This type of energy tidbit isn't new, but the first time I had one was about 9 months ago. I'd just run a 5k with my husband, and we were with all the other runners milling around in the lobby of the recreation center waiting for the winners to be announced (I never have a chance of winning an award, but my hubs is pretty fast). Tables were set up in the lobby with contests to enter, advertising for running stores, and samples of new types of portable energy--gel, liquid, and solid.
One of the tables had samples of little energy balls that came in cute plastic tubes that you could stow in your pocket or water belt. We waited in the long time, but when I got to the table and saw them, I wasn't sure I wanted to try one. So I made my husband eat one. He didn't make a nasty face or spit it out, so I tried one. I was pleasantly surprised that it wasn't gross (I've had many terrible protein/energy bars). It was even tasty, and I happily tried one of the other two flavors. As I left the table I grabbed one of their glossy cards that proclaimed the goodness of their energy balls and listed the raw, vegan ingredients.
Of course, my thoughts immediately went to: I bet I can make something similar. It took me a few tries, but I finally had something that was tasty and full of really good stuff--a combination of some of the ingredients on that glossy card, and inspiration I got from some things I've seen on Pinterest. Oatmeal, dates, almonds, pecans, coconut, plus some other goodies make for a very nice flavor.
This recipe makes about 42 energy bites, made with a tiny cookie scoop or slightly rounded teaspoon-fulls. Simply scoop them, roll them into balls, and you're done! I don't know if they need to be refrigerated, but I do it just in case. I keep some there, ready to grab, and I keep some in the freezer. And these need not be just for those of you who exercise. These are a fantastic thing to grab and take with you when you're going to be driving around or running errands, or anything that will take a while. Taking a few of these with you will help you avoid the drive-thru lines. Or being grouchy from hunger. And that's such a good thing.
Another good thing is these are 1 Weight Watcher's Plus Point each, up to 4, and then 5 are 6 Plus Points. Here's the rest of the nutritional info: per energy bite: 42 cal; 2.2g fat; 5.3g crb; .7g fbr; .8g pro.
Note: Don't use already-chopped dates. They are really dry and won't mix in with the other ingredients well. Use whole dates and cut them into pieces.
Oatmeal-Date Energy Bites
1 cup old fashioned rolled oats (not quick-cooking)
1/2 cup shredded, sweetened coconut
1/2 cup raw, whole almonds
1/2 cup raw, whole pecans
1/2 cup whole dates, cut into 3 pieces each (I use kitchen shears)
1/4 cup agave
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla
Combine everything in the bowl of a food processor. Process until everything is mixed together and is a uniform consistency, it will be thick and stiff. Use a tiny cookie scoop (or make rounded teaspoon-fulls) to scoop the mixture (level it using the edge of the bowl), and roll it into balls with your hands. Store in the refrigerator or freezer.
Makes about 42 energy bites.