I always have homemade snacks on the bike. It's cheaper, they always taste fresher, and the recipes are super adaptable so you don't get sick of them like you do with store-bought bars. Plus, it's fun sharing homemade treats with friends on a ride. Here are a couple of my favourites. All you need is 20 minutes and kitchen equipped with a Vitamix or food processor (I got one for $10 at a used store!) and you can make any one of these recipes.
Gimme Some Oven
Honey, peanut butter, shredded coconut with chocolate chips thrown in... The mixture can be a bit sticky when you roll it together so I find keeping your hands as clean as possible and washing them halfway through helps them stick less. Keep these in the fridge for a delicious ready to go snack! (Click here for the recipe.)
Homemade Lara Bars
Lara Bars are one of my go-to bars since they don't have a heap of unpronounceable ingredients in them and I usually buy a bunch when they're on sale. The beauty of the homemade version is that you can make them a gazillion different ways, to suit your tastes and what you have in the cupboard. Just throw everything in the food processor and you're three-quarters of the way there! When using dried dates, it's good to soak them for 10 minutes ahead of time to make the mixture stick together better. (Click here for the recipe.)
Run Fast. Cook Slow.
I'm obsessed with Elyse Kopecky and Olympian Shalane Flanaghan's cooking books, Run Fast. Cook Slow and Run Fast. Cook Fast. East Slow. Their blog has a few recipes on it, like these Adventure Bars made with fruits and nuts, but I highly recommend buying their books if you're looking for easy, fast, nutritious recipes to keep your energy up on the bike. Pro tip: Don't try to double the recipe unless you have an extra powerful food processor! (Click here for the recipe.)
Peanut Butter Protein Balls
All you need to make these are a bowl, a spoon and 6 ingredients. If you're someone who likes to eat peanut butter (or almond butter, hazelnut butter, almond-hazelnut butter, cashew butter etc.) by the spoonful, these are just the ticket. If you're not, move along. (Click here for the recipe.)
Allen Lim's Rice Cakes
You'll need to cook rice for these, so they have the biggest time commitment. But are they ever worth it! Allen Lim is the founder of Skratch Labs, which you're probably most familiar with for their energy drinks, bars and chews, but for day to day activities, he advocates for eating real food over the packaged stuff. He's worked with tons of top road athletes and found success feeding them these rice cakes for long days on the saddle. I had a taste of a version with bacon at Sea Otter this year and was instantly cooked. He has an entire cookbook, Feed Zone Portables, if you want more recipes. (Click here for the recipe.)
What are some of your favourite bars and bar recipes?