Protein. Good fat. Healthy fiber. Vitamins and minerals. Greens. No, we're not referring to a balanced dinner, we're talking about the benefits of one of the most treat-like snacks around: superfood energy balls! Sure, they may taste like dessert, but when made right, these wholesome “balls” can be a wonderful way to get the essential nutrients your body craves while feeling like you’re totally indulging. The trick? Making them yourself.
Store-bought energy balls can often contain cheap filler ingredients (like flour), or excessive refined sugar (like rice syrup or cane sugar). They can also be very overpriced—we’ve seen energy balls sell for as much as $2 a pop! But going the homemade route allows you to incorporate nothing but high-quality ingredients in every batch … all at a fraction of the cost. Plus, there’s very little time investment needed: You can make a massive batch of these balls in mere minutes and be setup for days—even weeks—with grab-and-go snacks that the whole family will love. (Hint: they're great stashed in school lunches, too!)
Although we love working up variations of quick recipes like these, certain “ball” combinations are simply too good not to make again and again. That’s why this week we’re sharing our recipe for Mint Chip Energy Balls … completely with all the flavor you’d hope for in a dessert or sweet snack, but made with the kind of whole food ingredients you can really feel proud of.
Boosted with protein powder, immunity-boosting spirulina, mineral-rich cacao, and more, there’s really so much to love about these no-bake treats. So make a big batch of Mint-Chip Energy Balls this week, and enjoy the rainbow of healthy benefits that only superfoods can provide.
Interested in more incredible snacks? Check out our on-demand cooking course: Superfood Energy Bars
WATCH HOW WE MAKE OUR MINT-CHIP ENERGY BALLS:
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MINT CHIP ENERGY BALL PREP TIPS:
Make those balls better than ever! Here's how:
Pick a great-tasting protein powder. The flavor of the vanilla protein powder you use really matters here, as it will affect the taste finished recipe. Choose the most delicious superfood variety you know of (a few that we like include Amazing Grass, Navitas Organics, and Vega). While we prefer vanilla here, you can also use a chocolate-flavored version to double-down on the chocolate flavor!
Reduce the sugar if you like. Although the majority of the sweetness of this recipe comes naturally from mineral-rich dates, a small amount of maple syrup and chocolate chips are used to make this treat taste utterly indulgent. An option for those looking to reduce sugar further is to use sugar-free maple syrup and chocolate chips, which are available from Lakanto here. BONUS: Save 15% on both of these products with the coupon code LUMINBERRY.
Leave some texture. These balls taste best with a little bit of textural crunch from cacao nibs, as well as some chocolate chip morsels thrown in, so be sure not to over-process the mixture during the last stages of blending.
MORE EXCEPTIONAL SUPERFOOD SNACKS:
Mint Chip Energy Balls
These treat-like bites make an energizing snack that are surprisingly full of benefits like healthy protein, vitamins and minerals, fiber, and more!
Prep Time: 10 minutes | Cook Time: 0 | Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 12 (makes 3 dozen)
Author: Julie Morris
1 cup raw almonds
1 cup (packed) Medjool dates, pitted (about 16 large)
3 tablespoons your favorite vanilla/chocolate protein powder
¼ cup unsweetened shredded coconut, plus extra for rolling
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
¾ teaspoon peppermint extract
¼ teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon spirulina powder
¼ cup cacao nibs
¼ cup sugar-free chocolate chips (or use regular variety)
1. In a food processor, combine the almonds and the dates. Process until ground down into a crumbly dough. Add the protein powder, ¼ cup coconut, maple syrup, vanilla extract, mint extract, and salt. Process until well combined. Stop the machine and test the consistency—the dough should stick together easily when pressed between two fingers. (If the dough is too dry, add a little water, a teaspoon at a time, and blend again.) Once the dough sticks, add the cacao nibs and the chocolate chips. Process briefly to partially break down the chocolate, while leaving large chunks and nibs throughout, for texture.
2. A tablespoon at time, shape into balls, and roll in extra shredded coconut. Stored at room temperature, Mint Chip Energy Balls will keep for several weeks.