As a working mom I have chosen to take both of my children to daycare, and though breakfast is offered to them, I choose to feed them before they get there. Two reasons why I choose to feed them at home. 1. To get breakfast the kids have to be there by 7:00am. Well, unfortunately that time frame doesn’t work for me. I would prefer they sleep till 6:30/6:45am. 2. The food that they offer isn’t exactly the best for them. Usually it is toast and jam, cereal, or some sort of pastry-like bake. All very tasty options, but not my first choice. So what do I feed my kids? My staple breakfast is an orange (cuties work great), string cheese and energy bites. It use to be a granola bar (the healthier options – Larabar, Kind Bars, etc), and hey I think those are still amazing options, but they weren’t the most budget conscious. So I thought I would share my Energy Bite (or Balls as my son would say) recipe. It saves you a little money and is still a healthy option to give your kids.
A few suggestions before I give you the recipe.
Try to stick to semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips.
Make sure your peanut butter doesn’t have added sugar. Peanut butter should be made of peanuts solely. If you see a bunch of added oils, salt, and sugar, grind your own.
Look for Raw Honey. Raw honey is unpasteurized, unprocessed, not heated, so it leaves all the vitamins and enzymes in-tact. Wait to feed your child honey until they are over the age of 1.
Toast your coconut in the microwave. In 1 minute increments toast your coconut. Make sure to stir in between each minute.
Ground flax, shredded (should look like a coarse powder) coconut, and old fashioned oats work the best. Also if you can, grind up your chocolate chips. If you have to leave them whole totally fine, and then I suggest getting the smaller chips. If you can grind them up though it makes rolling them and eating them easier.
1 cup old fashioned oats (oatmeal) ($2-$3)
½ cup ground flax seed ($5-$7)
⅔ cup toasted coconut ($3)
½ cup semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips ($2-$5)
1 Tbsp Chia seeds ($7 – this bag will last forever)
½ cup organic peanut butter ($5)
⅓ cup raw honey (this one can really range depending on what you like, but I would go about $7)
1 tsp vanilla extract (small bottle $5)
Toast coconut, and then mix together all dry ingredients. Next, add in the wet ingredients and mix everything together (using your hands will be the easiest method). Roll into balls (makes between 16-20 balls), and put into fridge for 30 minutes.
I tend to leave mine in the fridge so they are easier to eat.
Breakfast can really be a chore in the morning, so I hope I was able to provide you a few more minutes in the morning. I also hope you will see the budget benefit to this energy bite option. On average a healthy “bar” is somewhere between the range of $1-$3 per bar. Right now Larabars are on sale at our local grocery store for $.99 which is the lowest I have ever seen. With the ingredients above you can buy in bulk and my children tend to eat 1 energy ball each day. That would mean 10 bars (1 per kid) at the lowest price would be $10.00 per week. If I totalled everything above at the highest price I would get $42. At minimum you will make 3 batches with what you have above (most of you will have plenty left to make more but you will find the chocolate you will need to replenish). If you make the minimum of 16 balls per batch that would mean each ball is $.875 so per week that would be $8.75.
Budget conscious, delicious and let your kids help you make them. They will love that!