What does that delicious word mean to you? To me, it is one of a love/stuggle relationship. I have been working on improving my relationship with sugar, and this most often surrounds chocolate. There is nothing I love more than a chocolate treat curled up on the couch after the kids go to bed. Because, lets get real, I do not want to share.
This late night treat often leads to a small binge of not the healthiest of chocolate choices. In an effort to clean up my treats, and reduce to frequency of how often I indulge, I wanted to create a healthier alternative. I think I have done just that!
These truffles are made with medjool dates. Dates are high in protein and fiber, and contain potassium and B vitamins. They are also a great sweetener alternative! Sunbutter is added to the dates and is made from sunflower seeds. Sunflower seeds are high in B vitamins, vitamin E, copper and selenium. Sunflower seeds also provide a healthy source of linoleic acid and fiber.
Now, one could debate that chocolate in itself is not a healthy choice. Conventional chocolate contains high fructose corn syrup, artificial food colorings and flavors, and waxes. These ingredients are linked to weight gain, cavities, allergens and ADHD. But, if you find quality sourced chocolate, with minimal additives, it can be beneficial to your diet. Dark chocolate, specifically, has been shown in studies to lower blood pressure (1,2), reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease (1), as well as providing fiber, antioxidants, iron, magnesium and copper for the body.
I have been focusing on chocolate brands that are non-GMO or organic, in an effort to clean up my chocolate choices. One of my favorite bars of dark chocolate is the Endangered Species Chocolate. When I am not buying a bar of chocolate, I usually turn to the combination of peanut butter and chocolate. It really is the best way to enjoy chocolate!
The truffle recipe below is based of my current obsession with sunbutter, to add a little twist on the typical peanut butter chocolate combination. Since these truffles have so many beneficial nutrients, I don’t feel guilty indulging in my chocolate treat. And the dates and sunbutter satify my snack craving with just one truffle!
- 9 medjool dates (pitted)
- 3 tablespoons Sunbutter*
- 1/3 cup Gluten Free Oats
- 1/2 cup Enjoy Life Dark Chocolate Morsels
- 1 tsp coconut oil
- 1 scoop collagen peptides (optional)
- Place dates in a bowl and cover with boiling water for five minutes. Then drain.
- Place oats in a food processor and pulse till they are finely ground.
- Add softened dates, sunbutter and peptides (if using.) Pulse food processor till a cohesive ball forms. This may take a few minutes for all the ingredients to incorporate, and you may need to open and stir the mixture a few times. I find pulsing the mixture works better than continuous mixing.
- Once the mixture is combined, use a teaspoon to scoop out and form a round ball between your palms. Set aside on a baking tray.
- Combine chocolate chips and coconut oil in a small glass bowl. Microwave in 30sec intervals, stirring in between, until melted. My microwave took a total of 1 minute 30 seconds.
- Using a fork, dip the truffles in the chocolate, cover and tap the excess chocolate off with your fork. Place chocolate dipped truffles on a parchment covered tray and chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.
*Store for 1 week in the fridge or 1 month in the freezer…if they last you that long!
**Can substitute sunbutter for favorite nut butter of choice.
*** Sprinkle with sea salt before chilling, if salted chocolate is your jam… it certainly is mine!