The primary purpose of most protein bars on the market is to give you an emergency bolus of protein when you're away from home or when you don't feel like going out into the yard to roast a small pig over a spit. Other protein bars, like Finibar™ Competition Bar, are designed to fuel you through intense activity.
That's all fine, but I wanted a legitimate meal replacement bar that I can take on a road trip so that the only reason I have to pull over is to hose the begonias, so to speak. I also needed a food to take with me so that when I go out into the world to take care of the mind numbing litany of doctor, dentist, and CPA appointments, I wouldn't have to pull into a goddamn Arby's and eat a beef and cheddar sandwich to keep my sugar and protein levels stable.
So I designed my own meal replacement "bar" using inspiration from no less than The Lord of the Rings. Even as a geeky kid – a geeky kid who'd read the 1000-page plus trilogy three times by the time he was 12 – I was intrigued by "lembas," which was what the elves made to give them sustenance on long journeys.
It was nutritious, delicious, and it was offensive to evil creatures. Hell, Gollum wouldn't touch it, even when he was starving.
So it was with lembas and my goal of having a meal replacement bar in mind that I concocted my own recipe. It has lots of protein, impressive amounts of functional fats, plenty of phytonutrients and antioxidants, a good amount of fiber, and a relatively modest amount of glycemically acceptable carbohydrates.
Best of all, you don't need traditional measuring cups and there's no pounding or kneading. You just mix the small list of ingredients together with an ordinary spoon, plop it in a pan, smooth it out, and bake it for 15 minutes.
And the only real tool you need is the scoop that comes in a pouch of Metabolic Drive® Protein, which is one of the ingredients. You'll "measure" out everything using that scoop.
- Metabolic Drive® Protein (vanilla, although chocolate and banana would work as well)
- Almond flour
- Unsweetened apple sauce (for moisture as well as nutrition)
- Flax seed meal
- Superfood. This is a blend of 18 different fruits, berries, and vegetables.
Granted, I could have used a lot more ingredients and made it taste even better, but it's not the elvish way. Besides, it would be a pain in the ass and the goal was to remove as many obstacles to making it as I could.
- A medium-sized mixing bowl
- A spoon or spatula
- An 8-inch square metal pan (an aluminum pie tin would also work)
- The scoop that comes in the bag of Metabolic Drive
- Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Mix 3 scoops of Metabolic Drive® Protein with 3 scoops of almond flour, 3 scoops of applesauce, and 1 scoop of flax meal. Add two scoops of Superfood using the small scoop that comes in the Superfood pouch.
- Mix everything together until smooth.
- Spray the pan with non-stick spray, or smear it with butter or olive oil.
- Plop the ball of ingredients into the pan and smooth it out.
- Bake for about 15 minutes, or until edges start to turn brown.
- Let cool before cutting. Keep refrigerated.
- Total prep time: 5 minutes
- Baking time: 15 minutes
When cut into four equal-size servings before trudging off to Mordor, each serving contains:
- Calories: 312
- Protein: 23 grams
- Fat: 17 (the majority being monounsaturated and omega-3 fatty acids)
- Carbs: 20 (of which 5.5 grams are fiber)
Bodybuilder lembas also has plenty of vitamins and nutrients from the almond flour, flax meal, and applesauce. Phytonutrients and antioxidants are also off the charts, courtesy of the Superfood.
As an added bonus, if someone doesn't like it, you can pretty much write them off as an orc or something.