Glorious food. Oh how I love thee. You, on the other hand, love me too much. You cling to my thighs, my belly, my booty. You and I are in the midst of a change of guard. For far too long, you, dear food, were in control. And I was your humble servant. This will no longer be the case. I am taking back control and creating a new, healthy relationship with food. Not one with labels of good or bad but one of balance.
Such a tease, I know.
My Parents Knew Best
One thing about getting older is that sometimes you realize that your parents were right. Not all the time. Just sometimes.
I wouldn’t want them to get a big head, after all. 🙂
They always told me getting healthy was more about balance than deprivation. But I would deprive, then get stressed and binge. Over and over.
The good news is you can teach an old cat new tricks (well, when the cat is me, not an actual cat who would just ignore you). I am focused on eating a balanced diet, which does mean I get the occasional treat, like a supreme chocolate chip cookie.
It also means that I need a smart treat for all those others times when I’m craving something a little sweet and need an energy boost to power through the late afternoon. Old Tanya would have told herself to suck it up and treats were bad. This would have eventually led to double-fisting potato chips.
A Healthy Snack is an Option
This was faulty thinking on my part. Cravings are not my enemy, nor do I have to eat something “bad” to satisfy them. I can choose to eat something good instead, like these lovely protein bites. These are not fat-free snacks but are a far better choice than empty calories when eaten mindfully and not gobbled with abandon.
With only five ingredients, these chocolate peanut butter protein bites come together quickly. Plus, it’s a no-bake recipe and doesn’t use yucky shredded coconut as its binder. I despise shredded coconut, although oddly love a good pina colada. Go figure.
These protein bites are very similar to my no-bake chocolate oatmeal cookies — minus all the sugar and butter. Those are childhood favorites and delicious, so you can imagine these are a huge hit with me, especially since I don’t feel guilty afterwards.
Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Bites
- 1 cup dates pitted
- 3 tbsp peanut or almond butter
- 1/4 cup dark chocolate roughly chopped
- 1 tbsp chia seeds
- 2/3 cup old-fashion rolled oats
- Add dates to food processor and pulse until they are in small pieces and begin to stick together.
- Add oats, chocolate, chia seeds and peanut butter and pulse until combined. Don't over process because you want some texture. There should still be small pieces.
- Roll into 1-inch balls. You will need to mold them with your hands and squeeze the mixture together to form each protein bite. Place ball on a cookie sheet lined with wax paper.
- Refrigerate for 15 minutes to set. Store in an airtight container for one week or freeze.