Loving the BITE: Go Bananas For This Energy Bar

This bar is bananas, B-A-N-A-N-A-S.  And for good reason…athletes love bananas (sweeping generalization, I know).  Some are fanatical, as in 30-bananas-a-day (there’s a whole site about this).  Others simply consider them just a go-to for pre-training, during-the-ride, and recovery.  For Training Nutrition, my only issue with them is that they can get squashed in my pack, and they are big in volume for the amount of calories and carbs they provide – this comes from being a long-distance, no-support-car, pack-and-carry all your own stuff into the mountains athlete.  But this week, I’ve solved my problems, and hopefully yours too.  Our energy bar recipe keeps the bananas compact, un-squashable, and tasty.  Oh yeah….

Recipe of the Week:  Banana Energy Bar

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup golden raisins, or 15 pitted, chopped dates
  • 2 medium banana
  • 1 1/2 cup raw almonds
  • 2 Tsbp organic coconut oil
  • 1/4 – 1/2 tsp salt

Instructions:

  1. Slice bananas into thin slices. Lay slices in single layer on greased baking sheet.
  2. Cook banana in oven or dehydrator at 175F for 2-3 hours until dry. Allow to cool.
  3. Place banana chips, raisins, almonds, and salt in food processor and process for 1-2 minutes, until almost smooth but still a little chunky, and not quite a paste (technical terms – obviously, this doesn’t need to be exact).
  4. Press into a greased bread loaf pan (if it’s sticky, you can use wax paper to press).
  5. Place in freezer 1 hour, or in refrigerator until firm. Cut into 8 equal bars or squares. Store in refrigerator – wrap in plastic wrap to take with you.

Nutrition Values: Calories: 266.4, Sodium: 74mg – 148.1 mg, Total Carbs: 26.5 g, Dietary Fiber: 4.5 g, Protein: 6.5 g, Potassium: 447 mg

Comments:

The humble banana has received lots of flack in the past several years.  Mostly, since it’s one of the sweeter tropical fruits, those wanting to minimize carbs and sugars have cast them aside.  And, it’s true…there’s lots of carbs in this natural energy food.  In fact, just ½ of a medium banana is one serving of carbs, the same as 1 whole orange.  And there’s very little fiber.  Problem?  Not so much…these aspects make bananas perfect for Training Nutrition.  Before, during, and after training, bananas offer quick absorbing carbs with very little fiber to slow it down.  And now that the smash-factor has been eliminated (with our bars), they travel well.  And, it’s more than just carbs, by using bananas as your Training Fuel, or a small portion as some whole-food carbs in Daily Nutrition, you’ll get:

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