go ahead and giggle. fat balls. say it a couple times and snicker a bit more, and, now that that’s out of the way, let’s talk about these fat and protein-packed little jokers that satiate like none other.
healthy fat is good for you. healthy fat keeps your brain and body functioning, your metabolism fueled for a steady burn, and it gives a richness and flavor to foods that could otherwise taste stale and bland. fat isn’t the enemy.
do you remember when the low-fat craze gained momentum, and even things like potato chips were being produced as low-fat or fat-free? first of all, need i remind you, those chips were found to cause–prepare for more giggles–anal leakage. secondly, most anything marketed as low-fat or fat-free contains higher amounts of sugar, artificial sweeteners, or sodium to make up for the flavor lost from the reduced fat content; therefore, by reducing the fat content and increasing the sugar and sodium content, these products actually make their consumers at higher risk of metabolic, hormonal, and cardiovascular issues. yes, there are different kinds of fats–saturated, trans, and unsaturated–and not all of them are good for you. there’s an obvious difference in nutritional value between mashed potatoes with olive oil and potatoes fried in palm or soybean oil. i could talk about different fats for far too long, but i won’t do that to you. just do your research, decide which fats you’re comfortable with eating (but definitely not trans fats), and make an educated decision for yourself.
back to fat balls. these little bundles of nuts (yes, i went from talking about balls to nuts) are the perfect pick-me-up first thing in the morning, right before a workout, or during an afternoon slump. the monounsaturated fat found in nuts is crucial for keeping insulin levels stable, cholesterol levels low, and helping your body utilize its fat stores, thus aiding in maintaining a healthy weight. did i mention they’re delicious, and i’m now addicted to them? i first tried a recipe by lee from america and, though i liked them, they were a bit too oily for my taste. i’ve been tinkering with them since, and i’ve nailed down a pretty consistent recipe that has me and my husband tucking into our bag o’ balls at least twice a day. i eat one or two as a pre-workout snack to jumpstart my metabolism and boost my energy levels, and i usually have one first thing in the morning while i make our coffee and breakfast. i have to refrain from going crazy with them since they are calorically-dense, and though it’s healthy fats, at some point too much fat is no longer healthy.
but i’d eat the whole bag if i could.
they’re easy to make, adapt, and store, and they’re great to grab while on-the-go. share them with friends, or keep them for yourself. switch up your nuts to keep it interested. get wild, and go fat balls to the walls (i’m sorry, i couldn’t not say that).
- 4 cups of mixed raw nuts (my favorite combo is almonds, cashews, and hazelnuts, but the batch featured here is almonds, hazelnuts, and macadamia nuts)
- 1 heaping cup of unsweetened dried coconut
- 3 Tbs of coconut butter
- 1 Tbs of coconut oil
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 4-6 pitted dates
- 1/2 cup of coconut milk
- preheat oven to 325F. spread the 4 cups of nuts on a baking sheet and roast for 14-16 minutes until lightly golden.
- allow the nuts to cool for at least 30 minutes, then transfer them to a food processor or high-speed blender and pulse into a flour. once finely ground, pour half of the nuts into a large mixing bowl, keeping the other half in the food processor/blender.
- place the dates in a small cup or bowl and cover them with hot water to soften.
- add the dried coconut, coconut butter and oil, and cinnamon to the food processor/blender, and blend to form a smooth but runny nut butter.
- drain the dates and add them and the coconut milk to the nut butter. nuts are hydrophobic, so the butter will seize and turn into a soft dough once combined with the dates and coconut milk. when the dough is evenly mixed, scrape it into the bowl with the reserved nut flour and fold them together until thoroughly combined.
- use a small cookie scoop to scoop the dough, then roll the balls by hand and place them on a plate. when finished, put the plate in the refrigerator to let the balls firm up. once firm, transfer them to a tupperware or storage bag and keep refrigerated or frozen (i like them best frozen).