Double chocolate banana protein balls are the perfect snack or dessert! Great for afternoon snacking to satisfy your sweet cravings. Naturally vegan, gluten free, allergy friendly.
Why you will love this recipe
- Easy to make: Everything gets added to the food processor and pulsed together to form the dough. Simply roll the dough into balls (bites) or flatten the dough out into a baking sheet to make into banana energy bars.
- Allergy friendly! These double chocolate banana protein balls are made with a base of sunflower seeds which makes them nut free and allergy friendly! You can make them with whatever nut or seed you have on hand but the sunflower seeds keep them budget friendly!
- Great for kids and adults alike! These double chocolate banana energy bites are the perfect afternoon snack no matter what your age is! Store them in the fridge and grab 1 or 2 for an afternoon pick me up!
- Satisfying snack – because of the protein, fiber and healthy fats in these energy bites, they will leave you feeling energized, so they are the perfect snack to keep hunger at bay until dinner time!
- Medjool dates – these add sweetness and also create the base for the energy bites to stick together easily.
- Roasted sunflower seeds (no salt) – instead of oats, the base of these energy bites is sunflower seeds! This is great if oats bother your stomach or you are looking for a snack that is slightly more satisfying!
- Cacao powder – this is the first of 2 forms of chocolate in this recipe! Cacao powder is not as bitter as cocoa powder and provides a chocolatey base for these energy bites.
- Protein powder – I use a vegan protein powder in this recipe to add protein which can make these more satisfying. You could try this with whey protein or collagen peptides but don’t get the exact same texture/consistency since the vegan protein powder tends to thicken the batter and helps it stick together.
- Chia seeds – chia seeds are optional but can help to add fiber, healthy fats and help absorb any excess liquid to make sure these are easy to roll and don’t stick to your fingers too much.
- Dairy free chocolate chips – I like to use the mini chocolate chips for this recipe, but you can use whatever you have on hand. This is the second form of chocolate and helps these energy bites satisfy any sweet cravings you have.
- Freeze dried bananas – instead of regular bananas which can make the batter really sticky and tough to work with, I use freeze dried bananas for the banana flavor without any of the liquid!
How to make chocolate banana protein bites
- Start by removing the pits from the medjool dates.
- Add the dates and sunflower seeds to the food processor and process on high until well combined and the mixture looks like wet sand.
- Add the water and chia seeds next and pulse just to combine.
- Add the protein powder and cacao powder to the food processor and process on high until well combined and a thick consistency. Note: you may need to scrape down the sides once or twice to ensure everything is well combined!
- Crush the freeze dried bananas in your hands and add the crushed bananas and mini chocolate chips to the food processor and pulse a few times to combine.
- Transfer the dough to a large bowl -optional – (it’s easier to scoop out of the bowl than the food processor).
- Scoop out 1-2 tablespoons of mixture into your hand (depending on how big you want these bites). Roll into a ball and repeat until you have about 20 energy bites.
- Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days. They can also be stored in the freezer for up to 1 month.
- Use sticky medjool dates. When you take the dates out of the container, if they feel hard (not soft and pliable), microwave the dates for 15 seconds or soak them in hot water for 5-10 minutes before using them in this recipe.
- When rolling out the energy bites, it can sometimes be helpful to have wet hands to ensure the date mixture doesn’t stick to your hands. Your hands should not be dripping wet, just damp.
- If you don’t use a vegan protein powder, you will want to add oat flour or coconut flour to ensure you have the right texture.
How to add protein to energy bites
- Protein powder:
- I use a vegan protein powder in this recipe. It’s allergy friendly and tastes amazing. If you have never tried vegan protein powder, it tends to be a little more dense than whey and is great to bake with since it doesn’t dry out the recipe like whey tends to.
- You could also use whey protein or collagen peptides in place of vegan protein powder. If you choose to use whey or collagen peptides, you will also want to add about 2-3 tpbs. of coconut flour or about 1/3 cup of oat flour to offset the dense quality of the vegan protein powder.
- Hemp hearts: Hemp hearts have 10 grams of protein with just 3 tbsp. hemp hearts. You could sprinkle in 3 tablespoons to this recipe without changing the texture too much.
- Peanut powder: You could use peanut powder in place of the protein powder (you will need about 1/3 cup) to add protein and give these energy bites have a peanut butter flavor.
Other add-in ideas
These chocolate banana energy bites are great on their own but can easily be changed up based on what you have on hand. You can add:
- Coconut flakes
- Other freeze dried fruits like strawberries or raspberries
- Cacao nibs – cacao nibs are made from rushed cacao beans – so that have that bitter chocolate flavor without any of the added sugar or milk. You could use these in place of the chocolate chips or as a way to add even more chocolate flavor.
Fridge: Store these banana protein bites in the fridge for up to 4 days in an airtight container.
Freezer: You can also store these protein bites in the freezer for up to 1 month in a freezer safe bag or container. Take them out of the freezer about 30 minutes before you want to eat them for the best texture.
- Medjool dates: You could also use raisins, dried figs or Deglet Noor Dates (which are more slender than medjool dates). You will want to soak the raisins or dried figs in water for 5 minutes (drain the water before use) to ensure they have that same sticky texture.
- Sunflower seeds: Use whatever seed or nut you have on hand. You could use pumpkin seeds, almonds, cashews or pecans for a similar texture and flavor.
- Chia seeds: Chia seeds help to absorb any extra water from the recipe to ensure these are not too sticky. You can also use ground flax in place of chia seeds or omit the chia seeds and use slightly less water.
- Cacao powder: This adds to the chocolate flavor of these energy bites. You can omit the cacao powder completely or use cocoa powder if that is all you have on hand.
- Vegan protein powder: you can omit the protein powder or use one of the other protein options above. You will want to add about 2-3 tbsp. coconut flour or about 1/3 cup of oat flour in place of the vegan protein powder to ensure the right consistency.
- Dairy free chocolate chips: You can use cacao nibs to add a chocolate flavor if you don’t have chocolate chips on hand. You can also chop a chocolate bar into chunks if you don’t have chips. Also this recipe would be find to completely omit the chocolate chips as well.
- Freeze dried banana: I get these at Trader Joe’s. They are a great way to add lots of banana flavor without any added liquid or sticky texture from fresh bananas. Freeze dried bananas are not the same thing as banana chips. Banana chips typically have added sugar and they are crunchier where the freeze dried banana will “melt” into the mixture as the water rehydrates the banana. You can omit this or use freeze dried strawberries or raspberries in place of the bananas.
If you love this recipe, you should try
- Carrot Cake Energy Bites
- Single Serve Protein Brownies
- Mint Chocolate Energy Bites
- Vegan Protein Banana Bread
- Vegan Chocolate Protein Banana Bread
Double Chocolate Banana Protein Balls$7.46 Recipe/$0.37 Serving
Guided Recipe Video
- In the food processor combine the sunflower seeds and pitted dates. Process until sunflower seeds resemble coarse sand (1 minute).
- Add water and chia seeds and process again, 10 seconds to combine.
- Add protein powder and raw cacao and process until completely incorporated.
- Crush the freeze dried bananas in your hand and add them along with the chocolate chips to the food processor. Pulse to just combine.
- Move the mixture to a large bowl (this makes it easier to scoop out the mixture into balls).
- Roll into balls, about 2 tbsp. each.
- Store in the fridge in a sealed container for up to 4 days or in the freezer for up to 1 month.