Bliss balls are a great gluten-free, dairy-free food. Making your own allows you to pack them full of nourishing ingredients and tweak them to suit your taste.
I’m very relaxed with my measuring when I make a batch of bliss balls. I work to a basic formula of about 2 cups of sticky dried fruit (dates, figs, raisins, apricots etc), 2 cups of nuts/seeds (cashews, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds etc) and several tablespoons of coconut oil. I then throw in whatever else I can find and blitz it up! You’ll love the flexibility of this recipe and I encourage you to play around with whatever you have in your cupboard.
If my blasé attitude to measuring makes you feel anxious(!) or you’re a newbie when it comes to making bliss balls, start with the below recipe. You may wish to halve the quantities to begin with. If you have trouble, please sing out!
- 1 cup of natural cashews
- ½ cup of natural walnuts (or other natural nuts)
- ½ cup of sunflower seeds (pumpkin and sesame seeds are good substitutes)
- 1 cup of dried dates
- 1 cup of raisins (sultanas, dried figs or apricots are good substitutes)
- 3 Tbsp of cocoa powder
- 3 Tbsp of chia seeds (white, black, whole, ground — it doesn’t matter)
- 1 ½ tsps of vanilla essence
- 5 Tbsps of melted coconut oil .
- Place the nuts and seeds into a food processor. Process until finely chopped (the finer the better when it comes to children)
- Add the raisins and dates. Process again until finely chopped
- Add the cocoa powder and chia seeds. Process until mixed
- Add the vanilla essence and coconut oil. Process until mixed
- Press into balls (they will be crumbly, so try pressing gently into shape rather than rolling)
- Place the balls onto a tray lined with baking paper and refrigerate until firm
- Remove from tray and store in an airtight container in the fridge for 2-3 weeks
- Best eaten chilled.
Hints and tips
- The coconut oil will solidify in the fridge, holding the bliss balls together. If they’re too hard to press into balls, add another couple of tablespoons.
- If you’re on a dairy-free diet and thoroughly sick of the taste of coconut (it happens!) then purchase a flavourless coconut oil. Conversely, if you like the taste of coconut, be sure to avoid those that say ‘tasteless’, or ‘neutral flavour’.
- Ground flax seeds may be added instead of chia seeds.
- I often replace some of the cashews with whole ground almonds. This is a good option if your processor isn’t the best at chopping the nuts into tiny bits.
- Leave out the cocoa if you don’t like the taste of chocolate.
- If you’re a coeliac, or following a gluten-free diet, bliss balls are a yummy way to add extra fibre to your day.
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