December 15, 2011

in Healthy "MAKEOVERS", Low Carb, Recipes

Every Christmas, my Mom used to make Snowballs as part of her Christmas baking.  They were chocolatey, minty, with a bit of crunch from nuts and graham crackers.  On and the best finishing touch…coconut! A party in your mouth!  I wanted to come up with a healthier version that was sugar-free with added protein.  Surprisingly, my version turned out tasting very similar to the original.  I also posted my Mom’s version to those that may want it as well.


Original Recipe (from my Mom)

Makes approx 3.5 dozen (can half recipe if you want less)

1/2 cup melted margarine or butter
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup brown sugar
1 egg
15 single graham crackers
3/4 cup chopped nuts (my Mom always used walnuts)
1 package unsweetened medium coconut (400 gram bag)
1 cup icing sugar
1 tsp peppermint flavoring

Mix first 4 ingredients in saucepan. and boil, stirring consistently so it won’t burn. Break graham crackers in small pieces (not crumbs).  Use your hands, not a rolling pin. Add nuts to graham crackers.  Pour hot mixture over and mix.  Cool approx 1/2 hour and roll into balls.  Add peppermint flavoring to icing sugar and enough milk to make it runny.  Roll balls in liquid icing sugar mixture, then into coconut.  Set on wax paper.

Nutrition (per ball if it made 42 balls)  Calories: 158   Fat: 10g   Carbs: 18.5 g   Fiber: 2 g   Sugars: 14.3 g   Sodium: 56 mg   Protein: 1.4 g

My Healthier Low Carb Version

Makes 18 balls

1/2 cup natural peanut butter, room temperature
1/2 cup chocolate protein powder (I used Whey Gourmet)
30 drops liquid stevia
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup walnuts, chopped
1 tsp peppermint extract

3-4 Tbsp unsweetened almond milk
1 scoop vanilla whey protein
additional almond milk
1/2 cup unsweetened medium coconut, lightly toasted (toasting is optional, but I like it)

Mix together peanut butter, protein powder, almond milk, stevia & cocoa powder. Add in peppermint extract and chopped walnuts. Roll into balls and place on plate lined with parchment or wax paper. Freeze for 15-20 minutes until firm.  Meanwhile, mix 1 scoop protein with a bit of almond milk to make it slightly runny.  Toast coconut in dry pan on stove (if desired). Remove balls from freezer.  Roll in protein powder syrup, then roll in coconut. Place in freezer to set.  Store in fridge or freezer. Bring out of freezer 15-20 minutes before serving.

Nutrition (per ball)   Calories: 97   Fat: 7.6 g   Carbs: 2.9 g   Fiber: 1.4 g   Sugars: 0.4 g   Sodium: 26 mg   Protein: 5.5 g

Modified (using no protein powder)

Same as above, but substitute chocolate protein powder for 1/2 cup quick oats.  For the coating, sub with 1/3 cup icing (powdered) sugar thinned with milk.

Nutrition (per 1 of 18 balls)   Calories: 98   Fat: 7.5 g   Carbs: 6.1 g   Fiber: 1.7 g   Sugars: 2.5 g   Sodium: 8.9 mg   Protein: 2.8 g


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I'm Kristine Fretwell, busy mom of 2 little girls, author, blogger, and former pro fitness competitor. I love almost any kind of cookie, anything coconut or pumpkin flavored, and Thai food. A perfect day for me is enjoying my family, getting to the gym, and whipping up a new healthy recipe. I've got a collection of over 300 healthy recipes, and other tidbits like fitness and health tips. My recipes have been featured on websites such as Huffington Post, Savvy Mom, Shape and Skinny Scoop.
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