I'm heading to New Orleans(!) so I created these matcha energy bars to keep us energized for the drive.
One of my go-to strategies for staying healthy wile traveling is bringing snacks from home. Being armed with healthy snacks just makes it so much easier to bypass processed convenience store stuff that I don't really enjoy eating anyway.
WHAT IS MATCHA?
Matcha is a type of green tea that comes in a powder. Because the entire leaf is used, matcha contains even more beneficial antioxidants and nutrients than regular green tea. You can read more about the health benefits of matcha tea in my Matcha 101 post.
Matcha has been shown to support a feeling of calm alertness - pretty helpful while traveling.
NEW TO HOMEMADE ENERGY BARS?
A great homemade energy bar needs a few things:
- Nuts and seeds for energy, healthy fats, fiber, and plant-based protein.
- Dates and/or other dried fruits for easily-digestible carbohydrates/quick energy, fiber, sweetness, and to act as a binder.
- Flavorings I used coconut, cacao nibs, matcha, and vanilla here. (But you could substitute with other flavorings and spices to make tons of different combinations, feel free to experiment.)
How can I best describe these energy bars?
They're kinda like a Lara bar and a green tea latte had a (really delicious) baby...
- 1 ¼ cups dates pitted + roughly chopped
- ½ cup almonds
- ½ cup cashews
- ¼ cup hemp seeds
- 1 tsp vanilla bean or pure vanilla extract
- 1 tbsp matcha powder + additional for sprinkling
- 2 tbsp cacao nibs unsweetened
- ¼ cup unsweetened coconut flakes
Combine dates, almonds, cashews, hemp seeds, vanilla, + 2 tsp matcha powder in food processor and pulse until well-combined. Mixture should stick together like a dough when pressed. If mixture is falling a part, add a few more dates and process again until combined.
Add cacao nibs and pulse just enough for cacao to be dispersed throughout.
Line a small baking dish with parchment paper (so bars are easier to remove later) and add bars to dish. Use hands or the back of a spoon to press the mixture down until it is compact and smooth. Sprinkle coconut and additional matcha on top and press down with back of spoon.
Place dish in freezer for at least 30 minutes.
Remove bars from dish by pulling out parchment paper. Cut into bars + store in fridge for up to 1 week.