These little power balls, made with a bevy of awesome ingredients, are floating all over the internet and Instagram. After many of us stashed protein bars in our cars and purses for so long, we’re looking for an alternative that provides the same benefits of protein bars – filling, yummy and convenient – but without all the questionable ingredients. Lindsey shared her Carrot Cake Energy Bites a few months ago, and now a new version; No-Bake Lemon Macaroon Power Balls. I had to tweak with the recipe just a bit, but for the most part, these came together fairly quickly. Once you have a good understanding of what ingredients you need to make these little delights stick together; usually shredded coconut and some sort of nut flour or oats, you can then tinker with ingredients and come up with a variety of versions. These are light and refreshing, but satisfy a sweet craving just as well as a cupcake, and they’re a nutritious little snack to have in the morning with some tea or in the afternoon when you need a pick-me-up. For these, you can use almond flour or hazelnut meal, but almond flour is much cheaper. Most health food markets, even Sprouts, sells almond meal/flour in the bulk bins, but you can make your own by just pulsing raw almonds in a blender or food processor until very fine. I suggest you start with the zest of 2 lemons, taste, and then add more zest if you want it tangier. I find that lemons range quite a bit in levels of tartness, and people’s preference differ as well. I personally love the extra tang, so if you’re like me, be bold and just start with 3 lemons. You’re looking for a consistency that stays together easily when you smash it together with a fork. If it seems too gooey, simply add a bit more coconut or almond flour. Your hands will still get messy either way, so don’t be afraid to roll away, and maybe keep a dish towel on hand for the occasional hand wipe. Depending on how much you love coconut, you can roll these babies around in some more shreds, or not. My favorite brand of coconut is Let’s Do Organic Shredded, Unsweetened Coconut, as the taste of coconut is very faint, so it adds a hint of sweetness to recipes, without being overpowering like the fake stuff you get in the grocery store, which is too sweet and too strong. I may just buy it in bulk, as I use it so much in smoothies, power balls, my Nutty Baked Granola, and all sorts of baked goods.
You can certainly pop these in your mouth right away, or put them in the fridge to firm up for about 30 minutes or so, and I personally think they taste even better. These hold up in the fridge, stored in a covered container, for at lesat a week or two, but guaranteed they won’t last that long.
All photos by the lovely Claire Paice.
- 1 cup finely shredded unsweetened coconut
- ½ cup almond flour
- 3 tbsp melted coconut oil
- zest of 2-3 lemons
- 2 tbsp pure maple syrup
- ¼ tsp vanilla
- ⅛ tsp sea salt
- Combine all ingredients in bowl, and work into small 1.5 inch size balls. Roll in a shallow bowl of unsweetened shredded coconut if desired. Place on parchment lined baking sheet and freeze or refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
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