Best Protein Bar EVER – with Garden of Life

Follow ME To a HEALTHIER and More Vibrant YOU #gardenoflife #gardenofliferaw #kindorganics


So…by now y’all are aware that I went all whiny and whingy at BlogHer14, but I came away with a few positives, like meeting the awesome reps from Garden of Life Kind Organics.

I start every day with smoothies prepared with Raw Protein-Beyond Organic Protein Formula

  • Good for those with gastrointestinal sensitivities to milk, whey, and other protein sources
  • Easily digested – supports digestive health and function with live probiotics and protein-digesting enzymes
  • It’s raw, vegan and gluten free.
  • One serving has 17 grams of raw plant based protein.

My family loves my protein bars — I’m on a constant quest experimenting with different recipes to pack as many nutrients as possible in every bite, and THIS one is so good, it could be a meal replacement bar, too.

There are a lot of ingredients, but don’t let that scare you; it makes enough to last a long time.

This recipe uses Garden of Life Raw Protein in Vanilla, but you could use any flavor. Chocolate would be DELICOUS, and if you use that, add 1/2 cup cocoa to the dry ingredients.

“Bomber Bar” with Quinoa and Lentils ©™

We call them “Bomber Bars” ‘cos “bomber” is a term for an awesome wave. In my family, everyone but me surfs, and this is a great snack when you’ve burned all those calories in the water.

Lentil Puree:
4 ounces lentils, approximately 2/3 cup, picked over and rinsed
2 cups water
Cook until soft, about thirty minutes, then mash or use immersion blender. Set aside.

Ingredients:
½ – 1 cup Garden of Life Protein Powder
1½ cups whole-wheat pastry flour
1 cup buckwheat flour
½ cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon (we love cinnamon)
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
2 teaspoons fresh or ground ginger
1 teaspoon cardamom

2/3 cup maple syrup
½ cup vegetable oil or coconut oil
1 egg (delete egg to make it vegan)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2/3 cup unsalted peanut butter

2 cups rolled oats
½ cup raw quinoa
1/2 c. Garden of Life chia seeds or ground chia
1/4 c. ground flax seeds
¼ cup rice bran
1/4 c. shredded coconut, sweetened

½ cup dried blueberries
1 cup assorted dried fruit, such as raisins, cherries, apricots, cranberries
1 cup chopped almonds

Directions:
In a really big bowl, combine the first ten dry ingredients, whisk to stir and set aside.quinoalentilbarCombine the quinoa, chia, flax, coconut, oats, and almonds on a baking sheet. Bake for 5-10 minutes @350 degrees until lightly browned.

quinoalentil6in a large pot, mix the peanut butter and maple syrup together and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and stir in the rice bran, salt, cinnamon, allspice, cardamom, ginger, and vanilla extract.

quinoalentil7Combine the lentils with quinoa/oats/almonds mixture with dry ingredients that were set aside. Whisk to mix.

Pour the peanut butter/maple syrup mixture into the bowl with dry ingredients, add oil and egg (if used).

Add cooked, mashed lentils. Mix well with wooden spoon to completely incorporate.

Add fruit. At this point, I use my hands to mix it all together. The mixture is a bit heavy and thanks to the maple syrup, it should stick together, so you may need to slightly moisten hands as you go.

Line a 13×9 pan with parchment paper, leaving enough hanging over the sides so you can lift it out after it bakes and cools.

Pour the (heavy) mixture into the pan and press down firmly.

*This is a super important step. When my tugboat man is home, this is his job. When he’s not here, I use a one-pound can to roll back and forth until it’s a flat and mooshed(?) together as possible. Pack it down to ensure it fills each corner and creates an even, flat surface.

Bake at 350 degrees for about thirty-forty minutes. Remove from oven, and press down again. The more dense the bar, the less crumbly it’ll be.
Let cool, refrigerate for at least two hours. Cut into 2×2 inch squares. To keep them fresher longer, I wrap each individually in parchment paper and always refrigerated.

quinoalentil8
quinoalentilproteinbar2 quinoalentilproteinbar3One of these bars is a protein packed “bomber” that’s a perfect snack or even meal replacement.

My son needs to eat several small meals with high quality nutrition and these are perfect for his busy, on-the-go lifestyle.

I’m happy because I know my family is eating healthy food made with love.

Foursquare Helps Vegetarians Celebrate National Cheeseburger Day

northstarToday is National Cheeseburger Day and it seems to be a particularly good time to extoll the virtues of a non-animal, meat-free, violence-free burger.

Do you have a favorite veggie burger restaurant?

 

Have you visited any of these locations?

How about your own recipe? I’d love to hear about it!

(I received the following news release and thought I’d share it with y’all who live in different parts of the country.)

goldenmeanTo help enjoy the beloved sandwich, Foursquare has made is possible for vegetarians to get in on the celebration by rounding up a list of the country’s best veggie burgers.

Forget “checking in” with Foursquare’s new app – now we’re all about leaving tips at places you love (or hate) and finding recommendations personalized for YOU by allowing you to pick from over 10,000 “tastes” (everything from “veggie burgers” to “veggie pizza,” “veggie pho” and “vegetarian curries”). We have over 55 million people using the app, all of which have contributed to the making of this list of meat-less beauties.

Details on the top veggie burgers (and a popular tip for each location) according to Foursquare around the country are below.

BEST VEGGIE BURGERS IN THE USA

Top Tip: “That veggie burger was better than a lot of regular burgers I’ve had. Definitely recommended.”

Top Tip: “Best veggie burger ever- I couldn’t believe it wasn’t meat. The kale salad is also a must-order. Hillstone is surprisingly very vegan-friendly!”

Top Tip: “Very cool vibe! Maca hot latte was amazing and yes the burger lived up to the reviews!”

Top Tip: “$6 burgers/veggie burgers during happy hour. Perpetual happy hour on Yuenglings ($3). You can easily spend very little or live like a hip king here. Awesome brunch, too.”

Top Tip: “Bring a carnivore here who you want to convince that being a vegetarian, vegan, or hipster is cool. Also, amazing playlist when DJs aren’t spinning.

Top Tip: “The spinach dip is what I come for & the veggie burger is the BEST!!!

Top Tip: “This is hands down the best veggie burger I have ever had. It has substance, flavor, texture, and obviously a little love. Wow.”

Top Tip: “I don’t know what I love more the cornbread or the veggie burger”

Top Tip: “Veggie burger was awesome! Handmade fresh with great seasoning. The Kentucky bourbon is exceptional too.”

Top Tip: “The food here is unbelievable! Just enjoyed a Veggie Burger that was absolutely outstanding.”

 

Stuffed Portobello ‘Shrooms Recipe

Portobellos — or portabellos or portobellas —  I’ve seen it spelled all three ways — are fat-free and very low in calories.

They’re also a rich source of selenium, copper and niacin. I learned that portobello mushrooms are the mature form of baby crimini mushrooms. They grow up to six inches in diameter with a dense, meaty texture.

It’s that “meaty” texture that vegetarians and vegans love. We’re definitely NOT trying to recreate meat in any fashion– at least my tugboat man and I aren’t — but quinoa and brown rice and lentils leave little in the way of a CHEWING experience — and this ‘shroom is beyond versatile on the grill or stuffed and baked.

This is how I prepared it last night for me and my tugboat man.

For two people:
Two portobello mushrooms
1/2 onion
One summer squash or zucchini
1/2 jalapeño
Chard and beet greens (from our garden)
One small tomato
Two slices whole wheat bread or 1/4 cup bread crumbs

portobello1 Prepare the mushrooms by carefully washing off all dirt — don’t soak any mushroom in water or they’ll tend to become spongy and/or mushy. Ick. Wipe dry. Remove the stem and set aside. Scrape out the gills to make more room for the filling. Place bottom side down (stem side up) on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Sprinkle a teaspoon of olive oil over the mushrooms. Bake at 350 degrees for about twelve minutes. Immediately remove and drain off any water. Notice the shrinkage!

While the mushrooms are in the oven, chop the onion, jalapeño, tomato, greens, mushroom stems, and shred the squash.

portobello2

Using a teaspoon of olive oil to coat the pan, sauté all the vegetables except for the greens until soft. Add a pinch (or more) of dried red pepper flakes, cracked pepper, fresh basil, and oregano. Add the greens and a few tablespoons water or wine or low sodium vegetable stock. Put a top on the pan and steam until the greens are tender.

Take off the heat. If you’re using bread crumbs, add them now and stir. If you’re like me and ran out of bread crumbs, take the bread and shred it in a bowl, add about half cup of warm water. Allow the bread to soak up the water and then squeeze out all the water and add to the cooked vegetables. Mix well.

Place the mushroom cups on a baking sheet with a clean sheet of parchment paper. Fill each of the portobellos with equal amounts of filling and sprinkle with freshly grated parmesan cheese (or vegan cheese), if desired.

Preheat oven to 350 degreportobello3es and bake for approximately fifteen minutes until heated through and cheese is melted.

 

 

 

Add a fresh salad of lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, and feta cheese with a lemony vinaigrette to complement the “meaty” stuffed portobello mushrooms for a healthy and satisfying dinner.

portobello4

 Options: Use any leftover cooked vegetables, too. plus spinach, green peppers, shredded carrots, corn, brown rice, quinoa.

#portobello #recipe #vegetarian

Sign the Animal Bill of Rights! | Animal Legal Defense Fund

I’m discovering my blogging path isn’t all seashells and Chanel…my tugboat man and I are both ardent animal activists — no, he doesn’t eat meat either, and abhors hunting or killing of animals. Hunting is not a sport. My tough merchant mariner is proud to stand up for and defend animals. What an awesome man I’m married to.

Sign the Animal Bill of Rights! | Animal Legal Defense Fund.