Monthly Archives: August 2014

How To: Homemade Protein Bars

Need a tasty, healthy snack that will fill you up and satisfy your sweet tooth too?  Here is a recipe that does just that.  Made with just a few simple ingredients this will save you a ton of money compared to the $3 protein bars you can buy at the grocery store.  Here’s what you need:

  • 3 Cups Oats – Old Fashioned Rolled Oats
  • 15 oz Jar All Natural Peanut Butter
  • 3 Tablespoons of Honey
  • 5 Scoops of Whey Protein Powder (I use Chocolate)
  • 1.5 Cups (12 oz) Skim Milk
  • 1 Tsp of Salt

To make, melt the peanut butter in a large bowl in the microwave on high for 1 minute.  Add all other ingredients and mix until well incorporated.  The mix should resemble a slightly wet cookie dough texture.  If it’s too dry, add a few tablespoons of milk at a time.  If it’s too wet add a 1/4 cup of rolled oats at a time until you reach the right feel.  When the mix is ready line a 9×13 pan with parchment (wax) paper and spread mixture evenly.  Refrigerate for 8 hours.

Cut into bars and use parchment paper or aluminum foil to wrap.  You can cut the bars to any size you would like, but I typically cut them into 20 pieces and they come in at about 14 grams of protein each.  If you like a bigger bar cut into 12 pieces and they will be at 22 grams of protein each.  The recipe is right at 280 grams of protein and 2500 calories in total.  They keep for as long as the milk does not spoil, so 2-3 weeks in the refrigerator.  I have taken them with me on the go, out of the fridge, for up to 6 hours and they still tasted as fresh as when I made them.

You can also add to this recipe if you enjoy things like nuts, flax seeds, chia seeds, or anything else that adds to the protein and nutritional content, but I like simple and cheap so I just gave you basic foundation for a great homemade protein bar.

These taste exactly like chocolate peanut butter no bake cookies so they are delicious, in my opinion, and it’s a great healthy alternative to a sugary, processed cookie to help those cravings.  Not to mention the entire recipe costs right at $6 to make.  Whey Protein at Sam’s Club costs $32 per 5 lbs bag and you use $2.76 worth.  Peanut Butter is $2-$3 depending on brand the milk, honey, salt is less than $1.  So why pay $3+ per protein bar when you can make a healthy, non-processed, homemade bar quick and easy at home?

How To: Homemade Shampoo/Body Wash – Great For Dandruff Too

I know the “No-Poo” fad has come and gone for the most part, but people recently have been trying to go more all natural when it comes to put soaps and shampoos on their bodies.  I wouldn’t call this No Poo but it certainly is a healthy all natural alternative to this commercial brands that contain chemicals and dry out your hair when they specifically advertise against that.  Here is a great hydrating recipe that costs a lot less than most shampoos and works amazing.  It doesn’t lather like commercial brands, but if you can get over that then you will never want to go back and will love how this makes your hair feel.

This recipe makes about 30 fluid ounces so it can be halved if you do not have a container that can hold that much.

Ingredients:

  • 2 Cups Distilled/Boiled Water
  • 1/2 Cup Castile Soap – Choose Your Favorite Scent
  • 1/2 Cup Aloe Vera Gel – Can Be Bought Online Easily If You Cannot Find It In Stores In Your Area
  • 2 Tablespoons Vegetable Glycerin – Easy To Buy Online
  • 2 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2 Tablespoons Almond Oil – I Also Bought This Online
  • 2-4 Tablespoons Baking Soda – I Use Until When The Recipe Is Mixed Together It Makes A Good Shampoo Like Consistency

I put all ingredients in a large bowl and mix until well incorporated.  It will not look like a typical shampoo, but the consistency will be similar.  When playing around with this recipe I have found the more aloe vera gel you use, the better the lather.  Also, some people like to use jojoba, avocado or grapeseed oil in place of the olive or almond oils, but I use what I like best or have on hand at the time.  I also find the almond oil and olive oil to be cheaper.   I use this as body wash as well.  Cleans great!

This recipe is extremely hydrating for the scalp.  I suffered from dandruff and it works great for that too along with my all natural conditioner, recipe follows.

All Natural Conditioner

This may sound crazy to some but this is a extremely simple, extremely cheap homemade conditioner that leaves your hair feeling great, hydrated, and keeps the scalp dry.  Just mix 1 part Distilled or Boiled water with 1 part Apple Cider Vinegar.  That’s it.  Work it into your hair and scalp and let sit for a few minutes and rinse.

All natural and cheap, just the way I like it.  I provided some links to the products to show you where I have found these to be the cheapest.   Let me know what you think about this or what variations you have tried that work as well.

How To: Homemade Window/Mirror Cleaner (Windex)

Four Simple ingredients to make the best Mirror and Glass cleaner you have ever used, no streaks, non-toxic, all natural.  You probably have all of these on hand, but get a spray bottle and mix in:

  • 2 oz White Distilled Vinegar
  • 2 oz Rubbing Alcohol
  • 1 Tablespoon Cornstarch (Or Arrowroot Powder)
  • 2 Cups Distilled or Boiled Water

That’s it.  It makes 20 ounces of cleaner for less than $0.50.  Can’t get better than that.  It is also antibacterial too.  You can add some blue food coloring to make it look more like the commercial brand if you like that sort of thing.

Use with newspaper or paper towels.  Costs 1/5 of commercial brands.  Awesome.  Do it Homemade!

How To: Homemade Dish Detergent

Here is a quick way to save 50% or more on your dishwasher detergent.  It’s made with easy to come by ingredients you can find at Wal-Mart and you can increase your savings if you purchase some of these online in bulk.

Here are the ingredients.

  • 2 parts borax
  • 2 parts washing soda
  • 1 part citric acid
  • 1 part kosher salt
  • 1 part baking soda

I mix all of these ingredients in a gallon zip lock bag, shake well, and leave for a few days before use.  The ingredients tend to cake together and it is easier if you shake the bag once a day and break apart anything that is starting to stick.  It’s easier to do in the bag instead of another air tight container where it can become hard as a rock in a corner of the container (trust me on this, I learned from experience).

I use 1 tablespoon of dish detergent with each load of dishes.  I live in an area where we do not use water softeners and I found that when I used this detergent alone it can leave a slight residue on your dishes.  So if you try this soap, I recommend that you add 4-5 drops of your favorite dish soap, like Dawn, to the detergent when putting it in the machine along with a rinsing agent.  To keep my dish cycle as all natural as possible, I use distilled white vinegar as my rinsing agent, I think it works as good if not better than the commercial kinds, not to mention there is a huge cost savings there.

Try it out and save some money.  When I purchased these items in bulk I ended being able to make this for about 1/3 of the cost of commercial dish detergent when I bought it in bulk from Sam’s Club.  Check out how to make your own washing soda from this linked video and blog.  Also, there are links provided where I bought some of these ingredients in bulk off of Amazon.com.

Let me know how this worked out for you in comments below.