Easter is over. Too much food has been eaten, too many sinful desserts, sugar and calories… OK, lady! No more. It’s time for you to reduce the intake of refined sugars. How?! I am a chocoholic and have a really bad sweet tooth. Here is an alternative, terribly yummy alternative – the well-known energy balls. They are nutty, sweet and indulgent, without the sin. One or two of these lovely balls could be a quick remedy for my sugar cravings.
I must admit, I have eaten way too many Easter cookies. The traditional Bulgarian Easter cookies my mother prepares every Easter. I officially declare that her recipe is the best in the world! No joking. This year, I decided to try it myself and bring a piece of Bulgaria to our home in the UK.
This is what my first attempt looked like:
They were not even half as good as Mum’s cookies, yet they were delicious. Well, as neither my son nor his dad is in love with cookies, I had to eat almost everything myself. Not proud, but not that guilty either. It was Easter after all… 😀
As I said, however, NO more! There is not a single cookie left at home and it’s time to get back to the healthier treats. Because I don’t want to give up desserts, I just try to make them less sinful and more healthy.
Here is my version of Oat and Date Energy Balls (adapted from Bake Play Smile):
- 1 cup rolled oats
- 1/2 cup raw almonds, chopped
- 1/3 cup raw walnuts, chopped
- 1/2 cup natural dates (I use Anjoman dates, they’re sweet and succulent, and affordable too)
- 8-10 dried apricots
- 1 tbsp cacao powder
- 1/4 cup raw honey
- 1/4 cup peanut butter (the smooth peanut butter by My Protein, for example)
- pinch salt
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon (optional)
Roughly chop the nuts. I usually use almonds and walnuts but feel free to add your favourite nuts (next time, I think I’ll try with hazelnuts).
Halve the dates and dried apricots.
You can heat the honey and peanut butter a little bit so that they mix with the other ingredients more easily. But even if you don’t, you’ll still have a nice mixture. That’s why I sometimes omit this step.
Now, the easiest part – put everything in a food processor and blend until well combined. I prefer to leave it crunchy.
Tips: You can add 1-2 tbsp ground linseed if you want more fiber. If the mixture gets too dry, add a splash of water.
Shape the mixture into balls with your hands.
Place the balls into a box and refrigerate. Put baking paper at the bottom of the container if you wish. I don’t do it, the balls don’t stick even though the mixture is quite sticky before being rolled.
The balls will need an hour or two to get firm. A one-hour wait is my best achievement so far but it actually seems to be enough. They are said to be freezable, too. Honestly, I haven’t tried this out as they don’t stay in the fridge for too long. 🙂
Oat, nut and date energy balls – super tasty, easy to prepare and full of good nutrients. A sweet bite of energy and a healthier alternative to refined-sugar desserts.