Pumpkin + Protein = Perfect

Are you tired of pumpkin yet?  I’m not.  I found a great pumpkin granola bar recipe, and I needed to try it.  It was one of those recipes that I searched for on a couple sites, and they pretty much all brought me back to same recipe.  I took that as a sign that this recipe is a good one.  I like the recipe because it doesn’t have flour, eggs, or butter.  Instead, just applesauce.  The only thing I thought could make the recipe better would be protein powder.  So I added some.

I added a “scoop” which is about 25g, so it only really added a few grams of protein to each bar.  I was surprised, however, that the protein powder had a negligible affect on the taste and texture of the final product.  Score!

Pumpkin Protein Granola Bars

Yields about 9 bars (one 8 x 8 square pan) adapted from Sweet Pea’s Kitchen

Ingredients

  • 3 cups old fashioned oats
  • 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 cup applesauce
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 350. Cover an 8 x 8 square pan with parchment and/or nonstick spray.
  2. Combine oats, spices, protein powder, and salt in a bowl and set aside while you combine the brown sugar, applesauce, honey, pumpkin, and vanilla in different bowl.
  3. Pour the wet mixture over the dry and stir well to combine.  Add the cranberries, chocolate chips, and pecans.  Make sure the ingredients are well distributed.
  4. Pour batter into the prepared pan.  Bake 30-35 minutes.  Allow to cool and enjoy!
    Packed up and ready for an adventure!


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