When midday munchies strike, I have a habit of letting my healthy eating habits go downhill, fast. Steel cut oats for breakfast, spinach salad for lunch…handful of peanut butter M&Ms for my afternoon snack? Doesn’t exactly jive, does it? This year, I’ve resolved to makeover my snacking [bad] habits, and these Raspberry Cocoa Energy Balls are the perfect, bite-sized treat to get me started on the right foot. Made with dates, they stand up to even the most intense sweet tooth naturally, and they’re packed with powerful ingredients like almonds, chia seeds, and antioxidant-rich cocoa. (Adios, M&Ms.) The best part? The addition of freeze dried raspberries adds a layer of indulgence that, I swear, makes them taste exactly like a raspberry chocolate bar.
And while I created these with afternoon snacking in mind, feel free to reach for these energy balls at all times of day. They make a great breakfast on-the-go for those of us who crave something light in the morning, and lately, I’ve even been treating myself to one in the evenings when I’m winding down but my sweet tooth is begging for just a little something chocolate-ly. (I will warn you though, if you’re sensitive to caffeine, avoid eating these guys post-dinner hours because cocoa powder does pack a punch.) Enjoy!
- 2 cups pitted medjool dates (19-20 dates)
- 1 1/2 cups raw almonds
- ½ cup freeze dried raspberries
- ½ cup unsweetened shredded coconut, plus more for rolling
- 1/4 cup cocoa powder
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds (optional)
- ½ teaspoon almond extract (optional)
- 3 tablespoons unsalted almond butter
- 1-2 tablespoons warm water, if mixture is dry.
- Add the dates, almonds, raspberries, coconut, cocoa powder and chia seeds to the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until mixture is thick and crumbly.
- Add the almond butter, and almond extract and continue to pulse. Take a small amount of mixture and press it between your fingers. If it sticks together easily and can roll into a ball shape, it's ready. If the mixture is too dry, add 1 tablespoon of water at a time, pulsing in between, until mixture is sticky enough to hold its shape.
- Roll the mixture into 1-inch balls, then roll in shredded coconut or cocoa powder, if desired.
- Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to two weeks.