Healthy pumpkin chocolate chunk energy bites

 

Energy bites with chocolate + pumpkin?  Welcome to Tuesday.  I know! Stop it.  They’re healthy too!

healthy chocoloate chunk energy bites

 

I need confess something: I really like candy.  I try to eat healthy 90% of the time, and the other 10% is my sweet tooth getting the better of me. This time of year puts me into full split personality mode. I love healthy, hearty soups and stews and leafy greens. But the flip-side? Gimme the candy. I know I’m not the only one raiding my kids’ Halloween buckets for the Snickers. And Reese’s. And Butterfingers. And anything with chocolate, nuts, nougat, or caramel.

 

pumpkin chocolate chunk energy bites - balls

 

But hey, I made some delicious Healthy Pumpkin Chocolate Chunk Energy Bites which are now stowed away in my freezer for when that morning (afternoon and evening) sugar craving hits and I have to have something sweet. Preferably that includes chocolate, which these bites do. With these, I’m not going to feel guilty for having three or four at one time. No. They’re loaded with healthy, satisfying things like sunflower butter, pumpkin puree, oats, dates and pumpkin pie spice for a quick hit of energy.

Did I mention chocolate chunks?  Yeah, that’s my favorite part.

 

pumpkin chocolate chunk energy bites - ingredients pumpkin chocolate chunk energy bites - chilled

 

Actually I have another favorite part and that’s how easy they are to make! Favorite part #3 is that my kids like them too. I have been making these to give to them as an after school snack. Like I said, these are perfect for those moments when you have the munchies and need something sweet so you don’t kill someone hit up the vending machine at work.

 

pumpkin chocolate chunk energy bites - scoop

Healthy Pumpkin Chocolate Chunk Energy Bites

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup pitted Medjool dates (about 8 large)
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup or honey
  • 1/4 cup sunflower butter (can use almond or peanut butter)
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 1/2 cups old fashioned rolled oats (not quick cooking)
  • 1/2 cup ground rolled oats (or wheat germ)
  • 2 Tablespoons ground flax seed
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chunks

 

pumpkin chocolate chunk energy bites - bitten

 

Instructions:

  1. Place dates in the bowl of a food processor. Process until finely chopped. It will come together into a sticky ball.
  2. Add the pumpkin puree, maple syrup, sunflower butter, pumpkin pie spice, vanilla extrac and sea salt. Process again until smooth and well combined. Stop and scrape down the sides as needed during the processing.
  3. Transfer the puree into a large bowl. Add the rolled oats, oat flour (or wheat germ) and ground flax seed. Stir until everything is combined. Stir in the chocolate chunks.
  4. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place in the fridge to chill for 30-60 minutes.
  5. Using a small ice cream scoop, form the chilled mixture into mounds and roll into balls with your hands. Place on waxed paper. Cover and place back in the fridge until ready to serve.

Keeps for about a week in the fridge. For longer storage, keep in an airtight container or bag in the freezer.

Yield: 20 energy bites.

 

pumpkin chocolate chunk energy bites

Recipe source: adapted from Gimme Some Oven and Oh My Veggies!

 

Go make yourself some energy, ASAP.

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Lindsey Johnson

Lindsey Johnson can usually be found in one of three places–the kitchen (cooking and washing dishes), behind her camera, or at her laptop editing photos and writing. If she’s not in any of those places, chances are she’s chasing after her three crazy kids or scoring a great find at the thrift store. She writes the food blog, Cafe Johnsonia and lives near the beautiful mountains in Utah with the aforementioned three crazy kids and one great husband.

7 Comments

  1. lynn :

    im like you love my sweets! thanks for the recipes

  2. Nicole :

    These look and sound delicious! I’m all for anything with chocolate in it as well as pumpkin!

  3. Mackenzie :

    Oh my word. I’m doing this. This is so going to be done. Perfect.

  4. symone :

    Great recipe idea. I’m definitely going to try making them. Perfect hiking fuel for fall. Will post pics on my blog when they are done: thenaturalmetropolitan.com.

  5. Lindsey @ DishingUpHope :

    This look GREAT! I too have a sweet tooth and am always looking for a healthy alternative. Thanks!