Hemp protein powder delivers fiber, omega fatty acids and plant protein in these easy, delicious granola bars. The bars are vegan, gluten-free and super satisfying!
This has been in the refrigerator, waiting for some new uses:
I am keen on hemp hearts, which have a buttery-grassy flavor akin to pine nuts, so I thought I would be smitten by hemp protein powder.
But it was a rough start. I blame myself. I should have googled first, I know that now. I could have tried specific recipe especially suited to hemp protein. But no, I dove straight in, dumping a giant scoop into one of my smoothie concoctions.
It was challenging. I drink some pretty swampy-looking smoothies, but hemp powder turned my berries and kale into a bracken bayou shade of gray-green. The taste was pretty great, but the visual had a powerful effect, significantly dampening my hemp powder enthusiasm.
But one can only avoid the jumbo container of hemp protein in the refrigerator for so long. Or, more precisely, one can only ignore a husband, nagging about the space taken up by said container of hemp protein, for so long.
So I added hemp protein to my baked goods.
It’s a perfect fit. Case in point, my hemp protein granola bars.
With a bit of oven heat, hemp protein powder adds toasty, nutty layers of flavor to simple granola bars.
It also adds a wallop of nutrition. Specifically…
Protein: A 1-ounce serving of hemp powder has about 14 grams of protein. Hemp seeds, like quinoa, are one of a short list of plant sources that are a complete protein; this means they contain every essential amino acid. Your body is unable to make these essential amino acids and they must come from your diet.
Omega Fatty Acids: Hemp seeds are also a great source of essential fatty acids, namely omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Among other things, these fatty acids may reduce inflammation, prevent heart disease and improve neurological conditions.
Fiber: You’ll also get about 4 grams of fiber from 1 ounce of hemp protein powder. Kapow. Compare that to most milk or whey-based protein powders, which only provide about 1 gram of fiber or less per serving. Your digestive system will thank you :).
All combined, these are granola bars worth getting VERY excited about. My husband has his own reasons for applauding :).
- ½ cup unsweetened applesauce
- ¼ cup nondairy milk
- 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
- 1 and ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon ground cardamom (or your spice of choice)
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 tablespoon whole psyllium husk
- 1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats (certified GF, as needed)
- ½ cup unsweetened hemp protein powder (see note)
- ½ cup chopped seeds and/or nuts
- ½ cup chopped dried fruit
- 1 tablespoon virgin coconut oil, melted
- Preheat oven to 350F. Spray or grease 8 cups of a standard size muffin tin.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the applesauce, milk, syrup, vanilla, cardamom, and salt; whisk in psyllium until blended. Let stand 5 minutes to thicken.
- In a large bowl, stir together the oats, hemp powder, seeds/nus and dried fruit. Add the applesuace mixture and the coconut oil, stirring to completely combine.
- Divide mixture evenly among prepared cups. Using the bottom of a measuring cup (spray or grease bottom of cup to avoid sticking), firmly tamp down the pucks.
- Bake in preheated oven for 14 to 17 minutes until golden brown. Transfer to wire rack and cool in tin for 10 minutes. Remove pucks from tin and cool completely.
Storage: Store pucks in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week, in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks, or freeze for up to 3 months.or