These are my mega watt energy kicks. I ate my weight in this at all stages from pregnancy and pre labour to post natally to fill the breastfeeding hunger! The recipe for these energy bites is really rich and feels like a total treat while being healthy and completely sugar free. They are also packed full of energy rich ingredients that will hopefully keep you feeling nourished and balanced.
Nerdy Nutrician bit
Cacao is an important South American food rich in magnesium and iron and the purest form of chocolate you can consume. It is antioxidant rich and essential minerals Present in Cacao are zinc, calcium, iron and potassium. Cacao is a great energy booster for this reason but it's added bonus is it contains L-tryptophan which is responsible for relaxing the brain. This is a win win situation - it can help calm your nervous system while it also contains a stimulant called theobromine which has similar positive effects to caffeine without the side effects such as palpitations or headaches.
Dates are my favourite sweet treat and great as they supply slow release sugars. Dates are high in potassium an essential mineral important for maintaining proper muscle contraction, efficient metabolism in the body and help promote a healthy nervous system which is vital to enable us to rest fully and deeply.
Almonds are also an excellent source of magnesium and potassium and have some of the highest antioxidant levels of all plant based foods. Antioxidants are vital for combating inflammation, cell and tissue damage and supporting the brain, cardiovascular and respiratory system and the high fibre content helps regulate blood sugar levels.
Coconut oil is an amazing food product and has a stupidly long list of beneficial properties. Coconut oil has a concentration of beneficial fats including 50% lauric acid (also present in breast milk) which helps fight irritation, and inflammation of the gut. These fats (Including lauric acid, capric and caprylic acid) also have anti fungal, anti viral and ain't viral properties so support the immune system. The fats in Coconut oil also support the bodies natural hormone production (a huge bonus for mamas in pregnancy and motherhood).
Cacao Energy Bites Recipe
1 cup Dates
1 cup desiccated coconut
1 cup almonds
1 cup seeds (I use a mix of pumpkin & sesame)
2 tbl almond butter
2 tbl coconut oil
Grated zest of an orange
Juice of 1/2 Orange
3 tbl cacao powder (2 tbl if you want a milder chocolate taste)
1 tbl cacao nibs (optional)
Pinch Himalayan salt
First soak your dates in warm water for 10-15mins.
Then place the dates, coconut oil orange juice and zest in a pan and simmer gently until the oil melts and the dates break down a little and a sticky paste forms.
Place the nuts and seeds in a blender and pulse until they break down into small crumbs (You can blitz for longer until a flour forms if you prefer your energy bites to have a smoother consistency. I prefer mine with a little texture so I leave the mix more course).
Now add your date and coconut paste to the blender with the almond butter, desiccated coconut and cacao powder and blitz until the mixture is combined and starts to clump together.
Stir in the cacao nibs with a spoon if you are using. I love to add these as it gives the bites a more rich, chocolate flavour and you get these little bits of crunch too.
Now just scoop up small amounts and roll in your palm to form balls.
If your mix feels a little loose you could add another table spoon of desiccated coconut or once you have made the balls you could roll them in coconut if you prefer.
If Your mix feels alittle dry and the mix is not holding to form balls, add more orange juice, another 1/2 an orange and then just add it to the mix a table spoon at a time until the mix will hold.