But I always felt ridiculous paying for them, because it was totally the kind of thing I could make at home for much less.
So I went out and got myself a container of a great protein powder, and while researching protein recipe ideas, I figured out that you can actually use the powder in a LOT more than just shakes!
(Or just a great way to use up that GIANT container of protein you've had sitting around your pantry for ages.)
This recipe for Strawberries & Cream Protein Crumble is one of my new favorite ways to use protein powder--as a delicious vanilla-scented crumble topping for baked summer fruit.
ViSalus Vi-Shape Shake Mix--a protein powder mix with a lovely vanilla cake flavor that works beautifully in this simple crumble topping. The sweet, vanilla flavor of the protein mix gives this crumble topping an almost cake-like taste that is incredible on top of the berries.
Other bonus? Using the already sweet protein mix allowed me to cut out the bulk of flour and sugar I would typically use, making this version much lower in carbs than your typically berry crumble.
Once baked, the berries bubble and deepen in flavor--the perfect contrast to the crumbly sweet topping.
It's incredible served still-warm with a generous dollop of creme fraiche or plain yogurt on top.
Learn more about the ViSalus program on their blog or connect with them on Facebook.
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Strawberries & Cream Protein Crumble
For the Filling:
2 pounds ripe strawberries, hulled and quartered
2 tablespoons sugar (use a bit more if the berries aren't very sweet)
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon corn starch
For the Topping:
2/3 cup Vi-Shape Shake Mix (or other vanilla protein mix)
1/3 cup all purpose flour (substitute a low carb baking mix or gluten-free flour, if desired)
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 tablespoons sugar + some for sprinkling on top
zest of 1 lemon
6 tablespoons cold butter, cut into small pieces
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
Creme fraiche, plain yogurt, or sour cream, for serving (optional)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine the berries, sugar, lemon juice, vanilla, and corn starch in a bowl and toss well to combine.
In a separate bowl, combine the protein mix, flour, baking powder, sugar, salt, and lemon zest. Whisk to evenly distribute, then add the butter, using your fingers to rub it into the dry mixture until it resembles crumbs.
Pour the berry filling into a 8" baking dish (or divide into smaller ramekins for individual portions, like I did above). Top with the crumble topping, piling it on generously. Sprinkle with a bit of sugar and place on a baking sheet.
Bake for 30 - 45 minutes, or until the topping is golden brown and the fruit filling is bubbling. Let cool 20 minutes before serving. Serve topped with a dollop of creme friache, plain yogurt, or sour cream, if desired.