This protein ball recipe makes paleo and vegan friendly dark chocolate energy bites with pistachios. They’re a crunchy, lightly sweet, delicious NO BAKE snack! These little chocolate balls are naturally sweetened and full of healthy fats. With a low carb and keto option, so that everyone can enjoy these tasty treats!
Just letting you know this chocolate pistachio balls/bite recipe was originally published in 2015. I retested, rephotographed, updated content and URL. I hope you enjoy. Thank you for following Cotter Crunch Y’all!.
I have a couple of quick notes regarding the ingredients you’ll need to make this recipe. Because you can make the protein ball recipe keto friendly, I want to give you plenty of ingredient options.
Keto Protein Ball Recipe Notes
If you can find keto-friendly maple syrup that isn’t full of unhealthy chemicals, by all means, use it! Honestly, it’s not an easy ingredient to find. So instead, I suggest that you use xylitol syrup. Just keep in mind that the texture of the protein balls will be a little different than if you use pure maple syrup or honey.
- Cocoa powder
We’re using unsweetened dark cocoa powder to make this recipe, which makes them low carb, but not necessarily keto. To be sure the energy bites are keto-friendly, you can use shredded, unsweetened coconut instead.
- Protein powder
Not all brands of protein powder are keto compliant. So, you will need to read the label to be sure that the brand you use is approved for your diet.
Other chocolate protein ball ingredients to have on hand!
- Pistachios (unshelled)
- Maple Syrup or sweetener of choice
- Dark Chocolate
- No Stir Nut or Seed Butter. Tahini also works great!
I make a lot of protein balls, energy bites… whatever you want to call them. Sometimes I use almonds, like in The Ultimate No Bake Breakfast Cookie Bites. But, the combination of chocolate and pistachios is, in my opinion, hard to beat. It is my favorite nut, which happens to be in my favorite color. Pistachio green!
Because these are no bake energy bites, there isn’t much prep necessary. Just a couple of steps and you are good to go!
Pulse the nuts and chocolate in a food processor or high speed blender. Transfer to a large bowl.
Add in the rest of your ingredients and shape into a large ball!
Once you have that large ball of batter, section off a tablespoon or more and roll into a smaller golf size ball. Then coat in extra crush pistachio!
Look how pretty! Once you’re done staring at the pretty protein balls (LOL), transfer the freezer to chill.
Should protein balls be kept in the freezer?
You don’t have to store them in the freezer, but for the best flavor and “shelf life”, definitely keep them cold. Although, since part of the process of making the protein ball recipe involves freezing them, it makes sense to store the protein balls there.
Do I have to use protein powder to make the energy bites?
I call this a protein ball recipe, but not necessarily because of protein powder. Pistachios on their own are a great source of protein. If you prefer not to use protein powder, you can make the bites with coconut flour or flour instead.
This protein ball recipe makes crunchy, lightly sweet, delicious HEALTHY BITE! In fact, the texture reminds me of a Krinkle bar. They’re crunchy on the outside, creamy on the inside. Can you handle that?
This combo is so good I shared them with only a few of my favorite people, then ate the rest within a few days. They are ALL gone, which means I need to make more stat! I’m okay with that. It seems to be a good problem, ya know?
Because these protein bites are UBER healthy! Packed with all the good fats you need, plus antioxidants.Print
This protein ball recipe makes paleo and vegan friendly dark chocolate energy bites with pistachios. They’re a crunchy, lightly sweet, delicious NO BAKE snack!
- 1 cup pistachios, shell removed
- 1/3 cup dark chocolate (finely chopped or finely ground in a food processor) – see notes for keto
- 1 1/2 tbsp (20-25 grams) coconut flour, protein powder, or oat flour
- 1/4 cup (heaping) unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/3 cup almond butter or tahini (smooth, no stir variety)
- 1/4 to 1/3 cup maple syrup or honey (start with 1/4 c and adjust as needed) – see notes for keto
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- Optional – extra ground pistachio or cocoa powder to coat bites
- Blend pistachios in a food processor or chop finely with a chef’s knife. Transfer into a large bowl and whisk in all the remaining dry ingredients. Add the syrup and vanilla extract and and any other add ins.
- Mix well (I use my hands) then roll into bite size balls.
- If the batter is too dry add more almond butter and/or syrup. If it’s too wet, add more protein powder, oat flour, or coconut flour.
- Freeze balls on a cookie sheet and once frozen, coat bites in extra cocoa or ground pistachios, if desired.
- Makes about 15-17 bites. Freeze or keep in refrigerator to maintain freshness.
- shredded unsweetened coconut maybe be used in place of dark chocolate for keto option.
- Xylitol syrup to replace maple syrup. NOTE: the texture and consistency will vary.
- Category: snacks
- Method: no bake
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: protein ball recipe, energy bites, keto, no bake, vegan, paleo
What is your favorite chocolate nut combo? Are you a protein ball fan?