These Nut Free Snack Balls are made with just five wholesome ingredients and make a quick, healthy snack or treat in a lunch box.
Having a batch of snack balls in the fridge just makes my life easier: Everyone can grab them for snacks, lunch boxes, and even two-bite desserts (one if you’re my husband).
Yet so many recipes for snack balls and bites contain nuts or peanuts in some form, either whole nuts or nut butter.
So I wanted to create a nut-free snack that was safe for kids who are allergic to nuts or peanuts–or for kids (like my fifth grader) who each lunch with a buddy who is allergic and take a nut-free lunch to school every day.
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An Easy Nut-Free Snack from 101 Healthiest Foods for Kids
This recipe comes from my brand new book, The 101 Healthiest Foods For Kids, which is a handbook on the best foods to fuel your child’s body and mind, with 26 easy recipes you can make with your kids, and advice for some of your most common kid-feeding questions.
Ingredients for Nut-Free Snack Balls
- Sunflower Seed Butter such as SunButter: I find SunButter in the “natural foods” section of my grocery store. It comes in a few different varieties, but I choose the natural, unsweetened kind.
- Oats: Quick oats work best in this recipe. You can use old-fashioned oats but they will be chewier.
- Ground flaxseed: Make sure you are choosing ground flaxseed (or grinding it yourself in a coffee grinder) to get the health benefits of the seeds.
- Crispy rice cereal such as Rice Krispies: Use brown crisped rice cereal (such as Barbara’s Brown Rice Crisps) if it’s available. You can also use crushed Rice Chex or another mild-flavored crispy cereal.
- Honey: This obviously provides sweetness. You could also swap in maple syrup or agave.
- Chocolate chips: These are optional, for melting and coating one side of the snack bites.
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FAQs about Nut-Free Snack Balls
Are these safe for kids with peanut allergies?
Yes, but be sure to check labels on all of your ingredients to be sure they are nut- and peanut-free.
My kids don’t have allergies. Can I use peanut butter?
Yes. If allergies aren’t an issue for you, feel free to swap in another kind of seed or nut butter. I’ve made these with natural peanut butter many times.
How do I store these nut-free snack balls?
These are best kept in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
I don’t have flaxseed. What else can I use?
You could substitute extra oats, cereal, or another seed like sunflower seeds. If you need these to be nut- and peanut-free, check labels carefully, since some seeds are processed on the same equipment as nuts and peanuts.
What’s the best way to make these evenly-sized?
I highly recommend a cookie scoop like this for making uniform snack balls.
How to Make 5-Ingredient Nut-Free Snack Balls
Nut-Free Snack Balls
If you need a nut-free snack for your kids, these 6-ingredient snack balls are the perfect solution! Healthy ingredients are quickly tossed together for an easy snack.
- 3/4 cup quick oats
- 1/2 cup sunflower seed butter, such as Sunbutter
- 1/2 cup crisped rice cereal, (use brown crisped rice cereal if you can find it)
- 3 tablespoons honey
- 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed
- 1/3 cup chocolate chips, optional, for coating
- In a small bowl, combine the oats, sunflower seed butter, rice cereal, honey, and flaxseed and mix until incorporated.
- Roll tablespoon-size portions into balls. If the mixture is too sticky, add a bit more cereal or oats. If it's too dry, add a bit more sunflower seed butter.
- Place on a plate lined with parchment paper and freeze for at least 30 minutes. Store in the freezer or refrigerator.
- Optional: In the microwave, melt the chocolate chips in a small bowl, heating for 30-second intervals and stirring until melted. Dip one end of each snack ball into the melted chocolate and place on a parchment-lined plate. Place in the freezer until the chocolate sets, then transfer to an airtight container in the refrigerator.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 15 Serving Size: 1 snack ball
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 114Saturated Fat: 1gSodium: 32mgCarbohydrates: 13gFiber: 2gSugar: 7gProtein: 3g
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We’ll be making these this weekend! Thank you!
Hope you like them!
I’m allergic to flax. Do you happen to have any substitution for the flaxseed? Thank you
Hi Lisa–The flaxseed is simply to add a little nutritional boost, so you could substitute extra oats or cereal or something else like sunflower seeds (if you’re needing these to be nut- and peanut-free check labels obviously, since may be processed on same equipment).
I don’t have quick oats, but I do have regular oats. Will these work? What’s the difference in the two when used in no bake balls?
Hi Kristin–I think the quick oats make them easier to roll into balls and also slightly less chewy. I haven’t tested hem with regular oats. If you try them with regular oats, please report back! 🙂
I came across this recipe in my free Subaru magazine, and it caught my interest immediately! I sent it to my daughter-in-law, telling her to show my grandchildren. I asked if they would like to make these with me when I come visit next week, and they gave an enthusiastic, “Sure!” I “follow” no one except close friends on Pinterest, but now am “following” you, and forwarded your website to the Health and Nutrition Coordinator at the Head Start I work. A wealth of fantastic information for all parents, grandparents, and anyone else interested in good, healthy eating. I also got my daughter-in-law, who is a first grade teacher, on board. Thank you for keeping it “real”!
So delicious! Thank you for this great recipe!
Hi. Is there an alternative to the sunflower seed butter? I can’t find them ok my country. Thanks
If allergies are not an issue you can use peanut butter or another kind of nut or seed butter.