An Easy Vegan Dessert for Valentine’s Day

Photo by Lindy Stockton

Valentine’s Day is upon us and I think this “fudgy balls” recipe is worth reposting. It’s a simple treat that would make the perfect homemade Valentine’s gift. Enjoy!

This morning I threw out all the refined sugar and flour products in my kitchen. I decided the next time I need a dessert, I will use only unrefined, natural ingredients. For example, if a co-worker is having a birthday, it’s nice to bring in a treat to celebrate. In the past, I would normally feel compelled to bake vegan cupcakes using a recipe from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World: 75 Dairy-Free Recipes for Cupcakes that Rule. Every recipe is delicious. Always a big hit with omnivores too. But I know there are healthier dessert options. So in honor of my new commitment to optimum health, I wanted to share a simple and sweet recipe I learned from a friend. It’s natural and delicious.

Fudgy Balls
Makes about 12-16

1/2 cup all-natural nut butter (peanut butter is my favorite)
1/2 cup pitted dates
1 tbsp cocoa powder
Shredded coconut, if desired

Soak dates in water for about an hour. Drain dates. Using a food processor, combine the nut butter, dates, and cocoa. Once mixture is well-combined, use your hands to roll mixture into small, bite-size balls. Next, roll balls in shredded coconut as shown above, if desired. Refrigerate for about 30 minutes so the balls will become extra firm. Store in the refrigerator.

For the completely lazy, you can skip making the balls and just store the mixture in a sealed container in the fridge. Eat a spoonful when the desire for a sweet snack takes hold.

Variations:

  • You can use any kind of nut butter (cashew, almond, pistachio, etc.).
  • Instead of cocoa, try carob powder or raw cacao nibs.
  • If you don’t like coconut, try rolling the balls in ground flax-seed or leave them naked, which is my personal preference.
  • This dessert could be made completely raw by using a raw nut butter and cacao.
  • I have also added a pinch of cinnamon and a bit of vanilla before when using raw almond butter.
  • Add dried fruit, such as cherries. Yum.

Get creative with this simple recipe and have fun in the kitchen. You will not miss the white sugar and flour one bit. Enjoy!

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