These cashew-date energy bites are all natural in that there's no added sugar and they're made from whole food ingredients (that you can pronounce!) I source my ingredients from the bulk foods section of our local natural foods store, EATS, which also serves in saving me A LOT of money in comparison to buying snack bars from the grocery store. I make up a large batch every two weeks or so and stick them in the freezer. When I need a few, I pull them out, place in a ziploc baggie and typically they've thawed to the perfect consistency by the time I'm ready to eat them. Feel free to make these as is, or play around with your own extra flavor add ins!
2 cups dates
2 cups cashews
1/2 cup coconut flakes
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
1/4 cup dried tart cherries (or dried fruit of choice)
Preheat oven to 350 F and toast your cashews for approximately 5 minutes. Let cool before transferring to your food processor. Now toast your coconut for approximately 3-5 minutes (watch it so it doesn't burn!) and set side.
Meanwhile, blend your cashews to form a nut-based flour (note: thanks to friend Kati for the tip of doing this first!). Next, add your dates, dried tart cherries and pumpkin seeds into the same food processor and continue to blend until it becomes moist and starts to come together. Transfer mixture into a mixing bowl and fold in the toasted coconut by hand. Form into balls, or line a small baking pan with parchment paper and press into bars. Note, you may find it best to use a paper towel to absorb excess oil while pressing (naturally expressed from the cashews). Place in an airtight container in the fridge! These mini snack bites are packed with nutrients and concentrated energy and are naturally sweet...perfect for fueling any ride, run, pre-gym or just as a snack!
Download the recipe here.
To end this post, I have to give a huge shout out to the peeps of UltraVT. As the school semester comes to a close, many individuals are graduating and/or taking jobs that will be pulling them away from SWVA, including the team's co-founders Rudy and Guy. For those who are moving on: you will be missed tremendously! For those who are staying: I am looking forward to see where you take the team next! I had the opportunity to enjoy two great runs with the team this past week and I am thankful for both great runs and fellowship with friends.
Have a great weekend, enjoy those workouts and fuel well!!!
Kristen Chang is Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN), Certified Specialist in Sports Dietetics (CSSD) and endurance athlete residing in southwest Virginia alongside her husband and dog. Through this blog she aims to share favorite fueling recipes, general wellness and sport nutrition tips and stories from her athletic endeavors.
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