Since I was a young pup, around Christmas time it was all about the peanut butter balls. Not just any peanut butter balls though – Jan’s peanut butter balls. I didn’t even really know who Jan was, but man did she ever know how to make a damn good ball (which conveniently combined my two flavours in the world – peanut butter and chocolate!)
With Valentine’s Day coming up, I wanted to share a yummy treat with you guys. I’m not much of a Hallmark card/flowers kind of girl, but I am all about the chocolate (hint hint, nudge nudge Mr. Randall!) I had been thinking of making peanut butter balls since Christmas time when they happened to dance across the Christmas desserts table. While I love them, I don’t necessarily love the classic ingredients of icing sugar and Skippy peanut butter (which actually has more icing sugar – what?!). I knew there was a way I could still enjoy them but with the healthy ingredients I know, love and feel good about putting into my body! I recently saw Angela Liddon of Oh She Glows did a take on healthy peanut butter balls with her Peanut Better Balls recipe (which I hear is amaze-balls, pun totally intended) which inspired me to create this recipe for the almond butter fan club!
I chose to use almond butter in this recipe for a few reasons. First off, peanut butter isn’t much of a staple in my house as it used to be. This is because peanuts are actually susceptible to aflatoxin mold which is a naturally occurring toxin that has been known to cause liver damage, have carcinogenic effects and trigger allergies. They also contain a high omega 6 profile and low omega 3 profile, which can actually increase inflammation in the body where things like disease thrives. We want to make sure we’re having a happy balance of omega 6 to omega 3 – a 2:1 ratio to be exact (the average person following the Standard American Diet currently has a ratio of 20:1 in their diet).
Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE peanut butter! Every now and then, I’ll purchase a high quality jar of organic peanut butter to nosh on with a banana or even by the spoonful (I like to live on the edge like that!). But for the sake of optimizing my health and reducing any potential health risks, I chose to opt for almond butter this time around.
When creating recipes, it’s not only important that I’m using whole foods based healthy ingredients, but practical ingredients that you likely already have in your house too! When we have these ingredients on hand at the same time that a chocolate craving strikes, it’s easy to pull together on a whim (just like how this recipe was born on a random week night!) By doing this,we’re not turning to the quick fixes like ice cream, chips or cookies. When working with clients, I always tell them that they are allowed to have treats made with natural sweeteners, but you have to make it yourself. The process of making it allows us to see everything that’s going into it, control the amount of sugar that goes into it and prevent us from overindulging mindlessly into the easily accessible junk foods.
All that to say, I’m excited to share this recipe with you because it’s one that I truly feel good about from a health stand point. Just remember, sugar is sugar and these are meant to be a treat – trust me, it’s something I have to tell myself over and over again! While they are comprised of whole foods based ingredients that come from the Earth, they should be enjoyed as an occasional indulgence. But I can bet your balls that you’ll be the star of your dinner party or potluck when you show up with these beauties in hand! Enjoy!
Almond Butter Balls
- 1/2 cup almond butter
- 4 tbsp brown rice flour
- 3 tbsp quinoa puffed rice cereal
- 2 tbsp raw honey
- pinch of sea salt
Chocolate Coating Ingredients:
- 2 tbsp cacao powder
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 1 tbsp raw honey or maple syrup
- Scoop almond butter into a large mixing bowl and combine with raw honey. Mix together for 20 seconds until thoroughly mixed and slightly thickened.
- Add brown rice flour to mixture. Mixture should be dough-like but still slightly sticky like almond butter. Add quinoa puffed rice cereal and sea salt and mix.
- Roll into 1/2 – 1 inch balls and place on parchment paper. Set aside.
- Preheat small pot on medium heat. Scoop in coconut oil. Once melted, add cacao powder. Whisk until mixed thoroughly.
- Remove from heat and add raw honey. *Time to act fast!*
- Hold the pot with one hand and hold a spoon in the other. Holding the pot, turn it on an angle so the chocolate pools together. Place a ball on the spoon and bathe the ball in the chocolate coating. You can either grab the ball with your fingers and set back on parchment paper or use your spoon to place the ball on the parchment paper).
- Once all almond balls have been coated, place in freezer for at least 15 minutes before consuming. You have the option to do another coating at this point to make a thicker chocolate coating or you can leave it as is. If you wish to do another coating, simply make the chocolate coating recipe again and repeat steps #4-7.
- I would suggest freezing them over the night and then storing them in the fridge. You can store them in the freezer but then it becomes too hard. You want them to be crunchy on the outside but smooth and crispy (from the puffs) on the inside.