Healthy Protein Snack
If you’re looking for a healthy protein snack, you’ve come to the right place. You’ve probably got breakfast handled, you have a few go-to lunches, then your favourite dinner options…but when on earth do you do when you get the afternoon munchies?
As a former sugar addict and, as you know, a current chocolate lover, I’ve always tended to want something sweet in the afternoon. Most of you will be familiar with that 3pm afternoon ‘slump’, when a sugar rush is exactly what you feel like you need to get you through til dinner.
You also know that hitting the sugar in the afternoon is the worst thing you can do. But who wants a carrot stick for their afternoon snack? Not me, that’s for sure. I love carrots but, personally, I prefer them in my salad or on my dinner plate.
There’s plenty of muesli bars out there, but check the ingredients and you’ll see that most of them are packed with sugar and weigh in at far too many calories for an afternoon snack.
How to make: Healthy Protein Snack
For a long time, we’ve been searching for a healthy protein snack that is both nutritious, delicious and not packed with sugar and, after trawling recipe books and google, we finally came up with one.
We’ve tested and tweaked this recipe a number of times in our test kitchen, and here it is. We’ve called them ‘afternoon protein balls’.
They fit all the criteria: nutritious, delicious and, amazingly, still taste quite sweet even though there’s no added sugar or honey or other sweetener.
Healthy Protein Snack – Afternoon Protein Balls
- 1 cup mixed nuts + seeds (We use almonds, brazil, cashew, hazelnut, pumpkin and sunflower)
- ½ cup good quality protein power (we use 180nutrition or Vega)
- ¼ cup unsweetened shredded coconut
- ¼ cup almond butter (health food store or health aisle in supermarket)
- ¼ cup almond meal (health food store or health aisle in supermarket)
- ¼ cup coconut oil (check your local health food store)
- 1½ tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1 large egg
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ cup dates or currants
- On a cooking tray, toast nuts and seeds until golden brown on a medium heat. In order for them to cook evenly, you need to shake up the tray at least once during cooking. It should take approx 7 minutes
- Once toasted, pour mixture into a food processor and pulse until nuts and seeds are chopped and the mixture becomes coarsely ground (sort of the consistency of bread crumbs)
- Add nut and seed mixture to a mixing bowl, then add shredded coconut and almond meal
- Pour coconut oil and almond butter into the dry mixture. If your coconut oil is hard (this depends on outside temperature), then melt gently on a low heat first. Stir until smooth.
- Add vanilla extract and sea salt. Mix thoroughly.
- Add whole egg and mix thoroughly.
- Fold in dates or currants
- Make 12 cookie balls and place on baking sheet
- Cook in a preheated oven at 160 degrees for approx 10 minutes, until golden brown
- Note: the coconut oil will have risen to the top and make it look like the oil has separated, but this will sink in as soon as you remove from the oven.
- Allow to cool and then store in an airtight container.
Modified from an original recipe at CrossFitFenrir.com
For more healthy snacks, go to Donna & Tora’s healthy snack recipes!