Step-by-Step Chocolate Pistachio Energy Bites

Yield: Makes 18 energy bites

Enter the Energy Bite. Chock full of heart healthy nuts, fibre-rich dried fruit, and anti-inflammatory spices like ginger and cardamom, these little bites of deliciousness are sure to power you through the day. Have one of these after you hit the gym and you’re pretty much winning at life.

Juicy Medjool dates, which are super high in potassium and antioxidants, are the base for these bites. Combined with cocoa powder, they make a sweet chocolate mass, without any refined sugar added. Feel free to switch up the nuts to whatever you like. Walnuts, pecans, peanuts, cashews would all be exceptional. Add orange zest and other spices like cinnamon and star anise. You can munch on these as-is, or get fancy and roll them around in cocoa powder. Placed in a pretty glass jar, they make a dandy hostess gift too.

This is a recipe that is gluten free, vegan, dairy free, refined sugar free, and can be thrown together in five minutes, thanks to your trusty food processor. Not only do they check off all the boxes, but these energy bites taste really good too, with a little zing from the fresh ginger and a little crunch from the cacao nib. Think of them as a less-indulgent, distant cousin to the chocolate truffle.

The energy bites make a quick on the go breakfast and tucked into lunch bags, your kids won’t know just how healthy these chocolate balls of goodness are. Best part is there is no need to feel guilty about snacking, but your fondness for watching Dancing with the Stars, well that’s another matter. 

Renée Kohlman is a food writer and pastry chef living in beautiful Saskatoon. She writes restaurant reviews for The Saskatoon StarPhoenix and whips up delicious gluten-free dessert creations at Leyda's Café. Check out her blog

Photo by Renee Kohlman


1 ½ cups pitted Medjool dates

3 Tbs cocoa powder

6 dried figs, stem removed

½ cup pistachios

¼ cup almonds

¼ cup cacao nibs

1 Tbs coconut oil

2 tsp fresh ginger, sliced

1 tsp ground cardamom

1 tsp (5 mL) pure vanilla

½ tsp sea salt

extra cocoa powder for rolling (optional)


  1. In the bowl of a food processor, combine all ingredients, except extra cocoa powder.
  2. Process until mixture is coarsely ground and comes together in a ball, about 3-4 minutes. Take a heaping tablespoon and roll gently with palms.
  3. Place extra cocoa powder in a shallow bowl and gently toss energy bites, if you like. Store in an airtight container in refrigerator for 1 week.

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