After a few too many weekend pizza binges and really late nights working, I decided it was definitely time for a season of healthier eating and self care. Nothing too radical, no crash diets, but small easy to stick to tweaks to my routine that will hopefully turn into long term lifestyle changes.
More vegetables, less sugar.
More cooking at home, because I find such pleasure in doing it.
Less grabbing an unhealthy lunch on the run purely out of hunger and desperation.
Mostly I’ve done really well. I am waking up more easily and feel like I have more energy. The main time I struggle with eating healthy is when I haven’t been organised. I tend to make poor choices when I’m really hungry! For me, the key to following through on any new habit is definitely planning. If I forget to get groceries, or don’t have a shopping list, it’s a disaster. It’s really simple – when I have a fridge full of healthy food, I eat healthy!
And it’s for all of those reasons that I love these little Bliss Balls. They are so easy to make in advance – basically all the ingredients are dumped in the food processor! They make a fantastic snack with the bonus of being easily portable for when you’re on the go. No more chocolate bars, or store-bought ‘healthy’ granola bars that are actually packed full of sugar and weird ingredients you don’t recognise.
They are absolutely delicious. I mean that! I’m now a bliss ball convert. It’s the perfect snack that makes you feel like you’re treating yourself after dinner, but really isn’t too naughty. Naturally sweet because of the dates, which also help in binding everything together. Next time I’m going to try them with Medjool dates because lots of people recommend them for their taste and texture.
These bliss balls are vegan, gluten free and contain healthy fats and protein from the nuts, chia seeds and coconut oil. Cacao has a whole lot of health benefits too, like balancing your hormones and reducing blood pressure – plus it’s a proven mood enhancer! There’s nothing artificial. No ingredients you can’t pronounce. It’s all good stuff in here.
You can definitely use this recipe as a jumping off point to experiment here too. Use cashews, hazelnuts or brazil nuts instead of macadamias as they all have different healthy properties. Maybe some high quality protein powder or matcha instead of the cacao. You could add some tahini or peanut butter. Try different dried fruits like mango or figs – just watch out for the sugar content. The possibilities are literally endless. I definitely have some ideas to try out for next time too, because this batch is all gone!
Cacao & Chia Bliss Balls
Adapted from Donna Hay
- 1/2 cup (80g) almonds
- 1/2 cup (70g) macadamias
- 1/4 cup (20g) shredded coconut
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons cacao powder (not cocoa)
- 1 teaspoon chia seeds
- 16 fresh dates, pitted
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
Place the almonds, macadamias, coconut, vanilla, cacao and chia seeds into a food processor and process until roughly chopped. Add the dates and coconut oil and process until the mixture comes together. Roll tablespoons of the mixture into balls. Store in the fridge for up to two weeks.