If you are into anything remotely fitness related and haven’t heard of Quest nutrition bars, sorry to say it but you are most likely living under a rock. These bars are easily the most popular around, great quality, variety of flavors, crazy AMAZING taste, and the macros on them are superb. Unfortunately, if your tummy is anything like mine and SUPER sensitive to whey protein (isolate and concentrate), sadly most store bought bars like these are going to be off limits. You have no idea how sad I was when I narrowed down my sensitivity to the protein. I can only tolerate whey in VERY small amounts and/or in protein blends like my absolute all time favorite and the only protein I use: Trutein by Body Nutrition (contains whey, casein, egg protein). Since the main ingredient in Quest bars is whey, I can usually only have a few bites before I start noticing some discomfort. Having the option to grab a protein bar when I was pressed for time, running around with the kids, at an amusement park, or even as a quick and easy snack at home was ideal but I just couldn’t justify the stomach issues for it. Again… sad sad times. Fortunately, I think I may have stumbled onto magic… A few weeks ago, a company named Sweet It reached out to me and asked if I wanted to try their product out. The company not only claims that Sweet It (vita fiber) is the “secret ingredient” in Quest bars, but also claims the following: “Zero Sugar ~ No Aftertaste ~ Low Calorie ~ Super Versatile ~ Baking to Beverages ~ Gluten Free ~ Non-GMO ~ Vegan ~ Nothing Artificial ~ No Stevia ~ No Sugar Alcohols ~ Low Glycemic ~ Supports Digestive Health ~ Excellent Source of Prebiotic Fiber ~ Does Not Cause Tooth Decay ~ Diabetic Friendly ~ No Allergens” Yeah, I thought the same thing. TOO GOOD to be true. Either the company is full of crap or this is a miracle product. I was hesitant and skeptical, but definitely wiling to try it out for myself before I came to a decision. The product arrived and to be completely honest, I was even more skeptical (and confused). This is how the products looked (bottle of Sweet It and their custom almond brittle mix which is just powdered vita fiber and sliced almonds).
See what I mean?! Totally strange right? I looked at this little bottle and had NO clue what I was going to do with it. How was I supposed to use it in baking. Would it have a chemical reaction to other ingredients? Did it have a weird taste? Why was the texture so thick? These literally sat on my kitchen counter for5-7 days because I was scared to use it. I couldn’t even think of what I was going to do with it. Luckily, the company sends out a sweet little letter and some recipe ideas so I figured that should be a good place for me to start!
Mocha Caramel Chip
What I absolutely LOVE about the Sweet It is that it doesn’t change the flavor of anything you use. It sweetens it of course, but the main flavor will solely come from the protein powder you use as well as any extracts and/or extra ingredients you decide to incorporate. The base recipe was the exact same in all of these… ready for it? SO simple, it’s nuts.
- 1 1/2 tbsp Sweet It
- 1/2 scoop Trutein
- 1/4 tsp extract
- 1 tbsp milk (I use almond)
** Just keep in mind that I used these ratios for MY macros. Most recipes you will see for Vitafiber will call for an entire scoop of protein, but I personally just get the majority of my protein intake from actual food. The recipe is very very forgiving and easy to play with so you can easily just add a little of this, take out a bit of that, etc. and find a good ratio. The protein powder you use will also have an impact on the taste, quality, and texture of your bar. Again, I LOVE my Trutein because its a blend of whey, casein, and egg so it bakes great AND has different release times for your body… it’s also hands down the BEST tasting protein I have ever had! **
OK ready for a quick little run down to show how easy this product is to work with? Let’s go!
All you need to get going is a measuring spoon, spatula, small pot, Sweet It, your favorite protein, extract of choice (not shown), and any mix ins you like. I’m showing how to make a “Cake Batter” bar so I needed sprinkles as well! Saran Wrap and a cookie/baking sheet will also be needed.
- Place Sweet It and 1/4 tsp of vanilla extract in a small pot over low-medium heat.
- After about 1 minute, you will see the mixture begin to bubble. Stir and immediately turn OFF heat.
- Add your almond milk, vanilla protein powder, and mix well. It will be very thick but should slowly come together. If you are having problems and find there is still a good amount of power that won’t mix in, you can add a tiny amount of almond milk or water. Add it slowly just until the it comes together.
- Let the mixture cool slightly (maybe 1-2 minutes) until you can pick it up with your hands. Lay a small piece of plastic wrap on your counter (maybe 10×10 in size). For extra insurance, you can lightly spray the plastic wrap with some non stick spray.
- Lightly spray your hand and rub with your other hand.
- Pick up the mixture from the pot and form into a small ball.
- Using your hands, shape into a small rectangle (Quest size). You can also use the plastic wrap to help shape the bar if you are having problems with things being sticky. I noticed that depending on the flavor of protein I was using, some were stickier than others.
- Add sprinkles.
- Fold and roll the mixture up again to create a marbled effect if you like, reshape into a bar, and add MORE sprinkles.
Now, you could EASILY eat the bar just like this. You could throw it in the fridge or freezer to harden up a bit, wrap it up and store it for later, use pieces as toppings on things like pancakes, waffles, proyo (protein frozen yogurt), etc. OR my FAVORITE way to eat a Quest bar is to bake/broil it for a couple of minutes… seriously, you haven’t eaten a Quest bar unless you have had it baked for a couple of minutes! Obviously, thats what I did with these home made ones!
- Place your bar on a cookie sheet (be sure to remove the bar from the plastic wrap) lined with a Silpat or parchment paper and bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 5-6 minutes. I’m an under baked, soft cookie kinda girl, so I’m perfectly happy with it being super squishy. My husband prefers crunchy cookies (yeah, total weirdo) so I use a longer cooking time for his. Again, base recipe is the same but very forgiving. So easy to experiment with these!