Home made snacks for busy singers

When it comes to making the best choices about the food we consume, we singers need to weigh up quite a few options. Our circumstances often vary greatly day-to-day and what we eat can either help or hinder us. Whether we’re in an eight-hour recording session, preparing for an important audition or working at a late-night gig, we require energy and stamina. Food makes a big difference to the way we feel and perform, so it’s worth a little forethought and planning with some home made snacks.

I’m not a dietician, but a singer and a chef, so I’m constantly researching and inventing new recipes and food combinations. I know that healthy food doesn’t need to be bland, inconvenient or overly-expensive. Here are some of my recipes for healthy foods you can make at home and take with you on the road.

Energy bars for singers

Nuts and seeds provide us with healthy, unsaturated fats, protein, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. These bars contain no refined sugar, are gluten-free, dairy-free and full of sustainable energy. Make a habit of carrying these yummy treats with you, so that you always have a healthy snack to hand.

Storage: These bars will keep in the fridge for one week, if you can resist them that long!

N.B. Don’t worry about having a correctly-sized tin that will perfectly fit the mixture: I pressed mine into one end of a tin, as I wanted the bars to have some height. Use the wax paper to help you create an edge (see photo).

Raw Chocolate Brownies 

Brownies so rich and fudgy, that it’s hard to believe they’re packed full of healthy anti-oxidants! They’re also free from flour and refined sugar and work well rolled into balls.

Raw Chocolate Brownies 
Raw Chocolate Brownies

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup walnuts or pecans
  • 1 cup dates
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 5 tbsp dark cacao powder
  • 4 tbsp desiccated coconut
  • ¼ tsp salt

Instructions

In a food processor, blitz the nuts until fine in texture. Add the dates and process until well incorporated. Do not allow the mixture to get buttery: there should be some air between the pieces and it should resemble breadcrumbs, not a paste. Add the honey, cacao, coconut and salt and bring together until everything is a dark, chocolate-brown colour. Dump the mixture into a small cake tin and press down using the back of a spoon. Allow to chill in the fridge for one hour before slicing into squares.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Protein Bars

Chocolate Chip Cookie Protein Bars
Chocolate Chip Cookie Protein Bars

Who can resist an ooey-gooey chocolate chip cookie? I add in a heap of nutritious energy by using a clean protein powder, free from added preservatives and unnatural ingredients. Vegans can buy plant-based or dairy-free protein..

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup cashews
  • 1 cup dates
  • 3 tbsp vanilla protein powder
  • ¼ cup dark chocolate chips
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil

Instructions

In a food processor, blitz the nuts and dates until fine. Add the protein powder and salt, combining until the mixture presses together easily between your fingers. Transfer the mixture into a small cake tin and press down using the back of a spoon. Allow to chill in the fridge for an hour before slicing into squares.

Peanut Butter Quinoa Crunch Bars

The superfood quinoa is a seed, not a grain as many people think. Here, I’ve combined raw quinoa with peanut butter and honey to create delicious, crunchy, high-protein bars that double as a guilt-free sweet treat!

Peanut Butter Quinoa Crunch Bars
Peanut Butter Quinoa Crunch Bars

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup natural chunky peanut butter
  • ½ cup honey
  • ½ cup quinoa
  • ¼ cup chia seeds
  • 3/4 cup pistachios*, roughly chopped

*Any combination of seeds or nuts will work here. Use what you prefer or have to hand.

Instructions

Line a small tin with non-stick baking paper. In a bowl, combine the quinoa, chia seeds and pistachios. Heat the peanut butter and the honey in a saucepan for 3-4 minutes, stirring regularly. When bubbling, add the quinoa mixture into the pan and stir. Transfer the mixture into a small cake tin and press down using the back of a spoon. Allow to chill in the fridge for an hour before slicing into bars.

See more of Becky’s recipes on her family food blog: eatwhatweeat.com


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Becky Gilhespie is an American vocal coach and food writer based in Sydney, Australia. Becky trained her own voice and taught singing in London for 10 years, before relocating to Australia in 2015. It was while living in London that her passion for food was ignited and she reached the semi-finals of Masterchef. Becky has never desired to take up cooking full time because she loves her job working in music so much. She enjoys helping students overcome barriers to their singing, and teaching them about the importance of having a solid technique and a healthy mindset.