Dessert

Pumpkin Pie Energy Bites (My Secret Recipe)

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Since simple, raw energy bites have been some of the most popular recipes here on PaleoGrubs, I was excited to come up with another version of the recipe to share. This time the delicious round bites include pumpkin, in the spirit of the fast-approaching fall. Ready to enjoy in minutes, these pumpkin pie energy bites make the perfect sweet snack.

Pumpkin Pie Energy Bites (My Secret Recipe)- these make healthy snack and dessert. So popular with all of my friends and family!

You need to try these pumpkin pie energy bites! My friends LOVE them and request them every time they come over. They are perfect for a quick snack or wholesome sweet treat. So yummy.



I have a habit of craving something sugary at the end of my meals. These small sweet bites are the perfect solution for such occurrences. Eating one or two for dessert satisfies my sweet cravings without any guilt, since they are also healthy for me. The right mixture of dates, pecans, pumpkin puree, and coconut flakes gives the balls an almost cookie dough-like texture as you bite into them. This mixture also loads each bite with fiber, antioxidants, and nutrients.

These easy pumpkin pie energy bites are vegan, gluten-free, and required absolutely no baking. Once the ingredients are blended together in the food processor, I recommend putting the dough in the refrigerator. That way it will be easier to work with and shape into balls. Once the balls are formed, you could also roll them in additional chopped nuts or coconut flakes if desired. Then store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

pureed pumpkin and spices
just made

Like the other kinds of energy bites I have posted on PaleoGrubs, this recipe can also make energy bars if you press the dough into a square baking pan and chill in the refrigerator. It really depends how you would like to consume the raw pumpkin pie snack – as a couple bites of dessert after dinner, or as bars for packing along on a trip. Whichever shape they take, they will be bursting with the deliciously sweet spicy flavors of pumpkin pie.

Pumpkin Pie Energy Bites (My Secret Recipe)- these make healthy snack and dessert. So popular with all of my friends and family!


Ingredients

    • 1 cup pitted Medjool dates
    • 1/2 cup pecans
    • 1/3 cup pumpkin puree
    • 1/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
    • 2 tsp vanilla
    • 1 tsp cinnamon
    • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
    • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
    • Pinch of salt

Directions

  1. Place the dates into a small bowl and cover with water. Let soak for 10 minutes, then drain.
  2. Place the pecans into a food processor and pulse until finely ground. Add in the rest of the ingredients, including the soaked dates. Pulse until combined. Adjust the spices to taste. Place into the refrigerator for 30 minutes to chill.
  3. Use your hands to form the dough into small balls. Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container.

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    • Hi Kelli,

      Is it only nuts you are trying to avoid? I ask because you may substitute with a seed such as sunflower, chia, or pumpkin seeds… I haven’t tried the substitution myself but it seems like it should work just fine.

      Otherwise, (breaking the paleo-ism of it all) you could always use oats.

      Cheers!

      • I agree with Michelle, if you are okay with a non-Paleo option, oats would probably be the best substitute. You would have to play around with the other ingredients to get a good consistency.

    • ground flax or oatmeal may work and how about raisins if you don’t have dates. Recipes are only suggestions if you use your imagination.

    • The only thing that came to mind was dried cherries, though that would change the flavor a bit. Someone else suggested persimmons which might be worth a try.

  1. I made these today, and they are delicious, but the texture is very soft. I did get them to form into balls, but they are really soft and hard to handle. Any ideas on what I might have done wrong?

  2. Do you think this would it work if you omit the coconut entirely? I’m newly exploring paleo, and am on day 20 of the whole30, I can do coconut flour and milks and such, but I can’t quite get past the texture of the actual coconut. Thanks!

    • Hi Jen! Since everything is blended you actually don’t get the texture of the coconut flakes specifically. So if you like the taste of coconut I would suggest keeping it in!

  3. These are delicious, but mine are much darker in color, probably because of the dates.
    Also, they are quite wet and soft but firm up after a day or two in the fridge.
    How did you get the nice, golden color?

  4. Thanks for the inspiration. I just used this to use up some of the persimmons I got in my bountiful basket. I replaced the dates with the persimmons, added just a touch of honey to balance the sweetness and some raw cashews and chia seeds to keep the right consistency. They are great 🙂

    • Instead of coconut, shredded carrots would work well. Though I have not tried making this recipe without nuts, I think that oats would be a fine replacement.

  5. These are delicious!! I am having a hard time forming into balls after chilling for over 30 minutes in the fridge. I stuck the puree into the freezer to chill longer. Any suggestions?

    • If the puree is too soft, placing it in the freezer to chill would be my suggestion. Or you could add more coconut flakes.

  6. Jess,

    Thank you for this recipe, I’ve been making energy balls for a long time now but this pumpkin version takes the cake! (Or pie, rather? :D)

    Anyhow, super easy, fast, and simple. The clove taste might be just a weeeee bit too strong (which is okay this time as I am a huge clove fan), but next time I might try knocking it down to 1/8 tsp.

    Happy holidays,
    Michelle

    • Hi Jennifer, I am not positive what would make the best substitution. I believe dried cherries or persimmons might be worth a try, as suggested above.

  7. Made these last night and let sit in fridge overnight. Ours came out too soft for our liking as well but the taste is great, the only thing I would change would be to use pumpkin pie spice mix instead of clove. The clove flavor is quite strong.

  8. Hey there- I also had a hard time getting them to firm up, but I am going to put them in the freezer and try them colder. I added a 1/4 cup of shredded carrots to the mix, and two scoops of banana whey protein and they are really yummy, even if they are a bit soft. I’m not paleo, but just eating clean. Thanks for the recipe!

  9. Delicious! My new fav! They now have fresh-pack dates in with the raisons and cranberries (as opposed to dried) and they made these balls extra gooey and amazing! Def will be making these again in the future 🙂

  10. My husband loves these and is traveling a bit for work. He wants me to send him some…do they have to be refrigerated? Or is that just for a better taste? If they do, could they be baked for a bit to make them safe to ship? Thanks for the recipe!

  11. I can’t figure it out …. RAW or COOKED pumpkin?
    Is there any way to add eggs (or tapioca flour, perhaps?) to this and make it a baked recipe?
    It sounds like its got some serious pumpkin-flavored brownie-like potential!!!

    Just wondering ….

  12. I just made these and gave a we taste to my two year old. “Those make me dance!” He said. After hearing that, the six year old wanted a taste and sure enough, she danced too.

  13. These taste good but mine turned out brown and are very mushy. I will leave the in the refrigerator for that but I’m curious why I didn’t get the nice golden color either.

  14. I made these today and they turned out perfect…TOO good because they will NOT make it until Thanksgiving! My food processor did not want to chop the dates very well. I was in a hurry so I just used them as it was. Mine chilled and formed balls perfectly. I put the dough into a glass bowl and covered it in the fridge for about an hour before forming.

    When I bite one and close my eyes it feels like I am eating pumpkin pie! But I think the flavor is better! They are seriously addicting. I have to be careful and limit myself. KEEPER for sure. I think all the spices are spot on.

  15. Great little snack …love the flavors. I subsitued crushed pretzels for the nuts (only because I didn’t have them on hand). It worked for me. Next time I will try using oaks.

  16. These look awesome. I love pumpkin and dates!!! I tend to always crave sweets after a meal as well so these will be great. Thank you for sharing.

  17. I found the pumpkin puree really needed to be reduced in order for them to be firm enough to form balls. I tried it with canned pumpkin too, but still should have reduced the puree. Next time I will add the chia seeds and see if that firms them up better. But they are delish!

  18. These are great! I will definitely make these again. Mine were also more brown than orange and a little soft but still great! I’m thinking I should squeeze the liquid out of the dates a little more. Thanks for sharing!

  19. I just started making these and can’t find my pecans. Does it matter what kind of nut? I have cashews and almonds. I also have almond flour

  20. I’m having a heckuva time finding a recipe for Energy Bites or Balls that don’t contain any sort of nuts, seeds or nut butters (coconut is fine). This is the closest one I’ve found. Any thoughts on a non-nut/seed substitute for the pecans? I don’t care about texture so much as I want them to firm up. Doing a Ragnar in a couple of weeks and need some good energy food.

  21. Just made these… they are good! I omitted the pecans, and added a little extra pumpkin so that the date flavor wasn’t too strong. They were quite soft even after keeping them in the freezer a little and then refrigerating for 24 hours. And the texture wasn’t that enjoyable to eat. So I baked them in the oven at 350 for 25 minutes and they are much better, in my opinion! Has more of a “hushpuppy” texture and is easier (and cleaner) to pack in a baggie for a snack. Thanks for the recipe, Rebecca!

  22. I made these this week! so delicious. I had sweetened (“angel flake”) coconut so I used that instead of unsweetened. It adds 10 grams of sugar to the whole batch so I’m ok with that. also, my food processor did not whirl the dates very well so on the second batch, I chopped the nuts and dates instead. It made a chunkier texture that requires some very satisfying chewing. So glad I tried it!

  23. I also would like to know if the pumpkin puree is raw or cooked – I’d assume raw seeing as the recipe calls them raw pumpkin energy bites, but raw pumpkin?! very curious. Maybe raw pumpkin firms them up a bit

  24. These are over the moon! I rolled them in some more coconut flakes to make them easier to handle and served them for Thanksgiving! The family loved them and everyone wanted the recipe. So I emailed them the link. You have a winner here!

  25. I made these as a sweet treat as my husband and I have ditched processed sugar. They are an instant favourite! Our teenaged son and his friends loved them too. We store them in the freezer and eat them frozen, so good! Thanks for sharing the recipe.

    • I hadn’t thought of freezing them! I’m about to make these to tonight and will try them frozen. Thanks for the great idea.

  26. I have been making these since 2014 and they have become a favorite my elderly mom lives them. My hubby says he “dosent care for them that much,” but I find him sneaking them anyway. I took them to a holiday potluck (made two batches and was glad I did) and not only were they all eaten, but they stirred much conversation and earned second place (by applause) for “desserts” at the party!

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