You know how when you're reading a book and you come across a particular word that sticks in your mind, and not much later you hear it in a completely different scenario? That's kind of what happened to me recently with protein bars. Ever since I made my first protein bars at home, I've noticed how many people buy them from the store. I feel like I see it everywhere, someone buying one from a vending machine, a muscle head chowing down on one on his way out the gym, a bar sitting on someone's desk waiting to be eaten, someone in front of me at the checkout line buying bars in every flavor possible, etc etc etc. I'm not going to lie, I did that myself... especially with Luna bars. My goodness those things they are addicting.
But one other thing I'll admit is that I used to be obsessed with Lenny&Larry's Muscle Brownies (just like how I was obsessed with Chocolate Muscle Milk). But why buy those expensive, sugary, processed products when you can make a healthy version at home? A healthy version that tastes even better than anything inside a plastic wrapper can provide.
Just like my Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Bars, these are fudgy and chocolatey. They taste like a serious diet-buster but are totally diet-approved.
Triple Chocolate Fudge "Muscle Brownies": [no bake, low sugar, high fiber/protein, GF, vegan]
(makes 9 brownies)128g (1/2 cup) Raw Almond Butter
1 cup + 2 tbs Unsweetened Almond Milk
10 packets Truvia* (or sweetener of choice)
1/2 tsp Stevia Extract*
1/2 tsp Butter Extract (optional, but it's really great in here!)
20g (1/4 cup) Regular Cocoa Powder (unsweetened)
1/4 tsp Salt
144g (1.5 cups) Old Fashioned Rolled Oats (GF if you like)
168g (8 scoops) Chocolate Brown Rice Protein Powder** (I used SunWarrior)
1/3 cup Mini Dark Chocolate Chips (I used EnjoyLife)
*If you don't have Truvia you can use 1 tsp of stevia instead of 1/2 tsp. If you don't have stevia, add 6-8 more packets of Truvia, or to taste.
**8 scoops = 1+1/4 cups packed. Do not use whey protein powder in this recipe, it will be gooey and will not solidify.
1. Line a 9" brownie pan with parchment paper both ways and set aside (or 8" pan for thicker brownies).
2. Using a stand mixer, add the almond butter and milk to a large bowl and mix on low (don't use a whisk attachment).
3. Add the sweetener, stevia and butter extract.
4. Add the cocoa powder and salt.
5. Process the oats in a blender or food processor (I blended them to a coarse flour for texture), then add to the mixer. Add the protein powder (mixture should look like cookie dough and firm/thick like play-doh)
6. When mixture is even, fold in the chocolate chips. Scoop into the prepared pan and flatten with the spatula (I used a pastry roller). Refrigerate covered overnight and slice the next day. Store covered and in the fridge.
Feel free to add 1/4 teaspoon of instant coffee to the mix if you want a strong chocolate flavor... or add it because you simply like caffeine ;)
I decided to compare my nutrition label to Lenny&Larry's Muscle Brownies.
L&L's label is on the left, Chockohlawtay's is on the right:
I guess you can say I'm pretty darn happy right now. Chockohlawtay's version has:
- 70 less calories
- ZERO cholesterol
- Less saturated fat, sodium, carbohydrates and sugar
- More fiber, calcium and iron
- A whole lotta loooovee
All that for TRIPLE. CHOCOLATE. FUDGE. BROWNIES.
Yes, believe it. Life is good.
Edit: Life is good with one of these Muscle Brownies in your