Raw Chocolate Pecan Bites

Bliss balls, energy bites--call them what you will! These little treats are a go-to for me because they require only three base ingredients, no baking, and are added sugar-free. My love affair started with the chocolate chip cookie dough bites about two years ago, and now I've been making variations on a weekly basis when I can. Another favorite? Snickerdoodle bites. Yum. 

Pack some for a hike, keep a container at work for quick fuel, pop a few after a workout, or keep the kids happy before dinner. Even though they taste like dessert, they're made from only whole food ingredients, which means they're packed with vital macro and micronutrients. Seriously a dream come true. 

The three base ingredients? Dates. Nuts. And spices of your choice. It's actually that simple.

For these, I chose cacao powder and chocolate chips as my flavor profiles--I think these are perfect for Valentine's Day! And if you want to experiment, I have a feeling you could leave the pecans out of the date dough and make the ultimate chocolate truffle….

Raw Chocolate Pecan Bites (makes 6 bites)

2/3 cup fresh Medjool dates, pitted + chopped
1/3 cup chopped pecans
4 tbsp cacao powder (heaping)
2 tsp water (or more as needed)
1/4 tsp vanilla
pinch of salt
1/4 cup dairy-free chocolate chips
1/4 cup smashed chopped pecans

Gently pulse your pecans in a food processor until diced (but not yet a flour consistency). Add in your dates slowly; the dates will want to form a ball, so you'll need to keep breaking it up and pulsing until you get an even, sticky texture.

Next, add your cacao powder, water, vanilla, and salt, continuing to break up the date ball until well-incorporated. Taste and adjust for preferences. The water will help keep things moving.

Transfer to a cutting board and roll into a large ball. Taking about 1 tbsp of date dough at a time, roll your mixture into 1-inch size balls. Smash about 1/4 cup of pecans in a pestle and mortar, then combine in a bowl with the chocolate chips. Coat each ball in the toppings until evenly covered (you might need to press the toppings in a bit to keep them stuck). 

Store your bites in an airtight container in the fridge and enjoy whenever you'd like! These bites are dense, decadent, and--dare I say--healthy, with the right amount of crunch and flavor to satisfy any sweet tooth. Happy snacking!