Chocolate Dipped Chickpea Peanut Butter Energy Balls

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Wait, chickpea balls? Seemingly covered in chocolate? Calm down. It’s not as crazy as it might sound. Mike suggested a while back we could try making an energy ball using chickpeas as the main ingredient, his mind obviously thinking of ways to make these types of snacks nutrient dense and perfectly acceptable to munch on whenever. An overall balanced diet usually provides us with all the macro nutrients we need, thus no need for the protein-packed this or protein-packed that even for us mostly plant-based folks, but listen to the micro nutrient bonanza in these balls: heaps and heaps worth of folic acid, vitamins E and K plus B1, B3 and B6, selenium, zinc, iron, phosphorus, calcium, potassium and magnesium.

Where do all these goodies come from, then? Chickpeas, peanuts and dates are the superstars in this show, and with the help of a thin chocolate coating as well as a pinch each of vanilla powder, salt and cayenne pepper, the flavor is on point. Needless to say, you can choose your own adventure with the flavorings though – cinnamon, cacao, cardamom, ginger, coffee… the list goes on.

We never want to go a day without a prepared snack like this in the house, but those times happen too. Often. I’d say most of the time it happens because we manage to finish batches of stuff at an impressively quick rate. We go “how did we finish all those cookies already?”, “where did that squash bread go?” and “didn’t we put some of those muffins in the freezer?” all the time. What can we say? The more we move, the more we eat. It’s as simple as that. In dire times – when no fancy balls or hearty muffins or elaborate hummus versions are on hand and hunger strikes – we have a few go-to’s: crisp bread with butter and cheese (can’t go wrong with that in our book), lentil cakes (rice cakes but made from lentils) with peanut butter and raisins on top, fruit or maybe toast (but that’s more Mike than me – I love soft bread but am no big fan of toast, per se). It’s unclear where I’m going with this, but I think something along the following lines: fuel properly. Move your body, use your lungs, listen to your heartbeat. And then give it all the good food. Life is too short for restrictions.

If you don’t have access to cacao butter, just substitute any chocolate bar you like. We buy ours – that is, cacao butter – online. It’s a little pricey but we usually hop on a sale – and you use quite little every time, so even a small bag will last you a while. Melt it in a double boiler and follow the same instructions otherwise. That’s all. We’re so excited to share this treat with you (one of the best recipes shared to date, in our opinion) and can’t wait to hear what you think 🙂

Makes 30-35 balls

500 g cooked chickpeas (~8 dl), drained and rinsed
200 g unsweetened peanut butter (~2 dl)
12 pitted dates (~100 g)
1/2 tsp vanilla powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
2 dl salted peanuts
40 g cacao butter
2 1/2 tbsp maple syrup
3 tbsp cacao powder

  1. Place chickpeas, peanut butter, dates, vanilla powder, salt and cayenne pepper in a food processor. Blend ingredients until a uniform paste. Place in the fridge for 10 min to firm up slightly, and then roll into balls. Place the balls on a plate in a single layer and place back in the fridge.
  2. Chop the peanuts.
  3. Melt cacao butter in a double boiler. Remove from the heat, and stir in maple syrup and cacao powder. Stir until silky smooth.
  4. With the help of a skewer, dip the balls – one by one – in the chocolate (spin it around a few times above the chocolate to get rid of any excess) and push them off the skewer, onto parchment paper, using a fork. Sprinkle with chopped peanuts immediately. Repeat until done, and store in the fridge thereafter.

30-35 st bollar

500 g kokta kikärtor (~8 dl), avsköljda
200 g osötat jordnötssnör (~2 dl)
12 st urkärnade dadlar (~100 g)
1/2 tsk vaniljpulver
1/2 tsk salt
1/4 tsk cayennepeppar
2 dl saltade jordnötter
40 g kakaosmör
2 1/2 msk ljus sirap
3 msk kakaopulver

  1. Lägg kikärtor, jordnötssmör, dadlar, vaniljpulver, salt och cayennepeppar i en matberedare. Kör tills ingredienserna bildat en slät massa. Ställ i kylen i 10 min, och rulla sedan till bollar. Lägg dessa på ett fat (dock inte på varandra) och ställ in i kylen igen. 
  2. Hacka jordnötterna fint.
  3. Smält kakaosmöret över vattenbad. Ta av från värmen, och tillsätt sirap och kakaopulver. Rör tills silkeslent.
  4. Med hjälp av ett grillspett eller lång tandpetare, doppa varje boll i chokladen. Snurra runt bollen ett par varv ovanför chokladen för att låta överflöd droppa av. Använd sedan en gaffel för att trycka bollen av pinnen och låt den torka på bakplåtspapper. Strö omedelbart hackade jordnötter över. Upprepa med resterande bollar, och förvara sedan i kylen.

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