Step Up Your Snack Game With This Cocoa And Almond Energy Balls Recipe

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Energy balls are an increasingly common sight at supermarket checkouts, where they are offered as a healthier alternative to chocolate bars and sweets. But you don’t need to spend a couple of quid every time you want a stamina sphere – they’re very easy to make at home.

This cocoa and almond energy ball recipe comes from The Runner’s Cookbook by Anita Bean (RRP £14.99, Bloomsbury) – but these bite-sized snacks are great for everyone, not just runners looking for a boost during long training efforts. Whip up a batch at the weekend and keep them in your work fridge to have as a snack whenever the afternoon starts to drag and you hear the siren song of the biscuit tin.

Cocoa And Almond Energy Balls Recipe

Ingredients (makes 16 balls)

  • 125g ready-to-eat Medjool or other soft dates (you can use standard dried dates, just leave them to soak in boiling water for 10-15 minutes and then drain)
  • 100g ground almonds (or cashews or hazelnuts if you prefer)
  • 75g rolled oats
  • 2tsp almond or peanut butter
  • 1tbsp cocoa powder To coat the balls, your choice of cocoa powder, sesame seeds, finely chopped pistachios, finely chopped mixed nuts, desiccated coconut or chocolate chips.


  1. Place the dates in a food processor with the almonds, oats, nut butter and cocoa powder, and process for two to three minutes until you have a very stiff paste. You may need to scrape down the mixture from the sides of the bowl a few times.
  2. Take a small amount of mixture and roll it between your hands to make a bite-sized ball. Repeat until you’ve used it all.
  3. Choose your coating, spread it on to a large plate, then roll each ball around until nicely coated.
  4. Place in an airtight container and store in the fridge, where it will keep for up to a week – or in the freezer for up to three months.

Calories 86
Protein 3g
Fat 4g
-of which saturates 0g
Carbohydrates 9g
-of which sugars 5g
Fibre 1g

Nick Harris-Fry
Senior writer

Nick Harris-Fry is a journalist who has been covering health and fitness since 2015. Nick is an avid runner, covering 70-110km a week, which gives him ample opportunity to test a wide range of running shoes and running gear. He is also the chief tester for fitness trackers and running watches, treadmills and exercise bikes, and workout headphones.