Magpie Anthology

Chocolate Protein Balls

Including oats in this recipe ensures a balanced nutritious snack making them not only perfect if you’re out of time for breakfast but also a versatile snack throughout the day, whether you’re in need of a pick-me-up mid-afternoon or you’re craving a sweet treat at the end of your evening meal, these little energising protein balls will hit the spot! The variations are endless, but I always like to use raw cacao for an indulgent chocolate fix and “feelgood” factor – know what I mean?!

These anti-inflammatory protein balls are rich in flavanols, Omega-3s and provide plenty of antioxidants that protect against free-radical damage.

They will keep in the fridge for a week or so (if they last that long!) as well as the freezer, making them a perfect snack to grab at the beginning of the day for later.

To make these energising Protein Balls, you’ll need…

  • 50g almonds, whole or ground
  • 50g cashews, whole
  • 100g pitted dried dates (can use a mixture of dates and dried figs)
  • 30g raw cacao
  • 30g chia seeds
  • 60g oats
  • 85g coconut oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Desiccated coconut – toasted for coating (optional)

Making these protein balls is super easy, here’s how…

If using whole almonds and cashews, start by blending them in a food processor to a coarse texture. Then add the dates along with all the other ingredients and pulse until well combined and finely blended. Start with 3 tbsp coconut oil and if the mixture is still crumbly and difficult to form into a ball after combining, use a little more. I usually have to scrape down the sides of the blender a couple of times to ensure a good consistency.

They are now ready to roll into small balls. Put the toasted coconut onto a small plate and roll each ball around until fully coated.

Refrigerate for a firmer texture for an hour before serving.

NB: These quantities can be adjusted according to taste.

TIME SAVER: If you’re short of time, line a brownie tin with greaseproof paper and simply press the mixture into a tin until firm and compact. Sprinkle the top with desiccated coconut and cut into small squares and refrigerate.

Variations:

  • Use (chopped) dried apricots instead of dates for a more tangy, less sweet ball
  • For a more smooth texture, you can leave out the oats
  • Replace the oats with shredded coconut
  • Add ground cinnamon or ground ginger for a spicy alternative

Recipe: May Simpkin

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