It’s been a while since I posted a bliss ball recipe. They’re one of those things that change every time I make them, as in, I make little tweaks depending on what I have in the pantry, or flavours I’m keen on at the time.
This morning’s batch have a slight Jaffa – chocolate orange – vibe, and now perfectly fill a jar which is tucked in the fridge. I’m heading away for work for a couple of days and when that happens, I like to make sure there are some homemade things to fill my kids’ lunchboxes with while I’m gone. Bliss balls are a favourite: packed with fats and protein and sweetened with dates, they’re such satisfying bite. My kids like them rolled in black sesame seeds but sometimes we also use desiccated coconut or cacao nibs.
Like I say, every batch of bliss balls is different in my kitchen, so try swapping out ingredients. The basic balance you’re looking for is between sweet, bitter and savoury and between moist and dry. If your balls aren’t sweet enough, add more dates or a little brown rice syrup. If they’re not moist enough, add a very small amount of coconut oil. If they’re too wet, add more almond or coconut flour.
One thing remains constant in my bliss ball repertoire: I begin by making a rough butter from raw sunflower seeds. I just find this is my preferred flavour and texture base. Process them until they’re just starting to release a bit of oil, but not too much or you can then struggle to balance the oiliness. Sunflower seeds have a lovely savouriness that keeps these balls from being overly sweet, even though they’re packed with medjool dates.
If you only have dried dates, no problem. You might just need to add a little coconut oil to moisten the mix.
Makes around 20 balls
1 cup raw sunflower seeds
15 or so medjool dates, pitted (around 100g worth)
1/2 cup ground almonds
2 Tbsp coconut flour
1 heaped Tbsp raw cacao powder or cocoa powder
1 Tbsp mangosteen powder (optional – can use a protein or ‘superfood’ powder of choice)
Juice 1 mandarin
1/4 cup black sesame seeds
- In a high speed blender or powerful processor (I used Thermomix), process the sunflower seeds until they have started to turn into a rough ‘butter’ with a little oil evident.
- Add the rest of the ingredients and process on highest setting until smooth. You may like to stop the engine and scrape down the sides of the bowl or jug a few times to make sure none of the mixture is left uncombined.
- Roll heaped teaspoonfuls into balls, then roll balls in black sesame seeds to coat. Place bliss balls in jar and store in fridge. They’ll keep for a few weeks.