21 Things

Happy Monday AND happy first day of August!

One thing that always makes Monday better is the motivational Monday e-mail I get each week from Elisabeth Tavierne, an influential friend in my life and the founder of my favorite organization, CHAARG. This weeks topic was focused on a reflection of the last year of her life – August is her birth month and last year she came up with a list of 25 things to do at 25. This year, she reflected on these 25 things.

This really resonated with me as I have a “milestone” birthday coming up this month. In two weeks, I’ll be 21. The age that everyone looks forward to – the age where you can finally do anything, where you’ve hit the ultimate freedom. It’s exciting but nerve wracking at the same time. I feel like at 21, you’re expected to have adulthood figured out. When I was younger, I always thought everyone who was in their 20s had their life figured out and had accomplished so much. Now that I’m actually (barely) in my 20s, I know that that’s a HUGE misconception. While I have a “plan”, I definitely don’t have life figured out (and I don’t know if I ever will). I’m still learning new things about myself and the world around me each day.

In the last year, I’ve done so much more than I could have ever imagined – I’ve stepped out of my comfort zone in so many incredible ways! I’ve had two amazing internships, I’ve created a blog, I’m signed up for my FIRST 10k [it’s happening THIS Saturday!], I’m applying for graduate programs and so much more. 20 has been so great to me.

Being inspired by Elisabeth’s email, I’m going to commit to making 21 even better.

21 Things I’m Going To Do At 21:

  1. Conquer one of my fears – whether that’s leaving home, swimming with sharks, or jumping out of a plane, I WILL conquer one of my fears (my heart dropped at the thought of each and every one of those things…)
  2. Focus on what’s REALLY important to me – I’ve noticed that I get so caught up in what other people my age are doing, that I start to question whether or not I’m doing enough or what I should be doing, rather than what I WANT to be doing. After all, this is MY life & I have nothing to prove to other people. It’s time to start doing life at my own pace.
  3. Make more time for God – I’ll admit… I’ve been slacking. I haven’t been the best about going to Church, reading the Bible or praying regularly but I do have intentions to change and devote my life to God. The first step has already been taken – joining a Bible study group!
  4. Be more invested in the lives of those I love – I know I don’t spend enough time with my family, friends or boyfriend. But it goes much further than that. I’m not always fully invested even when I’m around. I’ve allowed myself to be distracted by social media, emails, TV… This year, I plan to be more invested in the time I spend with those I love.
  5. Help more – whether it’s staying late and helping clean up after events or parties, volunteering at a homeless shelter, carrying in groceries for my parents, I want to dedicate more time to helping others.
  6. Taking care of my health – sure, I make an effort to workout and eat better, but I could do so much better. I could try even harder to create a healthier lifestyle. And unfortunately… one thing I need to do is make an annual doctor’s appointment… *sigh*.
  7. Read more – I don’t think I’ve completed a single book at 20. I’ve been so busy that I haven’t dedicated time to get lost in some really good books. My goal is to completely read 21 books (not including textbooks HA).
  8. Visit another country – I’ve never stepped foot outside of the United States (unless you count standing in the Atlantic ocean) and I’ve been dreaming of traveling to another country for as long as I can remember.
  9. Live in another city – This one might be cheating a little bit… I’m almost certain that with deciding on a graduate program will come a big move. Whether that’s to Columbus or New Orleans, we’ll just have to see!
  10. Double my savings – This one is simple. I suck at saving money. I want to make it a priority this year, and every year after,
  11. Become more mindful – There are tons of things to be more mindful about, like what I fuel my body with, how I speak to others, how I breathe, and then there are tons of things to do to become more mindful like journaling, meditating, practicing yoga or reflecting.
  12. Go more natural – As you’re learning, I’ve gotten very into essential oils. Eventually, I would love to do things like transfer all of my body, skin and hair care to a more natural routine, eat more natural foods, and share more of my raw, natural feelings.
  13. Reduce my carbon footprint – It’s no secret that we’re hurting our Earth more than we’re helping. I’d love to do my part in making the Earth a little more “green”.
  14.  “Disconnect” for at least an hour before bed – I’ve heard incredible things about staying away from electronics for at least an hour before you go to bed. It can help with sleep, mood, vision and so much more. I’m ready to wind down the right way.
  15. Adventure more – I don’t just mean traveling or doing crazy things, although those definitely count, but I mean trying new things or taking a mini road trip to a hiking trail instead of binge watching Netflix. After all, adventure is food for the soul, right?
  16. Challenge myself – Whether this is mentally, physically or emotionally, I want to challenge myself to new extents. Who knows… my 10k may turn into a 15k or even a half marathon ; )
  17. Become a morning person – this might as well count for #16 because I’m the farthest thing from being a “morning person”. I’m that girl who says “I’m waking up at 6 to do X, Y & Z.” and then I set 13 alarms and snooze every single one until it’s 10:05 and I need to be out the door by 10:30. I need to cut this habit immediately.
  18. Learn a new skill or talent – I’ve told myself tons of times that I wanted to learn how to do X. I’ve wanted to learn how play the piano, to play the ukulele, to knit, to hand letter,  and everything else you can think of. But I’ve never actually made an effort to do any of them (except for learning the chorus of Yankee Doodle on the piano…).
  19. Master my own signature dish – Learning how to cook is so important. What 40 year old wants to eat Ramen and leftover pizza every night because they never learned how to cook? Not only is learning how to cook important, but I think it’s beneficial to master a recipe that can please crowds.
  20. Update my wardrobe – Don’t get me wrong, I love my gym clothes so much that I could live in them (okay… I DO live in them). But they aren’t appropriate for all situations. For working out, for running errands, for lounging around, sure! Sometimes they’re even cute for a quick coffee date with friends. But they aren’t the best for work, for dinner dates, or for girls night out. I need to update my wardrobe to fit all occasions.
  21. Get rid of excess – This could be clutter, toxic relationships and even belongings that I don’t use. It’s never too late for a clean slate.

I can’t wait to see where I am in a year from now and look forward to reflecting on 21 next year! I know this year will be one to beat.

I hope you feel inspired to set goals for yourself and to reflect on your life – don’t wait until New Years to set goals, now is as good as ever!

Naturally

Ari.

Advertisements

Easy & Delicious Blackberry Chip Ice Cream

Yesterday, Josh and I went to our local fruit farm and picked donut peaches and blackberries. I kid you not, they were the sweetest, juiciest peaches and berries I’ve ever tried. It took every ounce of self control to not devour them as soon as I got home. My mouth is watering just thinking about them.

I knew exactly what I was going to do with the berries. I don’t know about you but I love ice cream. It’s my one true (food) love. I could eat an entire meal and ALWAYS have room for ice cream. I could eat ice cream for breakfast, lunch and dinner, during spring, summer, fall and winter. You think I’m kidding but I’m being completely serious. I just really like ice cream. And my love for ice cream is what’s bringing this sweet, fruity, creamy goodness to you.

This recipe is great because it’s both delicious AND easy – it doesn’t require an ice cream maker! I was inspired by a family favorite, Black Raspberry Chip ice cream.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Ingredients:

  • 2 c. heavy whipping cream
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk (14 oz.)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 qt. fresh blackberries
  • chocolate chunks

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Start by freezing your fresh blackberries. The best way to do this is to lay them on a lined baking sheet in one layer. This will help keep the berries from lumping together. Leave in the freezer overnight. I really struggled with this step – I kept eating all of my berries before they hit the sheet. They were SO juicy!

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Once your berries are frozen, throw them in a food processor and blend until smooth. If you need something to help the berries blend better, add a little heavy whipping cream or water. (I personally like having the seeds in the pureed berries because it makes it seem like a more natural berry ice cream, rather than just artificial flavoring.) Set blended berries aside.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Using a standing mixer or hand mixer, beat the heavy whipping cream until it forms a whipped cream like texture (or soft peaks). Once your cream is the right texture, add in the sweetened condensed milk and vanilla.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Slowly mix in spoonfuls of the berry puree until you get the desired berry flavor. I added all of my berry puree because I wanted a richer berry flavor. This is my favorite part because the mixture starts to turn a pretty purple color!

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Once you’ve added in all of your berry puree, fold in your chocolate chunks using a spatula.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Once you’re done making your ice cream mixture, pour into baking pans or a container and let sit in the freezer. I froze mine for about 5 hours.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Viola! This ice cream was so good and it took hardly any time at all! I can’t wait to try out new flavors. 🙂

Naturally,

Ari.

 

 

This recipe is an altered version of Martha Stewart’s No-Churn Vanilla Ice Cream.

A Peak into Hatteras, NC

Last week, my blog was a bit inactive because my family took our biennial trip to Greensboro and the Outer Banks in North Carolina. This year, we stayed on the very edge Hatteras Island – we needed a ferry to go any further out. It was beautiful and relaxing (aside from the flesh-eating greenhead flies), most likely due to the less-populated nature of this island. I didn’t do the best job of staying on top of taking pictures but I managed to snag a few! Today, I’m sharing the highlights of our trip, in case you find yourself taking a trip to the Outer Banks!

THURSDAY – SATURDAY

Thursday through Saturday, our family stayed in Greensboro. My parents practice a form of martial arts called Tang Soo Do (they’re black belts) and every other year, there’s a world championship/convention held in Greensboro and people from around the world come to watch creative routines and to compete. This year my parents were judges. We left Saturday afternoon to head to the Outer Banks.

SUNDAY

Sunday was our first full day in the Outer Banks.

Processed with VSCO with hb1 preset

We started off the day with a nice service at Our Lady of the Seas Catholic Parish. It’s a small parish with a beautiful view of the ocean from inside.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

After Mass, we drove around and stopped for lunch at Frisco Sandwich Co. I couldn’t decide between two things that were both very “safe” – a Hawaiian wrap with ham and pineapple or a crab cake sandwich. Some switch flipped and I decided that for the rest of vacation, I wasn’t going to play it safe like I always do – I was going to branch out and try new foods. I’m not much of a seafood gal, but I tried a ton of new things and loved them all! At Frisco, I ended up going with the Mahi Wow wrap with blackened Mahi, rice, black beans, pineapple and strawberry-kiwi sauce. It was SO good! I definitely recommend it!

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

After lunch, we went back to our villa and relaxed in the pool for a bit. After, we explored the shops around our area, hoping to find some ice cream for National Ice Cream Day ; )

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

That evening, we went down to the beach. The beach was pretty desolate, which was nice. We played around in the ocean for a while as the sun set.

MONDAY

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

On Monday, we spent the day in Ocracoke. Ocracoke is an island not too far from Hatteras, but you need to take a ferry to get there. You drive your car up onto the ferry and you’ll end up in Ocracoke 45 minutes later.

We spent the day on the beach, jumping around in the waves. Ocracoke is beautiful – the sand is fine and white, and the water is a pretty blue-green. There are full, gorgeous shells all over the beach.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

After the beach, we drove down the island and stopped for dinner at Howard’s Pub. Trying to stick to my plan of branching out, I ordered the Build Your Own Seafood Platter with fried oysters, scallops, crab cake, hush puppies and red potatoes. Probably not the healthiest thing I could have ordered but life’s all about balance, right? I was actually terrified to try the oysters and scallops since they were completely new to me but they were both great and I may have even developed a new love for scallops!

Processed with VSCO with hb1 preset

After dinner, we hopped back on the ferry to head home. Coasting down the sound during sunset was a beautiful sight for sure!

TUESDAY

On Tuesday, we visited the Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum. It was pretty interesting to learn about how many shipwrecks there have been and how “life at sea” has evolved.

After the museum, we went back and explored more shops in our area. I ended up buying a super cute mug, only to drop it and break it a few days later </3

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

That night we went to the beach again to see what high tide looked like (I had the song “The Tide is High” stuck in my head the entire time). It was super relaxing walking along the beach as the sun was setting.

WEDNESDAY

Photo Jul 26, 9 00 19 PM

On Wednesday, we spent the day in the sound. We rented some kayaks and a paddle board and just relaxed by the sound. We saw quite a bit more hermit crabs and fish in the sound than in the ocean and we even had a few sting rays swim by us.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

For dinner, we went to Pop’s Fish House. I got the Grilled Tuna Tacos with Tortilla Chips and Salsa. I LOVE tacos but wasn’t quite sure how tuna would taste on a taco… I was pleasantly surprised! After, Josh and I split a slice of Key Lime pie. Yum!

THURSDAY

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

On Thursday, we did a little bit of traveling. We stopped in Rodanthe at a little coffee place called Beads and Beans. I got the “Nutty Monkey”. We explored Rodanthe a bit, looking at some of the local shops.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

After our visit in Rodanthe, we continued on our way to Manteo. We stopped for late lunch/early dinner at the Lost Colony Brewery. I ordered the Roanoke Shrimp Melt. Normally, I despise shrimp. For as long as I can remember, I’ve always hated it. I have no idea what on earth possessed me to order something with shrimp on it but whatever it was, I’m glad it did. I LOVED this shrimp melt! It was so yummy! I still probably won’t eat shrimp by itself, but on a sandwich, it’s bomb.

After dinner, we walked around Manteo for a bit and visited some cute little shops.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Our whole reason for visiting Manteo was for The Lost Colony play. I expected the play to be good, but I didn’t expect it to be as good as it was! If you’re ever in North Carolina, I ten out of ten recommend The Lost Colony!

FRIDAY

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Friday was our last full day. We went to a nice little Native American museum in Frisco, and then explored more after. Apparently no restaurant likes to stay open between 3PM and 5PM (what weirdos eat lunch at 3?) We finally found Quarterdeck Restaurant and stopped by for lunch. I ordered the crab bisque and hush puppies (again, not the healthiest but when it’s your last day, you order hush puppies!). After, Josh and I split the world’s greatest slice of Key Lime pie. I’m drooling right now just thinking about it.

That evening we just relaxed and swam some more.

SATURDAY

Finally, Saturday was our long haul back to Ohio. We ended up just driving the entire 12 hours back home.

All in all, it was a nice, relaxing vacation! It definitely made me feel refreshed after working so much this summer. Although I’ve just barely adjusted to being back in the “real world”, I’m ready to dust off my blog and get creative with you all!

Naturally,

Ari.

Activated Charcoal Lemonade

When life gives you lemons, make charcoal lemonade.

What?! Charcoal lemonade?? Yes! I said it. Charcoal lemonade. Before you say “forget that” and close your browser, hear me out!

When you read “charcoal” you’re probably thinking of the charcoal you use in the grill. It’s similar but it’s not the same! Activated charcoal typically comes in powder form (either loose powder or in capsules) and is tasteless and odorless. Activated charcoal is known for it’s detoxifying properties. It absorbs toxins and can help eliminate them from our systems. Some things that activated charcoal has been claimed to help with are bloat, gas, skin health, digestion, cholesterol reduction, and teeth whitening. This activated charcoal lemonade tastes just like the tasty summer drink, just with some extra health benefits!

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Ingredients:

  • 5 c. of filtered water
  • 3-4 lemons (enough to make 3/4 c. – 1c. of juice)
  • 2 tsp. activated charcoal
  • natural sweetener of choice to taste (stevia, agave, honey, maple syrup, etc.)
  • optional – a few drops of lemon essential oil, herbs (mint, rosemary, thyme, etc.)

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Juice your lemons. I find that rolling your lemons on a hard surface before cutting them in half helps to make them easier to juice.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Pour your juice, water and sweetener of choice into a pitcher (I used stevia). Stir until all components are combined.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Add in your activated charcoal and stir. I purchased mine on Amazon in powder form. When using the activated charcoal, be careful. It’s very easy to get powder everywhere and it can stain clothing and counter tops (although I’ve clumsily spilled and haven’t had an issue with stains yet!).

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

This lemonade can be as sweet or as tart as you like! It is slightly textured but unless you have intense texture issues, it won’t even phase you.

Hopefully you venture out and try this charcoal lemonade!

Naturally,

Ari

 

Snickers Brownie Truffles

As much as I enjoy choosing healthier alternatives for things, sometimes you just can’t beat the “original” – and that’s okay. Life is all about balance, right? So don’t be afraid to indulge a little! If you are going to indulge, I definitely recommend this sweet treat ; ). It has chocolate, brownie (need I say more?) and Snickers all rolled up into one perfect little truffle.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Ingredients:

For the brownies:

  • 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 c. unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 c. melted shortening (butter and margarine will also work well)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs

For the truffles:

  • Prepared brownies
  • 2 Snickers bars
  • Chopped peanuts
  • Milk chocolate chips

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Put all of the dry ingredients (flour, cocoa powder, sugar, salt and baking powder) into a large bowl and thoroughly mix until it’s even throughout.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Once dry ingredients are evenly mixed, add in the wet ingredients (butter, vanilla and eggs) and combine into a batter. The batter should be thick, almost like a dough.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Coat a 8×8 or 9×9 pan with non-stick spray or butter. Plop the brownie batter into the pan and spread out. It doesn’t have to be perfect. The brownies will even out a decent amount when they’re in the oven. Bake the brownies for 20-25 minutes.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

While the brownies are baking, cut your snickers bars into small squares. I cut mine the long way once and then horizontally five or six times.

Remove the brownies from the oven and allow to cool before cutting into small squares. Your brownies should be more on the “fudgy” side, rather than cake-like. The smaller the squares, the more truffles you’ll have. The edges of the brownies don’t make for the best truffles so consider that when cutting your squares. They do make a good pre-truffle snack though 🙂

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

With each brownie square, flatten it in the palm of your hand, place a Snickers piece in the middle and fold the edges of the brownie over the Snickers chunk. Form the brownie into a ball.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Place the brownie/Snickers balls into the freezer for about 10 minutes. While these are freezing, melt the chocolate chips in the microwave in 20 second increments, stirring in between, until fully melted.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Take the brownie/Snickers balls out of the freezer. Roll the truffles in the melted chocolate until evenly coated and place on a baking sheet with wax paper. Quickly sprinkle with chopped nuts before the chocolate hardens. Once all truffles are coated in chocolate and peanuts, place back in the freezer for another 10-15 minutes, or until the chocolate shell hardens.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

I love making truffles and out of all the different kinds I’ve made so far, these have to be my favorite (and that’s saying a lot for someone who hates peanuts)! If you need a second opinion, I made these for Josh’s dad’s birthday and he seemed to enjoy them!

Let me know what your favorite truffle recipes are!

Enjoy!

Naturally,

Ari.

Aromatherapy Shower Melts

Hey friends!

I hope you’re having an incredible Monday and an even better 4th of July! Today’s post is on these awesome aromatherapy shower melts using essential oils.

Photo Jul 04, 9 16 49 PM edit.jpg

For me, when I meet people who are passionate about the same things that I’m passionate about, I get excited. It fuels my fire and gets my creative juices flowing! This past week, I made a new friend who is super into essential oils, and I found out that a few of my other friends are interested in them too. We got to talking about how awesome essential oils are and I was inspired to craft up a few things. One of those things is these shower melts! Once you make up a batch, you place one on the floor (or in the corner) of your shower and the steam melts the shower bombs, releasing some amazing scents, leaving you feeling relaxed and refreshed!

This recipe makes about 8 shower melts (depending on the size of your mold). I made 3 different batches of aromatherapy shower melts: lavender, grapefruit, and lemon & spearmint.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Ingredients:

  • 2/3 c. cornstarch
  • a bowl of water
  • 5-10 drops of essential oil
  • 5-10 drops of food coloring (optional)

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Put 2/3 cups of cornstarch to a bowl. Add 5-10 drops of essential oils to your cornstarch and mix. For my aromatherapy shower melts, I used 10 drops of lavender for one batch, 10 drops of grapefruit for another, and 5 drops of lemon and 5 drops of spearmint for the last. Once you’ve mixed your essential oil and cornstarch mix, add 5-10 drops of food coloring (if you desire) and mix again. You won’t notice a change in color until the next step.

Processed with VSCO with hb1 preset

Slowly begin to add water to the corn starch mixtures, mixing as you add more. I started with 2-3 tablespoons and continued to add water in smaller increments until I got a smooth but thick consistency. It should seem like an almost solid/thick liquid, if that makes sense. You’ll see what I’m talking about as you begin to get a smoother consistency!

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Once your shower melt mixture is smooth, begin to scoop your mixture into a mold. I used a silicone tray as my mold, but I’m sure an ice cube tray would work well too. It will definitely take some getting used to when beginning to scoop/pour the mixture into the mold. Once in the molds, place your shower melts in the freezer for about an hour.

Processed with VSCO with hb1 preset

The shower melts should come out of the mold with hardly any effort. Store in an air tight container in the freezer until ready to use.

Feel free to get creative with the essential oil blends you use for your shower melts – that’s the most exciting part! Make up a batch or two of these and let me know what blends you decide to use for your aromatherapy shower melts!

Naturally,

Ari.

 

 

A Guide to Making Your Own Snack Bites


Hi friends!

Are always on-the go, really into your health, or do you have a major sweet tooth? Or if you’re anything like me, all of the above? If so, I get it! It can be so challenging to juggle a jam-packed schedule AND make healthy decisions at the same time. That’s one of my biggest problems. Because of how much time I spend at school at work, I end up picking up convenient snacks over healthy snacks. Another one of my major problems is that I struggle to curb my sweet tooth while eating a healthy, balanced diet. Curse you, ice cream, for being so creamy and delicious…

But have no fear – energy bites are the “cure” to BOTH of these problems. After you’ve prepped a batch for the week, which takes hardly any time at all, they’re quick and easy for us on-the-go gals and they’re a healthier (but still tasty!) alternative to a lot of store bought, pre-packaged sweets. Not only are they quick and healthy, but they’re customizable and versatile. YOU are in control of what flavors you make, how sweet they are, if they’re vegan or gluten free and so much more!

I’ve seen hundreds of variations of these little spheres of heaven, and I bet you have too! So rather than giving you a recipe, I’m going to also share with you the basics of how to make up your own energy bites without a recipe.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

There are four parts to making these yummy little treats – a base, the “glue”, sweetener and your flavors/toppings. As I said before, these are completely customizable to you. You can have as few or as many ingredients in your masterpiece as you wish. If you only want a base, somethin’ sticky and a topping, that’s totally fine! If you want 5 different toppings, that’s also perfect too! The more you make these, the more you’ll get used to the proportions of ingredients.

The base is going to be the main ingredient. It’s going to give your energy bites a denser, heartier texture. In most cases, you’ll have more of your base than any other component. Some common bases in snack bites are oats, oat flour, oat bran, ground nuts (usually almonds or cashews), seeds, almond or flax meal and coconut.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

The “glue” is what helps hold all of the other ingredients together. Typically, you’ll use the same amount of “glue” as you do for the base, or less! It depends on how many other ingredients you have in your energy bites! Sometimes, these sticky substances can serve as both the “glue” and the sweetener! You can use different nut or seed butters, honey, pumpkin puree, coconut oil, mashed banana or even mashed sweet potato as the glue for your energy bites!

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Finally, my favorite part – the flavors and toppings! This is where you can really make your energy bites speak to your taste buds. You can add no flavors or toppings, or tons. Just remember that you may have to adjust how much base and “glue” you use so that everything stays together. The possibilities are endless here. For flavors and toppings, you can use pumpkin seeds or other seeds, pumpkin puree, chocolate chips, coconut, raisins and other smaller dried fruit, cocoa powder, slivered almonds and other chopped nuts, and spices like cinnamon.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Now that you have all of the components of how to make your own energy bites, get out there and try making some of your own and get creative with it!

Here’s one of my favorites:

Chocolate Chip Flax Seed Bites

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ c. oats
  • 1 c. nut butter
  • ¼ c. honey
  • ⅓ c. coconut flakes
  • ⅓ c. dark chocolate chips
  • ¼ c. pumpkin seeds (raw or toasted)
  • ¼ c. ground flax seed

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Measure out oats, nut butter, honey, coconut flakes, chocolate chips, pumpkin seeds and flax seed in a bowl.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

For my nut butter, I chose to use OMG! Flax Butter. It’s full of omega-3’s and is SUPER creamy. You don’t feel any grittiness or the texture of seeds, which I really like. Don’t expect it to taste like peanut butter or almond butter – it has it’s own unique but delicious flavor. I did get this flax butter for free but all opinions are still honest and my own.  If you’re interested, you can check it out here!

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Thoroughly combine all ingredients until mixture is even throughout.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Take small sections of the mix and roll into small balls. It may be a little tough with sticky hands so I pressed mine into balls more than I actually rolled them. Place on a sheet of wax paper and freeze for about 30 minutes.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

See, you guys! It’s fairly quick and simple and they’re super yummy. They’re almost like a ball form of a granola bar. I don’t know about you, but I like knowing what ingredients went into my food so I think this is much better than pre-packaged, store bought granola bars!

Let me know what kind of snack bites you guys come up with!

Naturally,

Ari.