Sweet & Salty Popcorn Balls

Sweet & Salty Popcorn Balls via Nutritionist in the Kitch

It’s here. It’s here! It’s heeeeeeeeeeeerrrreeee (cue Oprah voice)!

My cookbook, Energy Balls, is officially available for pre-sale! You can pre-order the book if you are in Canada here: Indigo.ca and Amazon.ca, and if you are in the US here: Chronicle BooksIndiebound, Amazon and Barnes & Noble. It will also be available internationally, I’m just not sure when yet.

It’s been a pretty amazing journey writing this cookbook and definitely a huge learning experience. To be honest, during the making of this cookbook there were many moments of trepidation, wanting to pull my hair out, feeling like a total imposter, and hoping, really hoping that I wouldn’t create something that disappoints you all. It’s almost like I was being held accountable to a higher level for my recipe creation, photography, writing, and all that I do for the blog, because this work wouldn’t just be on my little slice of the internet, but in a book, a real life book. Eish! 

Sweet & Salty Popcorn Balls via Nutritionist in the Kitch

At the same time, during this book writing process, I truly feel like I learned to be kinder, more patient, and respectful of myself as a creative. I was able to really work through my perfectionist tendencies and understand that perfect is a ridiculous goal that would drive me bonkers if I let it. In the end, when I finally got to hold my book in my hands, and flip through the pages, taking all of the hard work in, I realized that I was pretty happy with the result, and I sure hope you are too.

I made this book for you, my readers, who love simple, fun, healthy food, and want to bring a little more NITK into your own kitch. In the back of the book is my dedication and I made sure to include you.

“To all my Nutritionist in the Kitch readers who inspire and drive me to continue creating and thinking outside of the box.”

I truly mean it. As tough as this gig is sometimes, I love it so much and it’s you who comment, encourage me, are brave enough to try out my recipes, and trust my recommendations who motivate me to keep growing NITK.

So thank you, again.

Sweet & Salty Popcorn Balls via Nutritionist in the Kitch

I was excited to know that I could share a couple recipes from the cookbook on my blog to give you a little taste of what’s inside and I went with this recipe for Sweet & Salty Popcorn Balls. These bad boys are so yummy and encompass a stellar combination of sweet and salty. Not to mention I’m a total popcorn fiend. 

These easy-to-make balls are loaded with fibre and also contain magnesium and protein combining the much-loved taste of freshly popped corn with sweet dates, rice syrup, rich and creamy sunflower seed butter, flaxseed, and sea salt.

Also, they are nut-free which is great for the kiddies who need nut-free options in their lunch box. Energy balls often contain nuts so it was a goal of mine to create a few for the “Lunch Box” chapter of the book that would be suitable for not only an adult lunch but an elementary school lunch too.

Sweet & Salty Popcorn Balls via Nutritionist in the Kitch

When it comes to healthy snacking, these balls have you covered, as do ALL of the energy balls in my cookbook!

I do hope you will check it out, order your own copy or one for a friend, and enjoy the recipes as much as my hubby and I enjoyed eating our weight in energy balls during the creation process!

Energy Balls Cookbook by Christal Sczebel, Nutritionist in the Kitch

Pre-order Energy Balls:

Canada: Indigo.ca and Amazon.ca

US: Chronicle BooksIndiebound, Amazon and Barnes & Noble

Sweet & Salty Popcorn Balls
This recipe has been reprinted with permission from Energy Balls, Chronicle Books (2017). Please note, it may not be re-produced or copied from this website without prior permission.
Serves: 10 balls
  • 1 cup pitted dates
  • ¼ cup sunflower seed butter (see notes)
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons brown rice syrup
  • 2 tablespoons ground flaxseed
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened carton coconut milk
  • 4 cups + 2 cups popcorn (see notes)
  1. Add the dates, sunflower seed butter, sea salt, vanilla extract, brown rice syrup, and flaxseed to a food processor and process on low for 30 seconds. Scrape the sides with a spatula, then process again on high for 30 seconds until crumbly.
  2. Add in 4 cups of popcorn and process on low. Slowly pour the coconut milk in the opening while the mixture is processing and process for 15-30 more seconds until the ingredients begin to clump into a sticky batter.
  3. Using a spatula, remove the batter and transfer to a bowl.
  4. Give the food processor a quick rinse and dry, and add in the remaining 2 cups of popcorn and process on high for 10-30 seconds until the popcorn is broken up into smaller bits.
  5. Spread the crumbled popcorn over a large plate.
  6. Using clean, slightly wet hands, take just smaller than golf-ball sized portions of the batter and roll into a ball shape, then roll the ball in the crumbled popcorn to coat.
  7. Roll and lightly squeeze the ball to maintain a ball shape and press the popcorn bits so they stick well.
  8. Place the finished ball on another plate.
  9. Repeat the process to make 10 balls total then place the balls in the freezer for 30 minutes to set.
Store the balls in the fridge for best consistency.

*When choosing a sunflower seed butter, look for one that is naturally sweetened with cane sugar or you may choose an unsweetened sunflower seed butter (this will make the balls slightly less sweet).

** You may use freshly popped popcorn that has been cooled to room temperature, or a simple natural pre-popped bagged popcorn containing only vegetable oil and sea salt. Using a bagged popcorn will add a little more flavour to these balls.
Nutritional Information
Serving size: 1 ball Calories: 134 kcal Fat: 4g Carbohydrates: 22g Fiber: 3g Protein: 2g

I would love, love, love to hear what you think of the book when you get it and please #EnergyBalls if you make any of the recipes and share your photos over social media!


Nutritionist in the Kitch

Author: Christal Sczebel

Christal is the creator of Nutrition in the Kitch. She's a Certified Nutritional Consultant, twice published author, gluten and dairy free recipe developer, food photographer, speaker, wife, and mama. Christal loves good food, all things wellness, and loves to travel. Her wellness philosophy is centred around balance and sustainable health, life's way too short for boring diets and restriction!

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