This Peanut Butter Oatmeal & Coconut Energy Bites recipe is an easy, healthy snack! It only takes 8 ingredients and 5 minutes to make! Gluten-free, dairy-free, refined sugar free and vegan-friendly!

Snacks: healthy finger foods that a busy mom of four should always have on hand to avoid hanger.

Hanger: the state of grumpiness that is brought on by the feelings of hunger…which usually occurs because a busy mom of four rushing out the door forgot to pack the snacks.

If you didn’t know, hanger is a real thing. It occurs in both moms and kids alike, and it’s not pretty. Thankfully, the condition is easily cured by eating delicious snacks! So today, I have a super fun post for you all! I’ll be sharing the recipe for one of our favorite snacks, {these Peanut Butter Oatmeal & Coconut Energy Bites}, talking about some of my favorite store-bought organic snack products, and giving you some fun lunchbox ideas!

This Peanut Butter Oatmeal & Coconut Energy Bites recipe is an easy, healthy snack! It only takes 8 ingredients and 5 minutes to make! Gluten-free, dairy-free, refined sugar free and vegan-friendly!

First, the recipe for these Peanut Butter Oatmeal & Coconut Energy Bites!

I almost always have healthy treats like these Peanut Butter Oatmeal & Coconut Energy Bites on hand in my freezer, ready to grab at a moment’s notice. They are the perfect snack to stave off hanger for three reasons. 1) They’re made with only 8 good-for-you ingredients. 2) They come together in 5 minutes {or less}! And 3) they freeze beautifully! Plus these energy bites are gluten-free, dairy-free, refined sugar free and vegan-friendly!

However, we don’t just eat these Peanut Butter Oatmeal & Coconut Energy Bites at snack-time! Sometimes they are part of our lunches as well! Because let’s face it, lunch can be tricky. I mean really, we just ate breakfast, did homeschool, and dinner is on the horizon! So I usually don’t have a lot of time to think about what to feed my little ones in the middle of the day.  And I’m definitely not interested in cooking gourmet food at noon. {Can anyone else relate}?!

So, we often resort to snacky lunches because it’s what my kids love the best! Peanut Butter Oatmeal & Coconut Energy Bites accompanied by fruit, veggies, cheese and crackers, you name it, if it’s in the fridge, freezer, or pantry…it’s fair game. As long as my kids get the nutrients they need to make it through until nap time I am a happy camper {and so are they}! Plus, letting them choose what they eat for lunch is a great way to teach responsibility and give them some autonomy! They know they have to pick one fruit and one veggie, and then whatever else their cute little tastebuds are craving that day!

This Peanut Butter Oatmeal & Coconut Energy Bites recipe is an easy, healthy snack! It only takes 8 ingredients and 5 minutes to make! Gluten-free, dairy-free, refined sugar free and vegan-friendly!

You all know we homeschool our kids!  Well, this year I joined a co-op that meets once a week on Thursdays. We get together from 9-12 and then everyone hangs out and eats lunch. Which means I’ll be packing lunches for my kids! I’m actually pretty excited about it because it takes me back to my childhood! My dad was the best lunch-packer ever, and I want to make it fun for my kids too!

Next, my favorite store-bought snacks!

Even though I love making homemade snacks like these Peanut Butter Oatmeal & Coconut Energy Bites, I always have some store-bought staples on hand to add to the lunch and snack-time fun! Buying high-quality products is very important to me. That’s where brands like Horizon Organics and Santa Cruz Organic come in! They are non-GMO, USDA certified organic and have no artificial colors or ingredients…plus they taste amazing.

Need some fun lunch inspiration? These rainbow fruit kabobs and butterfly snacks are the perfect way to make your kids look forward to opening their lunchbox every day! Plus a recipe for Peanut Butter Oatmeal & Coconut Energy Bites that's a perfect lunchbox snack!

Some of our favorites include Horizon Organics milk singles, string cheese, and graham crackers {<- to die for}. I also love Santa Cruz Organic’s applesauce singles {especially when I have a little one eating baby food!} as well as their peanut butter {duh} and jam! All of these products are available for purchase at Target stores nationwide! And right now you can save 20% on Horizon with Target Cartwheel and go in-store for savings on Santa Cruz Organic which are on sale this month!

Need some fun lunch inspiration? These rainbow fruit kabobs and butterfly snacks are the perfect way to make your kids look forward to opening their lunchbox every day! Plus a recipe for Peanut Butter Oatmeal & Coconut Energy Bites that's a perfect lunchbox snack!

Finally, lunchbox fun at Target!

Since I’m not very crafty {like at all} I’m always trying to find ways to make themed snacks that are easy and fit with what we are learning that week in homeschool. My kids thought these rainbow fruit kabobs and butterfly snacks were so much fun! Because it’s a proven fact that eating heart-shaped fruit off of a stick is 100x more enjoyable! 😉  Look at those cute little hands!

Need some fun lunch inspiration? These rainbow fruit kabobs and butterfly snacks are the perfect way to make your kids look forward to opening their lunchbox every day! Plus a recipe for Peanut Butter Oatmeal & Coconut Energy Bites that's a perfect lunchbox snack!

Another reason I’m excited about joining the co-op is because it means that I get to take the kids Back-To-School shopping! Going to Target to get all of our back-to-school supplies was the best when I was a kid! I remember walking up and down the aisles with my list in hand, carefully choosing each item!  I am totally going to make a list for Bethany and Gabe so they can experience the fun too!

One of the greatest things about Super Target stores is that you can buy groceries, school supplies, a cute dress, and a throw pillow all in one place! I’m all about the one-stop shopping because the more kids we add to our family, the more I try to avoid loading and unloading them in and out of the car!

So bring on the backpacks, luchboxes, cute clothes, pencils, folders and all the snacks we can eat! You can see below that my kids love going to Target! Not pictured: little miss Mara just hanging out in the baby wrap attached to mommy! 😉

Ways to make lunch more fun!

I know we can get in a rut of making the same thing every day! But here are a few simple ways to spice up your normal routine!

Fun Shapes! 

Pull those cookie cutters out of storage and go wild! I love cutting cheese, fruit and even sandwiches into fun shapes! It’s funny how my kids are much more excited about a PB & J when it’s shaped like a dinosaur! 😉

Use Stickers!

Stickers are a great way to make a normal lunch more fun! I love these stickers I found at Target! They’re cute mid-day reminders to my kids to be kind and don’t follow the crowd!

Write a note or draw a picture!

If you child can read then write her a sweet note telling her how much you love her! Or start a fun tradition like “joke of the day” or “quote of the day!” If you child can’t read then draw them fun pictures! This will take you an extra minute in the mornings but will create memories that will last! Plus it’s a great way to make them feel connected to you while they’re at school!

Finally, back to the Peanut Butter Oatmeal & Coconut Energy Bites Recipe!

Since most of you are here for the recipes {hi!} I would be remiss if I didn’t spend some time chatting about possible substitutions that can be made in this recipe!

Old-Fashioned Oats: Quick-cooking oats can be used however I do not recommend steel-cut oats!

Almond meal: If you’d prefer not to use almond meal you can simple increase the amount of oats by 1/4 cup! Ground flaxseed is also a good substitution!

Honey: For a vegan version use maple syrup or any other liquid sweetener of choice.

Almond milk: Any kind of milk {dairy or non-dairy} works great in this recipe!

This Peanut Butter Oatmeal & Coconut Energy Bites recipe is an easy, healthy snack! It only takes 8 ingredients and 5 minutes to make! Gluten-free, dairy-free, refined sugar free and vegan-friendly!

Print

Peanut Butter Oatmeal & Coconut Energy Bites

Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 18 bites

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Line a baking sheet with wax paper, set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together old fashioned oats, coconut, almond meal and salt. Set aside.
  3. In a microwave-safe bowl or in a saucepan over medium heat, melt together the peanut butter and honey until smooth.
  4. Remove from heat and add 2 TBS almond milk and vanilla.
  5. Add the wet mixture to the dry mixture and stir until completely combined.
  6. Scoop out 1 TBS portions of dough, roll them into balls and place on your prepared baking sheet. Continue until all the dough has been used. If you find it is too dry/crumbly add more almond milk ½ TBS at a time.
  7. Place balls in the refrigerator or freezer to set.
  8. Transfer the bites from the baking sheet to an airtight container and store in the refrigerator or freezer!
  9. If you choose to store them in the freezer, you may want to let them sit at room temperature for 10-15 minutes before eating!

This Peanut Butter Oatmeal & Coconut Energy Bites recipe is an easy, healthy snack! It only takes 8 ingredients and 5 minutes to make! Gluten-free, dairy-free, refined sugar free and vegan-friendly!

Phew! If you’re still with me…you rock and I just have to tell you a hilarious story! Right after the first time that I gave these Peanut Butter Oatmeal & Coconut Energy Bites to my kids as a snack they started running around the house like crazy people! I asked them to calm down and they said, “We can’t! We just ate energy bites so now we have SO much energy that we need to run around!” LOL! Ok then I guess they really work! 😉

Question: What do you usually eat for lunch and what do you feed your kids? 

If you make something from JoyFoodSunshine I would love to see your creations! #joyfoodsunshine

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Pin the recipe for later!

This Peanut Butter Oatmeal & Coconut Energy Bites recipe is an easy, healthy snack! It only takes 8 ingredients and 5 minutes to make! Gluten-free, dairy-free, refined sugar free and vegan-friendly!

Pin the lunchbox inspiration for later!

Need some fun lunch inspiration? These rainbow fruit kabobs and butterfly snacks are the perfect way to make your kids look forward to opening their lunchbox every day! Plus a recipe for Peanut Butter Oatmeal & Coconut Energy Bites that's a perfect lunchbox snack! Cute kid and toddler snacks!

This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you purchase a product through a link you clicked on here, I receive a portion of the sale. Thank you for supporting JoyFoodSunshine! 

This post is sponsored by my friends at Target, Santa Cruz Organics and Horizon Organics! Thank you for allowing me to continue creating delicious recipes for you by supporting partnerships with amazing brands that I LOVE. As always, opinions are completely my own!

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Horizon and Santa Cruz Organic. The opinions and text are all mine.

This Peanut Butter Oatmeal & Coconut Energy Bites recipe is an easy, healthy snack! It only takes 8 ingredients and 5 minutes to make! Gluten-free, dairy-free, refined sugar free and vegan-friendly!