Energy Bites - Healthy Chocolate Treats
|Chocolate and Coconut Energy Bites|
Its always fun making the Nutri-mercial videos however I often forget to include everything I would like to or say all that there is to say about the subject. Today's video is no different, I wanted to list the quantities of ingredients and talk more about the nutrients so I will do this in the blog post!
In this particular Nutrimercial, I was responding to a recent video posted by Dr. Mercola. He was making a little chocolate treat which he describes as "healthy" and the ingredients where butter, cacao butter, coconut oil, etc. You get the picture. I don't really think a treat with such high fat/calorie dense is so healthy so I am suggesting an alternative.
My version is what I call an ENERGY BITE. I developed this recipe for a demo I did at a Bootcamp Fitness Class few months ago. It really simple and delicious and you can customize these with all sorts of flavors. Basically they are a pureed date snack much like a Larabar. In this case I added Cacao & walnuts and vanilla. You could add other dried fruits such as dried cherries or cranberries, chocolate chips, peanuts, coconut. You can leave out the cacao for a more caramel flavor. The sky is the limit!
Cacoa is the raw form of cocoa. The nutrients from the cocoa bean are left intact because the beans haven't been roasted which helps to maintain the magnesium, iron, and of course anti oxidants contained in the pod. Its flavor is very similar to cocoa and you can feel free to switch these out. Cacao is much pricier than even the best organic cocoa! Both cacao and cocoa have all of the benefits of dark chocolate without the sugar and the fat!
Walnuts are a tree nut and a powerhouse of healthy fats containg 2.5 grams of ALA (Alpha-Linolenic Acid- think Omega 3s) per ounce.
Dates are the fruit from a particular family of palm trees. There are many varieties but Medjool are the best for dessert making. Yes, dates are sweet, full of fructose and dextrose (80% sugar) but that comes packaged with iron, potassium, fiber, calcium, manganese, copper and many anti-oxidants including tannins and flavonoids. You can watch a great video by Dr. Greger about dates HERE. Dr. Greger reviews some studies which prove the benefits of date.s While the Hellawi wins out over the Medjool for "best" it is not the best for certain dessert or raw food applications. You can try those or the dromedary dates in this recipe but I recommend adding a bit of water (tiny bit) and processing before adding nuts. Here's the recipe:
RAWSOME Chocolate Energy BitesIngredients:
1 cup firmly packed pitted Medjool Dates
3/4 c. Raw unsalted Walnuts (can use soaked, sprouted and dried)
3 - 4 T. Raw Cacao
1/16 t. vanilla or bourbon vanilla extract
- Place everything in the food processor and process. If your dates are really dry, you might want to process them first with a tiny amount of water and the vanilla. If you process the nuts too long trying to pulverize the dates, the oil from the nuts will come out and the end result will be oily and not as desirable, although still really good!
- Scoop up small amounts in a melon-ball tool or a small cookie scoop to make little energy bites. The amount you wind up with will depend on the size.
- Remember you can get creative with these goodies as long as you achieve a paste which can be rolled into a small ball or pressed into a small pan or plastic bag to form and then cut as bars.