Nectarine Energy Balls

Energy balls can be made with any combination of dried fruits, nut butters, seeds, nuts and whole grain flakes or puffs. They are basically trail mix in another form, though they are just as portable and convenient. I find that they can even be a bit easier to digest because everything is chopped finely. Generally, we do not chew our food enough, putting more stress on the rest of the digestive system to break down each bite. Since nutrient dense snacks like this are ideal for when on the go, or pre- or post- workout, the more easily digestible they are the better. I especially like them with some good kombucha (brilliant helper for the digestive system) and if I need a bit extra I’ll have some fresh fruit on the side or mix them into oatmeal or yogurt.Nectarines (or peaches) aren’t the most common dried fruit but they can be found in the produce section in health food stores or made at home if you have a dehydrator. They still have that nectarine flavour so reminiscent of long, hot summer days but they are not the sweetest so I combined them with some maple syrup and cashew butter, both of which are naturally sweet. Some Medjool dates add even more sweetness and their gooey texture binds all the other ingredients together well. Rolled oats and hemp seeds bulk the other ingredients up and add in fiber, healthy fats and several vitamins and minerals.Perhaps its partially attributable to my patriotism but I think maple syrup is one of the best sweeteners. It is a fairly natural product so it has some nutrients (in contrast to refined sweeteners) and it has a really nice, deep, caramely sweetness. However, honey or any other preferred types of syrup could work well.

Nectarine Energy Balls
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Serves: 32
INGREDIENTS:
  • 1 cup cashew butter (or almond butter)
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 cup hemp seeds
  • 1 cup Medjool dates, pitted and chopped (approximately 16)
  • ¾ cup dried nectarine, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • **If the dried nectarines or dates are really dried out, place them in a bowl and pour in some hot water until it just covers the fruit and leave for 5-10 minutes then drain the water and they are ready to go. This is especially helpful for the dates if they are not moist and gooey on the inside
DIRECTIONS:
  1. Chop the dates and nectarines thoroughly then place them in a bowl with all the other ingredients and stir to combine. It is quite thick so kneading it with one hand (like when baking bread) can be more effective than using a spoon or other utensil.
  2. Alternatively, if you have a food processor it can be used to mix all the ingredients. Pulse until evenly combined and the mixture is sticking together.
  3. Take 2 tablespoons at a time and roll them into balls between your palms.
  4. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week or in the freezer for up to a couple months.

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