Peanut butter and chocolate protein (amaze)balls

This is not the world’s greatest secret, but I have a shocking sweet tooth (caramel peanut slice anyone?) I’ll often read the dessert menu before I’ve ordered my entree. I’m thinking about what little treat I can have after dinner, as I am cooking dinner. I have no issues with eating dessert for breakfast. Yes, I still think that there is something wrong with my bathroom scales…

I have some new cook-off competition at work in the form of Ms Melissa. She won last week’s cook-off off with something that tasted amazing – and was jam-packed full of the good stuff (not the sugar-and-butter-good-stuff either).

In fact they were so good I had to make my own batch this week. It’s a protein-heavy mix of dates, peanut butter, quinoa, LSA mix, chia seeds, almonds and chocolate protein powder – all available from Woolworths and Coles.

And health benefits?

Let me start with Chia seeds. These tiny little seeds look much like a poppy seed, and contains essential fatty acids (Omega 3 and 6), fibre, protein and all 8 amino acids (I won’t pretend I know what all 8 are), antioxidants, essential minerals including calcium, zinc and iron amongst others, and Vitamins A, B and E.

LSA stands for linseeds, sunflower seeds and almonds. It’s a premade mix, and as well as being highly nutritious, also adds a nice nutty taste when used in cooking.

With the quinoa, peanut butter and protein powder, these little treats certainly pack a huge protein punch, and are perfect to grab on the run post-work out. Or even just to snack on when you’re on the couch watching My Kitchen Rules…

IMG_3126

Presenting peanut butter and chocolate protein balls

Here’s what you need: 

1/3 cup natural peanut butter

16 dates

2/3 cup almonds

2T chia seeds

2T LSA Mix

2 scoops chocolate protein powder (I went for the lowest-carb powder I could find)

1/3 cup quinoa

2/3 cup water

Desiccated coconut

And here’s what to do: 

1. Pop dates in a bowl of boiling water to soak

2. Add the quinoa and water a saucepan. Bring to the boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes until the water has been absorbed. Mel advises to let it sit for at least two hours, but I didn’t have that patience and used it straight away

2. Blend almonds, LSA mix, chia seeds and chocolate protein powder in food processor until finely chopped

Blend until the mix reaches this consistency

Blend until the mix reaches this consistency

3. Add the soaked dates to the food processor and pulse until chopped, then add in the quinoa and peanut butter. Pulse until all ingredients are well combined.

4. Roll into balls using a measuring spoon and cover in desiccated coconut.

IMG_3127

My chocolate cravings are cured!

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