Archive | February, 2012

Healthy Peanut Butter Balls!

1 Feb

SO I went on a cooking spree yesterday. It was fun stuff. With my husband preparing a brief business trip to Austin, I wanted to be sure to send him off with an easily portable and fortifying snack, since he is going to be on the UT campus all day and I didn’t know what his eating schedule would be like! Better prepared than not, right?

On the greatest website ever created (read: Pinterest), I’d pinned a recipe for some peanut butter balls that looked delicious. However, I didn’t have any dry milk on hand, and that didn’t sound like something I was enthused about using. I then set out on a search for a simpler recipe, and found a few. There were two in particular that I liked; they called for the same ingredients, but at almost completely different amounts (especially with the honey – one seemed like way too much, and the other way too little). Using the info I’d gathered as a base, I created my own recipe for them! AND I calculated the calories!

This recipe makes about 30 balls, and each truffle sized ball should have about 93 or so calories. That may seem high at first, but peanut butter, as well as the oats that are in these, are loaded with protein and fiber, so you shouldn’t be needing to eat very many of them as a snack before you feel full. And, speaking of rolled oats, I am convinced that those are the greatest kitchen asset few people know about. I made something else yesterday that I also snuck rolled oats into (in place of some flour) that was AMAZING. Rolled oats are high in dietary fiber, iron, thiamine, and even antioxidants and other compounds that can help fight Type 2 diabetes. I think their greatest strength, though, lies in their tastelessness. Because rolled oats taste so bland, I really think you could incorporate them into just about EVERYTHING you make or eat, in at least a small amount (and small amounts can add up to great ones, eventually!) We also mix them into our cereal in the morning and eat them that way, which, for one, provides us a healthier breakfast than just eating sugary cereal does, and two, cuts down on overall grocery costs because we buy less cereal because it lasts twice as long. Rolled oats are ALWAYS $1.00/lb, SUPER CHEAP! They really are great. While I think it’s time to get on to the recipe, if you want find yourself wanting to read more on this issue, check out this post at this blog over here! Now, onto the good stuff!

Healthy Peanut Butter Balls
(makes about 30 truffle-sized balls)

What you need:

  • 1 cup Creamy Peanut Butter (you can use crunchy, too, if you prefer it, but you may want to use less oats if you do)
  • 1/2 cup Honey (or Agave)
  • 2 to 3 cups Rolled Oats (however much you want to use)
  • 2 Tbsp Semi-sweet Chocolate chips (or just however much you feel comfortable adding, really)
  • Graham Cracker Crumbs (for coating – coating them helps eliminate the stickiness, and they add a fantastic subtle flavor, but you don’t *have* to do this)

Directions:

  • Line cookie sheet with parchment paper. Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Mix by hand (I just used a big spoon) until all ingredients are combined thoroughly. Roll into balls. Roll balls around in graham cracker crumbs until covered.  Place on lined cookie sheet. When all balls are finished, place the cookie sheet in the fridge for an hour or so, to help them set.

Now, some of the other recipes call for 1-2 tablespoons of wheat germ to add in, as an additional fortifying, healthful boost, but I did not have any of that on hand either. So if you happen to, go ahead and toss some in!

Also, next time, instead of chocolate chips, I’d like to try chopping up a banana and adding it! I think that could be delicious as well.