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Healthy Apricot Almond Butter Energy Balls

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Looking for a snack that is healthy, high in fiber, high in protein, and still satisfies your sweet tooth?  These no-bake, healthy apricot energy balls are all of that and more:  vegan, gluten free, and paleo friendly.  A hit for all ages, you definitely want to add these to your snack routine.

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What You’ll Need to Make It

pecans, almond butter, dried apricots, dates, dried cherries, an orange, and dried coconut
  • 2 cups of dried fruit.  I like to use 1 cup of apricots, ½ cup dried, pitted dates, and ½ cup dried cherries. 
  • 2 cups chopped unsalted nuts.  I like pecans, but any unsalted nut is a good option.
  • 1 cup shredded coconut. If you kind find unsweetened, that is best. (NOTE: I have Great Value Coconut pictured here. It is NOT low iodine friendly as it contains salt and Great Value brand does not state that it uses noniodized salt.
  • Juice of 1 orange
  • 6 tablespoons almond butter.  I like the Costco brand.  You could substitute peanut butter, tahini, or any nut butter you prefer.
  • food processor. I have had this one for over 10 years and really like it. I think investing in a good food processor is a good investment.
365 brand organic fair trade coconut shreds (amazon affiliate link)
Kirkland signature creamy almond butter (amazon affiliate link)
Cusinart Pro Custom 11-cup food processor, white (amazon affiliate link)

How to Make

This recipe couldn’t be simpler.  Chop and blend everything in the food processor or blender.  Then scoop it out, roll in coconut, and enjoy!

Variations

  • Mix up or simplify the dried fruit.  You could make all apricot energy balls, or add a different variety of dried fruit you have on hand.
  • Use your favorite nuts or nut butters.  I often use walnuts instead of pecans.  Almond butter is a milder taste to me, but peanut butter would also work. 
  • Want to add some omega-3 fatty acids?  You can definitely add a tablespoon of chia or flax seeds to the dough as well.  
  • Nut-free energy balls?  Skip the pecans, and use sunflower seed butter.  You will need to increase the amount of sunflower seed butter or add some honey or maple syrup to make sure it all sticks together.

Tips for Success

baking sheet with energy balls, food processor bowl with dough and scoop, bowl with coconut

I like to use my cookie dough scoop to make it even easier.  Then they are already “ball” shaped and I don’t have to do any rolling.

If the balls are too sticky to roll, stick them in the fridge for 30 minutes or so.  This will firm up the dough making it easier to work with.

I like the look of shredded coconut on the outside.  But you could also grind the coconut in your food processor to more of a powder for a more dusted look.

These are a great recipe for getting kids involved in the kitchen as well.  The only sharp object is the food processor blade.  Kids love rolling the balls and coating them in coconut. 

FAQ

What are energy balls?

Energy balls are a generic term for bite size snacks that are good sources of protein and fiber.  They can be made up of lots of things, including dried fruit, oats, honey, nut butter, chocolate chips, and more.  

The great thing about energy balls is they are almost infinitely adaptable.  You can substitute flavors you like to make them yours.

Are energy balls really healthy?

Like most things, energy balls are healthy in moderation.  They are good sources of fiber and protein and low in ADDED sugars.  So, they make a great sweet snack without lots of added sugar.  

However, they should be enjoyed in moderation.  Too much dried fruit can lead to tummy troubles.  And they are not necessarily low in calories.

For the full nutrient breakdown of these healthy apricot energy balls, see the recipe card below.

Why won’t my energy ball dough stick together?

There are a variety of reasons.  Here a few tricks to try:

  • Add more almond butter.  
  • Add a sticky sweetener, such as honey.
  • Pulse it a little longer in the food processor to see if it comes together.
  • Try refrigerating it for 30 minutes or so and see if it firms up.

Why isn’t the fruit breaking down?

While you do need dried fruit, you don’t want shriveled and rock hard dried fruit.  Try to use “fresh” dried fruit, or soak it in a little hot water if your dried fruit seems too hard.  (Like when someone forgets to close the container.  Happens at my house for sure).

How to Store

These should be stored covered in the refrigerator or freezer.  In the fridge, they last about 2 weeks.  I personally like to freeze them.  Then if kids take them for a snack at school or for lunch, they don’t “melt” too much.  

What I Love About Apricot Almond Butter Energy Balls

I love these healthy apricot energy balls because they are a great, healthy, quick snack.  It also helps hit my sweet tooth in a healthier way than grabbing some chocolate.  I also love that my kids love them for a quick snack or easy to pack lunch with protein and fiber.

Need more snack ideas?

Check out these recipes:

Looking for more help with your low iodine diet?

My e-book, The Simplified Low Iodine Diet Toolkit, includes meal plans, recipes, snack guides, and more. Click here to learn more!

Hand holding apricot almond butter energy ball over white plate with several energy balls
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Healthy Apricot Almond Butter Energy Balls

Bite size snacks filled with dried fruit, nuts, and almond butter.
Prep Time15 mins
Course: Snack
Cuisine: American
Keyword: dairy free, gluten free, paleo, vegan, vegetarian
Servings: 26 balls
Calories: 126kcal

Equipment

  • food processor or blender

Ingredients

  • 1 cup dried apricots
  • 2 cups chopped, unsalted pecans
  • 1 cup shredded coconut divided
  • ½ cup dried, pitted dates
  • ½ cup dried cherries
  • 1 juice of orange
  • 6 tbsp almond butter

Instructions

  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil.
  • Place all of the ingredients (except ½ of the coconut) into the food processor. Blend until smooth.
  • Scoop about tablespoon size portions. Roll into a ball. Place on prepared baking sheet.
  • Roll balls in remaining coconut. Store in covered container in refrigerator or freezer.

Video

Notes

You can use all apricots and skip the dates and cherries if you’d prefer.
If the dough is too sticky to roll, scoop onto baking tray and refrigerate until it firms up a bit.

Nutrition

Serving: 1ball | Sodium: 10mg | Calcium: 25mg | Vitamin C: 1mg | Vitamin A: 273IU | Sugar: 8g | Fiber: 2g | Potassium: 155mg | Calories: 126kcal | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Fat: 9g | Protein: 2g | Carbohydrates: 11g | Iron: 1mg

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