These pumpkin protein bars are so scrumptious and guilt-free!!! You would never guess they are healthy, they just don’t taste that. So moist, rich and all things pumpkin. I haven’t used a drop of oil because I thought applesauce + pumpkin puree should do the trick, and I was right.
They are also gluten free which apparently is a big thing right now. I’m not following a gluten free diet but I believe in moderation. Sometimes, I bake with whole wheat flour and sometimes with oats, almond meal and coconut flours. I even bought my first gluten free bread. It’s not bad at all.
These pumpkin protein bars would make a great breakfast on-the-go or an afternoon snack. They taste like the most decadent cake or a muffin. Delicious!
Even my kids said “wow” and they are usually hard to impress with any baked goods. Even if it’s the sweetest Starbucks muffin, they do not love baked goods. Period. It makes it hard for me because the stuff I bake would be a great after school snack.
I often get asked if protein powder can be substituted in my recipes. Sometimes it can be and sometimes not. I think, although I haven’t tried (I should), you can use almond or any other nut flour instead of protein powder in this recipe. But I haven’t tried. When baking, most of the time I end up baking with protein powder because I can enjoy more of a good food.:)
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- 1 cup applesauce, unsweetened
- 1/2 cup egg whites or 2 large eggs* (use flax egg replacer for vegan version)
- 1/4 cup maple syrup or honey
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 2 + 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
- 1 tsp baking powder, aluminum free
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 3/4 cup plant-based protein powder, vanilla (add extra 2-3 tbsp maple syrup if using unflavoured)**
- 1 + 1/2 cup quick or old fashioned rolled oats (use certified gluten free oats for GF version)
- 1/2 cup walnuts, coarsely chopped
- Cooking spray (I use Misto)
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F, line 8 x 8 square baking dish with parchment paper and spray with cooking spray. Set aside.
- In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together pumpkin puree, applesauce, egg whites, maple syrup, vanilla extract, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, baking soda and protein powder. Add oats and walnuts, stir well. Pour mixture in prepared baking dish, level with spatula and bake for 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean. Remove from the oven, let cool for 10 minutes and transfer to a cooling rack to cool for another 30 minutes. Cut with a serrated knife into 8 or 10 bars***. Serve warm or cold.
*Bars made with eggs will come out more moist and rich, but for a leaner version use egg whites - they still are super moist. **Substitute protein powder with almond or any nut flour. I haven't tried that though. ***For smaller portions cut into 10 bars.
Servings Per Recipe: 8
Amount Per Serving = 1 bar:
Total Fat: 6.5 g
Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
Sodium: 299.7 mg
Total Carbs: 26.7 g
Sugars: 11 g
Dietary Fiber: 3.2 g
Protein: 15.4 g
WW Points+: 6