This protein bar recipe is full of toasted coconut flavor, whole grains, and is sweetened with just a touch of honey. You will have a hard time eating the store-bought chalky ones after you’ve tried these!
The holidays are near (yay!) — which for many of us means travel! We are getting ready to make the 30+ hour trek back to the United States right before Thanksgiving.
I can’t handle airplane food. I always make sure I have fresh snacks (fruit and veggies) to snack on for the first half of the trip, and rice crackers and protein bars for the next part. Now that I have a little one following along, that means twice (no, 3 times!) the snacks. He has one healthy appetite.
I always feel so much better getting to my destination if I’ve taken the time to make sure I eat right on the way. Traveling is hard enough on our bodies without also throwing in sugar crashes and hard to digest processed foods.
Another thing that really helps– drinking water rather than coffee and flavored beverages (or alcohol). I’ve never been one for drinking on flights– just adds to the jet lag, plus extra trips to the extra dirty toilets! I am actually really bad at drinking water on flights too, because I try to avoid having to use the bathrooms. I’d rather hold it to the next airport. Not a healthy habit.
Travel Friendly Snack Recipes
If you’re looking for some airplane or car friendly snacks, and want real food that’s also tasty, skip the store bought granola bars and chips and try some of these ideas:
- Toasted Pecan Almond Butter: This works as a great dip for carrots, celery, and apples. I love to take this on car trips. It doesn’t need to be refrigerated. However, it’s a “gel” so it can’t go on flights- unless you have an infant! When you have a young child, you can even take water through security. Just take it out when you go through security, along with other items you have brought for your child like prepared bottles or diaper rash cream, and security just smells the bottles or might use a chemical testing strip, and then allows you to take them with you.
- Basil Pesto White Bean Hummus: Unfortunately, this isn’t something that will be making a 30+ hour flight. I have brought this on shorter flights just to enjoy as dinner before going through security. It’s an amazing option if you can travel with a cooler! Bring along whole grain crackers, rice crackers, and chopped veggies. If you don’t have time to make this (it’s easy- maybe 20 minutes to throw it together!), buy a premade hummus. I like making my own to make sure it’s low in oil and has tons of great flavor.
- Oatmeal Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins: This is another great option that will fare well for the first leg of a long flight, and will do even better if they can stay in a cold cooler on a car journey. Full of whole grains and fruit, low in added sugar. A much better option than stopping at a coffee shop and picking up a similar one! The chocolate chips melt if these aren’t kept cool, so if you know you can’t refrigerate them, you might consider subbing the chocolate for walnuts or pecans.
- Gluten Free Graham Crackers: I love these for traveling because they are a sturdy little cookie (many of my oatmeal-based recipes will crumble easily in a carry on bag!). They are made with almonds and whole grains, and are low in added sugars. These will be making our long flight with us next week- perfect snack for Xander. It’s hard to travel with good protein sources (I’ve taken hard boiled eggs and they just make everything smell- and I don’t enjoy them once they’ve warmed up, even though I know they are still safe to eat). I take nuts for myself, but since he can’t yet chew them, ground up nuts in a cookie like these are a great way to make sure he’s getting healthy fats and proteins.
- Sriracha Sesame Cashews: You know those sesame coated cashews at Trader Joe’s? These are my version, amped up with extra flavor from the Sriracha sauce. If you don’t have time to put this recipe together, no worries- just take raw or roasted cashews to snack on. Cashews are the perfect travel snack because they will make the whole journey, and they are just as high in protein as almonds. Because I use egg white in this recipe, they only have a shelf life of about 3 days, so they need to be made right prior to a trip to be fresh.
Tips for making Toasted Coconut Protein Bars
- Mix-ins would work great in this recipe! Mini chocolate chips, raisins or nuts would all work well.
- Make it Gluten Free: Be sure to use certified gluten free oatmeal and brown rice crisp cereal.
- Save time: I don’t take the time to top these bars with chocolate and toasted coconut flakes! They are just as delicious without it.
- For the Family: I don’t like to give my son protein powder. For one, he doesn’t need additional protein in his already healthy diet. Two, protein powders can be hard to digest for many people, and are doubly-difficult to digest for tiny bellies. If you’d like to make something similar like this for your child, the base (just the crispy oatmeal part) of this recipe is a great kid-friendly recipe.
Nutritional data for Toasted Coconut Protein Bars and images courtesy of www.NutritionData.com.
Other Homemade Energy Bar Recipes:
- Soft and Chewy Protein Granola Bars, by Running with Spoons
- Quick ‘n Easy No-Bake Protein Bars, by OhSheGlows
- Gluten Free Date Bars, by Vitamin Sunshine
- Dark Chocolate Cherry Energy Bars, by Vitamin Sunshine
This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, I’ll receive a small percentage of any purchases made.