Calling all Cinnabon lovers!
Does anyone else start salivating when they walk past a Cinnabon in the mall?! Cause I sure do. But don’t worry, I got yah. These cinnamon bun protein bars are so freakin’ delicious. They are gluten-free, sugar-free, nut-free, paleo friendly, & can be easily made dairy free!
But first, what the heck is cassava flour?
You may notice that I used a different flour in this recipe, cassava flour! I started testing out a few recipes with this flour lately & I am loving it! It gives a similar texture to my baked goods that is comparable to regular flour. While I love my almond & coconut flours, they can definitely be more challenging to work with.
Cassava isn’t a grain, but rather a root, so it is paleo approved. Although cassava is higher in carbohydrates than some other grain-free flours, it is actually a resistant starch. This means that instead of raising blood glucose levels, as you would expect with a high carbohydrate food source, it travels through the GI tract unabsorbed. When it finally reaches the colon it can serve as food for the good bacteria in your gut & actually benefit your overall gut health! Therefore, it acts as a prebiotic, which is anything that feeds good bacteria. This is a good thing because we want more good bacteria compared to bad in the gut. When the good bacteria are fed, they are able to produce short-chain fatty acids. These short-chain fatty acids have been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties, & may even benefit people with IBS (irritable bowel syndrome), allergies, & auto-immune conditions.
Consuming adequate amounts of fiber is also crucial, as it also acts as a prebiotic for those bacteria, & ensuring they have enough ‘food’ will allow the good guys to proliferate the colon much better.
I do want to note that people with SIBO, dysbiosis (bacterial imbalance), even some cases of IBS or certain digestive issues may have trouble with resistant starches & even some fiber sources. If the bad bacteria in your gut currently outnumber the good, you will subsequently be feeding the bad as well as the good. If you have a relatively healthy gut flora this usually will not cause any significant issues, as the good guys will remain outnumbering the bad. I do suggest working with a health care practitioner if you have severe gut issues, or have trouble consuming fiber or resistant starches, as you could have an underlying gut issue that needs to be addressed before adding these foods into your diet.
I would also suggest starting slow when you decide to add resistant starches or more fiber into your diet if you’re new to this concept, as you may experience gas or bloating while your body gets used to it & the gut microflora alters.
I found some helpful resources touching on the benefits & cautions of adding resistant starches into your diet, which I will link for you here & here if you’re interested in learning more on the topic!
Now for the recipe!
With all that being said this recipe is a great way to add some resistant starch into your life if you think it will be of benefit to you! You can also replace the cassava flour I used in this recipe with your preferred flour of choice. I haven’t tested any others out so I can’t say how it will differ from the original, but almond flour or my favourite gluten-free flour would be my best recommendations!