Have you jumped on the date/energy ball craze yet? If not I’m here to convince you that you need these treats in your life. There are a million kinds of date + nut based snack bars/balls out there (I have made this healthy nut and cocoa snack bar recipe a million times) and I thought it was high time I shared a few other similar recipes with you.
Today I’m sharing cherry pie date balls with you. They are sweet, easy to make, and all of the ingredients are healthy. I absolutely love having a batch of these homemade cherry pie Larabars in the freezer so that I have a quick treat all made and ready for when the sugar cravings hit (for me that’s right after lunch and again around 4 pm). These are the perfect natural craving busters that also have some great protein and fat. Plus, my kids love them! They have all kinds of healthy fat and I don’t mind the natural sugar. These are awesome!
Buying dates intimidated me a little the first time I went looking for them. You can get them at Costco in the unrefrigerated produce section. This kind had the pits in them still and I didn’t realize that. So I tossed them in my food processor, turned it on, and almost broke the thing. Date pits are hard as rocks. The pit come out very easily, just don’t forget that step! I have also bought whole pitted dates at my little grocery store near the raisins and other dried fruit. They came in a bag that looked like a “craisin” bag. I couldn’t tell a difference between the ones from Costco and the ones from our store and I had good luck making date balls with both. Dates are the sweetest little pieces of soft fruit you’ve ever had and they don’t have much flavor. You’re going to be surprised by how much you love them.
The nuts that you use don’t really matter, use what you like. I normally do half almonds because they are a nice “neutral” nut with a firm texture (I like the little chunks left!). The other half I’ll use what I have and it’ll end up being pecans, peanuts (make your balls taste like peanut butter, they have a lot of flavor), walnuts, or cashews, or a combo of any of those. I like to use raw unsalted nuts for these but I have tried them with roasted nuts too and they were great.
When it comes to the dried cherries looked for tart cherries that don’t have any added sugar. I bought mine online but I think Trader Joe’s might have some, they have a nice dried fruit selection.
Homemade Cherry Pie Larabars are going to become your favorite healthy no-bake treat in no time. Enjoy!
- 1/2 cup pecans, chopped
- 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
- 1 cup almonds, whole
- 1 cup dates, pitted
- 1 cup cherries, dried
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- Add all of the ingredients to the bowl of your food processor and blend until the nuts are well chopped and a thick “dough” starts to form, about 3-5 minutes of processing.
- When the ingredients are well incorporated, remove the blade from the food processor. Take 1 large tablespoon of the “dough” and roll it into a ball in between your hands. Repeat with remaining dough. Keep the balls in the fridge for up to a week or in the freezer much longer.