I created this recipe when I was pregnant with my son and my
love need for ginger hit an all-time high. I was nauseous until the day he arrived and creating these gave me a break from the ginger chews and ginger tea. Believe it or not, exercise also helped take my mind off of the nausea, so with my need for small bites of food all day, these delicious preworkout gingerbread energy balls were born. From there I’ve had everyone from professional and endurance athletes to active adults and kids enjoy them throughout the holiday season and beyond! They are also perfect to get your kids in the kitchen to help with a holiday recipe other than cookies.
Fueling with Preworkout Gingerbread Energy Balls
The balanced moisture and bold flavor in my gingerbread muffins are great for breakfast or if you have 60-minutes before a workout, but these preworkout gingerbread energy balls are a bit better on the go. You can store them in your car in cooler weather, pack them to take to work or in your kid’s school bento lunchbox. Plus, they freeze and thaw well, so a double batch is a must to reduce prep time next week once you’ve run out.
If you’re the type to exercise at the crack of dawn these are perfect as you’re running out the door, too. They also fit the bill during endurance events. I had an ultra-endurance client eat them (among other things) during a trail race last year and while it was a great energy boost that satisfied hunger on the course, the spices were also great for his GI tract, since he’s one of the many endurance athletes who experience some exercise induced GI distress.
Lately, I’m grabbing 2 before my 8 AM lifts to ensure I have the energy I need without feeling overly full during the workout or overly hungry by the time I am back for a full breakfast!
An Easy 15-Minute Snack
What most of you will love about this recipe, is it really tastes like a treat, but is filled with nourishing ingredients and can be made in minutes. After dumping ingredients into a food processor and pulsing for under a minute, they’re ready to be rolled into balls or pressed into bars.
I just scoop a bit more than a tablespoon of the mixture right out of the food processor at a time and put them directly into a storage container where they’ll hang out in the fridge til we pack them with our work lunches or snack on them pre-workout. You can also use a small cookie scoop for a more uniform size and to save a little time.
Gingerbread Energy Ball Variations
These gingerbread energy balls are vegan and gluten-free so that everyone can enjoy them! Tree nut allergies in your household? If that is the case, you can replace the almond flour with more oat bran and add a tbsp of sunflower seed butter.
No oat bran? Quick cook oats will work, too!
Looking for more festive snack ideas? Check out these holiday recipes that work to fuel your body and mind before or after a workout!
Gingerbread Energy Balls
These gingerbread energy balls give you the taste and nutrient density your body craves along with the energy it needs to power through the holidays!
- ½ Cup oat bran
- ½ Cup almond meal
- 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
- 1 ½ tsp ground ginger
- ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/8⅛ heaping tsp ground clove
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1 ⅓ cups pitted medjool dates packed
- 1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
Add all ingredients except dates and vanilla to a food processor and pulse until you have a fine flour.
Add dates and vanilla and pulse until the texture is that of wet sand.
Scoop roughly one tablespoon at a time and roll into a ball in your hands.
Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 10 days.