Feeding a toddler > rocket science — and that is a fact. Few things make less sense than the eating habits of my 20-month-old son. Yesterday I tried feeding him peas mixed in with macaroni and cheese (muahahaha) and he actually figured out how to sort the peas out of the macaroni INSIDE his mouth and spit out every last pea at the end of the meal. He must have been storing them in his cheeks. #facepalm
So, when it comes to sneaking nutrition in to my boy’s diet I have become the ninja I always imagined I’d be … well … actually, I imagined myself in a scantily clad ninja outfit — black cloth revealing only my sultry eyes — executing some kind of world-class bank robbery or jewel heist (What? Not everyone wants to be a ballerina, okay?!). The reality of it looks more like me, standing in my sweat pants over a toddler who keeps screaming “NO MOMMY, NOOO!” as I try desperately to spoon feed him yams. But, little does he know, when I finally give up on the yams and roll out desert that there is nutrition hiding behind every well-planned nibble. HA! Who wins, now?!
This recipe is a go-to for a healthful snack or desert that will make your GranolaHeart happy while making his little tastebuds do a jig. Without further a due, I give you — No-bake, almond-butter ball cookies. This recipe makes about 20 balls.
The Cast of Characters:
2 Cups puffed rice cereal. I bought mine from the health-food store this time but you can use the box of Rice Krispies hiding out in your cupboard (even if they’re stale, they still work!).
1/2 Cup Hemp Seed Hearts
1 Cup almond butter
1 Cup honey – Try to get local honey if you can for the health benefits and for the fair treatment of the bees. Bees are important.
Scoop the rice cereal and hemp seed hearts into a large mixing bowl and stir until blended
Add almond butter and honey
“Mush” with a wooden spoon or one of those rubbery scraper spoons (pictured).
Keep mushing until all of the almond butter and honey have been incorporated and you have a big ball
Place a sheet of cling wrap over a regular-size dinner plate
Cover one hand with another small sheet of cling wrap and use the other hand or a spoon to put about two tablespoons (depending on how big you want your balls to be … hehe) of mixture into your covered hand.
Close your hand around to squeeze into a ball then place the ball on the plate
Repeat until you run out of mix
Put the plate in the fridge for an hour or so and BLAM! Good to go.
Use them as snacks or desert or side-dishes for your little nibbler.
(Hint: I catch my husband eating these all the time so be sure to make a few extras just in case!)