Healthy cookie dough bites made from leftover almond pulp (from making homemade almond milk) are such an easy treat so that nothing goes to waste. Don’t worry – you can make these with almond flour too if you don’t have almond pulp. Drizzled or dipped in chocolate, they’re the ultimate vegan/gluten-free treat!
Back in the early days of blogging on this site (aka 2011), I went through a major obsession with cookie dough bites or should I say cookie dough balls because that’s what I was calling them back then.
From Nutella Cookie Dough Balls to Chocolate Chip Coconut Cookie Dough Balls to Cherry Coconut Chocolate Chip Dough Balls and almost every flavor concoction in between, I don’t think there was a week that went by that I didn’t have some sort of healthy cookie dough snack in the refrigerator.
Healthy cookie dough bites are kind of the most genius invention ever – you get all the deliciousness and texture of cookie dough without the worry of raw eggs in the dough and the guilt of eating something “bad” for you.
There are a bunch of ways to make eggless healthy cookie dough from using cashews as a base to medjool dates to oat flour or, like in this recipe, almond pulp from homemade almond milk.
Since I’ve been on this homemade almond milk making kick (which maybe I’ll eventually blog about), I’ve been having to come up with ways to use the leftover almond pulp.
Around the holidays, I was making these almond pulp thumbprint cookies on repeat, I’ve also made almond pulp muffins but, this simple and easy healthy cookie dough recipe that I rolled into bites and drizzled in chocolate might be my new favorite way to use up the almond pulp.
WHAT’S IN THESE HEALTHY COOKIE DOUGH BITES?
Using almond pulp as the base, I add the following ingredients to create the dough:
- softened and pitted medjool dates
- hemp hearts
- ground flax seeds
- softened coconut butter
- softened coconut oil
- vanilla extract
- almond extract
- coconut milk
- pinch of salt
- cacao nibs or mini chocolate chips
All the ingredients except the cacao nib/chocolate chips are processed in the food processor until a dough ball forms.
The dough is then transferred to a large bowl and the cacao nibs/chocolate chips are folded in. Use cacao nibs for extra crunch and texture in the dough balls or mini dark chocolate chips for a little sweeter option.
I like to use a medium cookie scoop to uniformly portion out the healthy cookie dough bites and roll them into balls in my hand.
Place the cookie dough bites in the refrigerator to chill while you melt the chocolate for the drizzle.
There are two options for the chocolate:
- drizzle chocolate on top
- dip the cookie dough balls in the chocolate
The drizzle approach is easier but the dipped approach is more decadent and almost turns them into a healthy cookie dough buckeye sort of like these just with almonds instead of peanut butter!
CAN I MAKE THESE WITH ALMOND FLOUR?
Yes! If you don’t have almond pulp (because obviously not everyone is as crazy as I am making homemade almond milk weekly), you can definitely use almond flour instead of almond pulp.
See the notes in the recipe below because using almond flour will require more coconut milk (or whatever non-dairy milk you choose) than almond pulp. Leftover almond pulp is full of moisture while almond flour is much drier.
You’ll have to use your judgment and add the milk slowly in the food processor until the ingredients come together in a dough ball that sticks together.
HOW TO STORE HEALTHY COOKIE DOUGH
The cookie dough bites will need to be stored in the refrigerator or freezer.
In the fridge, they’ll last 1-2 weeks but in the freezer, in an air-tight container, the bites keep for months so you can grab 1 or 2 as a snack any time your sweet tooth kicks in.
I like to use stasher bags for freezer storage. The 1/2 gallon size is perfect for storing all 28 bites this recipe makes.
GREAT FOR HEALTHY SNACKING
Not only are these bites packed with nutritious ingredients like heart-healthy almonds, hemp seeds and flax seeds, they’re naturally sweetened using dates instead of sugar.
The healthy cookie dough bites are also vegan (make sure to use an allergy-free chocolate/chocolate chips like Enjoy Life), gluten-free and dairy-free fitting almost every dietary niche and allergy-free need out there!
And while not made with almond pulp/almond flour, these pumpkin cookie dough bites are another delicious snack or treat (also vegan/gf) that are perfect for fall!
If you’re snack obsessed like I am, these are a no-brainer to add to your repertoire.
- Apple Cinnamon Cookie Bites
- Cranberry Orange Oatmeal Cookie Bites
- No Bake Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Balls
- Pumpkin Spice Chocolate Chip Bites
- Gingerbread Chocolate Chip Bites
All those bites and balls make great snack options throughout the year.
And, if you want a cookie dough ball that’s a bit more decadent, you must try these Dark Chocolate Kahlua Coffee Bites – they’re fudgy, boozy and a slam dunk for any chocolate lover. I make them at Valentine’s Day every year.
One day, I need to compile all the energy bites and cookie dough ball recipes on this site into the ultimate snack bite roundup of some sort but, until that day comes, here are some more recipes similar to these healthy cookie dough bites you can try out:
Coconut Nut Balls (these were made in the days before the keto craze but they’d probably be more commonly known as “coconut fat bombs” today if that’s your thing.
No Bake Coconut Lemon Chia Balls these have a little protein powder in them for a nicely balanced macro-nutrient snack.
Butterfinger Dough Balls one of my favorite older recipes. I don’t know how, but these dough balls taste just like a Butterfinger!
Chia Cherry Crunch Bites this recipe was really popular for a few years and I love the taste of the tart cherries in them.
Raw Brownie Bites I redid this recipe a couple years ago and decided not to roll them into balls like the original recipe but make no mistake, they’re just like all these dough balls in brownie form! Another guilty pleasure makeover using healthy ingredients.
That’s not even all of the recipes I have (told ya, I have a slight obsession) but I’ll stop there for now and spare you all the cookie dough craziness.
You should have plenty to choose from at this point and hopefully, you start with this healthy cookie dough recipe!
Whether you call them balls or bites, I know you’ll definitely call them delicious!
Healthy Cookie Dough Bites
- 1 1/4 cup almond pulp or almond flour
- 1 cup pitted medjool dates about 12, soaked in warm water if not soft
- 2 tablespoons hemp seeds
- 2 tablespoons ground flax seeds
- 1/4 cup softened coconut butter
- 1 tablespoon softened coconut oil
- pinch of salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
- coconut milk or other non-dairy milk of choice as needed (*see note)
- 1/4 cup cacao nibs or mini chocolate chips
For chocolate drizzle/dip
- 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
- 1/2 tablespoon coconut oil
- Place dates in a food processor and process until finely chopped.
- Add almond pulp, hemp seeds, flax seeds, coconut butter, coconut oil, salt, vanilla and almond extract and process again until dough forms a ball in the food processor. Scrape down sides as necessary as it processes.
- Add coconut milk as needed to get the mixture to come together. (*see note)
- Transfer the dough to a large bowl and fold in cacao nibs.
- Place the bowl in the refrigerator and chill for 20 minutes.
- Using a small cookie scoop or tablespoon, roll the dough into balls using your hands and place on a parchment lined baking sheet.
- Place baking sheet in the refrigerator to chill while you melt the chocolate.
- Melt chocolate and coconut oil in the microwave in a small bowl and stir until smooth.
- Either dip each ball in the chocolate mixture or drizzle chocolate on top of the balls using a spoon.
- Store refrigerated in an airtight container for 1-2 weeks. Or, freeze for up to 2 months.
This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition information can vary for a variety of reasons. For the most precise nutritional data use your preferred nutrition calculator based on the actual ingredients you used in the recipe.
Gina Matsoukas is the writer, founder, photographer and recipe developer of Running to the Kitchen — a food website focused on providing healthy, wholesome recipes using fresh and seasonal ingredients as much as possible. Her work has been featured in numerous media outlets both digital and print, including MSN, Huffington post, Buzzfeed, Women’s Health and Food Network.