Thursday, July 3, 2014

Healthy Dairy-Free Vegan Gluten-Free Chocolate Balls

I recently learned how to make these as part of a fabulous "Reset" (somewhat of a detox/cleanse) I did in January, and they totally satisfy any sweet tooth - I promise. The fact that they are dairy free and gluten free and vegan is of no importance to me but I realize for others it may be very helpful. All I really cared about was if they were good for me and would not prevent me from losing weight (which I did, on the Reset - 5 lbs, thank you very much).

The most shocking thing about these tasty little desserts is that the ingredients are super healthy, and they are really easy and fast to make. No baking required. There's no added sugar (just the natural sugar in maple syrup) and there isn't even any chocolate - it's cacao!!! And they're still so sweet and chocolatey!

The coconut oil that is one of the ingredients is what gives it a fabulous gooey texture and I'm going to surprise you now with a little known fact: 

Coconut oil contains a unique form of saturated fats known as medium-chain triglycerides. Unlike other saturated fats, MCTs provide an energy source for the body, rather than being stored (which is what turns into FAT)!! The fats contained in coconut oil may also help to boost thermogenesis and/or fat burning in the body. And it's quite delicious, unless you totally have an aversion to coconut.

Have I sold you on these yet? Ok, seriously try them. They are the ideal healthy after dinner sweet-tooth satisfier.

1/2 cup natural almond butter
3 tbsp real maple syrup
1/2 cup cacao powder
1/2 cup coconut oil (not melted)
1/4 cup hemp seeds
1/4 cup unsweetened coconut
3 cups rolled oats (save for the end)

Mix all ingredients except the oats together in a bowl (use your hands - they'll get totally dirty but honestly, it's better doing it this way) until well-combined. Then add in the oats until the mixture is dry but still moist enough to roll into little timbit-sized balls. Cool them in the fridge for an hour and voila - done! Store any leftovers in the fridge until eaten.

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