Almond Vanilla Protein Clusters

So you know I’m all about getting in the kitchen, getting my hands dirty and recipe testing all kinds of things! Well, the other day while flipping through the PALEO magazine, I saw a great recipe for Almond Clusters and decided to take it up a notch and make my own version. 

What ended up was 12 delicious, protein rich, fat rich (you know, the good fats!) clusters that were gone in 2 days!

My boyfriend took some to his athletes at work, I ate a few, he ate a few and well, before you know it, they were all gone! 

I actually love it when food goes fast. It means it was that good! 

These perfect energy fuelling bites are great pre workout, for a quick out-the-door breakfast (although, you might need some extra protein in there), or an afternoon snack. 

I’ve been super busy over here working on some top secret projects (one is a 7 day intensive detox program with amazing supplements included and the other project is all around beauty care). That’s all I can share for now! Keep your eyes peeled for more details coming soon. 

Anyhow, these delicious clusters were perfect for fuelling my brain and energy while I was busy working away on my projects. 

I loaded them up with pumpkin seeds which is rich in zinc, an important mineral for immunity, skin health (it’s great for acne) and for sex hormones! 


Along with zinc, you’ll also get a dose of vitamin E, magnesium, B6 and calcium. Not to mention blood sugar stabilizing protein and fat (key in keeping your moods in check and hormones happy!). 

Oh! And best part, these take 10 minutes to make and are free of junk. Meaning, no need for you to buy store bought bars when you can make your own. Swap out the nuts and nut butter for seeds/seed butter and they’re safe for school. 

Hope you enjoy these Almond Vanilla Protein Clusters as much as I do!

Almond Vanilla Protein Clusters
Yields 12
Write a review
Prep Time
10 min
Prep Time
10 min
  1. 1 cup raw almonds
  2. 1 cup raw pumpkin seeds
  3. 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  4. 1 tsp ground ginger
  5. 1/2 tsp sea salt
  6. 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  7. 1/2 cup thompson raisins
  8. 1/2 cup raw almond butter
  9. 2 scoops Progressive Organic Vanilla Whey Protein Powder
  10. 3 heaping tbsps raw honey
  11. 1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
  1. Line a muffin pan with paper liners and set aside.
  2. In a food processor fitted with the S blade, process the almonds, pumpkin seeds, cinnamon, ginger and sea salt until finely chopped. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl.
  3. Stir in the coconut and raisins.
  4. In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt together the almond butter, protein powder, honey and applesauce. When mixture is smooth and combined, pour over nut mix.
  5. Stir together until all nuts are evenly coated and thoroughly mixed.
  6. Divide the mixture evenly between the 12 muffin cups. You may need to slightly wet your hands in order to press the mixture down into the cups and keep your fingers from sticking.
  7. Eat as is or store in the fridge to cool. Clusters can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge or freezer.
  1. *Get creative! Feel free to swap out the raisins for dried blueberries or cherries. For some extra sweetness, you can add in some chocolate chips. You can also try using brown rice syrup or maple syrup in replace of raw honey. As for the nuts and seeds, try using cashews, pecans, sunflower seeds or even hemp seeds.
Holistic Wellness
Share on Pinterest

Easiest Protein Bars You’ll Ever Make!

I promise, this is the easiest recipe ever!

I’m always on the lookout for ways to make simple, easy and healthy protein bars as they make for a quick grab and go snack. 

This recipe is great as it requires no baking and very little clean up, which is perfect if you’ve got a kitchen full of hungry little monsters running around!

Feel free to add your own unique twists to the recipe. Dried fruits, cacao nibs, goji berries; these all make for healthy and tasty add ons. I kept my recipe simple with only a handful of ingredients. 

These bars are loaded with healthy fats from almond butter, slow releasing carbs from wheat free rolled oats and the right amount of satiating protein. This combo is perfect for balancing blood sugar levels which will prevent you from reaching for that unhealthy sugary cookie at 3pm!


 Gluten Free Vanilla Protein Oat Bars-4

 For more delicious recipes check out my ebook, The Qualitarian Cookbook! It’s full of 40+ whole food, gluten free and dairy free recipes. From juice to smoothies, breakfasts, dinners and dessert (yes… there are more protein bar recipes in the book!), I’ve got you covered for delicious and nutritious meals you can feel about about feeding to your family! Get your COPY HERE!

Share on Pinterest

Gluten Free Chocolate Oat Bars

What do you reach for when craving a snack?

I’m sure most of us crave something sugary, or salty during that 3pm crash. If you haven’t nourished yourself all day with the right amounts of nutrients, and your on your second pot of coffee by 3pm; there’s a good chance sugar and salt are on your mind!

I’ve been there… we’ve all been there, and it’s time to get outta there!

Fruits, nuts, seeds, a protein shake; these are all great snacks to have mid day. I always encourage my clients to reach for a whole food option when it comes to snacking. No prepackaged special K bar is good in my books. And to think, as a teenager I used to eat those! My I’ve come a long way 😉

These bars are just what you need for that afternoon fix. In fact, they are full of nutrients and goodness, that they would be great along side a bowl of fruit in the morning for your kids, before sending them off to school. I mean… don’t you think it’s time to ditch the pop tarts?!

So let’s get to it…

Image 1


Gluten Free Chocolate Oat Bars
(recipe adapted from Joyous Health Book)


2 and 1/2 cups wheat free rolled oats ( I use Bob’s Red Mill)
1 cup chocolate whey protein powder (I use Progressive Organic Whey)
2 tbsp raw cacao powder
1/4 cup sesame seeds
1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1/3 cup chocolate chips (optional, but great for extra sweetness for kids! I like Enjoy Life chocolate chips)
1/2 cup roughly chopped walnuts
1/4 cup coconut sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground vanilla bean
1 cup raw almond butter
1/4 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup almond or coconut milk
2 tbsp real maple syrup


Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a large baking dish with coconut oil.
In a large bowl, combine oats, protein powder, sesame seeds, coconut, chocolate chips, walnuts, sugar, cinnamon and ground vanilla; mix well. In a small saucepan over low heat, melt almond butter and coconut oil together. Add to dry ingredients and quickly stir. Then add almond milk and maple syrup and mix well. Stir until well combined. Pour batter into prepared baking dish and press down evenly with hands. Bake for approximately 15 minutes. Remove from oven, keep oven on, and let batter cool slightly for about 10 minutes. Then cut into desired pieces and place on a cookie sheet. Cutting the batter into bars may get crumbly. Be careful when transferring them to a cookie sheet. Transfer back to oven and bake for another 12 minutes, until edges of bars start to crisp up.

These bars are amazing as is, or you can crumble them like granola and serve over your favourite sheeps yogurt or with some homemade almond milk.

Happy Baking 🙂

To Your AWESOME Health & Abundance,
Samantha xoxo


Share on Pinterest

Gluten Free Vanilla Pumpkin Protein Bars

The days of reaching for an afternoon sweet treat, loaded with unhealthy fat and sugar are long over! In my high school days I considered a special K bar to be ‘healthy.’ I mean, only 110 calories, how could I go wrong? Oh boy was I wrong! Grabbing one of those chemically manufactured nutrient less bars only spiked my blood sugar and made me a little loopy at 3pm. Not a pretty sight when your a hormone ranging 16 year old! Now, I reach for real food. Like a salad, or fresh fruit with raw almond butter, or a green veggie juice; organic, fresh and homemade! But what about the calories? What about them? I’m eating REAL ORGANIC WHOLE FOODS, calories got nothing on me 😉

A few weeks ago I came across these pumpkin bars in Oxygen magazine. Being the savvy nutritionist that I am, I decided to change up a few ingredients and turn these bars into a powerhouse nutrient dense afternoon goodie that will have your tummy saying thank you! Also, my sweet man was heading off to a snowboarding trip and I couldn’t resist baking up something full of goodness to fuel his long flight. He called me once he arrived and told me his friend loved my bars! I was jumping for joy when I heard that 🙂

IMG_3689Why are these bars a powerhouse? They contain antioxidant rich pumpkin! Pumpkin is loaded carotenoids, lutein and zeaxanthin, all of which help to protect your eyes and prevent the formation of cataracts. Pumpkin also contains high amounts of vitamin A and C, both of which help keep your skin supple and improve immunity. You’ll notice this recipe also contains pumpkin seeds. These little green gems contains 7 grams of protein per 1 ounce serving, plus they are high in zinc which keeps your immunity strong! Let’s not forget the essential fatty acid content of these little seeds – great for inflammatory issues, cancer prevention and heart health.

So without further adieu…..

Vanilla Pumpkin Protein Bars!


3 scoops New Zealand vanilla whey protein powder (I’m sure vanilla brown rice protein would work too!)
1 1/2 cups wheat free rolled oats
1/4 cup dried cherries

1/4 cup pecans, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup walnuts, coarsely chopped
3 tbsp pumpkin seeds
1 cup pumpkin puree
1/3 cup egg whites
1 tbsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp ground vanilla bean
1-2 tbsp maple syrup
3 tbsp raw honey
2 packets stevia (optional – if you prefer a little added sweetness)
1 tbsp hemp seeds (for topping)




1. Preheat oven to 400.

2. Mix all ingredients together, except hemp seeds, in a large bowl and mix until thoroughly combined.

3. Lightly oil an 8×8 inch baking dish with coconut oil or line with parchment paper.

4. Press ingredients evenly into dish.

5. Bake for 20-25 minutes.

6. Remove from oven and let cool completely before cutting. Sprinkle with hemp seeds while still warm.


Happy Baking!
Health & Abundance,
Samantha 🙂

Share on Pinterest

Cinnamon Chia Morning Porridge and Apricot Almond Protein Bars for Meatless Monday!

Happy Monday Everyone! Hope you missed me last week 😉 I decided since it was labor day long weekend to take a mini break! I hid my phone away and computer and enjoyed some much needed time with friends, family and the sun! But I’m back now, with 2 VERY simple and delicious recipes that are perfect for a busy back to work monday! My morning chia porridge takes minutes to make, is full of plant based protein, healthy fats and slow releasing carbohydrates to take you through your morning. And for an afternoon pick me up, my apricot protein bars will do the trick! They are kid friendly approved-making them perfect for a quick after school snack and keep in the fridge for up to 1 week! Enjoy!

Cinnamon Chia Porridge
Natures Path launched this delicious gluten free chia, buckwheat and hemp mix that I just had to try! I revamped it with some additional ingredients, making it more filling and nutrient dense. Feel free to add/take away any ingredients. Adding in a scoop of chocolate or vanilla protein powder would also be a great option!

2-3 tbsp Qi’a
3 tbsp Quinoa flakes
1 tsp flax seeds
2 tbsp pumpkin seeds
1 tbsp chopped walnuts and/or almonds
2 tbsp goji berries
1 tsp cacao nibs
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 cup almond milk (or more, based on personal preference)

Mix all ingredients together in a bowl, then add almond milk. Let the mixture sit for a few minutes as the chia expands and absorbs the milk, which helps to thicken the mixture.

Apricot Almond Protein Bars
These bars are super easy to make and versatile. Add whichever nuts, seeds or dried fruits that you prefer!

1 cup raw almond butter
3 heaping tbsp raw honey
Dry Mix:
1 cup brown rice flakes
2 scoops vanilla protein powder
1/2 cup almonds, chopped
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
1 cup apricots, cut into quarters


These are REAL apricots! Apricots should not be bright orange! Be sure to purchase unsulphured apricots.

Heat almond butter and honey together over low heat in a pan. Once melted together, add all dry ingredients and mix well. Press mixture together into a pyrex dish and refrigerate for 2 hours. To serve – leave out for 10 minutes to soften and cut into squares.

Enjoy the goodness!

Health & Abundance,
Samantha 🙂

Share on Pinterest