If you have ever had a Snickers bar, you most likely enjoy a blend of peanuts with a sweet caramel-like experience. In trying to make healthy choices, however, you may have moved on to wholesome bars, like Larabars instead, and enjoyed their Peanut Butter Cookie flavor, which mimics the flavor experience of a Snickers. While you can stop there, why not take full control of the quality of your ingredients and make a similar treat yourself in just a few minutes, using only a few simple ingredients?

This is where this recipe, whether you make it into balls, squares, or bars will provide you with just that: a delicious blend of peanuts and caramel-like experience of Medjool dates. In turn you get to avoid snack foods that contain all kinds of added sugars, oils, dairy, modified ingredients, and additives, and instead enjoy the wonderful health benefits of whole, plant foods. This treat will provide you with healthy carbohydrates, including fiber, healthy fats, healthy protein, as well as a wide range of vitamins, minerals, anti-oxidants, and phytonutrients.

Characteristics

TYPE: Snack, Treat
PREP TIME: ~ 5 minutes for bars/squares / 15 minutes for balls (+ chilling)
SERVINGS: Makes about 24 balls or 16 squares in an 8x8 inch dish

  • Whole food
  • 100% Plant-Based (Vegan)
  • Raw (not baked or cooked)
  • Gluten-free
  • Wheat-free
  • Grain-free
  • Soy-free
  • Corn-free
  • Oil-free
  • Refined sugar-free
  • Isolated sugar-free

Goodies Needed

TOOLS:

Preparation Steps

  1. Remove pits from the Medjool dates and place the dates into the food processor, along with the peanuts, and vanilla.
  2. Process on high until a crumbly and sticky mixture results.
  3. Using clean hands, form the mixture into balls, or press firmly using a spatula into an 8 by 8 inch glass dish for squares or bars.
  4. This treat can be eaten right away (it will be on the softer side), or place it in the fridge and let chill for at least 1 hour to let it firm up.

Tips

  • These treats keep well in the fridge in a sealed container for a long time, but are best frozen for long term or future use
  • For best digestion, weight and energy, always aim to eat treats like these in between meals as snacks, not right after meals as desserts.

Health & Nutrition Benefits

Peanuts / Peanut Butter

  • provide healthy fats, protein, some carbohydrates, and fiber
  • provide phytonutrients and antioxidants
  • provide vitamins, especially vitamin E and most B vitamins
  • provide minerals, especially manganese, copper, magnesium, phosphorus, iron, zinc, and potassium
  • support optimal health, weight, healing, and prevention
  • support healthy blood pressure, blood sugar, and cholesterol levels
  • protect against cardiovascular disease, cancer, and diabetes type 2
  • for more information, visit the peanut overview from World’s Healthiest Foods
  • Health Tips: Choose only pure organic peanuts and peanut butter, as peanuts have both serious pesticide and mold health concerns. Avoid peanuts and peanut butter with any oil, sugar, salt, or other additives.

Medjool Dates

  • provide healthy carbohydrates, fiber, protein, and are virtually fat-free
  • provide phytonutrients and antioxidants
  • have anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory properties
  • provide vitamins, especially the B vitamins
  • provide minerals, especially potassium, copper, manganese, magnesium, calcium, and iron
  • support optimal health, energy, weight, healing, and prevention
  • support digestive, immune, and cardiovascular health
  • for more info, see the medjool date overview on Eco Watch

Vanilla

  • provides antioxidants and phytonutrients, like vanilloids, and has anti-inflammatory benefits
  • provides some B vitamins
  • provides some minerals, especially manganese, potassium, copper, and magnesium
  • supports healing, prevention, and overall health
  • supports cardiovascular and nervous system health
  • for more information, visit the vanilla overview from Nutrition-and-You.com Tips: Use the vanilla bean directly or choose pure, natural, and organic vanilla extracts. Avoid synthetic vanilla and similar artificial vanilla products.