Dear Leah Renee,
I love using hemp protein, but I’m getting tired of only using it in smoothies. Do you have any suggestions? ~Veronica, CA
I love hemp protein. It’s the only one I personally use because it’s a complete source of protein (it contains all the essential amino acids!) and is easily digested. Just three tablespoons boasts 15 grams of protein, 60% your daily recommendation of magnesium, 40% your daily recommended amount of iron, and 25% zinc while low in calories (90!). It’s also 100% vegan, 100% plant-based. And it even contains omega 3 fatty acids! It’s truly a winner when it comes to buying protein powders.
It’s easy to get into the routine of using protein powders only when we make smoothies, but there are other ways to get creative with this versatile ingredient. What better way than to make pre or post workout bars?! Not only do these contain an adequate amount of protein for strong, lean muscles, they also contain heaps of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, commonly known as “superfoods”. Superfoods are choc full of nutrients and help fight free radicals keeping us healthy and our skin radiant.
You are more than welcome to play around with the ingredients you use (like goji berries, maca, matcha)! I put in nearly everything in the pantry (OK, maybe not, but that’s what it felt like!). The sky’s the limit. It all gets blended up anyway, right?! Here’s what I did:
- ½ cup pumpkin seeds
- ½ cup sunflower seeds
- ½ cup dried shredded coconut
- ½ cup sesame seeds
- ½ cup hemp hearts
- ½ cup hemp protein powder
- 4 tbsp chia seeds
- 20 medjool dates, pitted
- 6 tbsp coconut oil, room temperature
- 4 tbsp raw cacao powder (cocoa powder works too)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
In a food processor or blender, pulse the dry ingredients a few times. Do not pulse too much since we want the bars a little crunchy. Place the mixture in a bowl and set aside.
Add all wet ingredients to the food processor or high speed blender and run until smooth (add a little water if it’s too thick aka not good pouring material!).
Pour the wet ingredients over the dry ingredients and combine. Spread the batter evenly into a 11 x 7-inch baking dish, packing it tightly. Place in the fridge for about 30 minutes. Cut into bars and enjoy! You can wrap them up in paper if you like or divide by wax paper.
You know what I ended up doing after a couple days because we weren’t eating them all up quickly enough? I baked them at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes which made yummy snack bites to combine to trail mix or by itself on the go! Here they are:
What are your favorite superfoods? Have you used hemp protein before?