No Bake Chocolate Hazelnut Cookies

This healthy, clean eating recipe for No Bake Chocolate Hazelnut Cookies contains no refined sugar and is easy to make in a food processor.

I did a bit of shopping with my mother-in-law and sister-in-law earlier this week, after celebrating Christmas with K’s family.  I couldn’t resist picking up a few new spices and flavors for sweet recipes at William’s Sonoma, including espresso powder and ground vanilla beans.

I came right home and made these No Bake Chocolate Hazelnut Cookies for a healthier snack to nibble on during this holiday week. Bonus: I think they make great road trip cookies with the extra kick from espresso powder {though adding it is optional}! I also snacked on these cookies after running a 10k on my own yesterday afternoon – I love running in the middle of the day during holiday vacation.

This summer I posted a recipe for No Bake Chocolate Orange Cookies, and it’s still K’s favorite version of “energy bites” from my growing snack recipe collection. I thought hazelnuts made a better wintry or holiday snack for this updated no bake cookie recipe. I started by toasting one cup of raw hazelnuts on the stove top for a few minutes, in coconut oil.

Next I added toasted hazelnuts and the remainder of ingredients to a food processor – unsweetened cocoa powder {Ghirardelli is my favorite}, dates, vanilla powder and espresso powder.

One extra step makes these no bake cookies come together so easily – soak your dates in almond or cashew milk for 1-2 hours before processing. This adds the perfect amount of moisture to the recipe and makes the cookies easy to scoop up. {Make sure to drain the dates before adding to the food processor}.

After the mix comes together in the food processor, pack a medium cookie scoop and form the cookies into balls with your hands. To make a “cookie” shape, press down gently on each cookie ball with a fork, in a criss-cross pattern.

I think it’s snack time again. Have a great holiday week and Merry Christmas if you celebrate!

No Bake Chocolate Hazelnut Cookies

Yields: 14 cookies

25 dates*
1 cup unsweetened almond or cashew milk
1 cup raw hazelnuts
2 teaspoons coconut oil
2 Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon vanilla powder**

Optional: 1/2 teaspoon espresso powder

How to~
*Soak dates in almond or cashew milk for 1-2 hours. Drain liquid from dates.
*Saute hazelnuts in coconut oil for ~3 minutes on the stove top, on medium-low heat.
*Add toasted hazelnuts and the rest of the ingredients to a food processor – dates, cocoa powder, vanilla powder, and espresso powder.
*Process until the ingredients are evenly combined {20-30 seconds}, using the “pulse” function.
*Remove the cookie mix from the food processor and use a medium cookie scoop and your hands to form the mix into balls. Create a “criss cross” pattern with a fork to make a cookie shape.
*Cookies will last chilled in the refrigerator for one week, and a few months if stored in the freezer.

*I used California dates, which are quite a bit smaller than Medjool dates.
**You can substitute vanilla extract.

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