Did you know that there is a universal hierarchy of hunger levels?
Level one – Hungry - you haven’t eaten in a little while, and your brain is starting to think about food and no longer on the task at hand.
Level two – Hangry – you should have eaten like 3 hours ago, your blood sugar has dropped. You need to eat right now or there will be blood. This is where you start to grab anything that resembles food – usually in a package.
Level three – Spangry – this is a level of hungry that happens after spin class. Spangry starts to hit during cool down and my spin bestie and I usually start trying to talk each other out of post spin big macs.
I try really really really hard to avoid level two and three. No good food decision making comes while in level two or three. One way to try and prevent level 2 and 3 (and how to treat it), is to have healthy snacks at your fingertips. Not only do they need to be readily available, they need to be portable.
The solution – energy bites!
They are make ahead, high protein, portion controlled, freezable, and portable. Pretty much what my snacking dreams are made of!
Lucky for me, spin bestie is just as obsessed with finding healthy treats as I am. She also gets as excited as I do about golden beets and rainbow carrots. Yes, I have a friend that I send pictures of produce to. This is why I haven’t joined snap chat. How many produce snaps can one person take?
Spin bestie has been sending me recipe links to energy balls for months now, and every time I make something she picks out, it’s a winner – so this weekend we decided to take a couple of hours and fill our freezer with energy balls!
Mostly because they sound like desserts, these are the energy balls we landed on:
Peanut Butter Coconut Energy Bites - Grounded Health NOTE: we added the chocolate drizzle. We are rebels like that - we also go to spin a lot so we can easily justify chocolate drizzle.
Almond Joy Energy Bites - Gimme Some Oven
Carrot Cake Bites - Joyous Health
Coconut Cashew Energy Balls - Nutrition Stripped
Cake Batter Energy Balls - The Healthy Maven
My husband and daughter think these are timbits ( a Canadian donut). Lesson learned: double this recipe.
Chocolate Cherry Energy Balls - The Healthy Maven - we didn't have dried cherries, but did have dried cranberries and blueberries so just used those and it worked just fine.
First step was to determine all of the ingredients we needed. This is where it becomes clear my project manager day job comes in handy.
Yes, this is an ingredient matrix. Yes, it is in excel with formulas. Yes, it is awesome, and no, this isn’t the first time I have created an ingredient matrix.
Another reason why spin bestie and I are meant to be friends is that between the 2 of us we had all of this in our pantries and we didn’t have to go buy anything.
I will warn you that if you don’t have a stocked pantry and have to purchase all of these supplies, it is going to be pricey.
| Method to Our Madness |
This took about 2 hours for two of us to tackle these recipes. Most of the time is in the rolling of the balls. The beauty of this is that there is no oven, no cooking. Just a a couple food processors and raw ingredients!
Here is what we did:
- Layout all of the ingredients and take a photo
- Each of us labelled a freezer bag for each recipe.
- Grab your food processor and pick a corner of the kitchen so you are not running into eachother.
- Divide and conquer. Each tackle a recipe and dump the finished products into bowls.
- Invent a faster way to turn the mixtures to balls and sit there making oh so many jokes while you roll balls for the next 20 minutes.
- Divide up the fruits of your labour.
- Keep in the freezer
A few notes on freezing. I have put these all in a ziplock baggie and put into the freezer in hopes I wouldn’t have one big frozen ball. It has worked because:
- I separate the layers with parchment paper - if there are multiple layers. When you do this as a team, you end up with half of the recipe and won't need to do this.
- I lay flat until they are frozen. Once individually frozen, you can orient them how every you want and they won’t stick too bad.
- If they do stick a bit, I just smash them lightly (is that even a real thing?) on my counter to separate them.
In the morning I pull a few out into a small container and then I have them ready for the day. I prefer mine cold, so I keep them in a fridge at work but it’s not necessary.
So, there you have it, Fill Your Freezer - Energy Bites.