Clean Peanut Butter Blondies + Have Yourself A Merry Little Fit-mas *GIVEAWAY*

I tend to have my favorite ideas during one of two very different parts of the day. They always seem to either hit while I’m walking my dog early in the morning or at 10pm when I should be getting ready for bed. As it turns out, I’m 2 for 2 in the last 24 hours. One grand idea: Clean Peanut Butter Blondies. The other: free stuff for YOU! ‘Tis the season for baking and giving gifts, right?

First and foremost: the blondies. This recipe might be my favorite creation to date.

I have about 30 different recipes floating around in my brain from the last week of what has felt like nonstop clean cooking (slow-cooker pork, roasted Brussels sprouts, and sweet potato chips to name just a few… Look for these next week!). I planned to post the sweet potato chips today, but when I make something on a whim that is amazing as these blondies are, sticking to my editorial calendar kind of goes out the window.

I caught the baking bug late last night. I’ve been wanting to test out using garbanzo beans instead of flour for LONG time, so I went for it and threw together these blondies. With cookie butter. And peanut butter. And chocolate chips. (Sweet tooth was in full gear, clearly.) Ryan was a happy camper.20131205-163037.jpg

Clean Peanut Butter Blondies

These are gluten-free, dairy-free, and delicious. If you have a holiday party/pot luck/cookie exchange coming up, bring these and brag about how healthy they are compared to everything else. :o)
Nutritional Overview
Calories: 125
Carbs: 13.9
Fat: 6.2
Protein: 5.3

Serves: 16
Cook time: 25 minutes



  • 1 can Garbanzo beans (AKA chickpeas), drained and rinsed
  • 1/4 cup natural peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup PB2
  • 1/4 cup Speculoos Cookie Butter
  • 1/2 cup granulated Stevia
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 scoop (50 g) Cellucor Vanilla Creme protein powder
  • 2 tbsp unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/2 cup (100 g) dark chocolate chips (I used 63%)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray an 8×8 baking dish with cooking spray
  2. Rinse and drain beans in a colander
  3. Throw everything except chocolate chips into a food processor (or blender) and pulse until everything is combined into a batter-like consistency
  4. Fold in chocolate chips until evenly distributed
  5. Spread batter into your prepared baking dish
  6. Bake for 20-25 minutes
  7. Cut into 16 squares. We ate ours with marshmallow topping and/or fat free Cool Whip on top. HOLY YUM.

SUBSTITUTIONS (note: any substitution to your recipe will change the nutritional details listed above)

  • If you don’t have vanilla protein powder, grind up 1/2 cup of rolled oats to make oat flour and add a little extra vanilla and Stevia to your batter
  • If you don’t have cookie butter or don’t agree with all of the ingredients in it (it DOES contain more additives than natural nut butters), double up the natural PB in this recipe and leave out the cookie butter. Personally, I’m all about cookie butter. If you do substitute this, your batch probably won’t end up as delicious as mine. Just a (biased, opinionated) forewarning.


My second grand idea is more in the “giving” spirit of the holiday season. If you want to win a Polar FT4 heart rate monitor watch (silver) or a handy new digital food scale for your kitchen, keep on reading! If you already have your own Polar and/or food scale, you should participate anyway. Both items would make GREAT holiday gifts for a friend or family member. (Less Christmas shopping for you!)

I love spoiling others. To be honest, I enjoy buying gifts for friends and family more than I enjoy shopping for myself. But, Ryan and I decided to go with a more conservative budget on each others’ gifts this year. With the extra cash that I’m not spending on him, I’ve decided to get a couple of fit-minded gifts to give away to you wonderful people who read my blog. Why, you ask? I’ve only been doing this for a couple of months, but the fulfillment that I get from cooking and writing is something that I really value. On top of that, hearing that I’ve inspired a reader to improve their health or even simply motivated someone to cook at home with real food seriously makes my week, so I want to show you guys some love with free stuff. :o)

Grand prize: Polar FT4 Heart Rate Monitor (silver) — buy yours from my boot camp!
Runner up: Epica Accupro Digital Food Scale

Deadline: Thursday, December 12

How to participate:

  1. Subscribe to the blog (if you aren’t already following) using an email address that you actually check. I’ll need to get your contact information to ship prizes if you win.
  2. Leave a comment on this post and tell me any recipe you want to see me clean up! I like a challenge, and I’ve already conquered pizza and ice cream. Get creative. :o)
  3. I’ll pick the 2 winners with the best recipe ideas by Friday, December 13 and will announce them in a blog post that same day. Check back to see if you’ve won!

If I can make a good version based on your ideas, you’ll see a blog post with the recipe in January. I’m curious about what you people like to eat. I cook a lot of chicken, baked goods, sweet potatoes, and pancakes, but I know everyone doesn’t have the same taste as me. If you’ve got a meal in your head that you’d like to see “cleaned up” — post away! You might get some free toys for sharing your ideas. :o)

Comment away! And go make these blondies after you’ve submitted. Seriously.

39 thoughts on “Clean Peanut Butter Blondies + Have Yourself A Merry Little Fit-mas *GIVEAWAY*”

  1. I love love your blog!!! I would like to see wings, nachos or brownies made healthy. :) keep up your hard work, I hope I can get myself together like you!

  2. My weakness is chicken wings. I have tried the baked wings, which weren’t bad, but the sauce is what gets me. I prefer a sweet & spicy combo, which does not tend to be low cal. Any suggestions?

    Keep up the great work! I love following along. You are such an inspiration!


    1. Dude, Ryan asks me for wings every week. I haven’t been able to do it yet, but now that two people have mentioned them here, I guess I’ll have to try harder and make it work.

      Also, a giant light bulb just went off my head for a Superbowl appetizer post… Technically, YOU have inspired ME! Thank you for that!

      1. Do you use a polar watch or a fitbit/NIKEfuel type band? If so, what specs are most important to you? I think the accountability/proof of progress would be a good motivator.

      2. I use both. :) My “4 Fitness Apps” post goes into more detail, but at a higher level, I bought both because I think they’re used for different purposes throughout the day.

        The Polar is fantastic for during workouts to see exactly how many calories you burn, but it shouldn’t be worn all day long because the reading will be inaccurate. The FitBit Flex is an all-day/all-night thing, and I tend to forget I’m even wearing it. I bought mine to monitor my sleep patterns (primarily), but it definitely motivates me to get up and walk around more. For tracking, I combine the total calories burned from my workouts (based on what my Polar calculates) and add it to my “Active Minutes” log through the FitBit app, which automatically calculates what I burn just through walking around/moving throughout the day. That way, I know how much I’ve burned through regular activity AND working out combined. Make sense?

        Proof of progress is absolutely a motivator! That’s why I love the apps and gadgets :)

  3. Loaded baked potato soup! That would be perfect for a winter evening especially if it were a healthy version!

    Thanks for the giveaway! :]

  4. I LOVE food. Being in San Antonio, Mexican food is my favorite. I’d like to see some clean carne guisada and maybe some awesome healthy clean tortillas to go with. Clean quesadillas, clean nachos, clean queso, or clean gorditas. Anything Mexican!

  5. Being from San Antonio I love Mexican food!! So how about some clean carne guisada or some clean healthy tortillas? Or even a clean gordita. I would also like a clean fappuccino from Starbucks ! Thanks for the giveaway!!

  6. Poppyseed muffins. Although I like the idea of a healthy cinnamon roll too. Can’t resist a quick grab and go breakfast. However healthier versions are hard to come by.

  7. I’d like to find out how to make a healthy version of tamales. My grandmother and aunt’s have been making them since I was a kid and while they don’t use lard or hog meat anymore I’d love to make the clean version. I am wondering about a sweet potato tamale?

  8. omg when you tagged me in ig that you had posted this recipe I was so excited but had friends visiting again and had no time to look at it, i’m so glad i finally did!!! i have everyting to make these except cookie butter, but i dont think I’ll be able to wait to get it and make these . I’m sure some one has said mac and cheese and cheescake but these are my weaknesses!! thanks for the recipe :)

  9. So I know the giveaway is over but I just thought how wonderful it would be to make my husband’s favorite food healthy. I suck at coming with healthy solutions myself so if you get a chance or you’re curious enough to try it I think pot stickers would be a great idea!

  10. I finally made these blondies today after making the homemade cookie butter from the link above. Yum, but neither this nor my mug cakes seemed to set properly. I just drilled down to the details, and I think I did not use enough protein powder. I just realized one scoop of your brand is 50g while one scoop of Biotrust apparently is only about 20. Since so many folks at Synergy use Biotrust, you might want to highlight that especially in your review of protein powders. Since I took the time to make the cookie butter, I think I’ll try the blondies again tomorrow with more protein powder.

    1. How did the cookie butter turn out?! I haven’t tried to make it on my own yet. Was it labor-intensive?

      I’m definitely planning on covering BioTrust in my protein powder post, but I’ve found that when it comes to baked goods, Whey blends tend to work best. Casein doesn’t rise quite as well (which that combined with the fact that you used 20g instead of 50) is probably why yours set a little differently.

      Try it with 3 scoops of BioTrust and let me know if it works!

  11. We stumbled over here coming from a different page and thought I should check things out.
    I like what I see so now i am following you. Look forward to going over your web psge yet again.

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