Almond Butter Bites {paleo} {vegan} {gluten free}

A couple of weeks ago my dad gave me an article to read in Sports Illustrated about a dietitian working with athletes and teaching them about eating real food. It made me so happy (obvs) and the woman totally has my dream job: working with a team. Please Toronto Raptors: hire me when I graduate. Actually, Boston Celtics.

Anyways, in the article the dietitian explained that she makes energy bites for the players – rather than giving them highly processed, sugar-filled, possibly-junk-filled, energy bars. Winning.

Almond Butter Energy Bites5

I’m a huge energy bar, bite, ball, Larabar fan. They are great for snacking: on-the-go, pre and post workout, and even for a sweet treat. But I have to tell ya: I had nooooo idea how to make them at first. I’d see them all over the place but didn’t know how to make them myself. Well I quickly learned that energy balls are typically made with dates (or another dried fruit) and nuts. Seems easy enough right? Well it wasn’t. I couldn’t get the balls to stick! I blamed my mom’s food processor (and then we proceeded to get in a “fight” about how I was going to break it) but ultimately it was my bad for not using medjool or sticky dates. Oops. Sorry mom. Another perk of living at home.

Even though I’ve figured out the whole bites-made-in-a-food processor thing out (like these) cleaning the food processor is an absolute hassle. So many parts. So much to wash. So much to dry. I just don’t feel like it all the time.

A one-bowl-minimal-mess-energy-bite… no food processor required? Yes please.

Almond Butter Energy Bites1

So back to the article my dad gave me. He said that the energy bites the dietitian makes sounded delicious: peanut butter, coconut, flaxseed meal and honey. This made me really excited so I tried to re-create them for him. Even though my measurements were a little off, dad actually said he liked them. Well he said they would be better with chocolate chips and “his” peanut butter but hey, he still liked them.

If you’ve been around these parts for awhile, you know I have a slight obsession with peanut butter. I didn’t think I’d be able to give it up for my Whole 30 but I did and eating the bites I made for my dad was the first time I had had peanut butter since March 1st! That’s 4 months PB-free. I honestly didn’t think it would be a problem for my stomach or digestion but low and behold… a few hours after eating one of the bites, my stomach was bloated and I was sooo uncomfortably gassy (not to mention my skin broke out too… worst). Sorry if TMI. Remember that peanuts are actually a legume – and you know what they say about beans. Damn you phytates, lectins and aflatoxin.

So that’s where almond butter comes in.

Almond Butter Energy Bites2

Peanut butter is soooo delicious but I’d prefer to be bloat and gas-free so I’m saving my PB for special treats (you can read more about the effect of PB here). I used to hate almond butter but now love it (dare I say it) as much as PB. But, feel free to use your favorite nut butter – I have come to enjoy many. I bet cashew or hazelnut would be great too.

I still try to limit my nuts and seeds (too many still hurt my tummy) but these little bites have been perfect pre-5:30am CrossFit (when a hard boiled egg just doesn’t do it for me). They are full of healthy fats and a bit of protein to give you a yummy boost. They seriously could not be easier… I hope you enjoy them too!

Almond Butter Energy Bites3

Almond Butter Energy Bites4

Almond Butter Bites

Ingredients (Makes 12 bites)

  • 1/2 cup all-natural, creamy almond butter (or your favorite nut butter)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup flaxseed meal
  • 2 tbsp. honey (vegan option: maple syrup)

Instructions

1. Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl.

2. Use a tablespoon measure (or a spoon) to form 12 bites.

3. Store in the fridge in an airtight container – will keep for a few weeks.

 

Questions of the day…

What’s your favorite nut butter? 

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45 thoughts on “Almond Butter Bites {paleo} {vegan} {gluten free}

  1. Ah these look so easy and delicious – also awesome photos :)
    I hear you on the food processor mess. I LOVE balls but sometimes I just can’t be bothered to crack out the food processor. I love that you love almond butter now – it is so drippy and delicious! I am also happy you will keep eating PB on special occasions – gotta have some of those pesky legumes – they are just too good! You will so have that dream job girl – just believe it and you will get there – I have every faith in you <3

  2. Thank you for creating a recipe that doesn’t require a food processor!! I don’t have one, so I’ve always felt out of the loop when it comes to energy bites. These look so easy and delicious. I’ll try these with PB first because that’s what I have on hand, but I’ll have to give the almond butter a shot, too. Thanks!

  3. YUM! I have a recently new infatuation with almond butter, so I must try these! I had no idea of the effects of PB, I lovelovelove PB, but try not to eat it often, I just can’t stop once I start. Thanks lady! Love your blog and Insta too! great stuff here :)
    xo

  4. Looks super yum!! Oddly enough, I can’t tolerate almond butter that well :(((

    When I did my Whole30, I became obsessed with almond butter and ate it frequently (ever pour it atop a sweet potato with cinnamon? YUM!). Anyway, months ago I started adding natural PB back into my diet.. and anytime I have almond butter, it causes the gas! SAD cause I started to really enjoy it! So now, only in minimal doses.

    These still look delicious! :)

  5. I love that you took the food processor out of the equation – these look perfect and like the greatest bite to pop on the way out the door! Sign me up for the almond butter over PB train too… I think it’s slowly winning (maybe because of flavors like vanilla almond… mmmm).

  6. These are so simple! Love that they don’t use a processor. Interestingly peanut butter never upsets my stomach or my skin. Other legumes make my stomach feel interesting sometimes, but not really. The thing I worry about with peanut butter is developing an allergy! Since I eat it so so so much.

  7. OMG, these bites look & sound amazing Amy! I’m totally going to have to pin these & try them! Only problem is that I have no control with things like this. lol
    That article is SO COOL!!! Yay, for a REAL food RD working with a sports team!! That definitely is a dream come true! I always thought it’d be awesome to work for the Milwaukee Brewers as their team Dietitian – my husband would be on the moon over that! I always worry about finding my place as a REAL food RD when I graduate, but I have more & more hope due to articles like this & other real food RDs slowly paving the way. :)

    1. I definitely think you will find your place Karey in the RD and real food world… because we NEED more real food RDs. Can’t wait to see all that you do!

  8. I have a love/hate relationship with my food processor. It’s super annoying to clean, but so necessary sometimes. I will gladly forego the mess and give this recipe a try. Simple, easy and looks delicious!

  9. girlfriend, you have hit the jackpot with these! I do lunch workout classes at the Y,, and I always find that I don’t perform as well as I could during the classes because my tummy’s hungry for lunch. These little guys will be perfect to eat on my way there. Made them tonight and tasted a bit-they are great! and love that no food processor is required. I tried to use my blender as a processor to make energy bars before…and it didn’t go well :) keep up the genius-ness!!

  10. SO making these soon. Yum. But two more important things … 1) Will you hire me as your assistant when you work for the Celtics? Holy moly. Dream job. 2) I broke out like CRAZY when I just reintroduced dairy after 3 months without it. Honestly, I never struggled with breakouts, even as a teen, so this was surprising for me! So, so interesting how our bodies work – and made me reconsider how much dairy I want to have in my day-to-day life.

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