I admit to being kind of a purist when it comes to sweeteners. I use fruit almost exclusively to sweeten our family's muffins, cookies, and holiday treats. Recently, though, I've been looking longingly at recipes for sticky, no-bake "Energy Bites" like these and these and these, which are sweetened with an amount of honey that I dare say is measured not in tablespoons, but in cups. CUPS. Well, a third of a cup, anyway.
So I put on my substitutions hat. I tried a batch made with dates instead of honey, but the bites crumbled. I tried again, switching up ingredient ratios: Energy Gravel. I was dying to get it right, but I just couldn't.
Finally, I had to do something not-too-easy for me, because I was starting to feel a little haunted by these recipes. I had to just use the flippin' honey.
My kids aren't old enough to say, just use the flippin' honey, Mama! But when they are, I hope they'll help be that voice in our household. Because not only does honey bind together all these beautiful bits of seed and grain with an almost-floral sweetness, it's also one of life's little pleasures, in moderation.
And for an occasional treat, you can't do much better.
Here's what you get in these eggs:
100% whole grains
Whole-food plant protein
Healthy fats from nuts, seeds, and coconut
Antioxidant-rich honey (instead of sugar)
A sweet indulgence you can make with love and share with your kids.
These nutty, chewy eggs are great for an Easter party potluck, or packed in a bento lunch as a dessert treat. And for me, they became part of my parent-education, reminding me to sometimes yield: to be the egg, not the eggshell.
No-Bake Speckled Energy "Eggs"
Makes ~ 15 eggs
1 cup rolled oats
2/3 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds, coarsely ground*
1/2 cup smooth natural peanut butter
1/3 cup mini dark chocolate chips
1/3 cup honey
1 tsp. vanilla
Combine all ingredients in a medium mixing bowl. Scoop and mash the mixture with the back of a spoon until they are well-combined.
Chill for 30 minutes or more.
Using your hands, roll the dough first into balls about one inch in diameter. Then shape each ball with your fingers to make egg-shapes.
Serve or chill in the fridge or freezer until ready to eat.
*I put my seeds in a sandwich baggie and break them up a bit with the back of a sturdy measuring cup.