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Wild Orange Energy Stars

Vegan I Gluten Free

Serves: 12+ stars

Time: 15 minutes + setting time

~2 cups dates, pitted and soaked

1 cup unsweetened, shredded coconut

1 cup almond butter (preferably a more smooth kind)

1/2 cup craisons*

6 tbsp. chia seeds

4 tbsp. flaxseed meal

2 tbsp. maple syrup

2 tbsp. coconut oil

8-10 drops ingestible wild orange essential oil (I like Doterra brand)

*Make sure to read the ingredients when purchasing craisons. I have found that every store bought package adds a sweetener of some kind, so compare different brands to find the best source.

Remove the pit from the dates if they aren't already pitted. Place the dates in a bowl of warm water and let soak 10+ minutes, until soft.

Drain the water and add the dates to a food processor. Add the remaining ingredients in the order listed.

Process on medium until the ingredients are well combined and a dough like texture is reached.

To make stars: Line a baking sheet with a reusable silicone mat or wax paper. Transfer the mixture onto the baking sheet and spread with a spatula into a thin loose layer. Place another piece of wax paper on top and use a rolling pin to flatten the mixture. Try to keep it around 1/2 inch thick. Place the baking sheet in the fridge for 4+ hours or until set. Use a star cookie cutter to remove your 'energy stars'. Make the impressions as close together as you can to optimize the amount of stars. Re-roll the scraps back into a thin layer, let set in the fridge, and cut more stars out. Continue the process until all your mixture is used.

To make balls: Line a baking sheet with a reusable silicone mat or wax paper. Transfer the mixture into a mixing bowl. Roll into bite size balls and place on the baking sheet. Roll in coconut shreds for a topping, if you desire. Let the balls set in the fridge for 4+ hours.

To make bars: Use a 9x9 baking dish. Transfer the mixture into the dish and press into an even layer. Place in the fridge for 4+ hours to set. When the mixture has hardened, use a knife to cut it into bars or squares.

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