Crunchy Paleo caveman's balls are a delicious dairy-free chocolate sweet treat, but only 1g net carbs each.
They're quick to make and there are plenty of other flavor ideas too.
So stop buying those bliss balls packed with dried fruit (dried sugar) and make these bad boys instead!
Are energy balls keto?
No, most energy balls, protein balls and bliss balls are not keto. They are made with dried fruit and sometimes sugar such as honest or coconut sugar.
Most Paleo balls, energy balls or energy bites are traditionally made with Medjool dates or other dried fruit in the false belief that makes it sugar-free. Dried fruit is incredibly high in sugar. So next time you read dried fruit, just think of dried sugar.
All that sugar will kick you out of ketosis and ruin your macros for the day. Not sure what your macros are and how to count macros? You can use the macro calculator to get started with a low-carb diet or keto diet.
These keto energy balls only need a few simple ingredients. They are dairy-free and also vegan.
They are little balls of happiness made with healthy fats, nuts, coconut and chia nut butters and chia seeds.
So if you are at the beginning of your keto diet and still craving sugar, these are perfect to have on hand. Keep some in the freezer for when you need a little energy and chocolate.
- Nut butter - I like to use almond butter or peanut butter, but you can equally substitute this for seed butter such as tahini.
- Coconut oil - this makes the energy bites melt in the mouth. Coconut oil melts at warm room temperatures and as soon as you bite into them.
- Shredded/desiccated coconut - make sure you read the nutrition label to ensure your coconut is sugar-free.
- Cocoa - make sure you buy the baking cocoa not the drinking cocoa which has added sugar.
- Chia seeds - these tiny little seeds swell and absorb liquid to help to hold the bliss balls together. They have protein and are high in fibre. Chia seeds can also be used for drinks, sugar free berry jam and make-ahead chia breakfasts (or breakfast meal prep).
- Sweetener - I like to use the granulated sweetener to give the balls a little extra crunch, but you can easily substitute for powdered sugar-free sweetener too.
- Coconut flour - to help hold everything together.
- Cinnamon - for flavor. See all the other flavor options below.
I try to make all of my recipes as adaptable as possible. With these Caveman's Balls you can change the nut butter to whichever nut butter you like the most - almond, tahini, etc, add flavours such as orange zest, mint, almond essence and roll in coconut, crushed pistachios, or cocoa.
In this version, I added ground cinnamon to the balls. But you could easily substitute it for these flavors instead.
- Ginger - if you like it spicy
- Vanilla - for a sweet chocolate vanilla flavor
- Chili - just a pinch to make chocolate chilli balls
- Cardamom - for an exotic punch of flavor
- Coffee - to make mocha energy balls
- Crushed walnuts, chopped almonds or crushed macadamia nuts
You need to store these keto energy balls in an airtight container in the fridge or a very cool part of your kitchen.
The coconut oil used in this recipe is very temperature dependant. If it is a cooler month, you can probably leave these out of the fridge, if it is warm inside, then you'll need to keep them in the fridge to remain firm, set and solidify into energy balls.
More balls and truffles
Here are a selection of other sweet treats that are low carb, no added sugar and grain free.
Please rate this recipe.
Caveman's Balls (keto energy balls recipe)
- 75 g (½ cup) nut butter or seed butter
- 25 g (2 tablespoon) coconut oil
- 40 g (⅓ cup) desiccated/shredded coconut unsweetened
- 1 tablespoon cocoa powder (unsweetened) unsweetened
- 35 g (¼ cup) chia seeds
- 2 tablespoon (2 tablespoon) granulated sweetener of choice or more, to your taste
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon (1 teaspoon) coconut flour
- Blend all the ingredients together in the food processor or use a stick blender with the blade attachment.
- Roll into balls and place on a plate.
- Refrigerate then roll in coconut, nuts or cocoa powder.
YOUR HOLIDAY PANTRY & GIFT GUIDES
Approximate nutrition information is provided for convenience and as a courtesy only. For the most accurate nutritional data, use the actual ingredients and brands you used in your preferred nutrition calculator.
Thank you for the recipe. After reading the reviews I decided to make some changes and the end results was delicious. Instead of shredded coconut I used 1/3 cup raw almonds which I first coarsely crushed in the mixer before adding all other ingredients. I also omitted the coconut flour. I used Monk Fruit sweetener which has 0 sugar and is as sweet as sugar. I turned it into a powder in my coffee grinder before adding it to the mixture. 1 tsp pure vanilla extract also adds a nice flavour. I feel the crushed almonds made everything stick together better and it was very easy to form into balls right away without the need to refrigerate. Sorry for all these changes but I feel it was well worth it!
Hey Naomi, I love it when readers adapt my recipes. I try to make them as simple as possible with easy-to-find grocery store ingredients. Your version sounds amazing.
These are delicious! Thank you for posting tge recipe.
How can I keep them shaped? I want to bring them on my hike, however, they melt when hot. Is there any way for them to stay together?
These really need to be refrigerated because of the coconut oil. You can, however, put them in a small ziplock back and they can be consumed like a squeezey.
Awesome tasting recipe! I just put the mix into a silicon mold tray.
Very disappointed in this recipe. I just had to throw the whole batch out. There was no way this mix was going to roll into balls. Kept adding things to try and make a rollable mixture without success. Very expensive lesson!
Never ever throw anything away, it can always be used. Remember coconut oil has a very low melting point so if the mixture starts to go soft and difficult to roll into balls, just pop the mix into the fridge for a minute or two to enable it to harden a little and makes it easier to roll into balls. 🙂
Like others I have been frustrated with the softness of these balls & finally came back to check if I was doing something wrong with the recipe. Next time I will put the mixture in the fridge! thank you thank you. I love these balls & will now be able to have them in proper ball shapes 🙂
YAY!!! These are so good but if the coconut oil is warned too much or it is the summer months, the mixture can be tricky to roll - popping it in the fridge even for a few minutes does the trick!
This is the first time in all the recipes I have made of yours that it didn’t work for me! Can you help me figure out what I did wrong? I mixed everything in my food processor, but it came out so liquidity I couldn’t roll it. Now they look like big brown mounds in my fridge lol they will be little caveman paddies but I’d like to get these to be in a ball form next time. It has been the best tasting energy bite I’ve had! Help please!!
It sounds like the coconut oil has melted at room temperature. Coconut oil has a very low melting point, so pop the melted mix back into the fridge to allow it to solidify again, but before it sets rock solid, bring it out, roll the balls and dip in coconut as shown, voila!
I can’t believe you’d refrigerate them BEFORE rolling them in coconut, how would it stick? Nit nearly as well I’d imagine.
i dont have a scale to figure out grams. even though you usually weigh things can you approximate the recipe in cups wherever grams are mentioned? that would help me out so much
Beneath each recipe there are two large red buttons. You can swap between metric and cups. Yay 🙂
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I have made a double batch, kids love it. Initially, The muxtire was not thick enough to make the balls, but after two hours in the fridge it was easy.
My worry is fytic acid, in nut butter, chia, cocoa.???
Could I just substitute butter for the nut butter? Nut butters can be hard to find (peanut butter being the exception, but it's the one nut not allowed on slow carb because of its high carb content) not to mention pricey!
You could, although it may be a little bit bland as there won't be the flavour from the nuts. How about tahini? It's much cheaper and lower in carbs.
We like these quite a lot! I've made them several times and have changed them up a bit. I up the chocolate flavor by replacing 25g of the nut butter with cocoa butter and add some cocoa nibs. Once when I was making these at a friend's house and couldn't find her cinnamon I subbed Chinese 5 spice powder and that has become our favorite now. Don't know what the nutrition profile is with the changes but I know they're still fat bombs!
I love these adaptations of my recipe, and as for Chinese five spice, who would have guessed that combination would work? The best ideas come from emergencies. Thanks for leaving your tips 🙂
How many servings are 93 calories worth ?
Serving size is one ball. Recipe makes 12.
I just tried making these and followed the instructions exactly, but for some reason, the batter didnt have the consistency of being thick enough to roll into balls (it was almost too liquidy). I just made it into a brittle by spreading it on parchment paper in a square plate... what did I do wrong?
May I also note that I used Tahini as my nut butter... maybe that has something to do with the consistency?
It sounds like your coconut oil was too warm. Next time, just pop it back in the fridge to set and harden a little, it will easily roll into balls then. Well done for making them into an alternative shape. I hate waste.
Thank you! I didnt really enjoy the flavor... it almost tasted salty. Is that from the tahini or coconut? Is there a replacement for all the coconut you use in the recipe? Sorry, brand new to low carb living and trying to find recipes that can become staples.
I'm not sure why it would be salty, I imagine it was from the tahini. Mine is unsalted. Take a look at your label to check. There isn't an alternative for the coconut in this recipe, you might like my Mocha ice bombs or my mint truffles, they might be easier for you. If you are new here, you will enjoy making all these new low-carb recipes and finding staples. My first one was spaghetti bolognese and all my slow cooker recipes. Then I slowly branched out making more and more. You slowly get into a "new normal" and a new routine.
Is there a substitution for the chia seeds. They give me the chills, lol!
Yes, you could use some more crushed seeds and some psyllium husks which would swell with the liquids to make them set. I'm not sure of quantities as I would have to develop a whole new recipe so add a little at a time until the consistency is correct.
Unfortunately my food processor has broken halfway through the mixing process (I added almonds instead of almond butter with the hope that it would all eventually mix in well).
All the ingredients are mixed, just not well enough to remain solid and together.
Any suggestions on what I can add to make it more of a slice?
What a shame. You could add some melted butter and pop the whole mixture in a tray and freeze to make frozen chocolate bark?
If adding a protein powder.. for example pea protein, would this really change the consistency?
I think it might make them more solid, it would be quite nice however.
Are these "freeezable"?
Yes, then they could be frozen fat bombs - great idea. You could defrost one at a time.
Is there any replacement for stevia.? I dont tolerate it at all. Or can it just be left out without upsetting the texture?
Have you tried erythritol? Swerve? They make for a lovely sweet flavour without the aftertaste.
Mine was the same.I put it in the fridge for a while to thicken up
I've been sugarfree for a couple of years now and don't need any sweetener in these balls
How do you make nut butter ,? yet something else I cannot find in the supermarkets here . Thanks
Nut butter just refers to any butter made with nuts such as peanut butter, cashew butter, almond butter, etc. You will find them near the regular peanut butter, or in the health food aisle. I was unaware of all these varieties before I started out.
I have s nephew coming over that's allergic to nuts. Can I sub the nut butter for something else?
Sure. You could use tahini which is sesame seed butter if he can tolerate that or you could just add some more butter.
Mine were super soft too so I decided to spread the mixture out like a slice and have sprinkled crushed pistachios on top before popping it in the fridge. Mmmmmmm!
Just made mine and they are super
Delicious. So Super delicious I am worried about eating the whole plate! Quick question in regard to Banting lCHF would these be too bad to consume daily or is it more a naughty type of treat? Opinions and thoughts appreciated 🙂
I'm super glad you like these, they make me giggle each time I share them. Personally, I try to steer way from sweet treats as often as I can, purely because part of the ethos of going low carb, sugar free, Banting and LCHF is to give up our sweet tooth. So enjoy them by all means, but do not rely on them. With everything, variety and balance is the key. Libby 🙂
I am new here on your bog and very anxious to try your recipes
One question, do you have a recipe for creamy suga r free chocolate ?
No but you could make my chocolate fat bombs which are pretty close.
Love the name! And anything with shredded coconut!
Can you tell me how much nut butter in cups ?
I would estimate it would be approximately 1/3 cup. I use weight as it is more accurate and nut butter especially is difficult to measure by volume.
As a new lchf follower, these were my first sweet treat I have made and omg! So very easy and uncomplicated :). I don't own any small appliances but a wooden spoon and determination had these bad boys made up in less than 3 minutes (including getting everything from the cupboard)!! Delicious is an absolute understatement! My 9 year old daughter even preferred these to original recipe rumballs!! I don't think I left it in the fridge for long enough before I made them into balls but I just used two tea spoons and quinelled them instead 😀
Laurie you are an absolute star! How fabulous to know you whipped them up so quickly and they were devoured even quicker. Eating them before they set is merely a sign of your fabulous cooking skills. Send my regards to your 9 yr old who has impeccable taste 😉
Sorry, I don't want to be a pain, but mine ended up being too soft to roll in balls. I'm not sure what I did wrong.
Did you pop them the fridge? That makes them easy to roll.
better late than never - I use softened butter instead of coconut oil and they stick together!
is desiccated the same as shredded?
Yes, sorry I must remember to use both terms.
Absolutely delicious & a real Christmas treat - thank you Libby! I tried mine with tahini & just a little stevia (sweet tooth in check ?). Merry Christmas & thank you so very much for helping me turn 2015 into such a healthy and energised year through your FABULOUS website.
Gemma you are a sweetie 😉 I'm so glad you like them and the name didn't put you off. I love your recipe 'tweeks'. Merry Christmas and I am so glad you are enjoying my recipes and they are helping you remain low carb. Libby.
Are the Carbs 'net' or is some of that Fibre? So net carbs would be... 1g?
They are total carbs so deduct the fibre if you are counting net carbs.
How yummy! (And funny!) But I love the fact that they are low in carbs, I've been searching for an alternative to dried fruits that are terribly high in carbs. Now I found it, thanks to you! 🙂
Hi Elviira, I'm glad you like the name. I've had readers spit out their tea and drop their keyboards with laughter. And yes, finally a recipe that doesn't have dried fruit that is incredibly high in carbs. Yay 🙂