Hello there, I hope 2016 is treating you smurfingly well!

Now that we’re back into the swing of regular weekday life, I’m thinking about how everyone in the household can keep eating well, no matter where they’re off to for the day or how picky they may be. There’s plenty of time on holiday to sit around and gaze into space, thinking about what to eat (I appreciate this is probably just MY idea of fun). But it’s another story when we’re all running around like fleas in a fit, trying to get to work/school/futsal/yoga/macrame class on time, and not wanting to resort to hangry road rage, convenience foods or desperation snacks. (Plus, there are those pesky holiday habits to break. Another gelato, anyone? Don’t mind if I do…)

Gelato 2

Anyway, we’re spoilt for choice in New Zealand for summertime snacks – so much incredible fresh stonefruit! Such luscious berries! An overflow of juicy cucumbers in the garden (if you were more organised than me, and actually planted some). That’s all still available, but what else to add to lunchboxes? I don’t know about you, but I’m aiming for popular snacks and morsels that are heat-resistant, travel well and don’t end up mushed into the bottom of the schoolbag under a pile of library books, resulting in that unidentifiable smell whose origins only become clear in the next term break.

Here’s one of my current favourites – it’s a development on the whole bliss ball concept, but takes no time to make as there’s no rolling involved. It’s tasty and fully of energy, but doesn’t include any dried fruit (public enemy #1587 in the healthy eating department, it seems). It’s dairy-free, egg-free and gluten-free (but not nut-free). It holds it’s shape and doesn’t melt in the sun. And – praise be to the lunchbox gods! – in my house at least, this one never gets sent home again.

Birdseed bites 2


Use whatever combination of seeds takes your fancy! The protein powder is optional – substitute with desiccated coconut or coconut flour if you prefer. You may need to add a little water to help it bind if you use peanut butter, which can make the mixture drier than almond butter.


1 cup almond butter or peanut and almond butter or peanut butter

3 tablespoons rice bran syrup (or maple syrup)

½ cup of seeds (combination of pumpkin, sunflower, sesame, poppy and/or chia seeds)

1½ tablespoons coconut flour (or desiccated coconut)

1 scoop protein powder

½ teaspoon vanilla extract



Line a slice tray (18 x 28cm) with baking paper.

Place nut butter and rice bran syrup in a bowl over hot water. Mix together until well combined, then add coconut flour, protein powder and vanilla. Adjust the coconut flour if necessary until mixture reaches a firm biscuit-dough consistency. Add a small amount of warm water to mixture if too dry.

Press into the tray to a thickness of approximately 1 cm (this will not fill the whole tray). Refrigerate until set and cut into small bites.

Must be kept refrigerated. Makes 30 – 40 pieces. Need a printable recipe? Don’t say I’m not good to you – voila!

Feeling Peckish cover small

This is just one of the 22 scrumptious, plant-based recipes from the Feeling Peckish ebook, which is available now!

It contains lots of portable, never-to-be-kicked-around-in-the-playground/office snack recipes – a mixture of sweet and savoury, some super-fast to make and some requiring a little effort, mostly gluten and dairy-free – and all delicious! Check it out here for more information.

If you already have the Feeling Peckish ebook (and many of you do – thanks SO MUCH for your enthusiasm!) – I’d love to know: what’s your favourite recipe from it so far?

Let me know in the comments, and good luck with the lunchboxes!

Nicola x






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