Peanut Butter & Coconut Power Balls

I'm not a picky eater, per se. But when it comes to food in the backcountry, I'm more particular about what I like. Traditional granola/meal bars just aren't my jam, despite how easy they are to pack and carry. I'd rather have smaller bites of different flavors than be stuck with one bar of a single flavor.

So when an instructor in my mountaineering class this spring brought these little snacks she called 'energy balls'. They were sweet, bite-sized balls rolled in coconut and made a perfect trail snack!

peanut power balls

At 200 calories per ball, these little guys are a great way to get quick, tasty energy on the trail in one bite. They're packed with healthy fats, protein and carbs to keep your mind sharp and body happy as you gun for a summit or earn your turns on the mountain.

The best part of this recipe is that you can customize it to fit your tastes exactly. The original recipe included dates which gave the balls extra sweetness that I'm just not into. But if you like sweet? Add some dates! Or raisins! For the more savory palate, maybe add in some pretzels or sunflower seeds. The sky's the limit.

These 'power balls', as I like to call them, are super easy to make and makes 12 servings - enough to share with friends! These also keep well in the fridge in between adventures if you choose not to share.

Peanut Butter Power Balls


  • 1/2 cup walnuts

  • 1/2 cup almonds

  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup

  • 1/2 cup peanut or almond butter (I like Earth Balance Coconut Peanut Butter for an extra coconut kick)

  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

  • 3/4 cup finely shredded sweetened coconut (1/2 for the mixture, 1/4 for rolling)

  • 1/2 cup oats

  • Handful of chocolate chips

  1. Using a food processor or high-powered blender, process walnuts and almonds until chunky.
  2. Add maple syrup and process again. (option to add chocolate chips in here to process)
  3. Add peanut butter and vanilla; process again. Mixture will be slightly smooth consistency and sticky.
  4. Add in coconut and oats; process again or transfer to a bowl and mix by hand.
  5. If you didn't add chocolate chips in step 2, add them here and mix by hand.
  6. Spoon mixture into bite-sized balls and roll in 1/4 cup of coconut (mixture will be sticky until rolled in coconut).
  7. Enjoy! Store in fridge to firm up.

TeamSierraTry these other homemade energy bar recipes: 

Honey Oat Energy Bites
Pumpkin Spice Energy Bars
Peanut Butter Trail Mix Bars
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