These Dark Chocolate Walnut Vegan Energy Balls are not only a super simple and healthy snack, but will also satisfy your chocolate cravings in only 15 minutes!

Dark chocolate walnut vegan energy balls in a bowl.

Why We Love This Recipe For Walnut Energy Balls

These chocolate balls with nuts were inspired by my never-ending sweet tooth and deep-rooted love for chocolate. There’s almost never a time after dinner where I don’t crave dessert, and usually, I crave something sweet mid-day as well. So, that’s where these healthy energy balls come into play.

They truly hit the spot when I’m in search of something sweet, and the best part is I eat them completely guilt-free. With oats, maple syrup, and dates, these are completely refined-sugar-free and gluten-free. I can’t wait for you to see how good they are for yourselves!

dark chocolate walnut vegan energy balls with chocolate chips

Ingredients For This Recipe

Old-Fashioned oats

For these Dark Chocolate Walnut Vegan Energy Balls I used Old-Fashioned Organic Oats as the base for them so they make a nutritious snack. Oats are high in fiber and help keep you full longer. They also don’t have much flavor, so they’re great to add to sweets.

Dates

Dates are naturally sweet and have a caramel-like flavor to them. They’re great to add to smoothies, oatmeal, desserts like these energy balls, bars, and much more. They’re even great to eat on their oat as a sweet treat.

Maple Syrup

Maple syrup is a great alternative to granulated sugar when it comes to baking, and even cooking, believe it or not. Maple syrup is about as sweet as regular sugar, so you can use the same amount if you’re substituting in a recipe. An example would be 1 cup of sugar equals 1 cup of maple syrup.

Other Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons dark cocoa
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • Generous pinch salt
  • 3 tablespoons almond butter
  • 3 tablespoons chopped walnuts, toasted
  • 3 tablespoons mini chocolate chips, plus 3 Tablespoons more for melting, optional
Dark chocolate walnut vegan energy balls next to oats.

Step By Step Instructions To Make These Vegan Energy Balls

These energy balls are super easy to make. All you have to do is grind up your oats in a food processor and then mix them with the remaining dry ingredients. That’s your dry mix.

Then make a paste in the food processor with soft pitted dates, almond butter, and dark pure maple syrup. Then you just mix the two together. This takes a little while, like 2 minutes or so. Don’t freak out when you start because it seems at first like they are too tacky, and sticky. Then the oats will start to absorb the paste and the texture will become more and more like a thick cookie dough the more you work it. I started with a stiff silicone spatula, but then I actually got right in there with my hands and kneaded the dough together. Store them in an airtight container in the fridge or freezer!

Step 1: Mix Dry Ingredients

Place the oats in a food processor and blend until finely ground. Transfer to a medium bowl. Add cocoa, cinnamon and salt and stir to evenly combine.

Step 2: Mix Wet Ingredients

Place dates in the same food processor and pulse several times until broken into chunks. Add the almond butter and maple syrup and blend, scraping down the sides if necessary, until it forms a thick paste.

Step 3: Combine & Form Balls

Add the date and almond paste to the bowl with dry ingredients. Mash and stir with a silicone spatula until it starts to resemble crumbly cookie dough, about 2 minutes. Continue working the dough, kneading with clean hands if necessary to work the oat mixture into a cohesive dough. Add walnuts and chocolate chips. Knead in well. Form into 14 balls. Drizzle the balls with melted chocolate, if desired. Refrigerate to set the chocolate. Serve and enjoy!

Dark chocolate walnut vegan energy balls on counter next to bowl.

FAQs and Expect Tips

Can you use a different type of nut butter if you don’t have almond butter?

Absolutely. Although it will alter the taste, you can use peanut butter instead. If you happen to have a nut allergy, then use sunflower seed butter and just omit the walnuts in step 3.

How long do these walnut energy balls last in the fridge?

You can refrigerate these for up to 2 weeks as long as you store them in an airtight container. You can also freeze them for up to 30 days.

Are energy balls healthy?

Energy balls are the perfect snack, especially these ones. They have a combination of healthy fats, protein, good-for-you carbs, and are also high in fiber. The ingredients leave you feeling full for longer, and the best part about them is that they’re easy to take with you anywhere you go.

Dark chocolate walnut vegan energy balls with chocolate drizzled over top.

Additional Healthy Snack Recipes To Try

Greek Yogurt Apple Streusel Muffins

Thanks so much for reading. If you are new here, you may want to sign up for my free weekly email newsletter where I share weeknight meal plans delivered right to your inbox. Or follow me on Instagram. If you make this recipe, please come back and leave a star rating and review! It is very appreciated. Happy Cooking! ~Katie

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Vegan Dark Chocolate Walnut Bites | Vegetarian | Snack | Winter | Oats | Maple Syrup | Healthy Seasonal Recipes | Katie Webster

Dark Chocolate Walnut Vegan Energy Balls

  • Author: Katie Webster
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 16 servings 1x
  • Category: Snack
  • Method: Mixed
  • Cuisine: American

Description

These Dark Chocolate Walnut Vegan Energy Balls are a super simple and healthy snack and will satisfy your chocolate cravings in only 15 minutes!


Scale

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cup Old Fashioned oats
  • 3 tablespoons dark cocoa
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • Generous pinch salt
  • 1 cup pitted soft dates, 4 ounces
  • 3 tablespoons almond butter
  • 3 tablespoons dark pure maple syrup
  • 3 tablespoons chopped walnuts, toasted
  • 3 tablespoons mini chocolate chips, plus 3 Tablespoons more for melting, optional

Instructions

  1. Place oats in a food processor and process until finely ground. Transfer to a medium bowl. Add cocoa, cinnamon and salt and stir to combine.
  2. Place dates in food processor and pulse several times until broken into chunks. Add almond butter and maple syrup and process, scraping sides if necessary until it forms a thick paste.
  3. Add paste to the bowl and mash and stir with a silicone spatula until it starts to resemble crumbly cookie dough, about 2 minutes. Continue working the dough, knead with clean hands if necessary to work the oat mixture into a cohesive dough. Add walnuts and chocolate chips. Knead in well. Form into 14 balls. Drizzle with chocolate, if using. Refrigerate to set the chocolate.

Notes

How To Store:

You can refrigerate these for up to 2 weeks as long as you store them in an airtight container. You can also freeze them for up to 30 days.


Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 ball
  • Calories: 97
  • Sugar: 8 g
  • Sodium: 22 mg
  • Fat: 4 g
  • Saturated Fat: 1 g
  • Carbohydrates: 15 g
  • Fiber: 2 g
  • Protein: 2 g