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Who made up the rule claiming dessert has to be an unhealthy indulgence?
Not that there’s anything wrong with occasionally dipping your toe (or tongue) into a final course of cake smothered in fat-laden icing, or cookies with a sky-high sugar content.
But wouldn’t it be nice if you could satisfy your sweet tooth with a treat that actually had some nutritional benefits?
Well, now you can!
If you’re on the same page with me and you believe a sweet, poppable bite packed with flavor doesn’t have to be loaded with junky, refined ingredients and empty calories, you’re going to fall for these coconut dream truffles. Hard.
What makes them “dreamy,” you ask? Come talk to me after you’ve chomped through your first one. I have no doubt you’ll agree this description is actually an understatement.
The advantages of these almond-laden spheres are countless, but let’s start with the fact that there are only six ingredients required to make these, and they require absolutely no cooking.
Unless you want to toast the coconut that coats the outside, of course. And in that case, we’re still only talking about a few minutes on the stove.
Both almonds and coconut have a nutty flavor and taste even more delicious with just a touch of natural sweetener.
Does this familiar combination remind you of something, but you can’t quite put your finger on it? Let me help you out.
Two words: Almond. Joy.
If your brain didn’t produce that connection on its own, don’t worry. I didn’t realize how closely these crunchy, craveable treats resembled the classic candy bar – sans the chocolate, of course – until after my first bite.
I’ve always been more of a peanut butter cup enthusiast, but it’s hard to deny the nostalgia induced by an Almond Joy.
The bright blue wrapper. The explosion of tropical flavor. The snap of the almonds.
And whereas those childhood favorites are made with corn syrup and refined sugar, our truffles feature zero refined sugar.
This recipe reaches for honey to sweeten things up, and boy does it ever.
No, really. Honey is actually sweeter than sugar since it contains more fructose than glucose, so you can use less of it. Which means using it in more recipes, like my peanut butter honey rice treats. Hooray!
It also comes with the added benefit of having a lower GI value than sugar, so it doesn’t spike blood sugar levels as quickly.
These bites also boast a twofold layer of fruity nuttiness from the shredded coconut. The flakes are first pulsed into the mixture before being rolled, then snowballed through even more shreds for a tasty coating on the outside.
Sounds like paradise to me.
A pinch of salt enhances all of the sweet flavors to be their best, most sweet selves and a drop of vanilla extract delivers that woody, musky undertone that’s a delight in dessert.
Some might even say it’s dreamy.Print
Sweetened with honey and rolled in coconut, these tasty truffles packed with ground almonds are a healthy take on candy that you’ll dig.
- 3/4 cup whole raw almonds
- 3/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut, divided
- 3 tablespoons honey
- 2 teaspoons coconut oil, melted and cooled to room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/8 teaspoon coarse salt
- Add the almonds, 1/2 cup of the shredded coconut, the honey, coconut oil, vanilla, and salt to a food processor or high-speed blender. Using 1-second pulses, pulse for about 10-15 seconds, scraping the sides down as needed, until the ingredients form a cohesive paste that still has some texture.
- Transfer to a medium bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate the mixture until slightly hardened, about 15-20 minutes.
- Place the remaining shredded coconut in a shallow bowl.
- Using a tablespoon as your guide, form the paste into a ball with your hands, and then roll it in the shredded coconut to coat. Place the ball in a mini cupcake liner and transfer to a large plate or platter. Repeat with the remaining almond-coconut mixture.
- Cover the plate of finished truffles with plastic wrap and transfer to the fridge to chill and harden for at least 1 hour before serving. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Category: Nuts
- Method: No-Bake
- Cuisine: Snack
Keywords: coconut, ball, almond, snack, honey
Cooking By the Numbers…
Step 1 – Gather, Prep, and Measure Ingredients
Measure the almonds, shredded coconut, and honey.
Measure the coconut oil into a small microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high until melted, about 15 to 20 seconds. Set aside to cool to room temperature.
Measure the vanilla extract and salt.
If you’d prefer to toast the shreds that coats the outside of the truffles – which will give them a roasty, nuttier flavor and a darker color – add 1/4 cup of the shreds to a small dry skillet and place it over medium-low heat. Toast, tossing occasionally, until the flakes are golden-brown, for about 3 to 5 minutes. Immediately transfer the toasted shreds to a shallow bowl.
Step 2 – Pulse Ingredients in the Food Processor
Using 1-second pulses, pulse for about 10 seconds, scraping the sides down as needed.
At this point, if some of the almonds are still only halved or quartered, continue pulsing for about 5 more seconds until they’re more broken down and the mixture becomes a more cohesive paste with a gritty texture.
If you’d prefer the truffles to have a smoother consistency, pulverize the mixture in the food processor longer until it reaches the desired texture.
Step 3 – Chill and Form the Truffles
Transfer the mixture to a medium bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate until slightly hardened, for about 15 to 20 minutes. This will make the balls much easier to form.
The warmer the paste is, the more it will stick to your hands. You can also wet your hands with water to keep the mixture from sticking too much.
If you didn’t opt to toast the coconut, add the remaining shreds to a shallow bowl now.
Using a tablespoon as your guide and pressing lightly as you shape so the mixture sticks together, form the paste into a ball with your hands.
You can also use a tablespoon-sized cookie scooper as your guide to make sure you get evenly-sized truffles. A heavy-duty, stainless-steel scoop is a great option, like this one that’s available via Amazon.
Step 4 – Roll in the Shreds, Chill, and Serve
Prepare a plate or platter nearby. Set out the mini cupcake liners if you’re using them.
Roll the truffles in the shredded coconut to coat, pressing slightly to make sure it adheres, and then place each in a mini cupcake liner,or directly on the plate or platter.
Cover the plate of finished truffles with plastic wrap and transfer to the fridge. Allow the truffles to chill and harden for at least 1 hour before serving.
Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week.
Love that Liquid Gold
Not only does honey have some great health benefits, but with so many different varieties available, you’ve got plenty of flavor profiles to choose from.
Bring in a hint of citrus by reaching for orange blossom. Lean into the lovely floral aroma of wildflower. Cling to the clean and pure notes of acacia.
If that rich coconut essence is what draws you into drooling over these truffles, tap into that nuttiness even more by adding a dash of coconut extract in place of the vanilla. And if I got in your head with all that candy bar talk, don’t let me stop you from attempting a melted chocolate drizzle.
Dreaming of taking these truffles on the go? They’re perfect for a picnic, or as a healthier candy choice at the holidays. Where will you enjoy them? Share your dreamy moments with this dessert in the comments below! And don’t forget to give this recipe a five-star rating if you loved it.
If you’re nuts for almonds and looking for new methods to help them shine, you’ll love these recipes:
Photos by Fanny Slater, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. Originally published by Shanna Mallon on July 10, 2012. Last updated on July 12, 2022.
Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.
About Fanny Slater
Fanny Slater is a home-taught food enthusiast based in Wilmington, North Carolina who won the “Rachael Ray Show” Great American Cookbook Competition in 2014, and published her cookbook “Orange, Lavender & Figs” in 2016. Fanny is a food and beverage writer, recipe developer, and social media influencer. She was a co-host on the Food Network series “Kitchen Sink,” was featured on Cooking Channel’s longtime popular series “The Best Thing I Ever Ate,” and continues to appear regularly on the “Rachael Ray Show.”