My friend Crystal—who just happens to be a very health-conscious Barre3 instructor—stopped by my place right after I finished making these bars, and I barely got the words, “I made them with watermelon seeds” out of my mouth before her eyes lit up with excitement.
“Ooh, watermelon seeds are so good for you! But where do you even get watermelon seeds, right?!” And in my head I was just like, Thank you, you just wrote my blog post for me! Because funny you should ask...
I created these protein-packed freezer bars in partnership with the National Watermelon Promotional Board and Go Raw, a company that specializes in raw, sprouted foods—a.k.a. “junk-free food”—and you probably already guessed this by now, but they now carry sprouted watermelon seeds. (Ask and you shall receive, Crystal!)
At first, I wasn’t quite sure what to expect from watermelon seeds. After all, don’t people usually try to eat around those things as they make their way through a slice of juicy watermelon? I was sort of expecting them to be tough, like pumpkin seeds, but I was pleasantly surprised that they are more like sunflower seeds. Very light and slightly crisp. Go Raw’s watermelon seeds are the hulls of the black shells, which are then removed, dehydrated, and sprouted to preserve the most nutrients. They have a nutty flavor, but one that’s mellow, which makes them great for adding to everything from smoothie bowls to salads.
Oh yeah, and they’re so good for you! Watermelon seeds are one of the most protein-dense nuts or seeds available (9 grams per 1 ounce, versus an almond’s 6 grams per 1 ounce), making these bars a really great afternoon snack that’ll help you power through the rest of the day, or an after dinner treat that’ll satisfy your sweet tooth.
Hope you enjoy them!
1 cup Go Raw Sprouted Watermelon Seeds
1 cup raw, unsalted almonds
1 cup watermelon juice* (or water)
1 cup prunes
1/4 cup honey
2 cups oats, divided
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips (I used a dairy free variety)
1/2 teaspoon salt
- Line an 8×10-inch jelly roll pan with parchment paper or tin foil. Coat with cooking spray. Set aside.
- In a food processor, use the blade to process 1 cup of oats until it turns into a fine powder. Set aside.
- In the food processor, blend prunes, almonds, honey, salt, and watermelon juice until smooth. Pour into a medium bowl.
- Stir oats (whole and powder), sunflower seeds, and chocolate chips into prune-almond mixture.
- Press batter into prepared jelly roll pan, cover with plastic wrap, and place in freezer for about 4 hours.*If you don’t have a juicer, make watermelon juice by slicing off the rind, cutting watermelon flesh into large chunks, and processing in a blender until smooth. Then set a fine mesh strainer over a bowl and pour though to separate the liquid.
- Remove from freezer, remove parchment or tin foil, and cut into squares. (Store covered in the freezer.)