(clockwise from top: chocolate, plain, cinnamon sugar, and unsweetened coconut)
I’ve been looking for a healthy snack that my kidlings can just pop into their mouths when their tummies are growling – something I could make ahead and keep in the fridge, that would also be good for them.
I came across this recipe accidentally. I was actually attempting to make a pumpkin pie crust using these ingredients. The crust didn’t bake up well, but I took some of the leftover unbaked dough, rolled it into balls and tested it out on my kids. It was a total hit! They also enjoyed rolling the balls into different toppings.
- 1 cup hazelnuts
- 2 cups blanched almond flour (I use Honeyville)
- 1½ cups pitted dates
- 4 tablespoons cold ghee, or fat of choice
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- 1-2 teaspoons of vanilla extract (optional)
- Ingredients for Optional Variations: rum, coconut sugar, cinnamon, unsweetened coconut, raw cacao powder
- If dates are dry, soak them in warm water for 15 minutes. Drain, carefully slice in half to remove pits, and coarsely chop. Set aside.
- Add hazelnuts to a food processor and pulse until chopped.
- Add all other ingredients and pulse until mixture looks like small crumbs.
- Test mixture by giving a small handful a squeeze and see if it holds together. If so, it's ready. If not, add a little more ghee or vanilla extract.
- To form into balls, use a mini spring-loaded scoop, or scoop by tablespoonfuls. Shape into a ball with fingers.
- Enjoy as-is or with the following variations:
- Rum Balls: Add a few tablespoons of rum to the mixture.
- Coconut: Roll in unsweetened coconut.
- Cinnamon-Sugar: Mix 2 tablespoons of cinnamon with 1 tablespoon of coconut sugar. Roll balls into mixture.
- Chocolate: For dark chocolate lovers, roll balls in cacao powder OR mix a little coconut sugar with the cacao to sweeten it up a bit.