Rate this post


 

The demand for healthy options has led to many innovations in the snacking industry. Without a doubt the rising concern for our individual health is commendable. Energy bars as we knew them have also undergone a tremendous transformation.

Skepticism and distrust still cloud people’s opinion when it comes to the energy bars. We can’t blame them for, amidst the huge fanfare and torrents of different types of energy bars that flock our markets, a consumer is bound to feel confused and cynical about its authenticity.

In this blog, we have tried to provide basic information about energy bars and how to select the healthiest energy bars from an array of options available to you.

Table of Contents:

 

What Are Energy Bars?

Energy bars are delicious and nutritious snack bars made up of assorted wholesome ingredients like whole grain cereals, oats, granola, quinoa, almonds & nuts, seeds, dried fruits, and fruits.

These bars were famous as a sports bar or a protein bar and catered mainly to athletes and trainers. But nowadays, energy bars are formulated to suit people with diverse health goals. If you scour the markets you will find bars that are balanced to replace your meals as well as support your training.

Some are ideal for people with diabetes and others provide aid to people on weight loss regimes. There are amazing and scrumptious options available for kids too.

From varied flavors and a wide array of ingredients used, these small, compact nutrition bars can actually nourish you wholesomely and pamper your cravings at the same time.

 

Different Types Of Energy Bars

There are numerous energy bars brands and several flavors of energy bars available in the market and they all fall into one of the few types of energy bars.

  1. Protein Bars

    Protein bars are just the thing you need if your aim is to raise your protein intake. These bars try to cram you up with proteins to help you build your muscle as well as help you recover after a strenuous workout. Whey protein isolates, casein and soy proteins are few types of proteins you would want to look for while picking up your protein bar. At the same time be sure to scan for sugar in the bar. A protein bar simply loaded with refined sugar won’t do your workout any good.

  2. Pre Workout Bars

    Pre workout bars are made to fuel your workouts and are generally best eaten before a workout or a training session. A healthy endurance bar should be made from complex carbohydrates that release energy slowly over a period of time to support your activity.

  3. Meal replacement Bars

    Meal replacement bars are a haven for dieters and weight watchers. These are specially designed to provide wholesome nutrition and aid in weight loss. They contain a balance of fats, carbohydrates, and proteins to replace any of your meals like lunch or breakfast safely.

  4. Daily Activity Bars

    These bars a type of cross-over between endurance bars and meal replacement bars. They emphasize on all-day outdoor activities and therefore provide both lasting energy and some meal-replacement nutritional features.

 

How To Choose A Good Energy Bar?

One rule of thumb we should remember is that not all snack or nutrition bars are created equal. Therefore while selecting an ideal bar we should evaluate it based on its nutrition value, texture, ingredients used, taste and most importantly the purpose it will serve.

For example, a weight loss energy bar will be low in calories and carbohydrates but high in fiber whereas an energy bar for a cyclist or runner needs to be high in complex carbohydrates and proteins to steadily fuel the race or run.

Energy bars with refined carbohydrates and added sugar should be avoided strictly as it will lead provide a momentary surge in energy followed by a period of bonking in athletes.

Proteins become a primary criterion when it comes to a pre-workout energy bar to support muscle gain. But if we talk about an energy bar for kids then taste and texture will be a paramount consideration along with the nutrient profile.

Flavors like chocolate, peanut butter, and fruits based bar seem to work best with kids and help replace the sugar-filled junk kids binge on. A crunchy texture compared to chewy one will strike a chord with kids. Even for kids energy bars sweetened with dates and honey should be selected.

Guide to Choose Healthiest Energy Bars

 

Why Date Based Energy Bars?

Dates, very often referred to as natures own sugar candy, are excellent natural sweeteners. Besides a lip-smacking sweetness, dates are loaded with nutrients like fiber, protein, iron, calcium and several other vitamins and minerals. They are also high in disease-fighting antioxidants and come with a host of health benefits.  Any decent energy bar is one which discourages the use of added sugar and artificial sweeteners like high fructose corn syrup but use dried fruits, honey, and fruits to sweeten up their bars.

 

Do-It-Yourself – Homemade Energy Bars Recipes

With the right blend of ingredients, you can make your very own perfect energy bar at home. Try these healthy recipes and enjoy the burst of good health.

Three – Ingredient Date Energy Bar

Yields1 Serving

Ingredients:

 1 cup Nuts

 1 cup Dried fruit

 1 cup (12-15 whole) Pitted dried dates, preferably Medjool

Instructions:

1

Roast the nuts (optional). Nuts can be used raw or roasted; roasting will add a toasty, nutty flavor to the bars. If desired, roast the nuts at 350°F for 10 to 12 minutes, until fragrant and golden. Allow cooling before using.

2

Combine the nuts, dried fruit, and dates in a food processor. Combine all the ingredients in a food processor. Pulse a few times just to break them up. Separate the dates if they start to clump together.

3

Process continuously for 30 seconds. By this point, the ingredients should all have broken down into crumb-sized pieces. Scrape the edges of the bowl and beneath the blade to make sure nothing is sticking.

4

Process continuously until a ball is formed, 1 to 2 minutes. Continue processing for another 1 to 2 minutes, until the ingredients clump together and gather into a ball.

5

Press into a thick square and chill. Lay a piece of plastic wrap or wax paper on your work surface and dump the dough on top. Press the dough with your hands until it forms a thick square, roughly 8″x8″ in size. Wrap and chill for at least an hour or overnight.

6

Divide into bars. Unwrap the chilled dough and transfer to a cutting board. Cut into 8 large bars or 16 small squares, as desired. Wrap each bar in plastic wrap or wax paper.

7

Store the bars in the fridge for several weeks or in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Ingredients

 1 cup Nuts

 1 cup Dried fruit

 1 cup (12-15 whole) Pitted dried dates, preferably Medjool

Directions

1

Roast the nuts (optional). Nuts can be used raw or roasted; roasting will add a toasty, nutty flavor to the bars. If desired, roast the nuts at 350°F for 10 to 12 minutes, until fragrant and golden. Allow cooling before using.

2

Combine the nuts, dried fruit, and dates in a food processor. Combine all the ingredients in a food processor. Pulse a few times just to break them up. Separate the dates if they start to clump together.

3

Process continuously for 30 seconds. By this point, the ingredients should all have broken down into crumb-sized pieces. Scrape the edges of the bowl and beneath the blade to make sure nothing is sticking.

4

Process continuously until a ball is formed, 1 to 2 minutes. Continue processing for another 1 to 2 minutes, until the ingredients clump together and gather into a ball.

5

Press into a thick square and chill. Lay a piece of plastic wrap or wax paper on your work surface and dump the dough on top. Press the dough with your hands until it forms a thick square, roughly 8″x8″ in size. Wrap and chill for at least an hour or overnight.

6

Divide into bars. Unwrap the chilled dough and transfer to a cutting board. Cut into 8 large bars or 16 small squares, as desired. Wrap each bar in plastic wrap or wax paper.

7

Store the bars in the fridge for several weeks or in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Three – Ingredient Dates Energy Bar

Cranberry Walnut Granola Bars

Yields1 Serving

Ingredients: 

 12 qts Pitted Dates

 1 cup Rolled Oats

 2 tbsp Almond Butter

  cup Honey

 2 tbsp Coconut Oil melted

 1 pinch Salt

 ½ cup Dried Cranberries

  cup Walnuts

Instructions:

1

Combine dates, honey, almond butter, and coconut oil in food processor or high-powered blender.

2

Pulse mixture until smooth.

3

Place mixture into a bowl and stir in remaining ingredients i.e. Walnuts, rolled oats and cranberries.

4

Press into a small pan or baking dish and place into freezer to chill for 15 minutes to allow the bars to set up.

5

Remove from freezer and cut into bars.

6

Store in pantry, refrigerator, or freezer.

Ingredients

 12 qts Pitted Dates

 1 cup Rolled Oats

 2 tbsp Almond Butter

  cup Honey

 2 tbsp Coconut Oil melted

 1 pinch Salt

 ½ cup Dried Cranberries

  cup Walnuts

Directions

1

Combine dates, honey, almond butter, and coconut oil in food processor or high-powered blender.

2

Pulse mixture until smooth.

3

Place mixture into a bowl and stir in remaining ingredients i.e. Walnuts, rolled oats and cranberries.

4

Press into a small pan or baking dish and place into freezer to chill for 15 minutes to allow the bars to set up.

5

Remove from freezer and cut into bars.

6

Store in pantry, refrigerator, or freezer.

Cranberry Walnut Granola Bars

Peanut Butter Oats Bar

Yields1 Serving

Ingredients:

 12 pt Pitted Dates

 1 cup Rolled Oats

 ¼ cup Peanut Butter natural

  cup Honey

 2 tbsp Coconut Oil melted

 ¼ tbsp Salt

Instructions:

1

Combine dates, honey, peanut butter, and coconut oil in food processor or high-powered blender. Pulse mixture until smooth.

2

Place mixture into a bowl and stir in remaining ingredients.

3

Press into a small pan or baking dish and place into freezer to chill for 15 minutes to allow the bars to set up.

4

Remove from freezer and cut into bars

Ingredients

 12 pt Pitted Dates

 1 cup Rolled Oats

 ¼ cup Peanut Butter natural

  cup Honey

 2 tbsp Coconut Oil melted

 ¼ tbsp Salt

Directions

1

Combine dates, honey, peanut butter, and coconut oil in food processor or high-powered blender. Pulse mixture until smooth.

2

Place mixture into a bowl and stir in remaining ingredients.

3

Press into a small pan or baking dish and place into freezer to chill for 15 minutes to allow the bars to set up.

4

Remove from freezer and cut into bars

 

HOW TO STORE ENERGY BARS?

These bars are simple to store without any elaborate requirements. They have a large shelf-life and can be simply stashed in a drawer or in your bag. For longer periods, store energy bars in a zip-lock bag or wrap it in cling film and keep in a freezer or refrigerator.