As the high’s still 100 degrees here in Austin today, a part of me feels a little silly embracing anything pumpkin themed in the slightest. But growing up in Kansas City we enjoyed all of the four seasons in their entirety, so fall still holds a special place in my heart. Just thinking of the changing leaves, cooler mornings and cozy meals brings me back to my childhood. So though the weather here might not have received the memo quite yet, I’m definitely taking advantage of the fall flavors in my own kitchen.
And what would this time of year be without a little pumpkin spice? I’ve never been a big Starbucks PSL girl, but I do love this seasonal combo in many other ways. These simple, no-bake energy balls will give you all that pumpkin spice goodness without any of the additional refined sugars or other gross junk you’ll find in many festive goodies.
While pumpkin is trendy and found in basically everything these days, I personally love how versatile it is in both sweet and savory recipes. Plus, pumpkin is a powerhouse of nutrition! Specifically, it’s rich in vitamins and minerals (such as vitamin A and potassium), packed with antioxidants and high in fiber. Together, these help reduce the risk of chronic disease, boost immunity, lower your risk of cancer and promote heart, eye and skin health.
Likewise, I personally think that no fall-inspired recipe is complete without nuts. Specifically, pecans and walnuts add the perfect crunch to these bites, along with tons of health benefits. Read about Why I’m Nuts About Nuts (& You Should be Too) to see why both of these additions make my list of the best nuts to add into your daily diet.
For these festive and easy protein balls, simply add your pumpkin, pecans, walnuts, coconut, dates, vanilla and spices to a high speed blender or food processor. Mix into a creamy dough, allow to set up in the fridge and roll into balls. The result is a soft, tasty snack that’s perfect for breakfast, an afternoon pick-me-up or nighttime treat to satisfy your sweet tooth. If you’re interested in making another variety of protein balls while you’re at it, check out all of my recipes here!
So while the thermostat is still showing summer weather where I am, I’m enjoying all of the cozy fall vibes regardless. Whip up a batch of these Pumpkin Pie Energy Balls, throw on some football and enjoy the changing of the seasons, friends .
- ⅓ cup pumpkin purée
- 1 cup pitted dates, soaked in warm water for 5-10 minutes to soften
- ½ cup walnuts
- ½ cup pecans
- ¼ cup unsweetened, desiccated coconut
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- pinch of salt
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