There are lots of recipes for healthy, vegan dried fruit and nut bars/balls/”truffles” out there but I want to offer you something different: a quick and easy way to make them without consulting a recipe. You’ll be happier with your own homemade energy snacks than with anything you could get from a shop. Promise.
Now, onto the non-recipe.
Choose 1 or 2 ingredients from each category:
1. Featured Ingredient: Goji Berries, Dried Cranberries (sweetened with apple juice), Tart Dried Cherries, Dried Figs, Dried Mango, Dried Papaya, Dark Chocolate Chips, Cacao Beans
2. Textural Ingredient: Any Seeds (Pumpkin, Sunflower, Sesame, Flax, Chia…), Any Nuts (Walnuts, Hazelnuts, Almonds, Pecans, Cashews…), Rolled Oats, Flaked Coconut (unsweetened), Shredded Coconut (unsweetened)
3. Sweetener: Medjool Dates, Dried Apricots, Organic Raisins, Raw Honey, Pure Maple Syrup, Ripe Banana
4. Binder: Coconut Butter, Nut Butter (Almond, Cashew, Peanut…), Seed Butter (Pumpkin or Sunflower), Tahini, Coconut Oil (melt oil before processing with other ingredients then chill mixture before shaping)
5. Additional Flavors: Ground Cinnamon, Ground Cardamom, Vanilla Extract, Cocoa Powder, Unwaxed Orange/Lime/Lemon Zest, Unrefined Toasted Sesame Seed Oil
Place your chosen ingredients into a food processor with a little unrefined salt. Just eyeball the quantities of the ingredients but start by aiming for fairly equal measures of everything except the salt and Additional Flavors, only add small pinches of these. Pulse the ingredients a few times until the mixture is crumbly. Press a small pinch of the mixture together in your fingers. If it holds together nicely, shape the rest of the mixture into balls or bars (or whatever you’d like). If not, add a bit more of the binder and continue pulsing and testing until it’s ready to shape.
The ingredient combination possibilities are endless but (if you’re like me) they’ll be totally dependent on what you already have in your pantry. Here’s what I used to make mine:
1. Featured ingredient: Cacao Beans (about 4)
2. Textural Ingredient: Raw Cashews (4-6) and shredded, unsweetened Coconut (about 1 Tbsp)
3. Sweetener: Medjool Date (1)
4. Binder: Unhulled Tahini (about 1 Tbsp)
5. Additional Flavors: Ground Cinnamon (about 1/2 tsp)
This healthy energy snack is vegan, grain-free (unless you add rolled oats), and raw (unless you add maple syrup or nut and seed butters made from toasted nuts and seeds)
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