Protein granola bar with delicious lemon and poppyseed mix-ins. Perfect for breakfast or a meal replacement while hiking.
Combine the coconut sugar (or brown sugar) with lemon juice, lemon zest, and optional lemon extract. Set aside.
In a large bowl, toss together oats, unsalted nuts, and seeds. Add nutritional powders: flax meal, arrowroot, protein powder, maca powder, and nutritional yeast to the bowl and stir to combine.
Preheat oven to 300℉/150℃. Line an 8x8 or 9×9-inch, or similarly sized small rectangular pan with parchment paper, leaving enough overhang on the sides for lifting the bars after baking.
In a medium heatproof bowl, place butter (or oil), nut butter (or tahini), honey/maple, sugar/lemon mixture, and heat it in the microwave or in a saucepan over medium heat until butter has melted and mixture is warm. Stir to combine. Let it sit and cool briefly (about 5 minutes). Meanwhile, stir in egg whites to the dry oat mixture.
Pour butter mixture into oat mixture and toss until evenly moistened. Add dried fruits (apricots or dates) and white chocolate chips. Mix until incorporated (make sure mixture isn’t too warm before adding the chocolate chips or they will melt).
Pour mixture into prepared pan, pressing down evenly and firmly for 1 minute (this will help create less crumbly bars). Bake for 20-30 minutes, depending on the thickness of your bars, until golden brown. The mixture shouldn’t be hard, but rather soft and elastic when lightly pressed. Allow to cool to room temperature.
Whisk together lemon juice, protein powder, and ¼ cup monkfruit sweetener, adding more sweetener to achieve desired thick consistency. Spread evenly over the bars. Sprinkle more poppy seeds over the top if desired. Place in the oven at 170℉/75℃ to dry out the icing. Remove from oven after 20-25 minutes or until icing is dry.
Allow to cool to room temperature, then cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before cutting into bars. Cold bars are best for cutting. Warm bars may crumble while cutting.
Store bars in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week. For longer storage, wrap the bars in plastic cling wrap and freeze in airtight containers or Ziploc bags. Grab and go as needed. The bars will thaw very quickly as they don't harden in the freezer too much.
- You can double the recipe and use a 9x13-inch pan, although baking time may be longer. Bake until golden brown.
- It is okay to omit the non-liquid sweetener such as brown sugar, granulated sugar, or coconut sugar for a less sweet bar. Just combine the lemon ingredients with the liquid sugar (honey or maple) first and set aside.