For times when only a caffeine boost will do, reach for these mocha and vanilla energy balls made with nutrient rich chia seeds and cacao nibs for an extra shot of deliciousness
Often we suggest energy balls as a good way to give children an energy-filled snack without launching them on a mile-high sugar rush. These coffee-fuelled balls, however, are more suited to adults. They’re not large, but a couple of these bites will give you a caffeine taste that might stop you diving into the nearest café for a very small espresso and a very large cake. Chai spice blends can be bought online, or it’s easy to make your own using cardamom, nutmeg, cloves, ginger, cinnamon and allspice. For readers visiting the UK, the BNUTZ brand sells a wide variety of flavours of nut butters, including a chai-spiced version.
The oats are a good source of fiber, and are high in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Whole oats are the only food source of avenanthramides, a group of antioxidants thought to help protect against heart disease. Oats can also help to lower blood sugar and cholesterol levels. Chia seeds are also high in fiber and antioxidants, while nut butters contain good amounts of protein and fiber which will help to keep you feeling full. Honey contains antioxidants and has antibacterial properties.
Makes about 18 small balls
– 1¼ cups rolled oats – not quick oats
– 1 tbsp chia seeds
– 1 tbsp espresso powder or instant coffee powder
– ½ cup smooth nut butter of choice
– 6 tbsp honey
– 2 tbsp cacao nibs or chocolate chips
– 2 tsp chai spice blend
– Splash of vanilla extract
1. Put all the ingredients in a bowl.
2. Mix for several minutes until it begins to form a clump.
3. Chill the mix in the fridge for about half an hour – it’ll be easier to handle.
4. Take tablespoons of the mixture and roll them into balls
5. Store in an airtight container in the fridge. These will keep for a couple of weeks or will freeze for three months.
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