I still get surprised at how regularly my kids need a little snack. As they are so active, I find their energy levels can drop really quickly. One minute they seem fine and suddenly I’ll have a screaming toddler, who will not listen and give me no clue as to what is wrong. With time, I’ve become better at working out they may need a small snack. My boy is especially grumpy when he gets hungry (It must come from me!).
These Nutty Cacao Balls work wonders in such situations as they contain raw nuts which are one of the best foods for a high-energy boost packed with nutrients.
They also feel like such a treat, I would describe them as somewhere in between a truffle and a brownie but not quite as sweet. In fact they don’t contain any added sugar, just dates, but my kids love them!
I have been making these Nutty Cacao Balls for a while now as they are so easy. All you need is a food processor and you don’t even need to be baked, just pop them in the fridge to set. I usually make a batch and put some in the freezer as they keep well and don’t take too long to defrost .
Nutty Cacao Balls
Makes approx 20
Note: You will need a food processor for this recipe
1 cup Pecans
1 cup Cashews
5-6 Chopped Dates ( Soft or semi soft dates would be best, if you have dried ones soak them in a little warm water first)
2 tbsp Raw Cacao or Cocoa Powder
3 tbsp of Cashew or Almond butter (You could also substitute with peanut butter)
Small pinch of sea salt
Desiccated coconut (Optional)
Place the Pecans and Cashews in the food processor and pulse with the blade attachment for a minute or until they have turned to small crumbs. Add the Cacao/ Cocoa Powder, salt, dates and nut butter. Whizz together until it forms a thick paste and comes together. You could add a little more nut butter if needed.
Run your hands under the tap to get them wet and then roll the paste into small balls approximately 2 cm in diameter. You can roll them in the desiccated coconut or leave them as they are.
To set you can either put them in the fridge for a few hours or in the freezer for 30 minutes. They do taste great eaten straight away but hold better once they have been cooled.
To have some handy for kids snacks (or for yourself!) you can store them in the freezer.
My kids will eat them straight out from the freezer, but they are a little harder. If you can make them wait a few minutes they will get softer in no time as they have no water content.