Hello you! Are you feeling hungry? Well you should be, because this Cacao & Cherry Energy Balls recipe is one you need to get your apron on for.
I hadn’t made energy balls (bliss balls, energy bites, whatever you call them!), for a little while, and I could see me slipping into a dangerous habit of eating WAY too much dark chocolate when I was feeling peckish. So last week, I grabbed my keys and my purse and marched down to my nearest high street, which luckily for me, is full of food stores selling 1kg of medjool dates for only £8. I purchased a box, grabbed a few ingredients from Waitrose and head back home to get busy in the kitchen.
From start to finish it took me about 10 minutes before I was taste testing my first Cacao & Cherry Energy Ball. And let me tell you, stopping at one requires the strongest of willpower. They were so good and this recipe is most definitely now at the top of my Favourite Energy Balls list.
I am a huge fan of the baked fruit range from Urban Fruit, because they don’t add sugar! It drives me just a little bit crazy when I go to the supermarket and pick up a packet of dried cherries/strawberries/mango/whatever, only to turn the packet over to give the ingredients a once over and see that sugar has been added. No, I just want fruit dammit. That is EXACTLY what you get with the Urban Fruit range and Girl Guides promise (is that what they call it? I never desired to be one!) they taste better than any baked/dried fruit range you’ll have ever tasted before. So, I made a beeline in Waitrose for a packet of Cheeky Cherries to add to my energy ball recipe.
The thing to remember with these energy ball recipes is that you can play scientist and invent your own favourite flavour. Don’t like cinnamon? Leave it out or replace it with a different spice. Rather cashews than almonds? Be my guest. And you can switch up the rice syrup for honey/maple/agave/whatever you prefer.
I am on a mission to make some more tomorrow morning, as this batch did not last long in my home. It did however curb my dark chocolate snacking habit, and quite frankly these are MUCH tastier.
Now let’s get the (energy) ball rolling……
CACAO & CHERRY ENERGY BALLS
2 cups medjool dates, pitted
1 cup chopped unsalted almonds
1/2 cup cacao powder
1/2 cup dried or baked cherries
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 tablespoon rice syrup
Place the pitted dates in a food processor, and whizz them up until the dates become blended and sticky.
Add the chopped almonds, cacao and cinnamon and blend together, letting some of the almonds still remain as tiny chunks.
Next add the cherries and rice syrup, and give it one final blend until everything is sticking together.
Using either a tablespoon or your hands, take small amounts of mixture and roll them into balls.
Store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator.