Raw energy balls made from dates and nuts are pretty common, their popularity no doubt fuelled by American Larabars, British Nakd bars and the like. One of my favourite is the Nakd Cocoa Loco Oatie bar, which combines oats in addition to dried fruits and nuts. The added oats make the bars more satisfying and filling than a regular dried-fruits-and-nuts bar, which I find can border on being cloying and a bit of a sugar-rush. Unfortunately, at $3.50 a pop, funding the craving can burn a hole in your pocket. But fortunately, Nakd has listed the percentage ingredients on the side of the wrapper. So why not make your own? All it requires is some math to calculate the amount of each ingredients for the desired number of bars or balls you want to make.
I followed the percentage ingredients almost exactly, except I substituted the walnuts for more almonds, and used a mixture of apple cider vinegar and coconut milk for apple juice. I rolled them into bite-sized energy balls, perfect for the mid-afternoon energy boost or supper indulgence. Since I had to mash the dough manually (both my blender and chopper had gone bust), it was not as smooth as the real deal. Nevertheless, apart from the slightly coarser texture, they came out just like the real deal. Actually, no; they were even better: more doughy probably due to the coconut milk; crunchy from the coarser texture; deeply chocolatey; custom-made size; and cheaper. You could even go the extra mile and coat it with cocoa powder, flax seeds or shredded coconut. But I’m too lazy for the additional work and clean-up and besides, the’re darn yummy on their own they need no adornment. These balls keep me dreaming about a new food processor just so I can make more of them, including their other flavours!
I feel awkward to post a recipe because you can find everything on the Nakd website, both for the regular bars and the Oatie bars. But for convenience and since I’d already compiled the data across all their bars, I’d just share the them with you!
- 55 g Medjool dates, chopped
- 37 g oat flour (freshly ground from rolled oats)
- 9 g dried cranberries
- 9 g sultanas
- 13 g raw peanuts, crushed
- 6 g almonds, crushed
- 8 g raw cacao powder
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vingear
- 1 1/2 tablespoons coconut milk
- Put all ingredients in a food processor and pulse until a dough forms. For a chunkier bite, you may want to mash it manually by hand.
- Divide the dough and shape into balls (or bars) of desired size.
- Optional coatings: cacao powder, flax seeds, or shredded coconut.
Below are the ingredients listed by percentage weight for their regular fruit and nut bars (top) and oatie bars (below). I hope you find this useful and enjoy making your own energy balls and bars!