Not-So-Guilty Chocolate Peanut Butter Balls

Not-So Guilty Chocolate Peanut Butter Balls

I fondly remember making holiday treats with my mom. An addictive and fantastically easy favorite, usually made for Christmas, were classic peanut butter balls. No doubt many of us remember those chocolate-coated treats with rice crispy cereal included for added crunch and texture. I never could resist peanut butter, and it often features in my no-bake treats and energy bites.

The only trouble with the classic ones I enjoyed as a child is that they are much too sugary for my tastes now. In addition to icing sugar, mom used not-so-natural peanut butter — you know the kind that isn't simply ground peanuts but instead a sugary spread. I loved them anyway, but over the years I've searched for healthier alternatives to satisfy my sweet tooth.

I've stayed true to the simplicity of the original recipe but left out butter, and used natural peanut butter and sweetener. I even bought a box of "healthy" sprouted rice crisp cereal, although I don't think that's really necessary — I shouldn't have felt guilty if I had used Rice Krispies, to tell the truth. But I dare say that this not-so-guilty version is even tastier and just as addictive as the original, and it also happens to be vegan friendly. Happily, if the urge to over-indulge is resisted, they are good for you too.

Note: Coconut flour is more absorbent than grain flours and in this recipe it's only required if the peanut butter used is somewhat runny. When stirred in, the mixture will thicken, so let it sit after adding a bit before adding more. The mixture before shaping should be moist, but neither too dry nor sticky.

Not-So-Guilty Chocolate Peanut Butter BallsNot-So-Guilty Chocolate Peanut Butter Balls
Recipe by
Adapted from Oh She Glows
Published on November 30, 2016

Sweet peanut butter and rice krispie balls coated with dark chocolate — addictive and guilt-free

Preparation: 20 minutes

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  • 1 cup natural crunchy peanut butter
  • 4 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons coconut, brown rice or almond flour, as needed
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/3 cup + 1 tablespoon rice crisp cereal
  • 3/4 cup dark chocolate, broken into pieces (or dark chocolate chips)
  • 1/2 tablespoon coconut oil
  • In a large bowl, stir together the peanut butter, maple syrup and vanilla until well combined and thickened. Stir in about 1 tablespoon of coconut, brown rice or almond flour if the mixture seems wet and let sit for a minute or two. Add more to get a firm, but not too sticky or dry shapeable dough. Stir in the salt and cereal.

  • Shape into small balls and transfer to a plate or small baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Place in the refrigerator while you prepare the chocolate.

  • In a small saucepan, melt the chocolate and coconut oil over low heat, stirring frequently, until just melted. Remove from the heat and stir for another minute or two until smooth.

  • Using a fork, dip the balls into the chocolate to coat and return to the lined plate. Reserve leftover chocolate. Place the balls in the freezer for 10 minutes.

  • Remove the balls from the freezer. Using a small spoon, drizzle some of the leftover chocolate over the top of the balls. Freeze the balls for another 15 minutes or longer. Store any leftovers in the refrigerator in a well-sealed container.

Makes 12 to 15 1 1/2-inch balls

 Peanut Butter Balls

Other peanut butter treats to enjoy from Lisa's Vegetarian Kitchen:
Raw Peanut Butter Fudge
Raw Peanut Butter Chocolate Nut Squares
Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Bites
Raw Peanut and Coconut Butter Fudge

1 comment:

Big Rigs 'n Lil' Cookies said...

These sound soo good! Stopping by from Carole's Chatter.