Packed with warming and healing anti-inflammatory spices, these flavour-packed bliss balls make the perfect snack for when you need a boost of energy, especially during the cooler months. A great source of long-lasting complex carbohydrates to fuel your body, healthy fats to boost brain power and plant protein to keep you satisfied until your next meal, as well as an abundance of vitamins, minerals and powerful antioxidants to nourish the body, mind and soul. Yum!
½ cup buckwheat
½ cup oats
¼ cup almonds
1 cup pitted dates
½ tsp turmeric
1 tsp cinnamon
½ tsp ground ginger
½ tsp cloves
pinch of black pepper
¼ tsp ground cardamom
2 tbsp vanilla plant-based protein powder (optional)
Chia seeds and freeze-dried pineapple (optional), to roll
Soak dates in warm water for 15 minutes to soften, then drain
In a food processor or blender, blend buckwheat, oats, almonds, spices and protein powder (if using) to a coarse flour
Add dates and blend again to form a sticky ‘dough’
Using your hands, roll the mixture into golf balls sized balls and place on a plate
Roll the balls in chia seeds or freeze-dried pineapple to make them extra pretty, or just leave them as they are!
Allow to firm in the fridge or freezer
Almonds can be swapped with almond meal or another nut or seed of choice
Store balls in a sealed container in the fridge or freezer
Extra nutritional information:
Buckwheat is a grain-like seed that can be eaten raw or cooked. It’s gluten free and a great source of low GI complex carbohydrates that keep blood sugar levels stable. It’s also high in fibre, acting as a prebiotic to feed good gut bacteria for a healthy digestive system, and is high in protein. It’s packed full of B vitamins, magnesium, manganese and zinc, as well as the bioflavonoid rutin, which has shown the strengthen blood vessels and promote a healthy heart. The triangular seeds, called groats, are great to use raw in bliss balls and desserts, or it can be cooked into granola, porridge, stews and soups, used for baking or as a rice alternative.
As well as adding a deliciously sweet and warming taste, cinnamon has powerful medicinal properties, thanks to compounds such as cinnamaldehyde, cinnamoc acid and cinnamate. Cinnamon has shown to have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial and immune boosting properties, as well as stabilising and lowering blood sugar levels and protecting the heart through the preventing of blood clots and improving circulation.
Almonds are a wonderful source of monounsaturated fats, which help promote heart health by regulating cholesterol levels, as well as being rich sources of fibre and protein, and high in essential nutrients such as vitamin E, selenium, calcium, zinc, magnesium and B group vitamins. Studies show almonds to have protective effects against heart disease and type 2 diabetes, as well as improving satiation and boosting memory function.
Turmeric has long been used in Eastern medicine for its powerful healing properties, especially for reducing inflammation and treating respiratory conditions. Curcumin, the main active constituent in turmeric, has shown to reduce pain and inflammation in conditions such as arthritis and ulcerative colitis, prevent against heart disease and even prevent cognitive decline linked to Alzheimer’s disease, through its anti-inflammatory properties. While curcumin is very poorly absorbed, adding just a sprinkle of black pepper to it increase its bioavailability by up to 2000%!
About Nina Gelbke
Nina is a Swiss-Australian nutritional and dietetic medicine student at Endeavour College of Natural Health in her final semester of study (soon to be a fully qualified nutritionist!), type 1 diabetic and vegan foodie from Western Australia.
With a huge passion for using food as medicine to nourish the body, mind and soul, she shares these passions with the world through her Instagram and website, ‘Naturally Nina’. She creates delicious whole foods plant-based recipes and shares her knowledge and experiences, plus a whole lot of food photography, with the aim to inspire others to live a healthy, vibrant and compassionate life.
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