Chocolate Caramel Energy Balls
Updated: May 8, 2020
This is a really simple recipe for raw energy balls which have the decadent taste of chocolate and caramel combined in one. These little treats are guilt-free as they contain a single natural sweetener.
In this recipe, we use only raw ingredients. The taste of caramel is recreated using dates and nut butter. This combination makes a healthy raw caramel with a consistency that differs from the consistency of the classical caramel. For optimal results, we recommend using Medjool dates as they are soft, decadent and taste very similar to caramel. Another amazing property of the Medjool dates (and not only) is that, unlike refined sugar, they can actually satisfy your sweet cravings without making you overindulge, as they contain a good amount of fiber. Fiber in dates helps prevent blood sugar levels from spiking too high after eating.
10 Medjool dates (pitted)
1 tbsp peanut butter (unsalted and unsweetened)
2 tbsp raw cacao powder
[optional] a pinch of salt
In a food processor, process the dates for several seconds to break them down into small pieces.
Add the peanut butter and the cacao, and process again until reaching a smooth consistency. Optionally, you can add a pinch of salt to enhance the flavor.
Make balls from the mixture and put them in the fridge for half an hour to set. Enjoy!
The recipe makes approximately 20 small to medium balls.
The recipe calls for Medjool dates because of their rich caramel-like flavor. Nevertheless, you can use other types of dates. In such a case, keep in mind that the taste of the energy balls might change. For instance, if Mazafati dates are your choice, it is very likely that you enhance the chocolate flavor of the balls as Mazafati dates are known for their chocolaty taste. In addition, Mazafati dates are smaller than Medjool dates and you would need to adjust the number of dates, used in the recipe, accordingly.
You can make your own peanut butter and use it to make these energy balls. The peanut butter is one of the easiest nut butters to prepare at home as the peanuts release their oils fast. All you need is a food processor and a little bit of patience. Depending on the power of your food processor, it would take between 5 and 15 minutes to turn the peanuts into a smooth peanut butter. The final taste is definitely worth the wait.
When processing the dates, the peanut butter and the cacao powder, the food processor should combine all the ingredients together as to form one sticky smooth ball. That is the ideal consistency we are going for. Achieving that effect, depends on the type of dates you choose to use as well as on your food processor. Whichever the case, you can still proceed with preparing the energy balls as long as the final homogeneous mixture is sticky enough.
If you do not have a food processor, you can make these energy balls by hand - it would just require more time and effort. You can use a fork to smash the dates (in this case, it is recommended you use softer dates). Then, you can start mixing the smashed dates with the rest of the ingredients either by using a fork or your hands. The final mixture might be a bit coarser and not as homogeneous as if you used a food processor, but the energy balls should be just as delicious.