These cookies wear many hats of health: they're vegan, they're clean (natural ingredients and no refined sugars!), they're healthy (check out the nutrition facts!), they're filling and they're satisfying. More than satisfying in fact. They're delicious. If all of that isn't enough, they can even be made gluten free by using GF oats!
Thanks to the dates and small amount of honey, they're perfectly sweet without being too much so. You'll find these cookies have much better staying power as a snack than regular cookies due to the peanut butter and oats. They may even be the perfect long-run fuel and I am seriously considering testing them out later on this year when I pick back up distance running.
And if you aren't crazy like me and haven't given up all added sugar, can you imagine how delicious these would be with a little drizzle of dark chocolate on top? (Only 33 more days!!)
Giving up sugar for Lent this year would have been nearly impossible if it weren't for natural alternatives. I'm pretty much a sugar addict and somehow managed to give the stuff up one day before the second biggest candy holiday of the year and two days after my Girl Scout cookies arrived. Fruit has been my saving grace, dates even more so. They're sweet, delicious, and basically taste like candy. I can't eat just one. Confession: last night I went to Costco and bought two tubs of dates to last me through the lenten season. (That's five pounds of dates. I'm certifiably insane.)
For ages now, I've seen no-bake cookie dough bites popping up on blogs and they usually include dates. I thought I'd give it a go and surprisingly after one try, these cookies were the result. Peanut butter, honey, dates, oatmeal, cinnamon and vanilla extract are the only ingredients you need. Easy, simple, clean, nutritious, filling and satisfying. I hope you'll enjoy!
Guilt-Free No-Bake Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Bites
Prep-time: 10 minutes
Cook-time: Zero minutes!
Yields ~ 28 one-inch cookie dough bites
1 cup dry rolled oats (for gluten-free use GF oats like these)
1/2 cup natural peanut butter (I used crunchy because I'm always on team crunchy, but creamy works perfectly well too!)
12 pitted dates (golden or medjool work equally well)
2 tbsp honey
1 tbsp cinnamon (or more if you're a cinnamon fiend like I know so many of you are!)
1 tsp vanilla extract
- In a food processor, add dry oats and cinnamon and pulse until powdery. (About 2-3 minutes)
- Add dates and pulse until dates are well combined. (Another 2-3 minutes)
- Add peanut butter, honey and vanilla extract and pulse until combined. (2-3 minutes again)
- With your hands, roll the dough into one-inch balls. It may seem a bit crumbly at first, but if you press it together, it will stick together easily. Put the finished bites in a container or on parchment paper and place in the refrigerator for storage. Enjoy for up to one week!
|[Recipe Calculations from SparkPeople.com's Recipe Calculator]|
Of possible interest:
12 tips for kicking the refined sugar habit via Mother Nature Network