Vegan Protein Balls

No bake, high in protein balls made with other ingredients that are high in omega fatty acids and fiber.  A very satisfying, healthy snack.

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These balls are heavenly delicious, rich and decadent. A very satisfying snack without the guilt.  They’re vegan and gluten-free.  The chocolate chips and nuts added some crunch as well as the Chia seeds.  You don’t even need to add sugar.  The natural sugar in chocolates and peanut butter were enough to sweetened these balls.  You’ll forget that they’re even healthy.  You may also add quinoa in this recipe.  However, I was going for a low-carb or no carb snack that is why I didn’t add any quinoa.

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I was hungry and feeling under the weather, so I did not want to cook anything.  Fortunately, the children already had their lunch. I wanted to eat something healthier, so I took anything and everything “healthy” out of our pantry.  There were Chia seeds, Sesame seeds, Flax seeds, mini chocolate chips, walnuts, pecans, almonds, and organic peanut butter.  I had some leftover chocolate ganache that hardened because it was so cold in the house last night.  I started measuring and mixing the ingredients (except the Chia seeds) and formed them into balls.  The balls were a little sticky and I didn’t have anythings in the pantry I could add to rid of the stickiness except oats, so I added some then rolled them in Chia seeds.  Perfect!

The good thing about these balls is you can make them ahead of time and freeze them.  A healthy emergency snack when you are on-the-go or too lazy to prepare anything.   They will help overcome your cravings for empty calories.  Why?  Because of the nutritional value of the ingredients such as protein.  According to WebMD,  protein is an important component of every cell in the body. Hair and nails are mostly made of protein. Your body uses protein to build and repair tissues. You also use protein to make enzymes, hormones, and other body chemicals.  Protein is an important building block of bones, muscles, cartilage, skin, and blood.

Along with fat and carbohydrates, protein is a “macronutrient,” meaning that the body needs relatively large amounts of it. Vitamins and minerals, which are needed in only small quantities, are called “micronutrients.” But unlike fat and carbohydrates, the body does not store protein, and therefore has no reservoir to draw on when it needs a new supply.  However, you can’t eat protein all day long.  To  much protein is harmful to the body.  So balance is the key.  Having protein in your diet, helps you curb your appetite.  For more information, read it here.

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I ate two protein balls at lunch with half a cup of blueberries and a glass of low-fat milk.  It was enough to curb my appetite or cravings.  It’s been five hours and I’m still full.  I don’t feel hungry at all.  They are so easy to prepare too.  All you have to do is mix all the ingredients and form a ball then roll in Chia seeds.

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The recipe yields four balls.  For a large quantity, triple the recipe.  Place them in the refrigerator or freeze them for later consumption.

Ingredients:

  • 1 Tablespoon chocolate ganache, hardened (cooled in room temperature for hours or overnight)
  • 1 Tablespoon peanut butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon Flax seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon Chia seeds
  • 1/2 Tablespoon sliced almonds
  • 1/2 Tablespoon walnuts, chopped (about 4 pieces)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Sesame seeds
  • 1 Tablespoon quick old fashion oats
  • 1 Tablespoon mini chocolate chips

Mix all ingredients in a medium bowl.  Shape to form a ball.  Refrigerate for 10 minutes. Enjoy!

Note:  If this recipe inspire you to create your own, please be considerate and credit annascuisine.wordpress.com.  Thank you.

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©annascuisine.wordpress.com (2013-2014), unauthorized use and/or duplication of material herein without expressed and written consent from this blog’s author, Annabelle Bedell, is strictly and completely prohibited.

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Coconut Balls

Christmas is imminent and there’s no stopping it.  If you are searching for something quick, super easy to make and delicious addition to  your dessert table or gift basket ideas, here they are just in time for the holidays. Organic, low-fat, unsweetened, finely shredded coconut cooked in condensed milk, rolled in organic Chia seeds, Sesame seeds, and toasted coconut then formed into balls.  Yes, and they’re ready to be rolled in these three super foods in less than 10 minutes.

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At first, I was thinking about making plain coconut balls, but I thought of adding something that would give these coconut balls a kick; something with health benefits other than ingesting empty calories.  There are many varieties such as tree nuts, but my children are allergic to them.  However, you can add them if you want.  You can also roll them in chocolate powder, cinnamon sugar, powdered sugar, chopped candy cane, and festive sprinkles, which are great for birthdays and other special gatherings.  But, Chia seeds came to mind, then sesame seeds, and toasted coconut.  Here’s why.

Chia seeds, a member of the mint family, are rich in Omega-3 and Omega-6 essential fatty acids, fiber, and B vitamins.  Chia seeds also contain protein and calcium and are gluten-free.   They also play an important role in regulating blood sugar and blood pressure.  Chia seeds have a mild flavor and are great addition to salads, cereals, smoothies, yogurt, oatmeal, muffins, breads, soups, and desserts.  You can find out more information about the benefits of these super seeds here.

Sesame seeds are also excellent source of nutrients and minerals.  You can confirm their benefits here.

Lastly, coconut.  According to Coconut Research Center, coconut is known as the “tree of life” because it’s highly nutritious and rich in fiber, vitamins, and minerals and provides many health benefits beyond its nutritional content, especially its oil.  You can read more about it here.

So, what more can you ask?  A simple, easy to make, delicious treat with the above health benefits; who would not want to eat them?

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Yields:     35 coconut balls

Ingredients:

  • 1 can condensed milk
  • 2 1/4 cups organic, low-fat unsweetened finely shredded coconut
  • 1/4 cup organic Chia seeds
  • 1/4 cup toasted coconut
  • 1/4 cup Sesame seeds
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil or coconut oil
  • chopped tree nuts (optional)

Preparation Methods:

Place the toasted coconut, Chia seeds, and Sesame seeds in separate small bowls.  Set aside.  Heat skillet over low heat then add oil when hot.  Pour the entire can of condensed milk.

Let it bubble a little bit then stir, scraping the sides and bottom of the pan. Be mindful.  The milk can burn fast if you are not careful. Let it cook for 15 to 25 seconds or so depending on the heat of your stove.  Turn the heat to very low setting.  Add the shredded coconut and quickly stir.

Keep stirring until the coconut and condensed milk are well combined and all the liquid is absorbed.   Do not overcook.  Let stand just until warm enough to handle.  Scoop 1/2 tablespoon of the coconut mixture and place it in one of the bowls with super foods (Chia, Sesame, and Coconut). Press down to coat then roll on your palm to form a ball.  You have to work very quickly.  You do not want the coconut mixture to harden or you won’t be able to roll them well.

Place them on a baking sheet or a plate.

IMG_20131206_164729_645You can either put them in a decorative box lined with colorful tissue paper wrapped with a festive Christmas-inspired hand tied bow or….

you can add half of homemade or store bought cookies of your choice then wrap it and place it on your guests’ plate for them to take home.  You can also put the coconut balls in a fancy bowl and add them to your dessert buffet for everyone to enjoy.  Be creative. I know you already have something in mind. 🙂

Variations:

You can also dip these balls in melted white or dark chocolates and sprinkle them with crushed candy canes or with your favorite sprinkles.  I am sure they would be sinfully delicious!  You can also make it more fun for the children by serving them like cake balls with some colorful lollipop sticks.  Or, you can flatten them like cookies.   I love these variations and will definitely try it out and will post some pictures later. 

Have a peaceful, joyful, and blessed holidays to all.  Don’t forget the real reason for the season, which is the birth of our Lord and savior, Jesus Christ.  Be a blessing to others simply by giving, being a comfort to those who are hurting, be a friend to those who are rejected, and extending help to those who are less fortunate.   Merry Christmas! 🙂

©annascuisine.wordpress.com (2013)   Unauthorized use and/or duplication of material herein without expressed and written consent from this blog’s author, Annabelle Bedell, is strictly and completely prohibited.