Energy Bites

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1 C Oatmeal (Quick oats)
1 T Chia seed
2 T Cocoa
1/3 C ground Walnuts
2/3 C ground Almonds
1/3 C Chocolate chips
1/2 C Peanut butter
1 T Coconut Oil (melted)
1/3 C Honey

Just mix it all together, then form into balls. The Pampered Chef Small Cookie Scoop (1T) is a good size. I scoop them with the scoop, then shape them into balls, using a wet hand.

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I first saw energy bites at Hy-Vee. They were near the Health Market section and had a dietitian sign near them, so I thought they might be healthy. And they had chocolate chips and looked tasty. (On a related note, I really need to stop grocery shopping when I’m hungry.) The ingredient list impressed me, and when I got around to eating them I liked the taste and how filling they were.

That’s when I googled ‘energy bites’ and realized that it was a thing. I found some recipes and combined them into something that sounded good to me. I listed some of the more influential recipes at the bottom of the page. Most of the recipes had coconut and ground flax – and I wanted to replace those. A while ago I researched flax and chia and I learned that to get the omega 3 from flax seed, you have to grind it, and it looses effectiveness quickly after it’s ground. As I don’t have any equipment or interest in grinding my own flax seed, I tend to favor chia. As for coconut – I just really don’t like the texture of dried coconut.

I replaced the coconut and flax with ground almond and ground walnut. I wanted to keep with dry ingredients that were high-protein. I used more almond than walnut because I find the flavor of almonds more neutral and walnuts more bitter. Honestly, the proportions of walnut and almond were also influenced by the fact that I couldn’t find a clean 1/4 C measure cup, but I did have a 1/3 C.

I added the cocoa, because I like chocolate and since cocoa is actually good for you I like adding it whenever I can. I also thought it would help balance the walnut. I used quick oats instead of old fashioned, because I had them on hand and wanted to use them up. The coconut oil was because was using the last of a big jar of natural peanut butter and it was really dry. The second batch ended up softer – I used regular creamy peanut butter. I might fiddle with the recipe a bit to deal with that.

Some people might prefer mini chocolate chips – but I like the big ones. The darker the better of course. I use Costco brand semisweet chips that are 51% cocoa. Lately I have been using one cup of chocolate chips instead of 1/3 cup, because I keep forgetting to check the recipe. It turns out delicious, but doesn’t tolerate heat as well.

Here are some of the initial recipes I used to create my own:

http://www.gimmesomeoven.com/no-bake-energy-bites/
http://eat-drink-love.com/2013/04/no-bake-energy-bites/
http://www.cookingclassy.com/2014/04/bake-energy-bites/
http://www.cookingclassy.com/2014/06/bake-chocolate-energy-bites/

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