There are wide varieties of laddu preparations in India, each unique in taste as it is made with local ingredients. An example of a healthy laddu that comes to mind is Karnataka's Akki Thambittu. Often made for special occasions such as Shivratri and Navratri, Akki Thambittu is made with a combination of jaggery, rice flour, gram dal, and peanuts. The laddu is also made with a variation of ingredients but the main ingredients, i.e. peanuts, jaggery, rice flour, and coconut are common to all. The Akki Thambittu is mildly sweet and crunchy and is an easy and quick preparation that can also be made at home. 

To make the flavourful Akki Thambittu, the peanuts, gram dal, and white sesame seeds are roasted. The rice flour can either be made at home or ready-made rice flour can be bought from the store, but it should be slightly roasted. The addition of grated coconut to the Akki Thambittu lends a crunchy taste to it. Akki Thambittu is then sweetened with a jaggery syrup, and flavoured with a pinch of cardamom. Overall, it is packed with flavours and loaded with textures. It is also quite healthy and satiating but not too filling.   

Here is a recipe for Akki Thambittu: 

Ingredients:

    1/2 cup of rice

    1/4 cup of peanuts 

    1/4 cup of roasted gram

    White sesame seeds

    1/4 grated coconut 

    Jaggery

    Cardamom powder

Akki Thambittu

Method 

    Put the peanuts in a pan and roast, on medium flame, till the peanut shell comes off. Later, after taking it off the flame, peel the peanut shell completely 

    Put the roasted peanuts in a mixie and grind, and after that put the peanut powder into a bowl

    Roast gram dal for a few seconds or minutes and grind it in a mixie

    In a pan, add one tablespoon of white sesame seeds and roast for a few seconds

    Add the peanut powder, roasted gram powder, and roasted white sesame seeds powder in a bowl

    Add grated coconut and one teaspoon of cardamom powder to the above mixture

    To make the rice flour, roast the rice in a pan on medium flame for a few minutes, wait for the roasted rice to cool down, and then grind it to a powder consistency in a mixie

    Then sieve the powdered rice in a bowl, and add it to the peanut, gram, and white sesame seed powders

    In another pan, make a jaggery syrup by dissolving grated jaggery in boiling water

    Sieve the jaggery syrup into the bowl of the peanut, gram, white sesame, and rice powders, and mix well

    Then shape small balls or laddus from the mixture, and serve on a plate. You can garnish the laddu with bits of peanuts or cashew nuts-this is optional

Akki Thambittu, though made for special pujas and occasions, can be savoured at any time of the year, especially as a snack.