surprisingly delicious. But I love PB in general so it’s hard for anything to go wrong.

  • Ooo those energy bars look great!! I like any pb without any added sugar mostly. I like Smart Balance’s a lot, though I usually have Skippy Natural because of the price 🙂

  • thanks for the recipe – gonna give that one a try for sure!

    favorite PB: arrowhead mills valencia peanut butter. best PB on the market, hands down.

  • Those bars look most lovely! I have to give that recipe a try, yum…. It’s really hard to get energy bars down these parts so I haven’t been able to develop an addiction to them (thank goodness–I’m sure I’d love them too much).

  • I love Naturally More Peanut Butter. Or, anything by Peanut Butter & Co.

    Sorry to hear you’re not feeling your best! At least you had some delicious fuel to revitalize your body. Those home made Clif bars look outstanding! Thank you so, so much for the recipe.

    Get well soon and have a great day! 🙂

  • ohhh i am LOVING the looks of those bars! anything with chocolate and peanut butter pretty much gets me 🙂

    speaking of, i LOVE krema. soooo good! however, i just discovered eastwind PB and i think it is my fave of all time!

  • Sorry you haven’t been feeling great. Loved the latest true/slant article! I agree so wholeheartedly about those kinds of diet plans. I’ll look at them sometimes and think “wow, am I eating way too much?” and then realize that, no, in fact THEY are the ones that are crazy.
    Those bars look delicious by the way! Excited to maybe make some…maybe tonight!

  • I don’t think your “salad bowl” is ghetto at all! I woulda done the same thing. 🙂 So impressed by your homemade bars–they sound great.

  • If I’m choosing peanut butter, I’m going to go with Teddy’s Natural PB. However lately I’ve been LOVING almond butter, and for that I always choose Trader Joe’s Raw Creamy Unsalted.

    A big pet peeve of mine is when I look at the ingredients on PB or almond butter and see anything besides peanuts or almonds (or salt if you get salted). So many brands have so much JUNK in them!

    I’m going to try your protein bar recipe. They sound awesome!

  • Tracy

    I am a major PB addict! I think I’ve tried just about every brand out there. All the ones mentioned above are great, but the one I keep coming back to is Santa Cruz. They have a few varieties (dark/light roasted, smooth/crunchy) so choose your preference and see what you think!

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  • Concerning this topic, it is often hard to get savvy ideas on the Web. Thanks for sharing your opinions on natural health and related topics. By the way, do you have any savvy recommendations on where I can find more useful suggestions on the Internet? Keep up the great work!

  • Michele

    My fiance is a Marine stationed in Japan and I bake a lot for him and ship it over… he’s a huge fan of Clif bars and health food, how long do you think the bars would hold for? He’d love these!

  • Anonymous

    @Michele – i think they should last for 2-3 weeks or so – especially if you
    wrap them up in plastic wrap before sending them!

  • I’m really happy to see one other person in the world who doesn’t want soy derivatives in their food. Many people don’t realize that unfermented soy is very bad for you…I knew a woman who was on a soy only diet for 2 years or so and she developed a golf-ball size tumor near her breast. I try to avoid it like the plague…

  • I am trying these tonight, but subbing flaxseed meal for the flour (I have a lot on hand.) YUM! Also, I’m training for NYC (my 1st) as well!

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  • Jennifer M

    Credible sources to substantiate this claim?? From what I’ve gathered, the jury is still out and more research is being carried out. Really? Like when my friend got into a car accident while she was wearing jeans, so I avoid wearing them when I drive like the plague… Science works for a reason.

  • james

    10g of fat?!

  • Ruslchu12

    How long do these last? I’m looking for something to use as a grab-n-go breakfast- would these last 9 days?