By: Julia Huston
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Let’s be real – there are some nights that we can only think about one thing: chocolate. These brownie balls are the perfect fix for your late night sweet tooth, without all the excess sugar and dairy. I like to make a batch once a week and store them in the fridge, but you could also double the recipe and pop those puppies in the freezer. They’re super quick and easy to make, involve no real cooking, and most of the ingredients can be found in your pantry already! Cocoa powder has an impressive range of benefits, too. It is rich in polyphenols, which are naturally occurring antioxidants found in foods such as chocolate, wine, and tea. Polyphenols are known for reducing inflammation, lowering blood pressure, and improving cholesterol levels; they also improve blood flow to your brain and brain function (Healthline). If you still need another reason to make these delicious power balls, research from multiple studies has found that dark chocolate actually reduces stress levels. That’s right: more chocolate equals less stress! (American College of Cardiology).
- 3/4 cup rolled oats
- 1/2 cup of your favorite nut butter (I use almond)
- 1/4 cup chopped dark chocolate chips (or cacao nibs)
- 1/3 cup chia seeds
- 1/3 cup honey
- 1/4 cup raw cocoa powder
- 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
- Dash of cinnamon
- Blend it all up! Combine all ingredients in a food processor and pulse for about a minute, scraping down the sides every so often. (If you don’t have access to a food processor, don’t fear: mix everything up by hand, but make sure your chocolate is super finely chopped).
- Once combined, roll into inch-size balls with your hands.
- For some extra holiday fun, roll the balls in sprinkles to coat them.
- Store in an air-tight container in the fridge. They’ll need a few minutes to harden up.
Mandl, Elise. “11 Health and Nutrition Benefits of Cocoa Powder.” Healthline, Healthline Media, 9 Aug. 2018, www.healthline.com/nutrition/cocoa-powder-nutrition-benefits.
Wirtz, Petra. “Dark Chocolate Intake Buffers Stress Reactivity in Humans.” Journal of the American College of Cardiology, 2014.