Feb 022012

Energy bites. Because we deserve to keep our bodies healthy. Because we deserve to divulge in something sweet. Because they’re delicious. Because they’re cute and small and look like they should be a truffle or something. Because they’re kind of awesome. Because we’re rock stars.

I’m not very good at exercising. Period. When it comes to will power, I can think of anything under the sun as an excuse not to work out. Like shopping. I like to justify shopping as a workout–I mean, I power walk for like 3 hours straight hitting sales and as many stores as possible. Sometimes I’ll even lift my shopping bags like they’re weights while I walk to the next store. Plus, when I get a pair of shoes or an awesome new sweater as my post-work out reward, what’s not to love?! Seeee how I have too many excuses? It’s sad. But every time I actually do exercise and get my (untoned) butt in gear, I never regret it. The rush is amazing, and I always feel mentally and physically better. Baby steps!

But I digress. Anyway, these energy bites are a major plus in anyone’s diet. Why? Check out the benefits for each of the ingredients:

  • Oats contain fiber from being whole grains, they help lower cholesterol, has significant cardiovascular benefits, stabilizes blood sugars, can lower diabetes risk and much more.
  • Almond butter is swimming with protein, calcium, folic acid, and vitamin E.
  • Sunflower seeds are a nutrient rich food that has magnesium, iron, phosporus, calcium, and zinc. They also have vitamins E and B and are high in fiber and protein.
  • Flaxseed (especially when ground) helps lower cholestorol, fights diabetes, cancer, inflammation, heart disease, and depression. It is also super rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, and fiber.
  • Raw agave nectar/syrup is a natural sweetener and a great alternative to sugar. It’s low-glycemic so it won’t cause a spike your body’s sugar levels like sugar or honey do. It also contains anti-inflammatory and immune-boosting agents, and it is anti-microbial.
  • Raw cacao nibs (or cocoa nibs) are a a Mayan superfood that are loaded with antioxidants, iron, magnesium, and dietary fiber. They are known to enhance cognitive abilities and mood and are a great alternative to chocolate chips.
  • Vanilla extract–well, I’m sure there are benefits there but vanilla extract is just. plain. delicious.

It’s all about balance and moderation. Lifestyle, food, and eating habits require balance. Let’s do it!

But DON’T, I repeat DON’T throw a handful of cocoa nibs in your mouth thinking they will taste delicious. Because they don’t. They’re soo bitter! I had to gargle with the cup of coffee that was sitting next to me to get the taste out of my mouth. However, when mixed with some sweetness, these little nibs are delicious and add a nice little crunch to each bite just like chocolate chips do. If you are looking to make a healthier power bar or energy food, I suggest you use these ingredients.

Energy Bites Recipe (adapted from Smashed Peas and Carrots)

  • 1 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1 cup of almond butter plus one heaping spoonful for good measure
  • 1/2 cup ground flaxseed
  • 1/2 cup raw cocoa nibs
  • 1/4 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1/3 cup agave nectar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • raw sliced almonds for garnish (optional)
Mix all the ingredients together (except for the sliced almonds) until everything is well incorporated. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. Then, remove from the fridge and spoon out a heaping tablespoon at a time and roll into a ball. Repeat until all of the mixture is used. (If the mixture starts to get too sticky or hard to roll, pop it back in the fridge for 10 minutes.) Top with a couple of raw sliced almonds for garnish. Store in the fridge and eat one or two for breakfast, as a snack, or as a pre-/post-workout bite.
If you’re feeling extra fancy, place in mini cupcake liners. If not using mini cupcake liners, just store in tupperware with wax paper between them if you stack them.

Make these, you won’t regret it. And then go out for a walk/jog/run/shopping excursion to find (if you’re like me) some new clothes you can’t afford. Good for the body, mind, and soul.

Happy Thursday! :)

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  17 Responses to “Energy Bites and Balance”

  1. These are almost exactly what I have been looking for! Do you have a protein bar recipe too?!

  2. Great Healthy Snack Bite as well as would work great for the hiking trail in a few months to refuel. Thanks for sharing and Have a Great Day:)

  3. Stephanie, do you think I can use peanut butter as a substitute?

  4. These look amazing! Definitely adding them to my repertoire.

  5. Great recipe and post. Love it! :)

  6. yum! how long will they keep in the fridge for?

  7. Love this idea – and having them a no-bake variety is extra appealing!

  8. Looks tasty… Thanks for sharing

  9. How do you make almond butter? Can you replace it with agave or maple sirop?

  10. […] Smashed Peas and Carrots Recipe: lifetasteslikefood […]

  11. Wondering if you could share nutritional information for these energy bites?

  12. […] original recipe is from Life Tastes Like Food, which is a great blog. Her original post has a breakdown on all the benefits of each ingredient, […]

  13. these look fabulous and going to make them right now, than you. You are right about the nibs, I obviously had to try a few before i cook with them and OMG awful, luckily at the time I was eating a nice juicy peach. They do sell the kind where they allow pulp to ferment on the seeds giving them a much sweeter taste, unfortunately not yet here in the United States.

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