Sunday, April 14, 2013

Peanut Butter Bent Balls of Yum

In order to broaden my repertoire of menu items I've been trying a number of new recipes I've found online.  Some have been amazing and some, well, not so much. A few however, have made it onto my list of regular menu items.

One of the many things I have been trying to make is healthier desserts or sweets. This is because I have a HUGE sweet tooth. I'm not kidding. Sweets are my main vice. I need something sweet every day or things can get ugly.  ;)  So in an effort to still get my sweet fix but make it a healthier one, I have been trying various recipes. From Black Bean Brownies to Bent Bars (my own energy bar creation) I'm definitely starting to get the hang of this. There was one particular recipe fail, however, that made my hubby asked "Why don't you just cut down on the sweets instead of trying to  make these healthier versions?".  Seriously?!?  Did he not know me at all?  That's just crazy talk! Although, after a bite of those awful tasting squares I could kind of see his point, but in no way was it going to discourage me. So off I went in search of the next recipe to try.

Which brings me to my Peanut Butter Balls.  In the past, usually at Christmas I would whip up a batch or two of your standard PB balls consisting of PB (the sugary kind of course), more sugar, butter and sometimes for crunch, graham cracker crumbs. They were amazing.  They were also crazy fattening and unhealthy.  So when I found healthy versions online I knew I had to try them.

After making a few different recipes, I figured out what I liked best in each of them and decided to try and come up with my own version.  Much to my surprise - success on my first try!  I've decided to call them Peanut Butter Bent Balls and I thought I would share the recipe with you so you can give them a try yourself.

Peanut Butter Bent Balls

1/4 cup pecans
1/4 cup walnuts
1/2 cup dates
1 tbsp ground flax seeds
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
1/4 cup natural peanut butter (or other nut butter) (not the kind that contains sugar)
1/4 cup maple syrup
2/3 cup oatmeal (not instant or quick cook)
1/4 cup unsweetened coconut
1 tbsp hemp seeds
mini chocolate chip (optional)

1) Place pecans and walnuts in a food processor and pulse until medium sized crumbs.
2) Add in dates and process until incorporated and a paste like consistency.
3) Add in flax and pumpkin seeds, pulsing until seeds are broken up.
4) Now it's time for the peanut butter and maple syrup. Again process until incorporated.
5) Finally add in the coconut, oatmeal and hemp seeds and blend until fully mixed together and no large chunks are visible. If you are adding chocolate chips, put them in at the very end and only pulse enough to incorporate.
6) Roll into balls and store in the fridge.
7) Eat and enjoy!

For the first batch (pictured) I didn't add the chocolate chips as I wanted to ensure that these little balls goodness could stand on their own without the added chocolate bliss.  But by all means add the chocolate, as much or as little as you see fit! Who am I to stand in the way of anyones chocolate fix.  Besides, peanut butter and chocolate, seriously who doesn't love them together?!  Right now, I'm dreaming of covering the next batch in chocolate for a girls night.  Not quite as healthy, but who wants healthy on a girls night??  :)

They may look like meatballs in this picture, but they are way more delicious.  ;)

Note: I used a 1" dough scoop to portion mine into balls and it made about 2 1/2 dozen.

1 comment :

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