Raspberry Cacao Protein Balls

recipes snacks sweets Jun 28, 2019

Last weekend, I enjoyed wedding festivities up in Maine where cocktails, lobster rolls and many desserts were to be had. While it’s obvious that I value healthy eating, I likewise refuse to allow my life to be overtaken by the desire to eat “cleanly” all of the time. A truly fulfilled life (and diet) requires a balance all of the above!

Yet after a big trip with family or friends, I always look forward to returning to my kitchen to prep and enjoy my own recipes. After many treat-filled days, my body was craving real, nutrient-dense foods. And personally, having quality snacks around always sets me up for success, especially when my body isn’t feeling 100 percent.

And what better way to do just that than with these Raspberry Cacao Protein balls? First of all, it’s no question that I’m a chocoholic, so this Almeda Labs Kasvi Cacao superfood and adaptogen protein powder is right up my alley!

It’s loaded with probiotics, adaptogens and superfoods to load your body up with nutrient-dense fuel. Recently, I’ve been using a scoop in my morning yogurt bowl, but you can likewise include in smoothies for added protein, nut milk for an on-the-go drink or to snacks, such as these balls!

And for more chocolate-y goodness, cacao nibs are a must. They add the best crunch to this recipe, without any additional sugar or junk. To learn more about the benefits of dark chocolate, I dive even in deeper in my Chocolate Superfood Chunks blog post.

Likewise, I’ve recently been turned onto the most incredible company called The Soulfull Project. Not only do they make the best variety of hot cereals and superfood oatmeal, but they also give back to local communities. For every sale they make, a bag of oats is donated to local food banks around the country.

You can check out their website to see where you can pick up a bag on of their hot cereal mixes or an on-the-go oatmeal cup near you. Here in Texas, I’ve been stocking up at Central Market, Sprout’s and Natural Grocers!

In this recipe, I used their Hearty Grains & Seeds blend which includes gluten free oats, oat bran, quinoa, flax seeds and chia seeds. While you can easily use regular rolled oats for these protein balls, the extra seeds pack an additional punch of superfood goodness!

As for the other ingredients, freeze-dried raspberries are key, of course. These tart, crunchy fruits add incredible flavor and pair perfectly with the chocolate. I picked up a bag at Trader Joe’s, but you should be able to find them in the dried fruit aisle in most grocery stores.

When purchasing the walnuts for these easy protein balls, I always look for the raw and sprouted variety. Why sprouted? Well, nuts prepared in this way are easier to digest, and thus, their nutrients are more easily and effectively absorbed.

Whole Foods typically carries sprouted nuts in their bulk foods section, but if you can’t find any, regular, raw walnuts work perfectly. Regardless, these are one of the most nutritious additions to your diet. Learn more about walnuts’ hair and skin loving and brain-boosting abilities in 12 Beauty Foods for Skin & Hair Health and Back to School Brain Boosters.

Finally, to make these protein balls stick together, I melted a bit of Cap Beauty Coconut Butter, which is truly the dreamiest, most addictive thing on the planet. Coconut butter is made by grinding the flesh of fresh coconuts into a spreadable paste, while coconut oil is the oil that has been extracted from the meat.

I love the creamy richness of coconut butter, but you can certainly use coconut oil for this recipe. Both are packed with incredible health benefits (which you can read more about here), but coconut butter actually retains more healthy fats, fiber and nutrients, so I encourage you to give it a try.

With all of the powerhouse ingredients, how could these cute little bites not get you back on track after a long, crazy and fun weekend? They’re truly just what you need to fuel your workout, satisfy your sweet tooth and get your day going before work or class.

Whether you’ve been traveling like myself or simply want to include more clean, healthy snacks into your week, these tart and chocolatey protein balls are a must!


 

 YIELDS15 Servings
 PREP TIME15 mins TOTAL TIME15 mins

 

Ingredients
  •  1 cup gluten free rolled oats (I used The Soulfull Project Hearty Grains & Seeds Mix)
  •  ¼ cup chocolate protein powder (I used Almeda Labs Kasvi Cacao superfood & adaptogen protein powder)
  •  1 cup raw, sprouted walnuts
  •  8  dates, pitted
  •  ¼ cup coconut butter or coconut oil, melted
  •  1  scoop collagen peptides (optional - I love Vital Proteins)
  •  ½ cup freeze-dried raspberries (crunched into small pieces)
  •  â…“ cup cacao nibs
  •  ¼ tsp salt

 

Directions
In a high speed blender or food processor, add oats, walnuts, protein powder, dates, coconut butter, collagen (if using) and salt.

Pulse until well-incorporated.

Add freeze-dried raspberries and cacao nibs, and mix by hand. If too try, add a bit more coconut butter or coconut oil.
Scoop out and roll into balls. Sprinkle with more freeze-dried raspberries.

Enjoy!

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