Coconut Lime Energy Bites – These nut-free lime energy bites are perfect for meal prep, healthy snacking, or packing in lunches. (Gluten free, vegan, and paleo approved!)
We are a month into school already (can you believe it!?) since we start so early, and we’re already trying to get creative with lunches. Our lunch box formula is pretty simple. We try to choose a few colors of the rainbow and include some healthy fats and protein with each lunch. But even then, it’s not all that boring:
Sophie isn’t into (read: will not eat) sandwiches or very many forms of protein, so we’ve had to get a little more creative with her lunches this year. Often, that means including things like grain free mini muffins, or trail mix, or energy bites.
These coconut lime energy bites are one of my FAVORITE combinations. They’re sweet and delicious like a treat, but made from a really healthy ingredient list (that also helps me give Sophie a dose of healthy fats while we’re at it). The other big bonus? These are completely nut free!
I love that I can make a batch and snack on them throughout the week or pack them in lunches with no extra effort. Basically: make a batch of coconut lime energy bites. You’ll never run out of occasions to eat them!
What’s in Coconut Lime Energy Bites?
- Medjool Dates. I use medjool dates in most of my energy bite recipes–they’ve got a great flavor and their texture helps the bites stick together well.
- Pumpkin Seeds (Or Cashews). I developed these coconut lime energy bites to be nut-free, using pumpkin seeds. I love these sprouted ones (certified nut-free!), but if nuts aren’t an issue for you, you can also make these using raw cashews.
- Unsweetened Coconut. Next, comes our unsweetened coconut. The coconut helps bind the lime energy bites together and gives a subtle coconut flavor that’s really gorgeous with the lime.
- Lime Zest. To really make the lime flavor shine, I love using lime zest. Lime oil is found in the zest, so you get the brightest, freshest lime flavor by using the zest. (A microplane zester makes this really easy!)
- Vanilla. To balance the flavor, I love adding a little vanilla. If it’s not your jam, feel free to skip it!
- Lime Juice. Then, to round out the flavor and help the energy bites come together, you’ll add fresh lime juice (PLEASE use fresh!) a little at a time while you blend.
HOW TO MAKE COCONUT LIME ENERGY BITES, STEP-BY-STEP:
Making energy bites is as simple as add + blend + roll! Here’s the whole process, step by step:
- Add dates, pumpkin seeds, coconut, lime zest, and vanilla to the bowl of a food processor.
- Pulse or blend adding lime juice 1 tsp. at a time, until the mixture comes together and no large pieces remain. (It should stick together easily when you pinch the mixture between your fingers.)
- Scoop! Use a small cookie scoop or a scant tablespoon to scoop the coconut lime energy bite mixture into even amounts, then roll the balls between your hands until smooth.
- Decorate. If desired, add a little extra shredded coconut to a small bowl and dip or roll the energy bites in coconut for decoration.
- Store. Add rounded energy bites to an airtight container and store in the refrigerator up to 1 week.
FAQ + TIPS AND TRICKS FOR THE BEST COCONUT LIME ENERGY BITES:
WHAT FOOD PROCESSOR DO YOU LIKE? My mom never owned a food processor when I was growing up, so I totally thought they were a fluffy extra kitchen appliance. I WAS WRONG. I literally use this or my blender almost every single day. I’ve had great luck with Cuisinart brand. (I just replaced mine after 9 years!)
HOW LONG TO ENERGY BITES STAY FRESH? Energy bites will stay fresh about one week in the refrigerator. I store mine in an airtight container in the fridge and they keep really well! Or, you can even freeze them for about a month.
HELP! MY MIXTURE ISN’T COMING TOGETHER! Dates have different levels of dryness. Some dates are still quite soft inside, and others are a little more dried out. All you need to do is add a *TINY* bit of liquid. In this case, I recommend lime juice. I usually only need 1-3 tsp of liquid if my mixture isn’t coming together, but go 1 tsp. at a time until the mixture can easily stick together when pinched between your fingers. (See the video for a visual!)
WAIT! I THOUGHT THESE WERE NUT-FREE! I’ll clarify that they *do* contain coconut, but many people with nut allergies tolerate coconut just fine. (See this article from the American College of Allergy, Athsma & Immunology). Then, you’ll use nut-free pumpkin seeds (look for that certification, since sometimes brands use the same equipment to process nuts.)