These cinnamon cake bars taste just like coffee cake. They’re high in protein, low cal, low sugar with no oils or butter and perfect for a healthy snack.
*This post for high protein cinnamon cake bars first appeared on April 1, 2012. The post, pictures and recipe have been updated and I added a video to the recipe card (scroll down) on how to make these easy, healthy treats.
Five years ago when this post was first published it was about 3 months before I first stepped foot into a CrossFit gym.
I was bouncing back and forth between HIIT workouts online, NROLFW and Jamie Eason’s LiveFit Trainer program desperately trying to find something that would help me build muscle.
Honestly, nothing really worked too well (sorry, but 15# dumbbells don’t really do much for muscle growth) and it wasn’t until July of that year when my CrossFit gym opened right down the road that progress finally started to happen.
If there’s one positive that came out of those few months of workout ambiguity though, it was this recipe for high protein cinnamon cake bars inspired by Jamie Eason’s recipe for cinnamon swirl bread I stumbled upon on her site one day.
Chocolate protein cake bars were another recipe from that era and I love those too!
This recipe also inspired by chocolate baked oats which is basically like cake but justified for breakfast!
Often times, people are hesitant to bake with protein powder saying the chalky taste can linger in the final product.
And while that can definitely be true, I’ll say this: it doesn’t happen as much with quality protein powder.
I didn’t always know this and I didn’t always care as much as I should about the sourcing of my whey protein.
These days, I use SFH Pure (their churro flavored whey protein is literally perfect for this recipe making the cinnamon flavor even more robust) or Vital Proteins almost exclusively as they’re both quality products whose standards live up to mine now.
While my workouts have changed quite a bit over the last 5 years since this was originally posted, my high protein post-workout snacking really hasn’t and these protein cinnamon cake bars are still a really great one I love to grab either right before or after my workouts.
They’re packed with protein, very low fat (like none really), gluten-free and a great source of healthy carbs to fuel you through whatever way you like to sweat.
Oh, and they seriously taste like coffee cake too.
Are you sold yet?
If you love this recipe for high protein cinnamon cake bars, try one of these high protein recipes too:
High Protein Cinnamon Cake Bars
- 1 cup oat flour
- 1/2 cup buckwheat flour
- 2 scoops whey protein powder I use vanilla or churro flavored whey usually
- 1/4 cup coconut sugar *see note
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 egg
- 1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1/4 cup plain greek yogurt
- 1 cup almond milk
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons sugar + 1 teaspoon cinnamon set aside
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease an 8×8 pyrex or cake pan.
- Combine oat flour, buckwheat flour, protein powder, coconut sugar, baking powder, salt and cinnamon in a large bowl.
- Whisk together egg, applesauce, yogurt, almond milk and vanilla extract in a small bowl.
- Pour wet ingredients into dry and mix until fully incorporated.
- Pour batter into the prepared baking dish.
- Combine sugar + cinnamon and sprinkle over the batter, swirl into the entire surface of the batter using a knife or toothpick.
- Bake for about 25-30 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
- Let cool in pan for 10-15 minutes before slicing.
- Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container.
This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition information can vary for a variety of reasons. For the most precise nutritional data use your preferred nutrition calculator based on the actual ingredients you used in the recipe.
Gina Matsoukas is the writer, founder, photographer and recipe developer of Running to the Kitchen — a food website focused on providing healthy, wholesome recipes using fresh and seasonal ingredients as much as possible. Her work has been featured in numerous media outlets both digital and print, including MSN, Huffington post, Buzzfeed, Women’s Health and Food Network.