When I decided to start working my way toward a Paleo diet in June, the first thing I did was scope out pre-packaged goodies that fit the diet and could be stocked in my pantry and grabbed at a moment’s notice. This was not easy. Turns out, there aren’t a lot of truly Paleo pre-packaged goodies out there. In fact, there are only two products that I’ve taken a liking to: Paleo Kits by Steve’s Original and LaraBars. These products are delicious and sustainably made by companies with social missions. Three qualities I love, love, love in anything I purchase and consume. The problem with these products?? They are pricey. One LaraBar will set you back $1.50 when they are on sale. The only Paleo Kits I’ve come across have been ordered via their website – and not at any sort of discount. Damn.
While I will happily buy both these products from time-to-time, the Whole 30 demands that I avoid anything pre-packaged, regardless of how Paleo it might be. Lara Bars consist of three ingredients, plus added flavor or filler – 90% of which are Whole 30 compliant. But that metallic wrapper is a deal breaker and so Lara Bars have lost me as a customer until August 9. My solution? Create something that is just as tasty, change the name, and make it look like a truffle. What was once a LaraBar is now a Power Ball and will be hiding out in my fridge at a fraction of the cost for the foreseeable future.
These suckers are infinitely adaptable, and can be stored in the fridge for a couple of weeks (if they last that long). I made mine into 1″ balls and yielded about 12. If you’d rather make bars, flatten the dough out to 1/2″ thickness and you will likely get between 10 and 15 “Power Bites.” The recipe is infinitely adaptable, even within Whole 30 constraints. The recipe I used here is for Almond Butter and Jelly – I’ve provided some other suggestions for flavor combinations as well. I’ll be using these for busy nights at work, when I don’t have the option of slowing down to grab dinner.
1 c. raw almonds
1/2 c. raw pecans
12 Medjool dates
1 c. dried, unsweetened cherries
1/4 tsp. salt
1. Pulse nuts and salt until chunky – it’s okay for some pieces to be finer than others! – Put into a medium-sized bowl.
2. Pulse dates and dried fruit until a paste forms. Add to bowl with nut mixture.
3. Make a ball out of the mixture, adding 1 tbsp. water if the ball doesn’t stick together. Cover the ball with plastic wrap and roll it out onto a baking sheet. Roll into 1″ balls or cut into bars 1/2″ thick. Place pieces on parchment paper and refrigerate until slightly hardened, approximately 2 hours.
Other flavor combinations to try, based on the LaraBar product page!
- Banana Bread – 1 c. almonds, 12 Medjool dates, 1 c. unsweetened, dried banana
- Cappuccino – 1/2 c. almonds, 1/2 c. cashews, 12 Medjool dates, 1 c. coffee beans, 1 vanilla bean, scraped clean
- Lemon Bar – 1/2 c. almonds, 1/2 c. cashews, 12 Medjool dates, zest and juice of a lemon
- Almond Chocolate – 1 c. almonds, 12 Medjool dates, 2 tbsp. unsweetened cacao powder
- Blueberry Muffin – 1 c. cashews, 12 Medjool dates, 1 c. unsweetened, dried blueberries, zest and juice of a lemon, 1 vanilla bean, scraped clean
Time: 10 minutes + 2 hours in fridge
Yield: 10-15 power balls (or bites)