Protein is such a big topic when it comes to plant-based eating. It's the number one question I get asked when talking about being vegan. It's a very legit question. A long term low protein diet can be detract from optimal health and nutrition goals. Our body uses and requires protein everyday for all bodily functions.
Vegans aren't lacking in protein options per se, but we do have to be more creative than the average meat eater.
Grabbing a slice of turkey is a quick and easy way to get protein. But when meat isn't an option sometimes we have to make smoothies or something like these protein balls for easily accessible high-protein snack. The added benefit? Making your own recipe means additional fiber, minerals and vitamins.
There are endless options when it comes to flavors and ingredients when it comes to making a good protein ball. But the basic foundation includes:
Nuts or seeds (or both in this case)
A sweetener (dates in this case)
Additional protein (vanilla SunWarrior in this case)
Flavors (i.e. coconut, vanilla, cardamom, cinnamon, chocolate, etc.)
Have fun with toppings. I used hemp seeds, cacao nibs and cocoa powder.
This is a great base for your protein balls.
Vanilla Tahini Protein Balls
yields 12-15 balls
2/3 cup raw almonds
1/2 cup vegan vanilla protein powder
7 dates, soaked for 20 minutes
1 tsp cardamom powder
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/3 cup tahini
1. Process the almonds and protein powder together in a food processor - pulsing over and over again - for about 30 seconds to a minute. Set aside mixture in a separate bowl.
2. Add soaked dates (discarding all but 3 Tbsp of the soaking water). Blend them in the food processor bowl with the 3 Tbsp water. Process for about 20 seconds. Add tahini. Process again for 30 seconds. Stopping every few seconds to scrape down sides of the bowl if necessary.
3. Add the almond and protein mixture back into the bowl combined with this date tahini mixture. Process for about 20 seconds until a dough is formed.
4. Form dough into balls and place in an air tight container in the freezer until ready to serve.
This recipe was adapted from JustJfaye.com - check out her recipe as well for more details.