Maple Walnut Balls (with Fairies + one Caterpillar)

ball shot

Is the ball thing getting old? You can tell me, really. I won’t get upset. Okay, I might get a teeny bit upset, but I promise not to take it personally. You wouldn’t be the only one. My husband is definitely over my balls. (If you have no idea what I mean head over to the recipe page.)

Actual conversation with him the night I posted my second official ball recipe:

Me: [hovering over him while he is attempting to watch Netflix on his iPad] I’m about to post a new recipe!

Him: [not bothering to look up from screen] Uh-huh. 

Me: [very excited, but still speaking in a whisper since kids are sleeping] Blueberry Granola balls! [emphasis on the balls, obvs]

Him: [finally tearing away eyes from screen, looking thoughtful] You know, you don’t have to call them balls. You could call them “bites.” 

Me: [shaking my head vigorously, smiling a little at his naivete] Everyone in the world [i.e. Pinterest] is doing that, which is WHY I’m calling them balls! Brilliant, right? 

Then, three ball recipes later…

Him: Are you ever going to be done with the whole ‘ball’ thing?

Me: NEVER! [insert maniacal laughter, in whisper form, here]

So you see, I’m rather attached to the ball thing, but not out of love as much as comfort. I’m not an intuitive baker, like some of my blogging friends, and I’m a Cancer, which means I’m a creature of habit (not to mention a total homebody) so when I get the hang of something, well, I have a little problem letting it go. But you’ll tell me, won’t you? I’m relying on your instincts here.

Until then, here’s my latest batch of balls posing with a fairy. Just for fun. Because how many pictures of balls can you look at before dying of boredom?

fairy balls

Maple Walnut Balls


  • 1 cup dates cut in half and soaked in water to soften up (drain before adding)
  • 1/2 cup cashews (I used raw unsalted)
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/8-1/4 cup coconut flakes or finely ground coconut (which is what I used)
  • dash of cinnamon


*If you want the nuts more finely ground (for a smoother ball), process them first, remove and set aside, and then add them back in after dates have been pulverized. Otherwise, ignore this and start with the dates, as instructed below.

Put softened dates in the food processor and whirl around. Add the rest of the ingredients until just combined.

Random but important note: the dough should not be too dry or too wet (thus the varying amount of coconut flakes) – if too wet, add a bit more coconut. If too dry, add a 1/2 teaspoon (at a time) more maple syrup.

You really can’t mess these up… unless you’re me (!) and you get a little cocky with your ball making and add TOO much wet and not enough dry and your balls never really firm up – even in the freezer. (Who knew that was even possible?! Must have been the extra 1/2 teaspoon of melted coconut oil I originally added, then later removed from the recipe.)

Take heart though, soft balls are STILL tasty.

In other (random) news, check out this awesome terrarium!


Bunky made it at a birthday party over the weekend. It’s a pretty brilliant idea. The kids got to dig into vats of small slippery stones, soft damp dirt, pick three plants and then “decorate” their creation with pretty rocks, marbles, and creatures. B chose fairies and butterflies over centipedes and dinosaurs, big surprise. All the kids had a blast doing it.

My (failed) attempt at an "artsy"  shot with my phone.

My (failed) attempt at an “artsy” shot with my phone.

The crafty mom (of four!) also made a beautiful Hungry Little Caterpillar themed cake – she told me about it ahead of time and I was just going to attempt to “draw” a caterpillar on a cupcake, but my husband waved me aside and took over. He rocked it. Everyone was amazed and Bunky was thrilled.


GF happiness on a plate.

What the hell has he been doing on the dessert sidelines all this time?! He is totally in charge of the next birthday.

19 thoughts on “Maple Walnut Balls (with Fairies + one Caterpillar)

  1. Okay, first, I totally don’t think the ball thing is over done. And second, I’ve been thinking how great it would be to have a recipe for date balls that used nuts instead of rice crispies. I even went and bought dates and nuts to experiment with. Now I’ll just use your recipe. Thanks for putting in the leg work for me. 🙂

  2. I am laughing so hard….you can NEVER have enough ball recipes! Keep ’em coming. I know I told you this before, but when I was recently making meatballs I was thinking of you. So you’ve got a reputation already in my mind…and from now on when I make balls, eat balls or think of balls I will be thinking of you (well almost always…ok enough now). As for the Cancer thing, I’m a Gemini (birthday is tomorrow!) and I love a good routine set in stone; creature of habit, and staying home is my favorite thing! I like you more and more each day (not to mention the fact that you linked my blog….it could be love!) Last note, the hubbie is also at the top my list, who knew the “little house on the prairie” project doer, could also make a mean caterpillar. He’s been hiding his skills….

    • Thanks Jenny! I have to say, you are my most encouraging ball blogging friend and I appreciate that so much! I also love that you keep me in mind when you’re making meatballs. Clearly I am making an impression 🙂

      Hope you had a great birthday! Can’t believe mine is coming up…

      Yes, the man who loves both Little House on the Prairie and, dare I mention, The Golden Girls, is also handy with both power tools and piping tools, apparently. He is totally going to help with all future birthday party cake prep from now on.

  3. i am going to have to try these!! i have been in a ball making mood. they are perfect for snacks and stuff!! i love the caterpillar 🙂 so cute!! you’re a good mama being so creative!!

  4. I read the part about the balls, but totally forgot it when I saw the pic of your little fairy and her own cake. Seeing it just made my day, I just love reading stories of happy gfree kids feeling special. Big bravo to your hubby!

  5. Pingback: Healthy Christmas Treats for Kids (And Adults!) | the fairy food mother

  6. Pingback: Healthy Christmas Treats for Kids (And Adults!) | The Fairy Food MotherThe Fairy Food Mother

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