Homemade Quest Protein Bars

by Kristine on January 13, 2014

in Gluten Free, Protein Bars, Recipes, Snacks

Homemade Quest Bars-main-photo

As you may have noticed, I’m a huge fan of protein bars. I eat them daily as I just love them so much. I have many recipes that I love, and I’m happy to add a new type of bar to my recipe arsenal. Homemade Quest Protein Bars.

If you haven’t tried a Quest bar before, you’re missing out.  So what’s all the fuss about Quest bars?  Well they’re low carb, gluten-free, sugar-free (some contain natural non-calorie sweeteners like stevia, while others use sucralose), and high protein (20 g + per bar).  Each bar is around 200 calories, so it makes a great snack.  They come in a huge variety of flavors, and trust me, everyone has their die hard favorites.  I’ve tried many of the flavors, and my favorites have been the Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, and the White Chocolate Raspberry.

I’ve heard some people say they aren’t a fan of the texture. They are a little stiff, and a touch gritty.  But the bars change a lot when you heat them.  You can bake them at 350 degrees F for a few minutes, or microwave them for about 20 seconds.  It turns them into a soft and melty bar…delicious!

I was inspired to make my own Quest-style bars as I came across this great ingredient that gives them a similar texture.  I love that these bars are ridiculously easy to make.  I’m talking 5 minutes…no joke. You just need the key ingredient.

Now, what is the key ingredient? Keep reading…

Homemade Quest Bars-cookie-dough-2

My bar is on the left, real Quest bar on the right. Mine not as pretty, but tastes delicious!

The key ingredient is something called IMO. IMO (aka. isomalto-oligosaccharide) is a high quality, high-purity isomalto-oligosaccharide, made from enzymatic conversion of starch. It functions as a dietary fiber, prebiotic and low-calorie sweetener. This ingredient is now appearing in MANY types of bars now. Bioneutra makes VitaFiber, which is the brand name. I’ve been looking for a IMO product for years, as I knew if I had it, I could make something similar to a Quest-style bar.  So I was thrilled when I came across a post from the lovely Anna over at Protein Pow.  She came across the company Bioneutra, and they make IMO! FYI, Anna’s got a great recipe on her site too, along with a handy Q&A about IMO.

Where To Get VitaFiber:

(March 2015) Bioneutra just announced that VitaFiber is now selling on Amazon (USA and Canada)!  Therefore the shipping rates are much cheaper.

Here are the links:

Amazon.com

· 1.2 kg syrup – http://amzn.to/1FgpQ8e

· 6 x 1.2 kg syrups – http://amzn.to/1EfPIzb

· 1.0 kg powder – http://amzn.to/1x0aHq4

Amazon.ca:· 1.2 kg syrup – http://amzn.to/1AixGZd

*Amazon.ca will also soon have the powder

If you are in the USA, another option to order VitaFiber is from Sweet It.  I assume its similar to what BioNeutra sells.

Homemade Quest Bars-bioneutra-vitafiber

IMO syrup is clear and has the same consistency as honey.

These bars are low carb because the fiber content is so high. That’s because IMO is almost all prebiotic fiber. If you take the total carbohydrates minus the fiber, there you have your final carb count.

Homemade Quest Bars-cookie-dough-1

This time, the real Quest bar is on the left, mine on the right. The IMO helps to give it a similar texture.

More info on VitaFiber (from their website):

———–

VitaFiber™ is a sweet natural fiber providing low calorie and soluble prebiotic fiber for human digestive health. VitaFiber™ is non-GMO, sugar-free and gluten-free.

VitaFiber™ is available as a syrup or powder. On a dry basis, VitaFiber™ is greater than 90% soluble fiber. Based on published studies, the caloric value of VitaFiber™ is 1.5 kcal/g. All VitaFiber™ products are Kosher and Halal.

————-

You will need the VitaFiber to make these bars, so use the links I provided above to purchase it. For these bars, I recommend you get the syrup vs. the powder.

It takes 35 grams of the syrup to make 1 bar (2 Tbsp), so the 1kg (35 oz) of syrup you buy (for $14.00) would make approx. 28 bars! Huge cost savings.

First, we have a Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough version…below that you’ll see a White Chocolate Raspberry version. I made those, just because they’re my favorites.  Below that, you’ll see some other suggested flavor combinations.

A few notes:

– Almond meal is simply whole almonds ground up. You can buy or make yourself…super easy.

Homemade Quest Bars-almond-meal

– If you want your bar to be shelf-stable, and not need refrigeration, don’t use anything that would go bad (ie. fresh fruit). For fruit add in’s, I recommend dried fruit or freeze dried fruit. You can even use whey protein that already has freeze dried fruit in it (this was the case in the Whey Gourmet Raspberry protein I used below, hence the pink.)

Homemade Quest Bars-white-chocolate-raspberry-1

Quest White Chocolate Raspberry on left, my version on the right. Mine is pink, as that was the color of the raspberry whey I used.

– You can use the VitaFiber powder if you prefer, you’ll just need a syrup of some sort to bind it all together (eg. sugar free maple syrup or sugar free honey). Probably around 2 Tbsp of your sugar free syrup, perhaps a touch more. You’d have to play around with it. If I do some more tests with the powder, I’ll add in some notes to this post.

– Can you use protein other than whey? Yes! If you have a vegan or non-dairy protein that you use, I think it would work. You just have to like the flavor of the protein that you’re putting in.

– Is this bar ok for kids to eat? I don’t see a reason why it wouldn’t be, if you’re using all-natural ingredients. IMO is essentially a fiber. I just wouldn’t give a child under 10 yrs an entire bar, as it might be a bit too much fiber and protein for their digestive systems to handle. I’d give my 5 year old half a bar, and I’ll hold off giving to my 1 year old till she’s older.

– As you’ll see in the recipe, if you want a firm bar (a touch more similar to the Quest ones), you’ll need to heat the IMO first.  This will produce a harder bar because when the IMO syrup is heated, it will react with the protein powder and have it cook slightly.  If you like softer bars, don’t heat the IMO syrup. The bar will be a little softer and a bit sticky to the touch. Either way, you can still bake them or heat them and get a great result. The softer bar is just easier to eat and you don’t have to heat it if you don’t want to.  It will also just melt a little faster if you do heat it, so you only need to microwave like 10 seconds instead of 20. Below I did them both at 20 seconds (mine is the pink, Quest is the other). Still delicious though!

Homemade Quest Bars-white-chocolate-raspberry-heated

* Edited to Add:

Below this recipe, I’ve also added the recipe for a batch of 12 bars as some have requested that. The calculation, is the recipe below x 12, but to make it easy, I’ve done all the calculating for you.

Version #1 – Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough

Homemade Quest-Inspired Bars - Cookie Dough flavor
 
Prep time
Total time
 
Homemade Quest-Inspired Bars. Low carb, gluten free.
Author:
Recipe type: Snack
Cuisine: American
Yield: 1
Ingredients
For Cookie Dough flavored Quest Bar
  • 2 Tbsp VitaFiber Syrup
  • 1 scoop (30 grams or ¼ cup) whey protein, vanilla (I used Whey Gourmet Naturelle Vanilla)
  • 2 tsp almond meal (just ground up almonds)
  • 15 g (2 squares) no-sugar chocolate, chopped (I used Simply Lite No Sugar Added Milk Chocolate)
Instructions
For a firm bar
  1. Heat the 2 Tbsp of VitaFiber Syrup in a saucepan over medium heat. When its just starts to bubble, remove from heat and immediately add protein powder, almond meal.
  2. Place mixture in a plastic bag and knead until it starts to cool down. It will form into a bar.
  3. Add in the chopped chocolate once its cooled a bit. Still might melt a little.
For a softer bar
  1. In a small bowl, combine the VitaFiber syrup, whey protein, almond meal and chopped chocolate. Mixture will be slightly sticky to the touch.
  2. From here, it can be stored in a plastic bag, or you could also bake it in a 350 degree F oven for 5 minutes, or microwave for 15-20 seconds, as you would to a regular Quest bar.
Notes
Nutrition (of a Quest bar Cookie Dough flavor) Calories: 210 Fat: 8 g Carbs: 21 g Fiber: 17 g Sugar 1 g Sodium: 290 mg Protein: 21 g
Nutrition
Serving size: Per bar (Cookie Dough flavor) Calories: 288 Fat: 10 g Saturated fat: 3.5 g Carbs: 33 g Sugar: 4 g Sodium: 131 mg Fiber: 27 g Protein: 22 g

Version #2 – White Chocolate Raspberry

Homemade Quest-Inspired Protein Bars - White Chocolate Raspberry flavor
 
Prep time
Total time
 
Homemade Quest-Inspired Bars. Low carb, gluten free.
Author:
Recipe type: Snack
Cuisine: American
Yield: 1
Ingredients
For White Chocolate Raspberry flavored bar
  • 2 Tbsp VitaFiber Syrup
  • 1 scoop (30 grams or ¼ cup) whey protein, raspberry (I used Whey Gourmet Raspberry. Could also use vanilla, and add 2 tsp freeze dried raspberries)
  • 2 tsp almond meal (just ground up almonds)
  • ½ oz (1 oz square cut in half) white chocolate, chopped (I used Baker's White Chocolate)
Instructions
For a firm bar
  1. Heat the 2 Tbsp of VitaFiber Syrup in a saucepan over medium heat. When it just starts to bubble, remove from heat and immediately add protein powder, almond meal. Stir it around until it comes together
  2. Place mixture in a plastic bag and knead until it starts to cool down. It will form into a bar.
  3. Add in the chopped white chocolate once its cooled a bit. Still might melt a little.
For a softer bar
  1. In a small bowl, combine the VitaFiber syrup, whey protein, almond meal and chopped white chocolate. Mixture will be slightly sticky to the touch.
  2. From here, it can be stored in a plastic bag, or you could also bake it in a 350 degree F oven for 5 minutes, or microwave for 15-20 seconds, as you would to a regular Quest bar.
Notes
*Net carbs = 14 g *For lower carb, use straight cocoa butter vs. white chocolate, or sugar-free white chocolate if you can find it.
Nutrition
Serving size: 1 bar Calories: 288 Fat: 8.8 g Carbs: 39 g Sugar: 11 g Sodium: 156 mg Fiber: 26 g Protein: 24 g

To Make a Batch of 12 Bars

Cookie Dough Flavor – 12 bars

1 1/2 cups VitaFiber Syrup
3 cups whey protein powder, vanilla
8 Tbsp almond flour
24 squares no-sugar added chocolate (2 x 35 oz or 85 g bars), chopped

Follow the same directions as above. Put mixture into an 9×9 pan. Cut into 12 bars.

Peanut Butter Chocolate Flavor – 12 bars

peanut butter chocolate quest bars_750

I came up with another flavor combination. I posted about it on Instagram, but wanted to have a place for it on the site too.

1 1/2 cups VitaFiber Syrup
2 1/4 cups whey protein powder, chocolate (I used Lean Body For Her whey concentrate)
1 1/4 cup peanut protein (I used Lean Body For Her Peanut Protein)
1/4 cup almond flour

For these bars, I melted the vitafiber syrup in the microwave for 55 seconds. Then, in a seperate bowl, mix together all the other ingredients. Add the warm syrup and mix until combined with a wooden spoon. It will be sticky. Put the mixture into an 8×8 or 9×9 pan. Press into the pan with a sheet of plastic wrap over top so it doesn’t stick to your hands. Place in the fridge until firm (about 1 hour). Cut into 12 bars. From here I wrap them individually for grab-n-go and keep them in the fridge.

 

 

Other Flavor Recipe Ideas:

{Base recipe as above: 2 Tbsp VitaFiber syrup, 2 tsp almond meal, 1 scoop (30 grams or 1/4 cup) whey protein}

Strawberry Cheesecake – use vanilla whey protein, and add 2 tsp freeze dried strawberry pieces

Chocolate Peanut Butter – use chocolate peanut butter flavored whey protein, or chocolate whey. Add 2 tsp chopped peanuts

Peanut Butter & Jelly – use vanilla whey protein or berry flavored protein, add 2 tsp chopped peanuts

Double Chocolate Chunk – use chocolate whey protein, add 2 tsp chopped sugar free chocolate

Banana Nut Muffin – use vanilla whey protein, add 2 tsp freeze dried banana and 2 tsp chopped walnuts

Cinnamon Roll – use vanilla whey protein, add 1/2 tsp cinnamon

Coconut Cashew – use vanilla whey protein, add in 2 tsp unsweetened coconut and 2 tsp chopped cashews

Lemon Cream Pie – use vanilla whey protein, add in 1 tsp lemon extract and 1/2 tsp lemon zest

Apple Pie – use vanilla whey protein, add in 2 tsp freeze dried apple and 1/4 tsp cinnamon

Would also love if you shared your flavor combo’s in the comments.

Happy bar making!

 

Kristine
Follow Me

Kristine

I'm Kristine Fretwell, busy mom of 2 little girls, author, blogger, and former pro fitness competitor. I love almost any kind of cookie, anything coconut or pumpkin flavored, and Thai food. A perfect day for me is enjoying my family, getting to the gym, and whipping up a new healthy recipe. I've got a collection of over 300 healthy recipes, and other tidbits like fitness and health tips. My recipes have been featured on websites such as Huffington Post, Savvy Mom, Shape and Skinny Scoop.
Kristine
Follow Me
  • Jason

    Hey Kristine! Did you by any chance do a cost comparison for how much it costs to make your own bar instead of buying them? Wondering how much the savings would be.

  • Farina

    Hi there – just wondering if you have a recipe for these bars using the vitafiber powder instead of syrup?

  • Farina

    Hi there – wondering about using IMO powder instead of the syrup. Is this possible for these recipes and if so, how do you go about making the syrup from the powder? Thank you!

  • Jacqueline Rowe

    I will strongly recommend Honeyville Almond Flour… THE BEST for baking. It is so fine it looks just like regular four.

  • Heather Cox

    Just tried my hand at these for the first time. Used vitafiber, isopure vanilla, almond meal, and freeze dried strawberries. Intended to use cinnamon or ginger too but decided against it at the last minute. They are delicious with a lovely texture. Much better than Quest, since they use corn fiber now in place of iso. My husband was not a fan of the stickiness but found flavor agreeable to his palette. I think I will try a coconut cashew version next (coconut flour, coconut oil, cashew meal). Thank you for sharing. Loving cost effective approach.

  • Paul Valachovic

    Hello, So I ordered my Vitafiber on line and was a little concerned when the label said made in China-packaged in USA. Is this new or, in your opinion, anything to worry about?

  • E C

    I’m having trouble using the ratios described in the article. I’m going with the cookie dough version, but it seems the powder to liquid ratio is too high, so I just end up with chunks of powder and have to compress it together. It doesn’t look like what you have pictured. I even had to add a tbsp of peanut butter to each bar and still couldn’t get it to mix properly.

    I’m using Optimum Nutrition 100% Whey protein. Is it the powder I’m using that’s the issue?

  • Elise

    Hello! Is there a substitute for the almond flour for those with but allergies?

    • Elise

      Correction. * those with NUT allergies.

  • http://www.g-freerd.com/ Caroline Waters

    I’m SOOO excited I found this! Just ordered the syrup and I cannot WAIT to try making them! I am gluten free and have always been addicted to quest bars but recently have been having terrible stomach issues. The Dr told me to try eliminating dairy from my diet for a few weeks…so I’m doing to make these with a vegan protein powder to make them dairy free! Thanks for sharing such an awesome post :)

  • mike

    this will sound like a horribly stupid question but can i buy the freeze dried fruit already at the grocery store or do i have to do it myself? also, do i add the fruit as frozen? thnx!

    • snarkylarky

      Frozen would be a mistake, the liquid from defrosting would fuck with it

  • mike

    These are AMAZINGGGGGGG – one question, can I replace almond flour with coconut flour and would it be the same amount? Thnx

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Hey Mike! I’m not sure coconut flour would work well as it would absorb so much liquid and dry them out. You can totally make them without almond flour. I’ve done that and just used the whey protein, vitafiber and add’ins and it worked totally fine!

  • max

    Hi! I am just now trying some of these out and its working great! Sometimes the bars don’t seem to have enough liquid in them (probably because I use a different brand of protein) so would you suggest adding a tiny bit extra syrup, or another liquid to help them?

    • snarkylarky

      Water?..

  • Sarah

    Awesome post! I’ve been wanting to make my own protein bars and this article is really helpful! I actually found an alternative to VitaFiber as well called FiberYum that also sells imo-syrup and imo-powder that are less expensive and also corn-free. If you can’t get your hands on VitaFiber or want to try out another brand I would definitely recommend it. You can also buy other ingredients from the company at the same time such as chia seeds, flax seeds, chlorella, barley grass powder, kale powder, pea protein crisps, etc.

  • ashley walsh

    thanks for this recipe! I used GNC brand vanilla protein, and found it to be a little too sweet. I added a pinch of salt and it tasted EXACTLY like the quest bar. WOW! THANKS SO MUCH!

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Awesome! So glad you like them!

  • https://superfitbabe.wordpress.com/ Cassie

    Delicious! I will definitely have to get the vitafiber to make these!

  • kat

    thanks for all the flavor ideas. for those concerned about shipping costs, netrition sells vita fiber and the entire site has a flat shipping rate of 4.99 for the continental USA. hope this helps!

  • http://em-poweredwellness.com/ Emma @Em-powered Wellness

    Hi! I really want to try this but I am curious how these keep? I don’t want bars you have to store in the fridge or freezer.. If you make a batch for the week and keep them in tupperware/bags in your pantry will they be okay or will they turn to mush/get moldy?

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      If you don’t add anything perishable like fruit they will last for a while at room temp. They will just be a bit softer.

  • Heather robison

    My bars came out to powdery is there a reason that happened should I just add more of the syrup?

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Yes probably not enough syrup. I’d add a bit more, and you could also add a bit of milk (almond milk, cows milk etc) or water.

  • BLinda

    I tried this recipe today and my cost came out to $24/12 bars which is exactly how much Quest bars are if you buy them online. I’m not sure how to make my costs less?

    12 bars:

    VitaFiber $7

    Sugar Free Chocolate $3

    Almond mill $2

    Whey $12

  • SZiaee

    I’m trying to purchase VitaFiber from http://vitafiber.myshopify.com/ however when I get to check out the United States is not listed as an option. Is anyone else having that problem?

  • Bonnie

    I just found your website, and I am soooooo excited to start trying everything on it!
    And we have the same favorite flavors!

  • arlene

    Oh. My. Goodness. Living just outside Edmonton I am SO stoked to try this stuff! I just put an order in and cannot wait to try it. Sweet.
    Has anyway monitored their blood sugar on this?

  • Allison Blakeslee

    Hi there –

    Thank you for posting these recipes, i want to try this weekend. I was checking out the macros though and yours seem to be higher in calories and sugar….is there a substitute to get them down to the 1 gm like Quest Bars and the calories under 200? I look forward to hearing your feedback.

    • Audrey Perron

      please note that quest bars only have 1 or 2 g of sugar but they do have aroung 20g of carbs just like those bars
      its impossible to lower the amunt of carbs but its possible to lower the calories a litlle bit if you use only IMO + isolate protein (no almond meal)

  • Lindsey

    do you need to use the almond flour in the recipe? Will it work without it?

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      It should work fine without the almond flour. The texture will just be a little different.

  • Jackie

    Can i use inulin powder instead of IMO??

    • oaklandj

      If you want to fart constantly for the next 24 hours, sure.

  • Wanda

    I live in Edmonton and, when you order direct from BioNeutra, one of the shipping options is “Pick up at Edmonton location”. I placed my order and went down the next day to pick it up.

    I made 3 kinds of bars last evening – Cinnamon Roll, using 26g Chai Spice whey powder and cinnamon; Chocolate Peanut Butter, using 26g Chocolate Peanut Butter whey powder and chopped peanuts, and Chocolate Cherry, using 26g chocolate whey powder and finely chopped dried cherries. Cinnamon Roll was my favourite of the three.

    Mine taste like Quest bars but are just a touch drier than the real thing. Next time, I would add almond flavouring to the Chocolate Cherry one to give a bit more ‘cherry’ flavour. Also, I might use a bit mire Vitafiber or a bit of water. The peanut one, in particular, was really dry and took a lot of kneading, so it might have helped if I had moistened it a bit more.

    All in all, I am happy with the results. I would like to find a way to make more than one at a time, though.

    Oh, and I made mine by heating the Vitafiber for 20 seconds in the microwave, rather than putting it in a saucepan on the stove. Then I poured it into the dry ingredients and mixed with a small spoon at first, then put it in a small Ziploc bag (not fastened all the way) and kneaded it and kneaded it and kneaded it… You get the picture.

    I weighed my protein powder because scoops are not created equal. One scoop from one canister is different than 1 scoop from another canister.

    • Wanda

      Just a quick follow up. Of the 3 kinds I made, the Cinnamon Roll was definitely the most like a Quest bar. It stayed nice and soft and was similar in taste. I used a different brand of whey powder for the Chocolate Peanut Butter version. It was dry when I was making it and it was still rather dry when I ate it yesterday. Not sure I will make that one again. I might use chocolate powder from the same brand as the Chai Spice that I used for the Cinnamon Bun. I’ll add Peanut Butter flavouring and chopped peanuts to that and see if it works up better. All three kinds that OI made used different brands and I now see which one worked the best, from my POV. Added bonus, it is also the one with the least calories.

      • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

        Thanks for reporting back Wanda! Appreciate it! Yes it seems that different brands of protein work differently. Some might need more syrup/liquid than others its seems if the dough is too dry.

  • Daniel

    Where can you buy the vita fibre in Australia

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      I’m not sure which site would accomodate. Check both bioneutra and sweet it.

    • S

      I just ordered some off mysweetit.com… $44.95 and shipping was $5.95 for a total of $50.90 (about $70 au) for 2.64lbs (1.2kg) of VibtaFiber syrup, which should make about 34 bars worth depending on how big you make them.

  • BuffDogLover

    I got my Vitafiber last night. Can’t wait to try. Cookie dough is one of my fave Quest Bar recipes! I’m in the US so it’s a little odd it ships out of So Cal but it is pretty heavy so I can understand the shipping.

  • Ashley

    If you make these ahead of time, how long will they hold? Also when you do the additivies, like cinnamon or dried fruits, do you just add or do you need to supplement with more liquid? Thank you :)

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      If you make them ahead, they should store fine in the fridge for a couple weeks. They would be shelf stable for at least a week, but it depends on what you put in them. Fruits could go bad over time. They can be frozen too, just thaw before eating, or warm them up. I add in the dried fruit all at ones, and knead it. If you add too much, you might need a touch of water to soften the dough.

  • Michelle

    Hey! I just tried your recipe, weighing out the protein powder (I made 2 bars using 2 different brands of whey protein), VitaFiber syrup, and almond flour. They tasted good, but both bars were quite crumbly, even after lots of kneading. Does this happen when you make yours? Mine never got to the same texture as what yours look like in your photos. Any advice? Thanks!

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      HI Michelle! If its a touch dry, try adding just a bit more syrup. Other readers have done that and its worked fine. It appears that different brands of protein work a bit differently. If the extra syrup doesn’t do the trick, I’m sure a touch of water would do it.

  • http://www.lisavoorhies.com lisav

    I loved the flavor of quest bars, but don’t like their new sweetener choices and I don’t like whey protein. I get really bloated from it and the taste is not great for shakes. I use Arbonne’s vanilla protein shake, it’s vegan and delish. Thanks sooo much for the info. Awesome stuff!

  • Jess

    I can’t believe how easy it was to make these! I got the vitafiber through Sweet It–paid only $5.95 for shipping and it was sent priority 2-day. I made chocolate chip and apple cinnamon so far but can’t wait to try other flavors. Thanks for a great recipe-delish! Just wondering how do you store them if you make a lot at once?

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Sorry just saw your post :) I store mine in little baggies in the freezer for long term storage (they will need to thaw before eating). If I’m eating them within a couple weeks, in the fridge works great.

  • Billy D

    Great recipe! Why did you decide to add almond flour, if I may ask?

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Thanks! I just added the almond flour to add a bit of texture. Regular quest bars also list almonds as an ingredient so I figured it might make them taste a bit more like the real thing :)

  • Kate

    What is the importance of vita fiber? Can you use psyllium instead?

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Vitafiber is a unique substance. Its not like psyllium, which would probably taste much different. The syrup is super sticky, and the vitafiber powder is super fine and doesn’t expand like psyllium would.

  • Lea

    If anyone feels that their bar may be too dry, you can try adding experimental portions of melted coconut oil.

  • Elisa

    Hi Kristine, thank you for your recipe. I have tried it yesterday, and i found that the bar was a bit dry, didn’t have much of a quest bar texture as all i could taste was dry protein powder (i used Optimum Nutrition Gold Whey cookies and cream), i’m not sure what have i done wrong:/ i have notice that on some bars quest list coconut oil and water as their ingredients, do you think adding one them could help, so the bar is more chewy than ‘sandy’ :)

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      If you try adding more syrup it should solve the problem. It seems that different brands are reacting a bit different. Also try to knead it really well. If that doesn’t work…then I would try adding a touch of water. Not sure how much, as I assume if it was too much it would get really sticky.

  • Ouisue Packard

    reading the back of the nutrafiber label, they say one tsp: 5 g, meaning one tablespoon is 15 g and two tablespoons are 30g, not 35.

  • Cheri

    Could you use Yacon syrup instead of the IMO? It seems they would be very similar, and I can get organic yacon syrup for much cheaper. Just curious!

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Yacon syrup would make it hold together fine. But it wouldn’t have the fiber and be low carb.

  • Scott

    I am curious how you did the math on how many bars the syrup makes. I just purchased the 5kg and the label says it is 200 1tsp servings which comes out to be 1000g according to the label. That only makes 28-29 bars if I use 35g per bar. If that’s correct than its $2 per bar of syrup. I know you said the 1kg can make 28 bars but could you actually make that many when made them?

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Hi Scott,

      I didn’t count how many bars my 1kg made, I just worked it out based on grams like you said. If you have the 5kg bottle that is a lot and should make 140 bars!

      • Scott

        It should yes but my 5kg bottle is only 1000g according to the label. So using the 35g per bar would result in only 28 bars per 5kg. Thats $2 per bar of syrup which does not make it cost effective. Unless im missing something I think your math is incorrect because the 1kg is not actually 1000g like it should be.

        • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

          Hmm, I don’t get how 5kg could only be 1000g…doesn’t make sense. Perhaps their label is a typo.

          • Scott

            Yeah im not sure. Im going to ask them about the labeling but ive made 5 bars so far and its easy to see the 5kg will not make 140 bars. Maybe it will make 40 but I doubt it. If thats the case its cheaper just to buy the quest bars.

          • Scott

            I just spoke with the people at Vitafiber and they said the label was a misprint and they are working on fixing it. So I do actually have 5000g in my 5kg container but it still doesn’t seem like it will make 140 bars. Ill keep track of how many it makes and report back.

          • ty

            It’s a liquid, I don’t even know why would they use kg/g instead of l/ml … either way just to make it easy on no metric users. 1 kg or 1L is always always always 1000 g or 1000 ml. So if you’ve got 1kg=1000 g and each bar calls for 35g then divide, 1000÷35=28.57 bars per kilo

          • Wanda Jollymore

            Much easier to be accurate if you weigh the amount you use. I much prefer the weight labelling, myself.

          • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

            I hear ya. Let me know how it works out!

          • Wanda Jollymore

            5kg would be 5,000g. At 35g per bar, you should be able to get almost 143 bars, but I have to think there will be some bits sticking to the container, so the estimate of 140 bars is probable right on the money.

  • Cassidy Turner

    I know the nutritional content would change (etc) but do you think you could use glycerin as a substitute for the VitaFiber and/or how would you adjust the recipe for the powdered fiber? I have Inulin Fiber (powdered… InulinFos – FructoOligoSaccharides… it’s a prebiotic soluble fiber, it says) and I was thinking about using that as I’m too cheap to buy the VitaFiber at this point. =)

  • Adrian

    I live in Calgary Alberta and VitaFiber is made 2.5 hours away in Edmonton. Whoohoo! considering most products come from somewhere several thousand miles away. Its amusing though because we spell fiber, fibre in Canada so clearly the company is targetting thr US market. Anyway I ordereed the 1kg size and shipping was $10. I ordered it on the 11th and I got it today via FedEx (13th).

    Knowing the package was on its way I went out to the grocery store and picked up a big bag of organic almonds, walnuts and coconut. My plan was to make a banana nut but I ended up making chocolate coconut.

    When I got home my package was waiting…. :)

    So I tried making one at first following the recipe. I did this so I knew what to expect and to test the taste. OMG it was amazing! I then made up two batches using all the vitaFiber syrup. My recipe was simular to yours. I heated the syrup, then added almond meal, chopped walnuts, coconut and a few scoops of Optimum nutitions chocoate chip isolate protein powder (the best sports nutrition shake mix in my option).

    after mixed, I put saran wrap around a big cutting board and moulded the mixture to a big rectangle to make bars. I scored the mixture to mark portions so it would be even.

    I then put the mixture (on the board) in the fridge as it was still a little warm from heating the syrup, then an hour later took them out, cut them into bars and wrapped them individually.

    Cost wise the syrup was $24.00 and the almonds, walnuts and coconut was about $8. Out of that, I got 29 full bars. Probably would of been 30 if I wasnt sampling :)

    They are cost effective compared to actual quest bars and you can flavour them how ever you want. VitaFiber sells a 5kg at $50 so that way is a lot more cost affective as shipping is still $10. For 5kg cost would be .70 a bar.

    No I do not work for VitaFiber. I am going to test these on my blood sugar for a week before I order more. I am type 2 diabetic.

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Awesome review…thanks for posting! So glad you like them….and glad you also saw a great cost savings!

    • Wanda Jollymore

      Great review. I work just a few minutes away from Bioneutra here in Edmonton. I emailed them late Friday to see if they would let me come pick up my order. I am hoping to make mine even more cost effectively. Between myself and my husband, we go through a lot of the chocolate peanut butter ones. And I big bag of low carb chocolate peanut butter whey powder sitting in the pantry unused. (I went on a vanilla smoothie kick lately.) This would be another great use for that bag.

  • Emerald

    I feel like I’m following this recipe perfectly, but I find that my bars always need more than 2 tablespoons of the vitafiber syrup. Does any one else have this problem or could it be the protein powder that I’m using??

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Hmm. How much more do you need than the 2 Tbsp…like 1 tsp, or more? Are you using a vegan protein, or whey?

  • Ryan

    Do you have a way to cut the sugar grams down? I noticed they are much higher than the original quest bar but not sure why. Would like to keep my sugar as low as possible. Also, do you happen to have a recipe for the new quest bar flavor (cookies and cream)? It is my new favorite!

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Hi Ryan, the sugar is higher in the white chocolate raspberry, as I used regular white chocolate. I’ve yet to locate a sugar-free white chocolate. For the Cookies & Cream flavor, I’d use 1 gluten free Oreo type cookie, chopped up….added to the ‘base’ recipe. I’ve done it….so so good. It will have a few grams of sugar though 😉

      • Wanda Jollymore

        Good tip about the gf Oreo-type cookie.

    • Wanda Jollymore

      You can buy cookies and cream whey powder. Depending on where you live, you might need to order it online.

  • mc

    Hi Kristine
    just wanted to share my double chcoclate flavour combo: I made a batch of five bars with 14 tsp IMO syrup, 6 tsp cocoa powder, 1/4 cup splenda, 6 tsp or to taste sugar free syrup, 4-5 scoops of whey protein isolate – vanilla and chocolate combo – and a few drops of stevia dark chcoclate drops. I wanted them nut free so I omitted the almond flour. Im not sure how that changed the texture. It’s based on Anna’s recipe proportions but I had to add more syrups… thx for the Inspiration for mere moms like me to make these :) I have lots of the powder and wonder if it is useful in muffins.

  • Mike S

    Hi Kristine! I’ve been making my own protein bars using IMO syrup but I always have the trouble of resulting in high carb bars, usually around +50g (+20g net carbs). My recipes never used almond meal though, just 55g of IMO and a scoop of whey. What does the almond meal do exactly for the recipe?

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Which brand of IMO are you using? Perhaps the carb count they have listed is incorrect, unless they add something different to their syrup? The almond meal just helps the texture to make it more similar to a Quest bar. It has very little carbs.

  • Tom

    Is there anything i could use instead of imo to get similar results? i live in the UK and i cant seem to find it anywhere :(

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Hi Tom. I haven’t come across anything yet that performs in a similar manner to IMO. It’s hard to find something like this that’s low carb. But if I do, I will for sure post about it!

    • Amanda Armstrong

      Amazon.Com Amazon.UK

      I have some coming from Japan, you have to search:

      Oligosaccharides

      http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000KF8DG8/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o01_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

      Maybe it won’t be a 2 month wait for you! After I bought that I found a company called Sweet it! Same thing. There are many other sources for IMO’s not just Vita Fiber.
      Hope that helps.

  • kate

    great idea, but as a US citizen, buying vitafiber or sweet it comes out to be at least $24 for the size you recommended. with the cost of the almonds and other ingredients, that’s even more expensive than just buying a box of quest bars :(

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Try buying of SweetIt New site I found and they’re US based.

  • Lynnlato

    Carbs are carbs. If it says 20 carbs then it is 20 grams of carbohydrates that are affecting your blood sugar and causing an insulin response. You cannot deduct fiber. Fiber affects blood glucose just as any other carb (yes it slightly more complex but it still triggers an insulin response). I point this out because companies use the “net carb” bit as a marketing tool to make consumers think that their products are low carb when, in fact, they are not. I am a type 1 diabetic who is very fit and I cannot deduct fiber carbs because they affect my blood glucose like any other carb.

    With all that being said, these bars are otherwise a great bar packed with protein and mostly nutritious ingredients. They are a great supplement or snack, but they aren’t low carb. The only truly low carb protein bars that I am aware of are Power Crunch bars, which have about 10g carbs, 14g protein and about 195 calories. But, of course, they aren’t all-natural… but then again, neither are Quest Bars.

    • lynnlato

      Kristine, I just re-read my post and I don’t my intent was clear. But here is a great interview with one of the founders of Quest Bars, Ron Kane, who talks with a Diabetes group about the affects of the IMO in the bars on blood glucose. Kind of interesting and better articulates the point I had tried to make about fiber and blood sugar. Sorry for the confusion! http://www.meandmydiabetes.com/2012/03/03/high-fiber-foods-and-blood-sugar-quest-protein-bar-interview/

    • Diatalk

      I am type 2 Diabetic and fibre does NOT spike my blood sugar. Just because it affects you does not mean that everyone else is wrong. All carbs are NOT the same.

  • Lexi Monzeglio

    Hi there, I live in South Africa and no one will ship VitaFiber here… (The Sweet-It site does, but the shipping is $60 !! and I am far too broke for that) Do you think I could replace the VitaFiber with Agave Syrup? Or possibly Stevia and 2 tbs of coconut milk for the moisture?

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Vitafiber is unique unfortunately, and while you can use agave, it will no longer be a low carb or high fiber bar.

  • Laura Tracey

    Does anyone make a bulk recipe of quest bars or is it better to do it one bar at a time?

    • Gina

      I was wondering the same thing

      • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

        I made 12 in a batch before, I just multiplied all the ingredients by 12. I pressed mine into an 9×9 pan..

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      I made 12 in a batch before, I just multiplied all the ingredients by 12. I pressed mine into an 9×9 pan.

      • dlove

        How did you mix the larger batch quantity? Did you still do it by hand, or does a food processor or blender work when working with larger batches?

  • Vanessa

    Sorry to be such a bug! I was just wondering how much of the vita fibre powder you used when making it with that instead of the syrup? I bought the powder by accident so trying to figure out what works best with it! Thanks so much in advance!

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      No worries! :) I’d try 2 Tbsp of the vita powder, with 2 Tbsp of some sort of sugar free syrup sf maple, sf honey, etc) Depending on the syrup you use, you may need to add a touch more syrup if the mixture isn’t coming together very well.

  • Anu

    Hi have you tried a vegan protein powder? I usually use pea protein.

  • sara

    what can i use in place of vitafiber? i need the bars to be low carb still, fiber in them would be great still too. usa shipping is just waaaayyyyy tooooo expensive.

  • Vanessa

    Thx so much for the response can I ask where you bought the sugar free honey I’m canada?

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      You have to get it online. Low Carb Canada or Low Carb Grocery.

  • Vanessa

    Hi there! Thanks so much for the great post! I was wondering if you have tried it with the powder form? If you have any suggestions on what syrup would be best to use as I’m not sure what I should try. Any ideas would be very much appreciated! :)

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Hi Vanessa, yes I’ve tried with the powder. I find it works best with sugar-free honey (Nature’s Hollow), or almost any kind of sugar-free maple syrup.

  • Erika

    I’ve been wanting to try these for so long! I finally bought the vita fiber syrup and made a bar this morning. I also found that they weren’t sticking together quite like an actual quest bar, but I wrapped it in some wax paper and put it into the freezer for 15 or 20 minutes. Took it out and it was PERFECT!!!! Tasted almost exactly like a quest bar!!! I added a bit of PB2, a bit of stevia, and used half vanilla and half chocolate whey powder. And it was just like the chocolate peanut butter bars!! I will definitely be increasing the recipe and making a giant batch!!!

    • Erika

      …my attempt. On the left: peanut butter & chocolate, on the right: cinnamon. The recipe does work!! Thanks for a great recipe!!!!

      • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

        They look fabulous! Thank for sharing and I’m glad to hear you like them! Sounds like you made some great tweaks to make them extra yummy!

  • Davide

    Hey just saw your recipe. Seems amazing. I am now waiting for the Vitafiber. Hope they don’t take too long shipping it over to Luxembourg. I’ll let you know how it works out for me. But in fact i just wanted to say thank you :)

    Greetings from Luxembourg

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Oh wow! Hope you get it safely shipped way over there! Thanks for visiting the blog :)

  • Mary Anne

    Okay, so I have tried to make these Quest bars …..today I made the last one. They never turn out like the real thing, despite tweaking ingredients…..so now my question – I have about 12 tub of VitaFiber. What else can I do with it?

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Do you have the liquid or powder?

      • Mary Anne

        liquid..

        • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

          Hmm. I haven’t used the Vitafiber for anything other than bars as of yet. Not sure why its not working for you. Have you tried not heating it? You’re using whey protein I assume? Someone wrote in and said theirs wasn’t coming together (was on the dry side), but the addition of a touch of extra syrup than listed in the recipe and some additional kneading helped solve the problem. I think different brands of whey protein are working slightly different it seems. Hope that helps!

          • Mary Anne

            I am using whey, have tried heating, not heating, using less whey, more vitafibre…..just does not come together. I think I may try adding a bit of almond or coconut milk next time…

          • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

            Which brand of whey are you using? Just curious. More liquid should help. Trying to figure out how different brands work as there seems to be some variations between brands.

  • EB

    I tried your recipe but I couldn’t get all the ingredients to come together. The small part that did was not anywhere close to a Quest bar. I’m not sure where I went wrong. The syrup is almost impossible to mix. I poured it into the ingredients after it started bubbling. Can you offer additional tips?

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Did you use whey protein or another type of protein? You can probably fix the problem by just adding a touch more syrup…like 1-2 tsp.

      • EB

        I used whey (About Time). I think the extra syrup helped! Does Quest use the same Canadian company?

        • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

          I don’t know who Quest uses…or even if they use this exact formula. I’m sure what they use in the bars is top secret 😉

  • Chris

    Hi, just to clarify, the list of ingredients you provide is for one bar only? Have you priced out the cost making your own vs buying quest bars?

    Thank you for your recipe.

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Hi Chris, yes its for one bar. In the notes above I mentioned this, ” It takes 35 grams of the syrup to make 1 bar (2 Tbsp), so the 1kg of syrup you buy (for $14.00) would make approx. 28 bars! Huge cost savings.” I didn’t incorporate the cost of the other ingredients (whey protein, almond meal) but those might add another $1.00 per serving…if that. Still a savings if you ask me! Happy bar making! :)

  • Gráinne

    Sorry for being ridiculously lazy…but just wondering how much you paid for shipping within Canada?

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Its different depending on province etc…so you will have to go through the cart.

      • Gráinne

        Ah. OK. Thank you!

  • http://batman-news.com Essa

    Do they sell Vitafiber at TradersJO ?

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Not at Trader Joes….just online

  • LauraR

    I just ordered VitaFiber and can’t wait to try this recipe – i love Quest Bars but don’t want to keep paying the expensive price if I can avoid it! I would like to make large batches of the bars and am wondering if they need to be stored in the fridge/freezer or if you can keep them in the pantry like Quest Bars?

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Hi Laura! You won’t be sorry! If you make in a big batch, I would probably store in the fridge. I had mine at room temp for a couple days, and it seemed fine, but it will probably keep its freshness better if stored in the fridge…especially if you’re taking a week or longer to eat them. I havent tried freezing, but I dont see why that wouldnt work either. But I assume youd have to wait till they are thawed to eat or they will be rock hard.

  • angie

    i want to make these but i cant get the vitafiber without paying $17 for shipping. Anyone else have an easier time getting it?

    • http://required2beinspired.blogspot.com Natasha Janzen

      I made these using a handmade stevia syrup instead of the vita fibre.

      I used recipe #1 http://steviapoint.com/stevia-recipes/how-to-make-stevia-pancake-syrup/ minus the maple extract and then just substituted it into the recipe for the vitafiber. You lose out on the extra fiber, but you also get to skip a few calories too!

      • Johanna

        How did they turn out? Like a questbar?

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      If you’re in the USA, you can order from Sweet It and it looks like its $12.00 shipping (I added the link to their shop in the post). I think that’s the cheapest you’ll find. The syrup weighs quite a bit, hence the higher shipping rate.

    • SM

      Search IMO on eBay — there’s a US seller that now has it with FREE shipping! Listed in 2.5 lb. and 5 lb. sizes. Finally, no insane shipping. So excited to make my own bars!

      • remcycle

        I can confirm this…just bought a 2.5lb tub for $25 bucks. I assume it’s just someone who drives over the border and picks it up because they talk on their eBay page about ‘running short on supply’ lol.

    • idealogik

      You can pay $14 for shipping 1 kg that costs $9 itself, so it’s much, much cheaper in total. Look for Sweetmefitme online store. Its sells IMO powder which is easily converted to syrup and a lot more versatile.

  • Osc Rich

    can you change the almond meal to someting else? coconut flour, oat or plain ole flour?

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Hi Osc, I’m sure you could put whatever you like in it….coconut flour, oat flour etc. I haven’t tried it myself. If you do try it out, please report back and let me know how it goes :)

      Kristine Fretwell
      Busy But Healthy(tm)
      http://www.busybuthealthy.com
      Ph: 604-805-3858
      *Connect on:*
      Facebook | Twitter

  • Romaida

    Is there a place to buy IMO syrup or powder in the US? Shipping can get expensive.

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      As far as I know, its only available online right now. Sorry.

  • Krumble

    Ahhhh where do I get this IMO syrup in Australia?! K x

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      I’m pretty sure Bioneutra.ca ships worldwide, but not sure what the cost would be.

      • angie

        its $17 to ship :(

  • Christina

    This is an awesome post. I’ve never heard of Quest bars myself, mostly cause I avoid pretty much all packaged goods – but these look awesome homemade style. Very interesting learning about IMO!

  • Nicole Trevisan

    Thank you thank you thank you!!!! I LOVE quest bars, but they are usually pretty expensive! now i can make my own =)

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      You sure can!

  • Danica_K

    Where did you find the Simply Lite in Canada?

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Danica, I go across the border to get it. Trader Joe’s. You’d have to look online otherwise. Alternatively, Krisda sugar free chocolate chips (stevia) just came out and they are fabulous. Can buy at Superstore in natural health aisle.

      • Danica_K

        thank you! we have a Trader Joe’s across the border here as well. I will look for them next time we go!

  • http://www.fitnesstreats.com Elise

    I’ve also tried a couple recipes using VitaFiber on my blog! Great product!

    • http://www.busybuthealthy.com Kristine Fretwell

      Oh awesome! I’ll have to check out your post!

    • http://joaoalexandre.com/en João Paulo Alexandre

      Great to see you here Elise.

      Nice article Kristine.

Previous post:

Next post: