July 31, 2014

Peanut Butter Power Bites

Hi. My name is Fran and I am an information addict.  Some people have chocolate. Some people have shoes. Others have cigarettes. I have the internet.

The internet is a lot like potato chips. I can’t go out to the web and just stop at one blog post or one website. I  visit my friend the internet with the best intentions. This week it was to figure out what healthy power snack I could make for my bicycle obsessed husband (yup, his vice is road biking) and the other members of his bicycle club for the upcoming City to Shore ride to benefit the Multiple Sclerosis Society.

Hours later I had Peanut Butter Power Bites.

I am not a cyclist myself but my husband has become quite the rider. Two years ago he and I poked fun at the padded bike shorts and colorful riding attire we saw along the edge of the road. Now he looks like this…

I do know from what he has relayed to me that riding for 75-100 miles or more requires a rider to keep his body fueled and hydrated. Many cyclists look to commercial products like energy drinks, energy bars and caffeine pills to keep them going. But I wanted to provide something homemade that could provide him with the fuel he needed. So off I went to my favorite online resource – Google – and began my search to determine how to properly fortify my brightly colored husband.

I learned that snacks that are high in carbs are very important since a long distance rider can burn through a lot of calories. Those carbs should be nutrient-dense, not from sugars or refined flours, but rather from whole foods like fruits and nuts.

The best high carbs fruits are:

  • Bananas
  • Raisins
  • Cherries
  • Grapes
  • Mangoes
  • Dates
  • Figs
  • Kiwis
  • Pears
  • Apples

I then discovered the Larabar.

The Larabar is an energy bar made from simple ingredients like dates, raisins, and nuts with fun flavors like Apple Pie, Blueberry Muffin, Peanut Butter & Jelly, and Chocolate Chip Brownie.

So off I went again into the depths of the internet to find some recipes for homemade Larabars. And I found some great ones.

Banana Bread Larabars

Chocolate Larabars

Cashew Cookie Larabars

And then I found Katie. Chocolate-covered Katie. And her decadent looking desserts that are actually good for you.

When I saw her Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Cookies, I knew I had to give them a try and add my own spin.

So after starting with bicycle nutrition, a few hours later I ended up with dessert. Go figure!

Peanut Butter Power Bites

Makes 6 balls (so you should really triple it because you will eat them all up in one sitting)

Ingredients

1/4 cup natural peanut butter (just peanuts and salt)
1/4 cup dried Mission figs
3 tablespoons dried cranberries
2 tablespoons roasted, unsalted peanuts
1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons unsweetened coconut flakes

Put peanut butter, figs, cranberries, peanuts, vanilla and salt into the food processor. Pulse until all ingredients have been combined to form a dough.

Using a tablespoon, spoon out the mixture to form 6 balls. Roll in coconut flakes or sprinkle the coconut on top. Inhale immediately or put in the refrigerator to cool a bit, if you have the willpower.

Still need a bit of chocolate? Mix in a few chocolate chips after ingredients have been combined.

So what is your vice? Are you experiencing information overload like me? Have you tried the Larabar? What are your favorite flavors? Share your thoughts in the comments.

Comments

  1. Your bubby reminds me of my brother in law. He loves to bike and competes in the Iron Man completions. He’s already in his late 40th but proves that you can do it no matter how old you are. These power bites are great for him. I will test these on him next time he’s around.

  2. I have all these ingredients and plan to make your recipe tomorrow! I’ll be adding mini chocolate chips for sure :)

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