Lately, I’ve been all about the cherries.
A couple of months ago, punnets of the most gorgeous cherries appeared in my local supermarket. Beautifully dark and glossy, they tasted amazing – juicy, and so sweet.
After only a few short weeks, they disappeared from the shelves as quickly as they arrived – why does cherry season have to be so short?!?
Also, where does the time go? The last time I looked up from my desk, it was July?
Now that fresh cherries are a distant memory, I’ve had to think of other ways to get my cherry fix.
These dark chocolate and cherry energy bites are the answer for my cherry loving tastebuds. These little beauties are no-bake, made with only seven ingredients, and are ready for eating in minutes. The sweet-tart dried cherries give me the fruity flavour I adore, along with lots of healthy fats from the nuts, and long lasting, slow release energy, and fibre from the oats (oh, and chocolate – you can’t forget the chocolate!)
Chocolate and cherries just go together, like eggs and bacon. Or toast and marmalade.
Um, apparently I’m also all about the breakfast.
Anyway. My love of the chocolate / cherry combo goes back to a childhood fascination with black forest gâteau. If you’ve never heard of a black forest gâteau, think whipped cream and cherry compote, sandwiched between layers of chocolate sponge cake, then decorated with more cream. And chocolate. And cherries.
Rich and delicious? Yes. Healthy? Not so much!
I haven’t eaten a slice for many a year (I’m the only one in my family who likes it and I can’t quite justify making a whole cake just for me…) but I still have a soft spot for the combination of cherries and dark chocolate.
Obviously, these chocolate and cherry bites don’t actually taste like a slice of cake. That would just be unrealistic. But when I first tried these bites, I kinda felt like I was cheating.
Yes, they’re healthy. Yes, they give you lots of good fats, and fibre, and all those nutritious things that are so important. What I wasn’t expecting though, was just how good they tasted.
These oaty chocolate and cherry energy bites are rich and chewy. Chocolatey (it’s a word!), and sticky sweet, and just so good.
Notice the full stop after the word good. Not, they taste good (for a healthy snack). Just, they taste good!
In fact, I don’t feel like I’m eating a ‘healthy snack’ when I’m eating them, I feel like I’m treating myself!
Which reminds me, I need to go and buy some more dried cherries. And oats.
The current batch in my refrigerator is going down alarmingly fast…oh well, at least they’re good for me!
- ½ cup (130g) cashew butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 teaspoons coconut oil
- ⅓ cup (100g) honey
- ½ cup (70g) dark chocolate (plus more to decorate)
- ⅓ cup (50g) dried cherries, chopped
- 1 and ¾ cups (155g) rolled oats
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a large, microwave safe bowl, combine the cashew butter, vanilla, coconut oil, honey and dark chocolate. Microwave on short (5-10 second) blasts, stirring each time until the mixture is smooth and glossy and the chocolate is melted.
- Add the chopped dried cherries and rolled oats, and stir well to combine.
- Divide equally - I used my tablespoon measure to make 20 bites. If desired, melt a little extra dark chocolate and using a fork, drizzle over the bites to decorate them.
- The energy bites can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to a week. They can also be frozen, just allow to defrost for a few minutes before eating.
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