“I received free samples of California Dried Plums mentioned in this post. By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe contest sponsored by California Dried Plum Board and am eligible to win prizes associated with the contest. I was not compensated for my time.”
Here’s a totally random tip for National Osteoporosis Month. Dried plums (AKA prunes) are really good for your bones. I’m sure you know all about the “other” benefits of prunes – or dried plums as they prefer to be called these days. Feeling a little bit constipated? Try some prune juice. Need a shot of fiber? Eat a few prunes… Yes, it’s true that prunes can help with that problem, but there are some new studies out that show that California Dried Dlums can also help to prevent osteoporosis by helping to increase bone density. Hmmm… Interesting, and kind of nice to know about for anyone who’s small boned, fair skinned, and at risk for bone loss. Yikes! That’s me!
I was actually diagnosed with mild osteopenia a few years ago – that means I’m already starting to lose some bone mass, and because I’m really small boned as it is, I can’t afford to lose much. I try to be good about my calcium, and I aim for at least 1200 milligrams each day between my diet and a supplement. I also take vitamin D to help the calcium work, and I do weight bearing exercises like walking, running and weights. But, it’s still happening, so I’m trying even harder to incorporate healthy whole foods that can help –like dried plums. The research shows that eating just 4-5 dried plums may help to prevent bone loss in osteopenic women. Hooray – I’m on it!
California Dried Plums are a delicious naturally sweet snack right out of the box, and they’re also great to cook or bake with. I’ve also been known to roll them in some Gorgonzola Dolce and toasted nuts for an appetizer. Yum! Today, I’m featuring them in a Sweet and Savory No Bake Energy Bar, inspired by those new savory KIND bars I love to tear open after the gym, but I’m too cheap to buy 🙂
These are just perfect to stick in your gym bag for after a workout. Just a little bit of natural sweetness, with lots of savory crunch and chewiness. I love that they have a punch of protein plus healthy carbs for your muscles, and they’re also great for the bones.
- 3/4 cup of unflavored protein powder
- 3 brown rice cakes crumbled
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 cup wasabi peas
- 1 1/2 cups California Dried Plums
- 1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
- 2 teaspoons reduced sodium soy sauce
- 1 cup whole almonds
- 1/3 cup sunflower seeds
- 1/3 cup hemp hearts
Combine protein powder, crumbled rice cakes, garlic powder and wasabi peas in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a chopping blade. Pulse about 5 times to combine ingredients. Transfer to a large mixing bowl and set aside.
To the bowl of the food processor, add California Dried Plums, peanut butter and soy sauce, and process until smooth.
Add the dry protein powder mixture to the dried plum mixture in the food processor, and pulse until the mixture comes together to form a dough.
The dough should hold together but be just a little bit sticky. If it seems too crumbly, add water - a teaspoon at a time. If it seems too wet, add protein power, a teaspoon at a time.
Place the dough in the large mixing bowl, and add almonds, sunflower seeds and hemp hearts.
Stir well with a spatulal, or mix with clean hands until ingredients are incorporated.
Gather the dough into a ball and place it on a sheet of parchment paper.
Press or roll the dough out into an 8" x 8" square. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about an hour or until firm.
Cut the dough in half, and then each half into 8 pieces for 16 bars total.
Wrap each bar in plastic wrap or parchment paper and store in a freezer bag or airtight container in the freezer.
If you prefer a smoother bar, process the almonds, sunflower seeds and hemp seeds with the dry ingredients. Keep leftover bars in the freezer.
How do you show your bones some love? Don’t forget to check out the other great recipes featuring California Dried Plums from the members of the Recipe ReDux!
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