I know people start rolling out the pumpkin flavored things in September (myself included!), but it really doesn't feel official for me until October. So here we are!! Happy October and happy pumpkin-spiced everything season!
This is a variation of my PB Chia Protein Balls, chock full of healthy whole food ingredients, like natural nut butter, oats and chia seeds. I swapped almond butter for PB, although you can certainly stick with peanut butter, or even use sunbutter if you are looking to keep them nut free. The addition of pumpkin, pumpkin pie spice and the pumpkin seed garnish puts on a fall-y finishing touch!
Pumpkin seeds are super healthy, by the way. Eating pumpkin seeds is linked to better heart health, lowered blood sugar and a reduced risk of certain cancers, including stomach, breast, lung, prostate and colon cancer.
Pumpkin Protein Squares
1 cup gluten free rolled oats
1/4 cup chia seeds
1 cup vanilla protein powder (we prefer vegan to keep these dairy free)
1 Tbls. pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup natural almond butter
1/4 cup honey
1/2 cup canned pumpkin
Pumpkin seeds for garnish
Grind the oats and chia seeds in a blender. Leave a tiny bit of whole oats for texture! Pour into a mixing bowl, add protein powder, pumpkin pie spice and salt. Give it a quick stir. Add almond butter, honey and pumpkin. Stir until well combined.
Press the mixture into the bottom of a parchment-lined 8x8 baking pan. Sprinkle pumpkin seeds on top and press gently so they stick. Refrigerate for a bit until firm. When ready, remove from the pan and cut into one-inch squares.
I like to keep these in the freezer, but the fridge will do just fine too. If you stick to the one-inch size, this recipe makes 64 squares. Enjoy! XO
Food is fuel.
I love to cook and bake recipes that incorporate healthy whole foods and those nutritious macro and micronutrients into our daily diets. I also like to make treats though, because let's face it, everyone loves a good sweet now and then! My favorite part about cooking, though, is sharing my latest recipes with others. ENJOY! XO