Protein Bars

Total Time:
1 hr
Prep:
25 min
Cook:
35 min

Yield:
24 (2-inch) squares
Level:
Easy

NUTRITION INFO
Ingredients
  • 4 ounces soy protein powder, approximately 1 cup
  • 2 1/4 ounces oat bran, approximately 1/2 cup
  • 2 3/4 ounces whole-wheat flour, approximately 1/2 cup
  • 3/4 -ounce wheat germ, approximately 1/4 cup
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 ounces raisins, approximately 1/2 cup
  • 2 1/2 ounces dried cherries, approximately 1/2 cup
  • 3 ounces dried blueberries, approximately 1/2 cup
  • 2 1/2 ounces dried apricots, approximately 1/2 cup
  • 1 (12.3-ounce) package soft silken tofu
  • 1/2 cup unfiltered apple juice
  • 4 ounces dark brown sugar, approximately 1/2 cup packed
  • 2 large whole eggs, beaten
  • 2/3 cup natural peanut butter
  • Canola oil, for pan
Directions

Line the bottom of a 13 by 9-inch glass baking dish with parchment paper and lightly coat with canola oil. Set aside. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the protein powder, oat bran, wheat flour, wheat germ, and salt. Set aside.

Coarsely chop the raisins, dried cherries, blueberries and apricots and place in a small bowl and set aside.

In a third mixing bowl, whisk the tofu until smooth. Add the apple juice, brown sugar, eggs, and peanut butter, 1 at a time, and whisk to combine after each addition. Add this to the protein powder mixture and stir well to combine. Fold in the dried fruit. Spread evenly in the prepared baking dish and bake in the oven for 35 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 205 degrees F. Remove from the oven and cool completely before cutting into squares. Cut into squares and store in an airtight container for up to a week.


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    I was hoping for a "healthy" protein bar, but this one is just as bad as those you find in the stores. Flour, wheat germ, oat bran, brown sugar.
    These are great! Pretty easy to make, and you won't find a commercial protein bar that beats this one on flavor, texture, nutrition, or price! My batter ended up being noticeably thinner than AB's (not sure why, because I used exactly the same ingredients and measured them by weight just like he does. But they turned out great anyway. They ended up with a really nice soft, moist, slightly chewy texture, and very tasty.
    I just made these with an antioxidant fruit mix, some dried plums, and some unsweetened coconut... It's delicious!! Even my picky sister likes them. It's almost like dessert, and at such low calories and such high protein, I don't feel guilt eating them!! Every Alton recipe is spot on delicious, and the hunt for soy protein powder (I used EAS Vanilla Soy Protein- works great and easy to find!
    The kids (2 and 5 years old love this one. We go through granola and cereal bars like crazy, so I thought this was worth a try. I'll definitely be making these again. The texture is like bread pudding. Not too peanut buttery.
    I love ab's shows and almost all his recipes. This particular recipe however I did not like, in fact this is the first time I outright threw the creation in the trash. I'm almost confident it is because I used Chinese soft tofu and not the shelf stable silken( maybe Greek yougert would be better here I thought tofu was flavorless until I cooked this, ( the tofu was not expired however no am mount of dried fruit the wonderful bread pudding texture or the peanut butter came out over that stupid pallet killing nothingness that is tofu. If your at all skeptical skip this one, I wish I did.
    Liked the flavor, a little complicated as are a lot of AB's stuff, but a decent product...a little on the expensive side to gather ingredients
    Made my first batch exactly the same (only alteration was soy to whey protein. It was way too peanut-butter-y, and with so many different kinds of fruit, the fruit flavor was muddy and unclear. It was edible, but demanded alteration.Second time around, I switched the peanut butter for tahini (sesame butter and changed the sugar to 5oz, made my fruit selection primarily apricots and dried cranberries and added 2.5oz of chopped pecans. Everything else was the same, including bake time. The second batch is INCREDIBLY awesome. It honestly tastes like a toasty bread pudding. The nutty flavor is much more subdued, and the little bit of crunch from the pecans is perfect. Only using 2 primary fruits (in larger portions, total fruit weight was used, split between apricots, pecans, and cranberries let their flavor really shine through, too. Overall, I'd suggest using tahini or another nut butter and reducing the types of fruit to two or three at most.
    I need a "food" bar that i can carry with me so that when i'm out and need a snack i have something relatively healthy/safe to eat and my modified version of this recipe will do the trick. I am diabetic with lots of allergies and i cannot tolerate the fakey sugars like splenda and the rest, so i modified Mr. Brown's recipe so that it had less simple sugars. I measured everything by weight just to be consistent and to provide me with a basis for accurate modifications over time. The result is moist, tasty and my non-diabetic friends enjoyed it as well. My changes were to 
    Use 6oz unchopped raisins to keep fresh and no other fruit - this is about 1/2 the original fruit level 
    Replace 1/2 Apple Juice with unsweetened soy milk 
    Replace peanut butter with creamy almond butter 
    I didn't coat either the pan or the parchment in oil because the almond butter is naturally oily 
    I may try replacing the brown sugar with maple syrup for flavor.
    The first time I made these, I followed the recipe and was quite happy with the results. I shared them with some friends, and they also enjoyed the bars. One friend cautioned me about using soy based on an article he read in Men's Health regarding possible consequences of men ingesting too much protein. The second time I made these, I substituted low fat greek style yogurt for the silken tofu, and whey protein for the soy protein. While still good, the resulting bar was not as moist as the original, and was more dense. For my next version, I plan to substitute flax seed for the wheat germ and bulgar wheat flour for the whole wheat flour. Finally, I am considering a substitute for the peanut butter to address peanut allergies. Anyone have thoughts for that?
    I'm not sure why everyone thinks these are healthy. most dried fruit you find at the grocery store has a ton of extra sugar added. 2 cups of dried fruit comes out to over 200g of sugar.which is about 9 grams a bar.I doubt everyone on here is using unsweetened dried fruit. it's not that easy to find except organic or specialty stores. if you use unsweetened fruit i think it's a great bar!!
    I made this recipe 6 times but it consistently needs 4x the juice! The recipe only calls for 1/2 cup but I've had to use 2 cups every time to get a reasonable consistency. Might be because I am using regular not silken tofu? Last batch was the best, used almond butter instead of peanut, added vanilla extract and cinnamon. YUM!
    Made them 2x and both times a big hit. Someone mentioned not using vanilla protein with the peanut butter. I did and think they are great. I'll give plain protein a try - maybe they'll be even better. I cooked the 2nd batch a bit longer and they got nice and brown on top.
    Absolutely loved these! I work in a gym, so this was a big hit when I brought them in for everyone to try. Only one thing I would like to mention... don't use vanilla flavored protein powder, use chocolate or plain. I didn't realize it, but vanilla and peanut butter are NOT friends. 
     
    I also had to substitute out the dried blueberries (I couldn't find any. I used dried cranberries instead, they worked just great.
    Love this recipe! I bought my first package of tofu and was pleased to enjoy this easy recipe! I made the bars for a frustrated, health-conscious friend who recently discovered she was allergic to wheat and dairy. I substituted the protein for soy protein, Omega-3 with flaxseed substituted for wheat germ, almond butter for peanut butter, and it came out great! Thanks again, Alton, for the science! 
    These are very tasty and good. The apricots make it IMO. Ive made them three times so far. Alton's granola bars are very good and I make them often too. These certainly hold off hunger and they are very good for you. My husband and college son think they are just the thing to get them through the afternoon blood sugar drop. I found the soy protein powder at WinCo in the bulk foods. My fave go-to bar recipe!
    For people with allergies, this recipe is very easy to tweak! 
     
    Peanut: Use some other nut butter (more expensive 
     
    Wheat: Use semolina flour and bran or flax seed in place of the germ 
     
    Problem with eggs? Use an egg substitute + 3TB of soy, almond, or coconut milk. You could also substitute 1/4 cup apple sauce or half a banana per egg.  
     
    Sugar issues? Use the sugar replacements like Splenda. It won't taste the same and kind of messes with texture, so (if possible use half sugar + half sweetner. Adding a little molasses will make it taste like brown sugar.  
     
    Too difficult to cut the dried fruit? Soak in hot water with 1 tsp of vanilla for about 10 minutes. Softens them up and soaks in some flavor.  
     
    Not enough flavor? Add an extract. Vanilla is nice, almond is pretty good, orange is better than you'd think! Add about 1 tsp. You can also add cinnamon, nice touch.  
     
    Texture problems: Use a scale! 
    These came out quite nicely. My only changes were to substitute hemp protein powder for the soy protein powder and to use one of those Trader Joe's dried super fruit mixes instead of the exact dried fruits called for in the recipe. I found these had a more cohesive consistency after being in the fridge for a day. I'll be making these again (maybe adding some cinnamon? as my pre/post run snack.
    I have made three batches of these so far, and they are fantastic. I am on the P90X routine and have replaced their recommend protein bars with this application.
     

     
    And it is a wonderful way to get rid of the dried fruit (I like to experiment with different fruits to vary the taste and make then different each time, although the ones in the application are so far the best
     
    I have made these three times now and have been very satisfied each time. They are moist, tasty, with a good texture, and nicely filling. They actually calculate out as better nutritionally with lower points per gram than Weight Watchers bars. (by my calculations anyway 
     
    Make sure the fruit is room temperature to chop or it is too sticky, and it doesn't have to be too fine to be fine.
    The only difficulty with this recipe is the time taken to chopped all of the dried fruits. Otherwise - easy and straight forward. I have made it with both soft and medium silken tofu. The medium consistency made it a little harder to mix but resulted in a "drier" or firmer bar. These bars are the best. Better than any commercial protein bar - in flavor, protein count and for curbing your hunger. Excellent!
    I found all the ingredients at my local megamart except for the silken tofu. I substituted low fat yogurt for the tofu and the bars came out great. I didn't recalculate the nutritionals on them (and I'm sure I pushed up the cholesterol a little), but I shouldn't be too far out of the healthy-within-reasonable range. I'm not a big fan of dried blueberries, so I might double up on the dried cranberries next time. Great concept and obviously the recipe is moderately flexible to substitutions.
    Very moist and tasty. And easy to make.
    This recipe is so delicious and moist! I also like how it was so easy to prepare! Great job Alton!!!!
    Love this recipe!! I change the kinds of dried fruit depending on the season. They freeze great for months without losing moisture. The addition of Vanilla sounds yummy I will have to try that. Thanks MWH704!
     
    Nothing beats knowing excatly what you are eating!
    I made some minor alterations because the batter tasted really bland. Here's the exact nutritional info: 
    -1 C Soy Powder (440 cal, 4g fat, 96g protein) 
    -1/2 C Oat Bran (120 cal, 3.5 fat, 8 protein, 7 fiber) 
    -1/2 C Wheat Flour (250 cal, 7g fat, 16g protein, 14g fiber) 
    -1/4 C Wheat Germ (110 cal, 3g fat, 7g protein, 14g fiber) 
    -1/3 C Raisins (180 cal, 1g protein, 3g fiber) 
    -1 C Cranberries (400 cal, 1.5g fat, 6g fiber) 
    -1/3 C Unsweetened Shredded Coconut (140 cal, 10g fat, 10g protein, 4g fiber) 
    -1/4 C Slivered Almonds (170 cal, 15g fat, 7g protein, 4g fiber) 
    -12.3 oz 2% Fage Greek Yogurt (220 cal, 7g fat, 27g protein) 
    -1/4 C POM Cranberry-Pomegranate Juice (30 cal) 
    -1/3 C Dark Brown Sugar (250 cal) 
    -2 Eggs (140 cal, 8g fat, 12g protein) 
    -2/3 C Natural Peanut Butter (590 cal, 48g fat, 24g protein, 8g fiber) 
    -2 t Vanilla (30 cal) 
    -2.5 t Cinnamon 
    -1/2 t Ginger 
    Total: 3070 cal, 107g fat, 208g protein, 50g fiber 
    *Cut x 16: 192 cal, 6.7g fat, 13g protein, 3.1g fiber
    These are great. I did make a few alterations due to ingredient availability - I used acai-blueberry juice instead of apple juice, and used cranberries/apricots/cherries as the dried fruit mixture. I agree that they are moist bars - I found it helped to cut them into bars, and then place them on a cooling rack to dry the edges out a bit. The flavor was great, and they weren't too dense or cakey. Overall, a good eat.
    I love this recipe! Not only does it taste good, it also freezes well if you find you can't eat them all fast enough. My favorite part is the idea of making my own protein bars and knowing exactly what goes into them!
    I made these for my daughter who needs extra protein for her pregnancy. She is a picky eater and she loves them. I am enjoying them too as a lunch meal replacement. They keep me going on busy afternoons when there is no time to stop to eat. I have seen several estimates for protein count. Anyone know for sure?
    My son (21 asked me to help him find alternate ideas for protein bars/shakes. I saw this show...a repeat, and was excited to try. Well...they are the best!! I could only find "Soy Flour" - so I used that. Used Cranberries in place of Apricots (personal choice. Also chopped up "dried Banana chips" - wonderful!. To keep it lower in fat and calories - I used "lite" tofu and I used "splenda" brown sugar in place of regular brown sugar and "egg beaters" in place of regular eggs.. All in all - a great addition to our diet/snacks - THANKS Alton!!  
    These are the most flavorful protein bars I have eaten. I follwed *most* of the recipe. Instead of eggs, I substituted ground flax seed with water added (almost volume-for-volume). The blender doesn't do tofu (even the soft silken) very well...try a food processor instead: works like a charm.
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