Pumpkin spice and everything nice — these Chocolate Peanut Butter Pumpkin Bites make for the yummiest quick and easy snack!
I say it every year, but I’m not a huuuge huge pumpkin-flavored-everything fan. I like it here and there, but more of a “dip my toe in, not dive head first” kinda way. These Chocolate Peanut Butter Pumpkin Bites are juuuust that!
I often get asked what healthy snacks I like to keep on hand when my hunger strikes, and these are always one of my simple go tos! Energy bites are easy (and fun!) to make, can be packed with super nutrient-dense whole food ingredients, and offer a quick, no mess form of fuel while on the go (or just sitting on the couch!). These are naturally sweetened with dates, and chock full of healthy fats, fiber and complex carbs to help provide sustained, lasting energy…without the crash.
Is Snacking Bad for Me?
If you’ve been trying to improve your eating habits or develop a healthier way of eating, you’ve likely asked yourself about snacking. Is it bad? Should I “need” a snack? What snack is best? Do I have to give up snacking to lose weight/reach my goal?
These are all valid questions!! Snacking is a point of contention in the wellness world. You have one camp that swears by snacking, and you have another camp that swears against it. So, which is it??
Well guys, it largely depends. Yep. It. Depends. Do you NEED to snack? Do, you don’t *need* to. Some people do perfectly fine eating 3 regular meals a day without snacking, while others feel like they couldn’t go without a snack. Neither is wrong nor wrong, however there are some things to consider to come to a decision that is right for you:
- Above all, make sure you are eating enough overall. You might feel like you “need” a snack simply because you aren’t eating enough at your meals to keep you feeling full and satisfied. If you don’t like the idea of snacking, try upping your intake at meal times and trying to include a mix of protein, fat, carbs and non-starchy veggies.
- What does your schedule allow? Some people, for one reason or another, can’t sit down to 3 full meals a day, so having smaller meals and more frequent snacks is more reasonable. Both work!
- What feels best to you? Honestly, do you feel better snacking, or not? Play around with both approaches and see which works better.
- Most of the time, focus on snacking on minimally processed, whole foods — not chips, crackers, cookies and other common packaged “snack foods”. Snacking on nutrient dense foods will provide improved satiety and fullness, so you don’t continue to mindlessly munch. However, this doesn’t mean that you’ll never snack on chips again (I’m typing this as I sit on the couch with a bag of chips haha #mindfuleating).
- Think of snacking like a mini meal: try to include a form of protein, fat and carbs to improve satiety and fullness
So, bottom line: snacking is not bad! Especially when it includes these Chocolate Peanut Butter Pumpkin Bites 😉
Yeah, back to those guys. Like I said, I’m personally not super into a heavy, sweet pumpkin flavor, so a dash of pumpkin spice is all you need for the perfect hint of pumpkin/fall flavor in these Chocolate Peanut Butter Pumpkin Bites! I also used pumpkin seeds for an extra magnesium boost — magnesium is a crucial nutrient for over 300 processes in the body, yet most Americans are deficient!
Try this recipe out and let me know what you think! I bet it’ll be on repeat all fall long 🙂
Chocolate Peanut Butter Pumpkin Bites
- 1 cup oats
- 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
- 1/4 cup cacao powder
- 2 tbsp chia seeds
- 3-4 medjool dates, pitted
- 1/3 cup creamy peanut butter (natural is best)
- 1 tsp almond extract (or vanilla)
- 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
- Pinch sea salt
- Remove pit from dates and soak dates in hot water for 10 min to soften. Remove from water and transfer to food processor to blend into a paste along with 2-3 tbsp of water. Add date paste to large mixing bowl.
- Add oats and pumpkin seeds to food processor and pulse into a flour-like consistency. Add to bowl with date paste and all remaining ingredients.
- Use a rubber spatula to mix everything together until well combined. If mixture is too dry, add additional 1-2 tbsp of water at a time. If too wet, add additional oats.
- Store in freezer for 15-20 min to slightly harden (optional, but makes rolling into bites easier/less messy) before rolling into bite size balls. Optional: roll in cacao powder afterwards! Store in an air tight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.