These are really simple to make and you can whip up a batch in about half an hour, and then all you need to do is pop them in the fridge for about an hour to firm up. They do soften after a period of time out of the fridge, but that problem is easily solved by packing an ice brick in your child’s lunchbox.
I have adapted this recipe ‘Lunchbox Treats’ from a Nigella Lawson cookbook called Nigella Express. I used to make these quite regularly before having to go gluten and dairy free. They’re sweet, without being too sweet, and have a lovely crunch, which makes a great snack or a yummy lunchbox addition. Just make sure to read the labels carefully when choosing a brand of rice malt or brown rice syrup. Unless it clearly states that the product is gluten free, assume that it is not.
For a nut-free version, I use the Sweet William brand of milk chocolate. This product is free from gluten, dairy, nuts, GMO and it is also suitable for Vegans. However, it does contain soy. You could swap the milk chocolate with dark chocolate if you preferred a less sweet treat.
The first batch I made, I found the quinoa flakes were a little overpowering for my taste, so next time I tried rolled millet flakes. By using the millet flakes, the flavour was much milder, but I found they didn’t firm up quite the same as using the quinoa flakes. So for my next attempt, I added a teaspoon of vanilla extract and this worked a treat in lessening the quinoa flavour.
I like everything to look uniform, so I weigh almost everything I make, from meatballs to biscuit dough and everything else in between. I made mine 25g each, but you can make them as small or as large as you like. They keep for up to a week in the fridge, but they don’t normally last that long in our house.
Update: This recipe now includes ounce and cup measurements.
Makes 16 plus 1 smaller ball
60g (2.1 ounces or a slightly heaped 1 cup) rice puffs, the crispy variety (I use this brand)
50g (1.8 ounces or ⅓ cup) sesame seeds, firmly packed
39g (1.4 ounces or ⅓ cup) quinoa flakes
30g (1.1 ounces or a slightly heaped ½ cup) cornflakes (I use this brand)
150g (5.3 ounces) gluten free rice malt syrup or brown rice syrup (I use this brand)
42g (1.5 ounces or 3 tablespoons) gluten and dairy free butter
50g (1.8 ounces) gluten & dairy free milk chocolate (I use this brand)
1 teaspoon (5ml) pure vanilla extract (mine is alcohol based)
Add all the dry ingredients to a medium bowl.
Next, in a small saucepan add the syrup, butter and chocolate. Stir frequently over a low heat until melted, then take off the heat and stir through the vanilla.
Pour the chocolate syrup mixture into the dry ingredients and stir until everything is well coated, before refrigerating for about 20 minutes.
Line a tray with baking paper/parchment. You will need to wear latex gloves, otherwise, the mixture continually sticks to your hands and creates such a mess. Gently squeeze the mixture into compact balls, about 25g each (0.9 ounces).
Refrigerate them for about an hour or so, to allow them to firm up before eating. Store in the fridge in an airtight container.
Recipe by: The Gluten & Dairy Free Bakehouse