It’s the age-old question: How do you get really healthy stuff inside your toddler who is just discovering a world of sweets, chocolates, birthday parties and adoring grandparents?!
I’ve been wrestling with this for a while and it was only recently when I popped into a local health shop and saw some nutritious but very expensive energy balls for sale. I wondered, “Could this could work for toddlers too?” Could these balls hold the secret to those fussy eating battles and temper tantrums, and even hide the appearance of the most detested vegetable?
Later that day, I decided to put it to the test at home. A quick online search of the brand that I had seen in the shop told me they contained dates and cashew nuts, but having neither in stock I threw in a few brazils, raisins and peanut butter, along with a sprig of broccoli for good measure. My 2-year-old little girl watched me eagerly, but loudly protested “I NOT LIKE IT” when the broccoli went in to the NutriBullet. She watched wide-eyed as the ingredients whizzed and whirled round. Once they were blended and we got busy rolling them out and shaping them into balls, she was mesmerized. We didn’t even get to finish making them – she tried one and liked it. And then she had another, and another, and suddenly we had eaten the whole lot! I was completely surprised. I figured she might manage one or two, but she virtually polished off the lot! This gave me the inspiration to get busy trying out more recipes.
In the weeks that followed, I made them so many different ways and I urge you to try your own versions. They really are very simple and the great thing is that you
can tailor them to whatever you little one needs and hide a variety of healthy ingredients inside them! If you have a nut allergy, then dried fruit and seeds are a good choice, while coconut oil is a great binder.
The recipe I used is shown below, however you can play around with ingredients until you find exactly what works for you and your little ones. Try to use organic where possible.
Here’s a video, which shows how to make my current favorite recipe – it really is super simple. I would love to know what your favorite recipe is, so please comment and let us know as its great to be able to share them!
- 4 Dates (Remove stones)
- 4 Brazil nuts
- 4 Walnuts
- 9 Almonds
- Small handful of seeds
- 2 tsp Cacao Powder or Cacao Nibs
- 1-2 Tbsp nut butter
- Shredded coconut (for the outside of the balls)
- Remove the stones from the dates.
- Put the nuts, seeds and nut butter into the blender.
- Blend for 30 seconds to 1 minute.
- Remove from blender and check that all the nuts have been crushed, re-blend if needed.
- Scoop out the mixture and roll out mini balls.
- Roll the balls in shredded coconut if desired.
- You can enjoy them straight away (they will be gooey) or put in the fridge and they will set harder.
Store in an airtight container in the fridge for about 5 days.
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