My recipe development for Pioneer Camp this year has been focused on nutritional snacking that is versatile to the point that it can be good to pack as a high energy snack for canoe trips.
The product needed to be vegan, nut free, able to be made gluten free, shelf stable and as natural as possible. Here’s one of the great end results. I am not sure why we make them as balls though …. it makes a portion very hard to stick to.
Happy rolling! Chef Sharon
Energy Balls (vegan; nut, gluten and dairy-free) Makes 28 small balls
2 cups quick oats (use gluten free quick oats if needed)
1 cup shredded coconut
3/4 cup WOWBUTTER (OR sunflower seed butter)
1/2 cup tahini (sesame seed paste)
1/2 cup date puree* (OR 1/3 cup raw honey)
1/3 cup mini chocolate chips (OR dried blueberries)
1/4 cup hemp hearts
Measure all ingredients into a mixing bowl, except for the chocolate chips (so they don’t melt).
Mix by hand, with a food safe glove if you’d like. Mix well.
You may need to adjust moisture levels, as brand variance and humidity can really dictate some of these measurements. If your mixture is too moist, add a bit more quick oats or hemp hearts. If it is too dry, add some more date puree or a bit of honey or any other liquid syrup you have in the pantry. Taste for sweetness too. Add the chocolate chips once you have the mix to a point where it will roll into balls nicely.
Divide using a spoon or portioning scoop. Roll into balls and place onto a pan or plate. If they are a bit sticky, roll them in oats or shredded coconut to keep them from sticking to each other.
I like to freeze these so they don’t disappear too quickly. Freeze them on a sheet pan first, then place in a container which can be frozen. Alternatively, they can be kept at room temperature in an airtight container for up to a month.
* you can buy date puree ready to go; it is also labelled as date spread. Alternatively, you can make your own, simply by cooking chopped, seeded dates in a small saucepan with enough water to make a paste.
Chef’s note: I’ve used a combo of sesame and soy or sunflower butters to do a few things. It keeps this snack nut free and safe for school and snacking anywhere. And, this unique combination simulates a nutty flavour we miss when having to cut out nuts.