Peanut butter stuffed dates are an easy and healthy snack idea! This recipe only requires two ingredients and there is no cooking involved. It is the perfect option for a healthy dessert or to calm your sweet tooth.
37 weeks pregnant and I'm looking for all the healthy (but tasty) snacks. I seriously can't get enough. For some reason, peanut butter seems to be high on my list of favorite foods over the last couple of weeks. The combination of peanut butter and chocolate sounds even better.
And while I obviously would love to eat peanut butter and chocolate all the time, I've come up with a much healthier option: peanut butter and dates! I've coined this recipe as a "natural version" of a Reese's Pieces.
Reasons you will love these:
- They are naturally gluten free and dairy free; a great snack for people with allergens
- There is not added sugar; any sugar in this treat comes from the date
- The peanut butter stuffed dates are easy to make
I wasn't kidding when I said this snack was easy to make! It only requires two ingredients: peanut butter and dates!
- Peanut Butter: I personally prefer creamy peanut butter because I enjoy the smooth texture. Crunchy peanut butter can also be used to add some extra texture. Feel free to substitute with another form of nut butter, such as almond butter or sunflower butter.
- Dates: The dates must be whole dates. One option is to use dried, pitted dates which do not have the pit in the middle. These are typically found in the dried fruit aisle of the grocery store. Another option is to use a fresh, whole date, however you will need to remove the pit from the center.
Let's Make A Healthy Snack!
Fresh Whole Dates:
Remove the center pit by slicing the dates open lengthwise. Using your fingers, gently pull out the pit, being careful not to tear open the entire date.
Dried Pitted Dates:
Make a small cut into the date in a length wise manner. It's important not to cut them entirely in half, since you will be stuffing the dates with peanut butter. Once you have cut the date, use your fingers to open the cut wide enough to fill it with peanut butter.
Once the dates have been cut open, fill them with 1 teaspoon of peanut butter. You may have to use your fingers to get the peanut butter in the dates.
After the dates are stuffed with peanut butter, top them off however you'd like. I personally like them plain, however you could top them with crushed peanuts, crushed walnuts, chocolate pieces or cinnamon.
Peanut Butter Stuffed Dates Variations
- Use a different type of filling: any type of nut butter will work: crunchy peanut butter, almond butter, sunflower butter or pumpkin butter.
- Toppings: 100% optional. Topping ideas include cocoa powder, cinnamon, crushed chocolate, chopped peanuts, chopped walnuts or sea salt.
How To Store Peanut Butter Stuffed Dates
Refrigerator: Store the dates in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
Freezer Method: These peanut butter stuffed dates also freeze well. I actually love eating them straight out of the freezer. Place the stuffed dates on a small cookie sheet so that they are spaced out and not touching. Freeze for 2 hours or until frozen solid. Once they are frozen, place them in a ziplock bag or airtight container. They should last for 2-3 months in the freezer.
Are Dates Good For You?
There are many different types of dates: dried chopped dates, dates coated in sugar, fresh dates and Deglet Noor Dates (dried & pitted).
Dried whole dates are considered a fruit, however they are considered a fruit that has a higher calorie and sugar content per serving size.
Although they have a high sugar content, there are still health benefits the can be found in dates. Dates are an excellent source of fiber, which can aide in digestion.
Also, dates are known to be high in polyphenols. This is a type of antioxidant that is known to help reduce inflammation (more information here).
So while dates do have a higher sugar content, they can provide some overall good nutritional benefits if eaten in moderation. The many vitamins and minerals also make them a great alternative to sugar in baking or in recipes.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Do You Use Dates For?
Dates are a fruit that are naturally sweet. They are an excellent way to replace sugar in many recipes. Dates are also known for having a texture that is "sticky", which makes them popular in many energy ball recipes and granola bar recipes.
Popular Ways to Eat Dates
- Use them in energy balls or energy bars. Check out this energy ball recipe !
- Make a trail mix: combine dates, pecans, walnuts, craisins and chocolate chips for a healthy snack.
- Make a date paste: puree dates with a small amount of water until smooth. Spread it on bread or tortillas.
- Eat them plain: the recommended serving size of dates is ¼ cup.
Can I Replace Sugar With Dates?
Dates are an excellent replacement to sugar. As discussed above in the nutrition section, they do contain sugar, however they also contain many vitamins and minerals, including Fiber.
Dates work well in energy balls and energy bars, due to their sticky texture. They can also be used to add sweetness to smoothies, sandwiches. Dates can also sometimes be used as a sugar alternative in baked goods if substitution amounts are carefully researched.
Do Dates Need To Be Refrigerated?
Dates are best when stored in the refrigerator to help preserve the quality. They can also be kept in the freezer for extended periods of time.
More Healthy Snacks
Peanut Butter Stuffed Dates
- 10 dates dried and pitted
- 10 tsp peanut butter creamy
- Make a small slice into the date in a lengthwise manner. Remove the pit if needed.
- Using your fingers, continue to separate the date, being careful not to split the date in half. Repeat with all dates.
- Fill each date with 1 teaspoon of peanut butter.
- Top with any additional toppings if desired.
- Store in the refrigerator. Enjoy!
- Dried, pitted whole dates (found in the dried fruit aisle)
- Fresh dates that still have the pits (found in the produce aisle)
- Crushed peanuts
- Cocoa powder
- Sea Salt
- Crushed Dark chocolate