To balance our savory recipes, today we want to share some sweeter sports bites to tempt your taste buds. Not only are these energizing and healthy snacks, they are fun and easy to make. Plus, these are some of Jeff’s favorites (Jeff Lucchino, MS, RD, CSSD, director of Sports Nutrition, that is). If you have kids, we think they’ll love joining in to help make, and of course partake in, these tiny treats. Many of the ingredients you may already have at home (one recipe is actually made with leftovers), but if not, shopping for these healthy ingredients can help you pass up the candy aisle. It’s worth it since you’re getting such a sweet, nutritious treat out of it—something that helps boost your mood and workout performance, rather than making you feel guilty about indulging in it.
Frozen Banana Bites
These can serve as a healthy dessert or just as a little energy boost throughout the day. Find the recipe card and details below:
- 1 cup of peanut butter
- 4 bananas, sliced into 1-inch rounds
- 1 cup chocolate chips
- 2 tbsp coconut oil
Melt the chocolate chips and coconut oil together in the microwave. Once melted, let the mixture cool to room temperature. Line a baking sheet with wax paper. Spoon a thin layer of peanut butter on top of each banana slice and insert a toothpick into each one. Coat each bite with chocolate and let it freeze for a least 30 minutes. Enjoy!
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Mini Pancake Triple Threat Sandwich
Have leftover pancakes from breakfast? You can use them as an energy boost later in the day.
- 2 mini whole-grain pancakes
- 1-2 tbsp of Greek yogurt
- 1 sliced banana
- ½ cup sliced strawberries
- ½ cup raspberries
Heat up 2 mini whole-grain pancakes. Spread 1 to 2 tbsp of nonfat Greet yogurt on each pancake slice. Add ½ of the sliced banana to each pancake, as well as sliced strawberries and raspberries. Fold/roll your pancakes, and you have an energy boost in a sandwich. Voilà!
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Chocolate Peanut Butter Overnight Oats
Our third sweet sports bite is a simple recipe that can be prepared the night before to help energize you before an early morning virtual workout. Overnight oats are filling and sweet enough to give you the boost you need to get moving. Check out this recipe card and tips for making:
- ½ cup rolled oats
- 2 tbsp peanut or almond butter
- 1 tsp cocoa powder
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tsp honey or maple syrup
- ½ cup milk of choice
- A dash of salt
- Optional: flax meal, chia seeds, or shredded coconut
Combine all ingredients in a jar and stir well. Refrigerate overnight and enjoy in the morning. See, simple!
Almond Butter and Banana Chia Seed Pudding
This recipe makes enough to serve four—so the whole family can enjoy! Of course, if you’re social distancing and live alone, you can keep this in the refrigerator for a while and spread out the portions all for yourself (1 cup per serving). Find the recipe card and details below:
- 5 very ripe bananas
- 1 ½ cups chocolate milk (or alternative)
- ½ cup creamy almond butter
- 4 tbsp chia seeds
- 4 tbsp chocolate chips
In a blender, puree the banana, milk, and almond butter. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and stir in the chia seeds. Cover with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for at least four hours. Spoon one cup of pudding into a bowl and top with one tablespoon of chocolate chips. Finally, dig in!
To schedule an appointment with Sports Nutrition at UPMC Sports Medicine, please call 724-720-3081 or email SportsNutrition@upmc.edu. To learn more, visit UPMC.com/SportsNutrition.
About Sports Medicine
Sports and physical activity bring with them a potential for injury. If you are looking to prevent, treat, or rehabilitate a sports injury – or improve athletic performance – UPMC Sports Medicine and the UPMC Sports Medicine Concussion Program can help. We serve athletes and active people of all ages and experience levels. Our experts partner with the Pittsburgh Steelers, Pittsburgh Penguins, Pitt Panthers, and about 100 other high school, college, and regional teams and events throughout Pennsylvania – working daily to build better athletes.