Peanut Butter Cups move over – Almond Butter Date Bites are about to steal your show. Since they’re healthy, indulgent and super easy to make, you really don’t stand a chance.
Oh my! Can we take a second and talk about how awesome almond butter is? I realize that I might be the last food blogger/person on earth who had never tried it before. I am happy to report that my curiosity finally got the best of me and I bought a jar just a couple of days ago. The verdict – it’s completely empty.
A classic case of I didn’t know what I was missing, but I’m so glad I finally discovered it. Better late than never, for sure!
And before giving myself the chance to eat it straight out of the jar by the spoonfuls, I figured it would be best to do some recipe testing while I was at it.
So I returned to the store, grabbed a package of medjool dates, dark chocolate and got to work. The only thing I knew was that it needed to be something I could make in no time, would qualify as a healthy snack and crush all of my almond butter/sweet cravings. Check, check and check!
Now I don’t know if all almond butters tastes the same or if I got lucky. But Justin’s Almond Butter must be one of the tastiest things I’ve eaten in quite a while. Whilst trying to decide which one to go for, I stumbled upon Justin’s simply because it was on sale and I was all about saving some $ since almond butter isn’t exactly the cheapest thing you can purchase at the grocery store.
And since I had the choice, I decided to go with Vanilla Almond Butter. There were quite a few varieties available. Maple Almond Butter will definitely be next, though I can’t imagine ever getting over or wanting something besides the version I bought. It’s just so good. And no, I’m not paid to say so. I just love it so freaking much.
So I scoped small amounts of almond butter onto a baking sheet and placed it in the fridge for a couple of minutes. After that, I formed the hardened butter into small balls and returned them to the fridge.
Next, I pureed the dates together with ground flax meal (ground up flax seeds) in a food processor until smooth. I took a small amount of the “dough” and wrapped it around one almond butter ball at a time. Back into the fridge they went. Not only does the layer of the date dough add natural sweetness and extra fiber, but it also adds an incredible chewiness to this yummy treat. As you can see in the pictures, I decided to dip mine into dark chocolate, but I also rolled some in sweetened shredded coconut flakes, and finally left some plain. So if you’re not up to melting chocolate, dipping and waiting some more, you can totally enjoy them as they are and they’re pretty much just as good.
But in order to get the whole peanut-butter-cup-dupe-experience, chocolate is somewhat mandatory ;). Don’t underestimate the coconutty ones though. Almond butter core, date layer and sweetened coconut flakes make for one amazing little bite.
And you really can’t beat a healthy treat that’s made with only 4 ingredients. Plus, you’d never guess they’re actually good for you.
Enjoy thoroughly, friends!
- almond butter, about 8 ounces
- 14 Medjool Dates, pitted
- 2 tablespoons flax meal
- 1/2 cup dark chocolate
- 1/2 tablespoon unsalted butter, optional
- 1/4 cup raw almonds, crushed into small pieces, optional
- 1/4 cup sweetened coconut flakes, optional
- 1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Drop almond butter into 14 equal piles onto the prepared cookie sheet (I use a very small cookie scoop) and place for 30 minutes in the fridge (or for 15-20 minutes in the freezer to speed things up). Remove baking sheet from the fridge and roll each almond pile with your fingers into small balls. Place bake onto the baking sheet and return to the fridge/freezer.
- 2. Meanwhile, place dates into a food processor and pulse until mostly smooth and no big chunks remain. Add flax meal and pulse until incorporated. At this point, you can move onto step 3 right away or place the date dough into the fridge as well for another 10-15 minutes. Since the dough is somewhat sticky, I found it easier to handle the dough after it had some time to chill. Not a mandatory step, but it makes things much easier.
- 3. Divide date dough into 14 equal pieces. Remove almond butter balls from the fridge. Flatten one piece of the date dough in the palm of your hands, fold around the almond butter ball, roll into an even ball, return to the baking sheet and repeat (make sure to work quickly). Place almond butter date bites into the fridge again for 20-30 minutes.
- 4. You can either enjoy the bites completely on their own straight out of the fridge, coat them in the chocolate or roll them in the coconut flakes.
- To coat the bites in chocolate, melt dark chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl in 30 second increments in the microwave or with a double boiler. Drop one bite at a time into the melted chocolate and using a fork, coat evenly with the chocolate. Remove bite from the chocolate, tapping your fork against the side of the bowl to get rid of any excess chocolate, and then transfer back to the baking sheet. Sprinkle with crushed almonds and drizzle bites with remaining chocolate.
- To coat the bites in the coconut flakes, simply place coconut flakes onto a plate and roll as many bites as you want in the coconut flakes until completely covered. Place bites back into the fridge for another 10 minutes or until set. Enjoy!