Chocolate Covered Date Nut Balls are the best energy bites and make a great snack or light breakfast. These include a healthy nut and date center topped with a dark chocolate coating. Win/Win for balance!
Power Balls with Dates
We love to keep healthy, homemade snacks handy for when we need them, and THIS recipe is now added to our stash. Several other items we keep for “hunger pain emergencies” include Peanut Butter Power Balls, Trail Mix Granola Bars, Homemade Cranberry Nut Granola, and Honey Roasted Nuts.
I’ve always kept a bunch of “healthy” snacks in my pantry. Granola bars, fruit snacks, goldfish crackers, etc. Oh hey, but are they REALLY healthy snacks? Not so much.
What I like about these, is that you know EXACTLY what’s in them. Only seven ingredients (providing you use the chocolate), and they are super quick to make. It’s quicker to make these than to run to the grocery store. Oh, and they taste GREAT! 🙂
What You’ll Need:
My Healthy Date Nut Balls have only seven ingredients including the dark chocolate coating.
- sunflower seeds
- pumpkin seeds
- dark chocolate chips
- vanilla extract
- dark chocolate melting chocolate
How to make Date Nut Balls:
Prep dates. Soak the dates in warm water for about 10 minutes. This will allow them to soften up and they will become a BETTER binder for these energy bites.
Process energy bites. In a food processor, combine the softened dates, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, pistachios, dark chocolate chips, and vanilla.
Pulse, and then let it run for several minutes to get everything well processed. This will allow you to form balls without adding other things (like peanut butter and/or honey).
As the dates soften, the nuts will release their natural oils, making a dough like consistency. It’s very easy to form the small balls, and you don’t actually need the chocolate coating if you prefer to use only the first six ingredients. But a little bit of chocolate is GOOD.
Form balls. Dump the energy bite mixture in another bowl and then form it into small balls. You should get about 22 of them in total. Set the date nut balls on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and chill. (You can also freeze them for a bit.)
Melt the chocolate. Add the melting chocolate to a microwave safe bowl. Melt at 50% power in 30-60 second increments, stirring in between. Be careful to avoid burning the chocolate.
Add chocolate. Take one ball at a time, and dip in chocolate until well coated. Shake off excess chocolate and place back on baking sheet. Add a few pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds to the top before the chocolate hardens. You can also add a little sprinkle of kosher salt.
Store. Store the date nut balls in the refrigerator. These are also great frozen.
Yes you can! Normally, I use peanut butter and/or honey in my power balls/energy bites. But this time, I used Medjool Dates, aka “Nature’s Candy Store”.
Dates help bind these energy bites together, especially if you soak them in water before using the food processor. Soaking them first helps to soften them, which is necessary unless your dates are already extremely soft.
These dates are naturally sweet in an unprocessed way. They are also high in fiber, a natural constipation relief remedy (ahem!), a great energy booster, good for your heart (reduces triglyceride levels), and are helpful in bone health.
Kitchen Tools Used: (affiliate links)
Date Nut Balls
- 20 whole Medjool dates – pitted
- 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
- 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
- 1/2 cup pistachios
- 1/3 cup dark chocolate chips
- 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
- a little warm water – if needed to form the balls
- 8 – 10 oz. dark chocolate melting wafers – I like the Ghirardelli brand.
- Place dates in bowl and soak them in warm water for approximately 10 minutes.
- Strain the dates and place in food processor. Add nuts, dark chocolate chips and vanilla, and pulse until smooth, approximately 3-4 minutes.
- Roll into 22 balls and place on baking sheet. Freeze until firm.
- Melt the dark chocolate melting wafers in the microwave for about one minute using only 50% power. You may need another 30 seconds. The chocolate should be smooth and creamy. Be careful not to over-cook.
- Dip the energy bites in the chocolate (using a dipping tool). Roll the ball around in the chocolate until it is completely covered. Lift it out using the tool and place on baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Add a few extra seeds to the top each date nut ball.
- Place baking sheet in the refrigerator until set.