Make a batch of these no-bake Peanut Butter Oatmeal Energy Balls to have on hand for hungry kiddos during the week—or to feed yourself a naturally sweet snack whenever you need one! They taste so good and are filled with nutritious ingredients. Plus: They’re ready in under 10 minutes!
Peanut Butter Oatmeal Energy Balls
Before anyone states the obvious, I do realize that most toddlers do not need more energy! They usually have plenty all on their own. But these “energy balls” are such a delicious (and easy snack) full of nutritious ingredients for little bodies.
These are an easy snack to make ahead and keep in the fridge. Plus, you don’t need to use any fancy ingredients or complicated methods to make these energy bites. You simply warm the wet ingredients and stir them into the dry—all in under 10 minutes.
And they have a texture that’s sort of like cookie dough so they’re great for younger toddlers, too—just dice them up if needed.
We love these for afternoon snack with some milk, as an easy bedtime snack, or a quick on-the-go bite.
Ingredients You Need
Here’s a look at the pantry ingredients you’ll need to make this recipe to share with the kids so you know what to have on hand.
- Creamy unsweetened peanut butter: I like the “natural” kind from Smuckers or Teddies, but any brand will do.
- Honey: The honey in this recipe helps the bites hold together. You can also swap in brown rice syrup for a less sweet taste.
- Vanilla extract: You can use pure or imitation vanilla extract here.
- Rolled oats: You can use the oats as they are out of the canister or bag, or you can grind them up in a food processor or blender to make a finer texture. (We like them ground up so the bites have the texture of cookie dough.)
- Chia seeds: These little seeds add some texture and additional fats. You can omit them if you don’t have them.
- Raisins or chocolate chips: Add these in for more flavor and yumminess.
Here’s a look at how to make this easy energy ball recipe so you know what to expect. Scroll to the bottom of the post for the full recipe.
- Warm the peanut butter and honey. Stir together
- Cut the raisins in half, if large, to make the balls easier to bite into for the little eaters.
- Add all ingredients to a medium bowl and stir together.
- Roll into balls.
TIP: The recipe works with regular oats, but grinding the oats—or using quick oats or oat flour—makes the balls taste more like cookie dough. You can skip the chia seeds if you don’t have any!
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I add chocolate?
Sure, just use mini chocolate chips in place of the raisins! That will definitely taste like cookie dough and I expect will make the kids really happy. (And probably the grown ups too!)
Can I make these nut-free?
If you can’t do peanut butter in your house or you need a nut-free snack to send to preschool or school, try these energy bites with sunflower seed butter instead of peanut butter. They should work just fine and taste similar.
Can I make these gluten-free?
Sure thing, just reach for certified gluten-free rolled oats and you should be good to go.
How to Store
You can keep them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. They will likely be gobbled up well before that. though—I make these as much for my kids as I do for myself. I store each batch in a quart-size mason jar in the fridge and cut them up for younger eaters to ensure they are easy to chew.
Best Tips for Success
- Grind the oats in a blender or food processor. Or use quick oats or oat flour. This will make the final texture smoother and more like cookie dough.
- Cut the raisins in half if they are very large so they are easier for the kids to bite into and chew.
- Warm the peanut butter and honey so they are easy to stir into the other ingredients.
- Use sunflower seed butter to make these nut-free.
- Use a tablespoon, measuring spoon, or a small spoon to portion out the dough.
- Cut up if needed to serve to younger kids.
- If they feel too firm for younger eaters, simply let sit at room temperature for a bit before storing.
- Use mini chocolate chips instead of raisins if you prefer.