I like to go to the gym in the morning before I’ve eaten breakfast, but I also feel like I need to eat before I go. If I don’t eat first, I feel like I don’t have as good of a workout than if I did eat. Some people can workout on an empty stomach, I am not one of them. The problem that I was having was that too much food, or something too heavy, doesn’t feel good before a workout either. So, I made up a recipe for something that is both appealing in the early hours of the morning, as well as being light enough, but also filling enough. Make sense?
Anyway, I love pears, and since they are in season at the moment, they are the perfect ingredient for this recipe.
Usually I would choose to use whole rolled oats in my recipes, however, in this case I wanted a faster release of energy. Quick oats are made the same way as traditional oats, but with a few extra steps. They are cut smaller and rolled thinner, allowing for a quicker cooking time (hence the name). These smaller, flatter pieces of oats digest much faster than the whole rolled oats, making them release their energy faster (and higher GI).
I also didn’t want to have high amounts of sugar in these bars, so I used unsweetened apple sauce. This is a great replacement for sugar in cake like products, as has quite a sweet taste, with low energy, as well as adding and keeping moisture in the product.
Pears are delicious, especially if they are really ripe and juicy. Apart from being tasty, pears are high in dietary fiber (8% per 100g), and most of this fiber is non-soluble, which helps keep you regular. They also have decent levels of antioxidants, vitamin C, A., copper, potassium, iron, manganese, magnesium, folate, riboflavin, and vitamin B6.
Eggs are really the best food around. They are sooo good for you. Chicken eggs are made of a yolk and the white (as everyone would already know). By adding the whole egg to this recipe, I am adding a good protein, vitamin B2, selenium, vitamin D, B6, B12, zinc, iron, copper, vitamin A, E, K, and lecithin. Always go for free range, or pasture raised if you can find them. The food that is fed to the chickens plays a huge role in the nutrients that are in the eggs, so chickens that are roaming free, eating what they are meant to eat, will have more nutritious eggs than chickens that are in sheds or cages, and pumped full of antibiotics and fed grains.
Protein Powder is a great way to get some extra protein into your diet. I use whey protein, which contains all of the essential amino acids, making it a complete source of protein. Whey protein is easily digested and has a quick uptake from the digestive system, meaning that it releases protein into your body faster than eating a food protein source can. Protein helps the body to feel full after you eat it, and whey protein does the same thing, but without weighing you down. That is why it is a good addition to this recipe. When choosing a protein powder, I always look for a few ingredients as possible, as well as being Australian made. The protein powder I use in this recipe is Bulk Nutrients Vanilla Whey, because it has minimal ingredients, is Australian made, and taste better than any other protein powders I have ever tried. All of their flavors are amazing too, not just the vanilla.
Oaty Pear Pre-Workout Squares
1.50 cup/ 170g, Quick Oats
0.50 cup/ 115g, Unsweetened Apple Sauce
Pinch of iodized Salt
45 g Vanilla protein powder
1 tbsp./ 10g, (heaped)Cinnamon
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Line a square tin with baking paper. Spray the tin with oil spray first to help the paper stay in place in the tin.
Core the pear and cut into large chunks. Chop in Thermomix, speed 4, 5 seconds. I like to have the pear pieces chunky, but chop for a bit longer if you want then smaller.
Scrape down the sides of the bowl and add all of the other ingredients. Mix, reverse, speed 5, 10 seconds.
Pour into the tin and put into the oven. Depending on the size of the tin, it should take around 30-45 minutes to be completely cooked through.
Once it is cooked, take out of the oven and let it cool down a bit in the tin (around 20 minutes), before removing and cooling on a cake rack (or whatever you your stuff on).
Cut into 16 pieces.
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Line a square tin with baking paper. Spray the tin with oil spray first to help the paper stay in place in the tin.
- Keeping the pear whole, use a peeler (Julianne or regular will both work) and shred the pear, all the way down to the core. If you like the pieces smaller you could grate it. Put the shredded pear into a mixing bowl.
- Add all of the other ingredients to the pear. Mix well until combined.
- Pour into the tin and put into the oven. Depending on the size of the tin, it should take around 30-45 minutes to be completely cooked through.
- Once it is cooked, take out of the oven and let it cool down a bit in the tin (around 20 minutes), before removing and cooling on a cake rack (or whatever you cool stuff on).
- Cut into 16 pieces.
- I like to put mine in a freezer bag and take 2 out the night before to that in the fridge. This way they are ready to go in the morning when I want to eat them before going to the gym.
- You can cut them into however many slices you want (obviously), they would also work as a mid-morning or afternoon snack for some quick energy that won’t ruin your appetite.
- If you want to use these squares as a post workout snack, you could add 135g protein powder, which will give it around 8.5g protein per square.
Protein – 78.1g
Fat – 35.6g
Carbs – 142.5g
Energy – 5050 Kj/1205 Cals
Dietary Fiber – 23.8g
Protein – 4.8g
Fat – 2.2g
Carbs – 8.9g
Energy – 315.6 Kj/ 75.3 Cals
Dietary Fiber – 1.5g