Chocolate espresso energy bites are packed with dates, almonds, and coconut. Perfect for a high-protein snack that will leave you wanting more.
The evolution of this recipe dates back to my first round of the Whole30. I felt myself craving after-dinner treats to curb my appetite. I read somewhere that RX bars were Whole30 compliant, I fell in love with them.
RX bars are a protein-rich date snack that comes in many flavors! Needless to say chocolate was my favorite. I created a copycat recipe that I believe is better than the original.
The bars morphed into delicious energy bites. I add a couple of tablespoons of espresso to turn these snacks into something special. Check out my candied kumquat recipe for more delicious snacks.
Why Chocolate Espresso Energy Bites are so good
- They freeze well. I portion the bites on a parchment-lined baking tray and pop them into the freezer. Once frozen I transfer the energy bites to a zip-lock bag.
- Rich in flavor while being healthy. No added sugar here in this recipe. The sweet flavor comes from a delicious combination of dates and cocoa powder.
- Perfect for your lunch box. I don't know about you, but I always need a protein-packed snack to throw in my lunch box. Energy bites are perfect on-the-go snacks since they are portioned out.
What You'll Need To Make This Recipe
- Almonds - make sure to buy whole almonds
- Cashews - use raw and unsalted cashews
- Dates - Medjool dates are the best option but make sure to remove the seeds
- Coconut oil - adds coconut flavor and is a great replacement for butter
- Vanilla - for flavor!
- Cocoa powder - chocolate lovers unite
- Espresso - helps blend everything together and adds a delicious flavor
- Coconut - use unsweetened shredded coconut
How To Make Chocolate Espresso Energy Bites
1. Place everything in the food processor.
2. Process until the mixture forms into one large ball. The date balls should hold together when you pinch between your fingers. You can add more espresso if the mixture is too dry.
3. Use a medium sized cookie scoop so all the energy bites are the same size.
4. Roll the date balls with your hands until they are round and smooth.
5. Place on a baking tray lined with parchment paper or silpat.
6. Sprinkle with large flaked sea salt for a nice pop of flavor!
Hint: Keep a cup of hot water nearby to dip the portion scoop into. Dates are sticky, and a clean scoop will make your life easier.
Inspiration for this recipe came from Chef John on Food Wishes
- Nut Butter - instead of dates utilize your favorite peanut or nut butter to bind everything together.
- Nut-Free - chia seeds, sunflower seeds, hemp seeds, and flax seeds are all great options.
- Chocolate Peanut Butter - Replace the nuts with ½ cup of peanut butter.
- Pumpkin Pie - use 1 cup of pecans and ½ teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice.
- Chocolate Cherry - add in ½ cup of chopped red bing cherries.
How to store chocolate espresso energy bites
Freeze or refrigerate chocolate espresso energy bites. I personally like to keep them frozen. They thaw in only 5 minutes!
After I portion the date balls I place them on a parchment-lined baking tray and place them in the freezer until frozen. Once frozen move them to a ziplock bag, and keep them in the freezer until I want a snack.
- Medjool dates are the best. I find that these dates are the softest and stickiest dates out there. Other varieties require you to rehydrate to soften them up.
- Don't add too much liquid at first. You want to add just enough water or espresso to bring the mixture together. To achieve the best result, add 1 tablespoon of liquid at a time until you reach the desired texture.
- Use a food processor. Sure you can chop the nuts and dates by hand, but I wouldn't wish that on my worst enemy. I love my Cuisinart food processor for this task. Just throw everything in and pulse it until the dates form a large ball.
- Salt is your friend. What's better than chocolate? Chocolate sprinkled with a little salt! I like topping my energy bites with a good quality Malden sea salt.
- Use your favorite nuts. In this recipe, I use almonds and cashews because I love those nuts. Play around with walnuts, macadamia nuts, and pecans.
- Keep hot water nearby. Dates are so sticky! They stick to your hands and cookie scoop. I like to dip my scoop in the hot water to clean it during the process. Put a couple of drops of water on your hands and it will keep the dates from sticking.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes! They are full of fiber, healthy fats, and protein. So if you are looking for a healthy grab-and-go snack these are it.
They all go well with dates! What are your favorite nuts? I happened to love almonds. You can choose to include 1 variety in this recipe or mix a few different types.
Nope. You can use a nut butter or peanut better to bring this mixture together.
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Chocolate Espresso Energy Bites
- 2 cups pitted Medjool dates
- 2 cups cashews raw
- 1 cup almonds unsalted
- ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- ½ cup unsweetened shredded coconut
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil melted
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons espresso
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- Malden sea salt
- unsweetened shredded coconut
- Place all ingredients into a food processor. Pulse until everything comes together into a large ball. If the mixture is too dry add another tablespoon of espresso or water.
- Using a ½ ounce cookie scoop portion energy bites out onto a parchment-lined baking tray.
- Roll between hands to form a circular and smooth ball. If your hands get sticky place a few drops of water on your hands to keep the dates from sticking to them.
- Place a few flakes of Malden sea salt on top of each date ball and lightly press the salt into the ball.
- Flash freeze the date ball in the freezer on the baking tray. Once completely frozen, transfer the balls to a ziplock bag, and leave them in the freezer.
Yum! These are so tasty!!