Alright. I'm going to reveal a secret today.
Many of you are aware of the energy bars that I make. I call them "Kleinbars", because that is the level of creativity I am capable of in regards to naming things.
These have evolved over the years. In the beginning, they tasted like shit. Why? Because I didn't add any water and they were basically bricks with chocolate chips and dried fruit. Then I added water and Kleinbars became an actual energy bar that people would eat (by people I mean my housemates and other team members from the UPS XC and track teams that were forced to eat them at our weekly Pie/Desert-Night). Then I thought, "What if I put pure cocoa in them? I have an undiagnosed addiction to chocolate, so more must be better right?" No. I put too much cocoa in them and that batch tasted like dirt. Kleinbars Chocolate Dirt flavor, which was quickly pulled from the market. And by pulled from the market I mean I sadly and slowly ate them all by myself over several weeks because no one would touch them. Even the Tacoma raccoons wouldn't touch them. I put them outside and those creatures looked at me through the window with an expression that said, "What the **** is this? You want me to eat that? Hell no." So the cocoa powder was removed from the recipe. That is not a good way to end an introduction into a food recipe. Further tweaking was undertaken (especially after the cocoa incident) to what they are today: Full Blown Awesome Energy Bars.
Kleinbars were designed to be both a pre-run and post-run snack. They have a 4:1 carbohydrate to protein ratio, which is in the realm of the post-exercise carb:protein ratio that you want for optimal recovery and glycogen replacement (3:1 or 4:1 are the optimal ratios taken ~30 minutes after the end of exercise). They are also light enough on the stomach that they work well as a pre-run snack, in case you happen to be hungry before a run but don't want to mess your stomach up with a huge meal a few minutes before.
So here is the recipe designed by yours truly. Make sure you cook them because the recipe does call for eggs.
-3 Cups Rolled Oats
-3/4 Cup All-Purpose Flour
-1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
-2 servings of Whey Protein Powder (whatever GOOD kind you want)
-1/2 Cup Peanut Butter (Get the GOOD kinds. IE not the crap kinds with Hydrogenated Oils in them)
-1.5 Tbsp Canola Oil
-1 Cup Chocolate Chips (Again, get the good kinds. No Hydrogenated Oils)
-You can use Milk, Semi-Sweet, Dark, White Chocolate, etc. Whatever you want.
-1 Cup Dried Fruit (Any kind you want. This is optional)
-1 Dash of Salt (Just a little bit)
-1/2-1 Cup of water (Depending on how dry you want them)
-Heat the oven to 350 degrees.
-Lightly coat a 12"x 8" (ish) baking pan with cooking spray (so they don't stick)
-Mix all ingredients together until combined
-Press batter into the baking pan evenly.
-Bake for 20-25 minutes (NOT TOO LONG or you will be enjoying homemade bricks)
-They will be lightly golden brown when ready.
-Cool and cut into 24 squares.
-Enjoy your Kleinbars.
Per Single Serving (Approx): 195 Kcals, 7 grams fat, 26 carbohydrates, 7 grams protein, 3 grams fiber. (26:7 carbohydrate to protein ratio or 3.7:1 ratio. Close enough).
Per Batch: 4680 kilocalories, 168 grams fat, 624 grams carbohydrate, 168 grams protein and 72 grams fiber.
If you do add cocoa powder, don't add too much. They will taste like dirt. I promise you.
So there you have it. The secret has been revealed. I hope you enjoy them. I'm learning that as I get older, I enjoy cooking more and more because each time is a little experiment. I have a few more recipes I'm working on that I'll post soon. One is a Kleinbar alternative made by my good friend and DPT-student buddy Dan's fiancee Cindy, who is a wonderful and awesome Dietitian. Another is one that I call "Kleinbites", which are small bite sized energy snacks. The Kleinbites need some tweaking before I post the recipe, but they are really good.
Again I hope you enjoy the Kleinbars recipe!
Thanks for reading!
As always, my opinions are my own.
-Matthew Klein, SPT