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I am not a sugar addict, but I must admit I do have a small sweet tooth, and I love love love the combination of chocolate and peanut butter.  I often enjoy a small piece of chocolate after lunch and after dinner.  My go-to sweet treat is often a mini Reese's Peanut Butter cup, although lately I have been eating the leftover cheapie chocolate I bought for the boys' Christmas stockings.

I feel guilty every time I eat the cheap bits of chocolate, because I know that if I'm really going to splurge on a sweet treat, it should be something really good that I am truly enjoying.  

I've also been interested in eating something that it a little less processed.  I've heard about the Newman's Own Organic Chocolate Peanut Butter cups, but they are so pricey, and they are pretty big (I don't think they make minis) and still have a fair number of calories, fat, etc.

So, I embarked on a journey to make my own (healthier) chocolate PB treats.  What I ended up with is an amazingly delicious sweet treat that you can enjoy without one gram of guilt!!

These Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Balls  (CPBP) are based off of this recipe, but I made one modification involving Chocolate PB2 to make it even less caloric.

Ingredients:
  • 1 mixed cup of Chocolate PB2 (I estimated this used about 4 tbsp of the powder -- you can find the PB2 in the Health/Organics section of the grocery store -- it has 85% less calories than regular peanut butter!)
  • 1 cup Natural creamy (or crunchy if you prefer) peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup agave nectar (I was just shy of a half a cup)
  • 2 scoops vanilla whey protein powder
  • sea salt, to taste (I used my Kosher salt, and it really makes all the difference!  I used just a dash of it, but it adds an awesome crunch and taste to the balls)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract (I used 2 tsp because I always double the vanilla)
  • If you find the mixture is too thick, you can add a little water.  I did not need to add any water, since the PB2 makes it a little on the gooey-er side.  It was just the right consistency for me.
  • 3/4 cup chocolate chips (I used a mix between dark and milk chocolate)


Directions:
  1. Mix up your PB2.
  2. Mix all ingredients (except for chocolate) in a bowl.
  3. Roll mixture into balls (about 1 tbsp in size, maybe a little smaller).  I made 66 balls.  Place in a dish and refrigerate for 30-45 minutes.
  4. Once balls are chilled, melt your chocolate (I melted mine in the microwave using 15 second increments until it was just melted).
  5. Dip your balls in the chocolate.  Since these balls are pretty rich, I only dipped one side of the balls in the chocolate.  This also left a nice clean side for putting it back in the dish.
  6. I put these back in the fridge and then ended up transferring them into two small freezer bags (I basically had a single layer of balls in each bag) and putting them into the freezer.  They are sooooo awesome fresh out of the freezer, but they are also good after they've been sitting out for awhile.


I used caloriecount.com to calculate the calories on these and 1 ball has 27 calories, 1.7 g. of fat, 2.4 g. of carbs, and 1.1 g. of protein.  That's about half the calories, half the carbs, more than half the fat, and almost the same amount of protein as the original recipe.  An actual Reese's Pieces Mini PB Cup has 44 calories, 2.6 g. of fat, 5 g. of carbs, and .8 g. of protein.

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