Cocoa Pepita Bites

These coco pepita balls are the bomb. 'Nuff said. Hungry for dessert? Have 5 minutes? Perfect. Throw a few ingredients in a blender or mini-food processor, and voilá: a MUCH lower maintenance version of "Chocolate Salty Balls." Eat your heart out, South Park Chef!

Ingredients:

1/2 cup pepita sunflower butter (or any other non-runny nut/seed butter)

2 dates

1 tsp. Vanilla Extract

1 tbs. Organic raw cacao powder, plus one more Tbs. for dusting

*NOTE: This recipe makes about 9-ish 1" servings, but can be doubled or tripled very easily.

Method:

Put all ingredients in a mini-food processor (or blender or regular sized food processor) and pulse a few times.

Then blend all ingredients for a few more seconds at a time until well blended. You might need to take a spoon and scrape the sides a few times to get all the ingredients sufficiently mixed.

Using clean hands, roll the mixture into 1/2"-1" balls and place onto a serving plate or a sheet of wax paper.

Place remaining cocoa powder in a mesh strainer (or any other kitchen tool with a fine mesh weave) and dust the balls with chocolate. (This is the PG version, get your mind out of the gutter!)

Eat immediately, or place them in the fridge to chill until ready to serve.

Health Benefits:

Cacao: Organic cacao is a legit superfood. It abounds with Vitamin A, C, and E, and a plethora of B vitamins, as well as, magnesium, copper, calcium, manganese, zinc, sulphur, iron, chromium, phosphorus, and Omega 6 fatty acids. It is also high in protein and fiber. Move over spinach! See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Dates: Dates are rich with vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin A, calcium, iron, potassium, manganese, and copper. They are also high in other antioxidants such as beta carotene and lutein, which help protect and nourish our cells. But they’re high in sugar, so a dab’ll do ya. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Pepitas (Hulled Pumpkin Seeds): These babies are packed with zinc and vitamin E, but are also excellent sources of manganese, tryptophan, magnesium, phosphorus, and copper. They are also very high in protein. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information. Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality.

Sunflower Seeds: A handful of sunflower seeds will supply significant amounts of vitamin E (the body's primary fat-soluble antioxidant, which is also an anti-inflamatory and cardiovascular health superstar), magnesium (which has been said to help reduce the severity of asthma, lower high blood pressure, and prevent migraine headaches, as well as reducing the risk of heart attack and stroke), and selenium (helpful for DNA and cellular repair). See here for more health benefits and nutritional information. Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality.