Easy no-bake, 7-ingredient pumpkin walnut energy bites made with real food ingredients like walnuts, dates and pumpkin. #walnuts #freezable #makeahead #vegan #glutenfree
It’s Healthy Food Thursday! A total real thing that I just made up 5-seconds ago.
Annd…. we have Pumpkin Walnut Energy Balls for the win!
More specifically, cute little nutrient-dense spherical forms that can be made in 5 minutes flat (not even joking).
These are crazy simple! Toss 7 ingredients into a food processor, pulse, roll, chill. That’s it.
No oven. No dirty dishes. Just yummy, seasonal, bite-size, protein loaded, portable, grab-n-go snacks. Oh yeah… and your kids will actually eat them.
We’re going to need:
California Walnuts. Delightful, crunchy, depth adding walnuts. My nut of choice whenever I am making energy bites. Why???? They don’t ooze oil when processed (looking at you peanuts), and they are the uncontested champion of plant-based omega-3 fatty acids in the nut category. They weigh in with an impressive 4 grams of protein and 2 grams of fiber per ounce.
Medjool Dates: Nature’s potassium rich natural sweetener.
Pumpkin Puree and Spice: Low calorie, fiber rich… oh yeah, and it’s Fall, soooo PUMPKIN everything!
Honey: Honey boasts some serious nutritional benefits.. think disease prevention, allergy solution and imrproved athleticism (seriously.. i read this!).
Dark Chocolate: Reduced heart disease risk, tons of anti-oxidants and most important.. ensures that your kids will eat these pumpkin and walnut energy balls!
Pumpkin Walnut Energy Ball Video:
Time Saving Tips and Tricks:
Prep: When the recipe is so simple, there really isn’t any reason to spend time prepping! The most time consuming part of this recipe is actually forming the balls, but once that part is finished… you are all done!
Make Ahead: Yes! This is a perfect make-ahead recipe. In fact, I recommend it. When the balls are first rolled, they are a bit sticky from the dates and honey. I like to let them firm up in the fridge for 1-2 hours before serving. You could make them up to 5 days in advance though.
Freezer: This is my favorite way to store energy balls. They will keep for several months. To freeze, arrange balls in a single layer on a baking sheet. Freeze for 2-3 hours, or until balls are frozen through. Remove from freezer and store in an airtight ziplock bag. Balls will store for several months. To serve.. remove desired amount of balls from freezer, allow them to thaw for 15-20 minutes on the counter.. enjoy!
- 1 cup walnuts
- 6 medjool dates, pitted
- ½ cup dark chocolate pieces (use vegan friendly substitution if needed)
- 1 tsp honey (sub maple syrup for vegan)
- ½ TBS pure pumpkin puree
- 1 tsp pumpkin spice
- ¼ tsp. course sea salt
- Optional Toppings: course sea salt, cocoa powder or extra pumpkin spice
- To the bowl of a food processor, add walnuts, dates, chocolate, honey, pumpkin puree, pumpkin spice and seas salt.
- Pulse until ingredients start to form a ball. Do not over process.
- Refrigerate for 5-10 minutes.
- Form dough into 1" balls by rolling between your hands.
- Store in fridge or freezer.
- DO NOT forget to pit the dates! I did once.. Joe almost broke a tooth. Not to mention, it was probably pretty awful on my food processor.
- If you want to make this recipe vegan, use Maple Syrup in place of honey.
- You may need to scrape the sides of the processor halfway through to make sure that everything comes out even. If your kids don’t like “chunks” in their food.. process until mixture is completely smooth. I personally prefer a little bit of texture.
- Looking for more healthy whole-food recipes? Check out Simply Sissom on Pinterest. If you like it, follow! New pins are added daily from my favorite bloggers from around the web!
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MORE Energy Bite Recipes:
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.
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