When I went vegan a few years ago, my goal was simple: eat what I want and still lose weight. Protecting the environment was a close second and then there was the health and welfare of the animals. Now, as a fully realized vegan, those are all part of my goals but my focus has shifted a bit more. Now I’m also concerned with improving my health instead of just losing weight, which is going spectacularly by the way.
One of my tasks has been to find low calorie and healthier ways to enjoy things like snacks and desserts. My “thing” is potato chips, specifically salt & vinegar but traveling makes them difficult to come by for a variety of reasons. First is that even here in Romania there is ONE brand of salt & vinegar potato chips but they are Pringles, which for some odd reason contains MILK POWDER. So it’s a no go and after months of testing out all the other chip flavors, I’m dissatisfied and off chips until I find my brand again.
But I have discovered something else…energy balls!
I first came across these little treats while watching a video from Those Annoying Vegans. I’ve since taken their recipe/tips and ran with it!
As you can see, the first batch wasn’t very pretty but they were pretty tasty and best of all, they are super easy to make!
What you’ll need is dried fruit and nuts, plus any other additional flavors you might want to add.
This is my apricot, date and puffed millet energy ball.
Making these balls is really easy. Simply measure out your ingredients, pretty evenly, and dump everything into the food processor. let it run until the chunks are small enough to gather and roll into bite-size balls. Add lemon juice a teaspoon at a time until it’s tacky enough to mold into balls and voila…energy balls!
This was my second batch of energy balls. On the left is dates, cranberries, candied ginger, pecans and golden raisins. When they were in perfect circles, I rolled them through coconut flakes. These were my absolute favorite of the first 2 batches I made. Beside them are cranberries and raisins with cashews and lemon juice.
Apricot, pecan & cocoa powder energy balls! (116 calories per ball)
Batch three was the most successful and tasty by far! This is cranberry, date, pistachio and coconut flakes with a hint of lime juice. If you want to make them easier to manage, chop the pieces before tossing them into the food processor but I don’t think its necessary. Also, just 67 calories per ball!
These were ridiculously delicious and I recommend that you use extreme moderation because though they are low in calories (about 69 calories per ball), they are still sweet as hell and likely to put your dentist’s kids through college.
This was the most recent batch of energy balls and I used some dried papaya, golden raisins and macadamia nuts. It was buttery and creamy and tangy and sweet and delicious!
Lay them out on parchment paper to keep them from sticking together and then keep refrigerated if you like. I keep them at room temperature because I make small batches that don’t last long! Use them for road trips, midday snacks or even dessert.