When my friend asked me for a healthy treat that didn’t include nuts, I really had to put my skills to use. Cooking and baking gluten-free (while keeping carbs in check) already presents some challenges, so omitting nuts and nut butters required some creativity. You see, it’s tough for us healthy moms sometimes. We are so passionate about feeding our kids well, but not everyone does the same. It’s hard for our little ones to go to school with hummus and celery, kale chips and other “weird” things when schoolmates go through the cafeteria lines ordering pizza, brownies and chocolate milk day in and day out. The last thing us healthy mommas want is for our kids to feel left out, wanting for junk, or going hog-wild when they’re not near us. I think the answer is in moderation and junk-food face-lifts. I love taking unhealthy treat ideas and putting my healthy twist on them. I make them look, feel and smell the same, but my kiddos aren’t getting filled with refined sugar, flour and processed ingredients. Did you know kids who eat healthy and exercise do better in school both academically and behaviorally? They focus much better, which just sets them up for success. I want my kids to have every advantage possible, which is why I will always be a healthy-food warrior for them.
Soft, chewy, sweet and as satisfying as candy, these bites have a nice dose of protein to help build up your muscles and keep you fuller longer. Just one or two makes you feel like you're cheating...but you're not. I used NO OATS in these! You may have to adjust your recipe slightly depending on the type of protein powder you select. I used egg white powder which isn't too thick.
- Prep Time : 15 minutes
- Yield : 12-14
- 1/2 cup pumpkin purée
- 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut shreds
- 3 medjool dates, pits removed
- 2 scoops protein powder - vanilla or even plain (I used egg white powder)
- 3 tablespoons coconut flour
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- stevia to taste - I used 2 mini scoops of concentrated stevia
- 1/4 cup chopped pecans (optional)
- 1/2 cup sugar-free chocolate chips
- 1/2 teaspoon coconut oil
- In a large food processor, add the pumpkin purée, coconut and dates. Process (scraping sides when needed) so the coconut and dates break down.
- Add in the protein powder, coconut flour, spices, stevia and pecans (if using).
- Process again until smooth. Mixture should resemble a thick dough.
- Remove dough to a sheet of parchment paper. Place in freezer for 1 hour.
- Remove and roll into balls.
- Melt chocolate and coconut oil on a double boiler or in the microwave at 15 second intervals (stirring in between) until melted.
- Submerge each ball into the melted chocolate and tap the edge of the bowl to allow the excess chocolate to drip off.
- Place in fridge for 10 minutes or until the chocolate hardens.
- If you don't wish to coat them, you can just press a few chocolate chips on the tops.