I just got back from a blogger meetup, here in Aruba!

I still need to get the pictures uploaded and the post written so in the meantime, let’s talk dates.

Recently I won Marla’s giveaway for Bard Valley Medjool Dates and they arrived in San Diego the day before I got on the plane to Aruba.

Although I love plain dates, the Almond Date Roll & Coconut Date Roll scream Omg Amazing-ness.

How good do those look!

Dates: rolled and processed with coconut and almonds.  Oh yes please!  Moist, sweet, chewy.  Nature’s Candy!

I can’t wait to put the Bard Valley Medjool Dates to use.

Maybe I will make some:

Raw Vegan Dark Chocolate Cherry Balls

Or Raw Vegan Peanut Butter Vanilla Balls (or use Almond Butter or Sunflower Seed Butter)

Or No-Bake Oatmeal Raisin Carrot Cake Bites

Or one of my personal favorite uses of dates in Raw Vegan Caramels.  3 ingredients.  Make these.

And yes, use all 3 ingredient and don’t go el cheapo trying to save money on the pine nuts. It’s a very small amount needed and worth it!   I always get a few emails about that every time post this recipe that “pine nuts are so expensive”. Maybe so, but you don’t need many.

And if you want to take it one step further, make Nut Butter Filled Carmel Bites

They are so good. 

You will never guess you are eating some no-bake, and naturally vegan and GF.  Natural “candy”.

I have a compilation Dessert Bites & Balls Post with about 25 recipes so if you need way to use dates, check that one out.

From my last post about Taking Care of Business, thanks for the comments and filling me in on what kind of bill payer you are.


1. Do you like dates?

I grew up thinking dates were gross.  I have no idea why? I saw my mother and grandmother eating them and figured I wouldn’t like them.

And, truthfully, as a kid I thought they were the same as prunes!  I know now that they’re not the same.

Plus they are not really that pretty.  Ugly food and ugly food pictures, I’ve got plenty.

It wasn’t until the past five years or so that I realized what I had been missing out on, and now, I love dates!

2. How do you like to use dates?

As I mentioned, many of my dessert bites and balls use dates in the recipes.

I use them as sweeteners and thickeners in smoothies.

You could add some to the Taste of the Tropics Smoothie

And I love to just eat them plain.

Or with Sunflower Seed Butter (or peanut butter) smeared in the middle + chocolate chips.

I call these ants on a log.

Way better than the celery version of ants on a log!

This combo is better than any candy bar, it’s sweeter, and it’s more satisfying.  And you’ll wonder why you haven’t tried it sooner.

3. Have you been on any dates lately?

No.  I’ve been married 10 years.  I wish I could say I was one of those people who “goes out on a date with my husband”.  But we  don’t.

But we’re in Aruba together and I guess that’s a “date” of sorts, right?  And now I am off to spend some time with him and Skylar.

P.S. Last chance to enter the $50 Giveaway.  Winner announced on the next post.


59 Responses to “Dates”

  1. Amanda- The Nutritionist Reviews — May 19, 2011 at 12:21 pm (#

    I’m not a big fan of dates but I do love prunes and all other dried fruits.

  2. Courtney @ Sweet Tooth, Sweet Life — May 19, 2011 at 12:22 pm (#

    I *almost* picked up some dates at the store today but ended up putting them back. After reading this post, I’m REALLY wishing I had held onto them! Next time ;)

  3. Tori (Fresh Fruition) — May 19, 2011 at 12:25 pm (#

    Yum! I don’t think I’ve ever had a date before. I keep seeing them in our store and think of all the amazing blogger recipes I’ve been seeing! Maybe I’ll get a few to try!

  4. Christa — May 19, 2011 at 12:28 pm (#

    Oh for the love… all of those pictures are making me drool all over my keyboard!! The coconut date rolls and those balls, yum!

    My favorite way to eat dates is stuffed with nut butter, or coconut butter and warmed in the microwave. so. freaking. delicious. Gotta love the Larabars too :)

    My hubby and I go on dates. Not very often, but we definitely go on dates when we’re on vacation.

  5. Heidi @ Food Doodles — May 19, 2011 at 12:44 pm (#

    Mmm, I love dates too. So many uses for them. I love making your ants on a log. Seriously, best snack ever and it totally squashes any sugar cravings for me. Who needs a crappy chocolate bar anyways?
    Haha, not many dates for me either. We’re really not the date type either, and if we’re going out we take the kids. We never leave the kids with someone else to go out, we love spending time as a family too much to leave part of it at home. Not saying it wouldn’t be nice to, once in a while though :D

  6. Holley @ Lunges and Lashes — May 19, 2011 at 12:46 pm (#

    i love dates! i will take on of each of those please! i adore them in my oatmeal as a staple, then i just skip the sugar. but stuffed with pb is pretty dang good too!

  7. Bianca @ Confessions of a Chocoholic — May 19, 2011 at 12:47 pm (#

    I’ve actually only discovered Medjool dates this year! I’ve always shied away from them and now I always have a container at home. Lovelovelove how caramely it is. I have yet to bake with them (or make vegan treats) but will do soon!

  8. kris (everyday oats) — May 19, 2011 at 12:47 pm (#

    Those coconut date rolls look really good! And so do your raw vegan caramels! I didn’t used to like dates (partly, like you mentioned, because they were SO not appealing looking), but recently i’ve been really enjoying them. Especially stuffed with nut butter. They’re such a great pre-workout snack that gives you an extra boost of energy without an upset stomach. I like to use them to sweeten up baked goods!

  9. birdie to be — May 19, 2011 at 1:03 pm (#

    Yes! I felt the same way! I have always ‘thought’ I hated dates. But I dont even remember eating them. I think they look bad maybe? And I think I was always referring to the hard, dried dates found in trail mixes. haha I will need to pick up some of these… theyre the real deal! :)

  10. Katelyn (new kid on the vegan block) — May 19, 2011 at 1:10 pm (#

    I love dates, one of my favorite desserts – I can eat them alone or in pretty much any raw dessert recipe. As for dating on the other hand…I live in Washington, DC: where dating comes to die. (Fashion, too, but that’s another story!)

  11. Leslie — May 19, 2011 at 1:15 pm (#

    I do love dates. I have recently discovered just how wonderful medjool dates are! What a difference compared to the bulk container of “dates” from SAMS CLUB! You are a lucky girl to get those in the mail!

  12. Andrea @ The Skinny Chronicles — May 19, 2011 at 1:46 pm (#

    Yes I LOVE dates. I wish they weren’t so spendy sometimes. Dates are like nature’s candy…

  13. katie @ KatieDid — May 19, 2011 at 1:56 pm (#

    I don’t think I even knew what dates were until a few years ago. When I found out what Larabars are, I realized dates might actually taste good considering how awesome the bars were.

    Now I use them as fuel for my long runs. I cut them up into pieces to make chewing easier, and they are perfect quick sugar during a run without any added ‘stuff’ that the goos have.

  14. Katie — May 19, 2011 at 2:16 pm (#

    LOVE dates. Both kinds.

    I haven’t bought any dates in a while, but I used to stuff them with chocolate chip cookie dough.

    Now I really want a date. Both kinds. :D

  15. Sarena (The Non-Dairy Queen) — May 19, 2011 at 2:21 pm (#

    Oh now those look good! I LOVE dates! In any treat or straight up…so good. Those are natures little candies!

  16. Christine (The Raw Project) — May 19, 2011 at 2:41 pm (#

    Wow, the almond date rolls sound fabulous. Great recipe inspiration, thanks.

    1. Yes and I go through a lot of them. I’ve been trying them in smoothies this week, very tasty.
    2. Smoothies, raw desserts, nut and seed milk sweeteners, or just straight up snacking on them for a quick sweet fix.
    3. Last Sunday with hubby, movie and dinner.

  17. Priyanka — May 19, 2011 at 2:42 pm (#

    As a child and teenager, I liked dates but never loved them. But now I actually love them.

    We have two date nights every month, one a quite dinner at a restaurant and one at home!

  18. Holly @ The Runny Egg — May 19, 2011 at 2:45 pm (#

    I love dates — and my love for them started when I started reading your blog because I wanted to make all of your ball recipes!

    Now I just like them plain, but some PB and choc chips makes them even better,

    Dates — usually Jason and I try to get out once a week — either out to dinner or out for drinks — it is fun to get out of the house once in a while!

  19. Amy — May 19, 2011 at 2:58 pm (#

    I never knew I liked dates until a worker at Whole Foods gave me a sample. Now I eat them everyday! I take a few to work in my lunch everyday for my dessert. I usually just eat them plain because I hate to use them in a recipe in case I don’t like it. Can’t be wasting my wonderful (and expensive) dates!
    Hope you are having a fabulous time! It is cold, wet and depressing here in the midwest!

  20. Sable@SquatLikeALady — May 19, 2011 at 3:02 pm (#

    As long as you’re spending time together that’s all that matters! I don’t think having an official date night is any better or more valuable than just having some time to be close.

  21. Crystal @ College Cooking Girl — May 19, 2011 at 3:02 pm (#

    I love dates! My mom always made date squares at Christmas time so that’s the only time I ever had them. But now I eat them a lot more often. I love their sweet taste and chewy texture.

  22. Bria @ West of Persia — May 19, 2011 at 3:09 pm (#

    Oh, I LOVE dates. The really good ones–like the mejdools you won-have that awesome caramel taste that I’m quite addicted to. One of my favorite ways to use dates is to remove the pit, and then dip them in melted chocolate. Maybe roll them in some coconut flakes or almond pieces. This makes a very simple, yet sophisticated and fast dessert.

  23. Ragnhild — May 19, 2011 at 3:27 pm (#

    I need to get my hands on fresh dates sooon! I find it nearly impossible to find fresh dates in Norway, seems like we only get the dried ones. I so want to try to put nut butter and choloate in them like on your photo. That looks just yummi!
    And I love love to go on dates! I think it is just a really nice thing to do:)

  24. mi-an — May 19, 2011 at 3:29 pm (#

    I love dates!!! :)) I recently just had some date coconut rolls and they were delish!! your date recipes look so good too!! I wanna make that rum date rolls.!

  25. Emma (Namaste Everyday) — May 19, 2011 at 4:00 pm (#

    I have recently fallen in love with dates, too! They are so awesome. i’m loving them by themselves (or with some p’nut butt-), but soon I want to try some recipes!

  26. Jess@HealthyExposures — May 19, 2011 at 4:10 pm (#

    ahhh, dates! I love them. My favorite is plain old pitted, covered with peanut butter and sprinkled with dark chocolate chips and/or shredded coconut :]
    my co-op carries date rolls that look to be a similar product as those you show – I’ve never tried them, though. Whenever I see them I think “bahhh, I can make them myself…or I’ll just shove some nuts in a whole date…” but I really ought to give them a chance!
    I will have to try out more of your date-based recipes, though! I love your raw brownies, I know that.

  27. Robin — May 19, 2011 at 4:15 pm (#

    I love dates! I only ate them in date-nut bread or date bars until about a year ago. Now I eat them most days. I buy the date coconut rolls at a store in my area, or I eat dates before running, in smoothies, etc. Yum!

  28. cathy — May 19, 2011 at 4:46 pm (#

    i’m trying to play “where is that?” with the photo that goes along with your comment about your aruba meet-up. i think i know. :)
    “I grew up thinking dates were gross.” – – > this is still me. :/ the only thing i DO like with dates is my mom’s homemade date squares (because it has an apple crisp type topping).
    have a wonderful eve!!!

  29. Gina — May 19, 2011 at 5:39 pm (#

    What a great giveaway you won! I was just eating some dates & PB though I picked up deglet dates this time and like medjools much better!

  30. J3nn (Jenn's Menu and Lifestyle Blog) — May 19, 2011 at 6:02 pm (#

    I am loving’ those medjool dates I won from Marla’s giveaway! They are so sweet and fluffy. Dead on with nature’s candy!

    I wasn’t much of a fruit eater as a kid, but yeah, dates, prunes, and figs were all in the same old people chow to me. Now I’m the “oldie.” I was so silly, lol.

  31. Naomi(onefitfoodie) — May 19, 2011 at 6:04 pm (#

    i have never dabbled int he date department but reading raw recipes they seem to pop up all over the place !I think I need to get some and try making some of your delicious lil treats! :)
    dates?!?! SIGN ME UP! :) hehe

  32. Ela — May 19, 2011 at 6:15 pm (#

    Ooh, how lucky you were to win that giveaway!

    I’m finally over my fruit-phobia and getting ready to go back to my happy place, which was always high fruit. Being half-Israeli, I was raised on dates. My childhood comfort food was mashed bananas with chopped dates–haven’t had that for about three years now, but before that it was often my dinner! Sounds so good right now…

    Your suggestions are awesome too.

  33. Pure2raw twins — May 19, 2011 at 6:22 pm (#

    oh I gosh I love dates, maybe way too much. When I tried to give up sugar, dates were one thing I could not give up.

  34. chelsey @ clean eating chelsey — May 19, 2011 at 6:23 pm (#

    Gosh, I love dates so much. They are the perfect fuel

  35. lisa — May 19, 2011 at 6:47 pm (#

    yum! I love dates! I agree, so nature’s candy! I have yet to eat them with peanut butter, ants on a log style, but will have to try soon!! :)

  36. FoodFeud — May 19, 2011 at 8:24 pm (#

    I love dates! I didn’t used to – I think because they look sort of like roaches…but I’ve gotten over that. I actually had some for breakfast with raw almond butter, I used them one as a sweetener in a cake and I used one today in a smoothie for the first time. I always mean to make larabars of sorts or raw desserts – but I eat them before I can!

  37. Callie — May 19, 2011 at 9:43 pm (#

    Funny timing as I have spent the past 2 hours searching for a new date wholesaler – ha… Sadly, I’m still searching. Obvi, I use them in my cookies the most, but also use them as a replacement for most liquid sweeteners (soak, blend, and place in fridge) – Always have date syrup on hand! And clearly, I haven’t been on any dates lately – given that most people who probably date, don’t spend hours searching for dates :) Just a theory…

  38. Tiina McKay — May 19, 2011 at 10:12 pm (#

    oh i LOVE your version of ants on a log! had 2 this afternoon and can’t believe i’ve never thought of trying that before! will definitely be having those from now on when i’m in need of a quick pick me up! and will be trying your oatmeal raisin carrot cake bites soon too…. they look amazing. and will be on the lookout for date rolls, or make my own :)

    aruba looks beautiful, don’t really know anything about that place so it’s nice to learn a bit about that area.

  39. Deb (SmoothieGirlEatsToo) — May 19, 2011 at 11:00 pm (#

    Over in Indio is where like 90% of the country’s date come from and they had samples at the PS farmer’s market- OMG they totally MELTED in our mouths. NEver had that before. I like dates fine, but if I’m honest, I’d rather have chocolate :-)

    Looking forward to seeing your meetup date pics!@

    • Averie (Love Veggies and Yoga) — May 20, 2011 at 8:51 am (#

      meetup post is up and i saw those date pics on your blog, or J’s? anyway…I knew I had this post in my drafts and was like…oh, I wish I could have tried the ones you had, too!!!

  40. Jolene ( — May 19, 2011 at 11:16 pm (#

    I have never used dates in anything!! Can you believe it!!? I do like them though, but haven’t bought them.

  41. reid — May 20, 2011 at 3:57 am (#

    Those dates look so good! My favorite way to eat them is with a slice of frozen banana and a piece of dark chocolate. I think I’m going to make the caramels this weekend if I have time!!

    (I haven’t been on a date in a long time. I needed to heal from my last relationship. Starting to get ready! Mom and daughter dates are really a nice treat. I go on a date with my Dad for lunch almost every week too.) :)

  42. Marcia @Frugal Healthy Simple — May 20, 2011 at 6:29 am (#

    We’ve been married almost 15 years, and we don’t go on dates either. I think we are going to start swapping babysitting with friends again. We did that for awhile, but then they all had 2nd babies and we didn’t. Now that their younger kids are 3+, it’s easier.

    I love dates, and I just like to snack on them with nuts or cheese.

  43. Megan@eatmybeets — May 20, 2011 at 7:07 am (#

    1. I used think dates were gross too! But now I love them.
    2. I don’t really use dates at the moment .:gasp:. but hopefully that will change soon.
    3. I love to go on dates! My boyfriend of three years and I take turns taking each other out. It’s so fun to me to get dolled up and have a nice dinner out (or other fun datey activity)

  44. Amber K — May 20, 2011 at 8:35 am (#

    I love dates, although I had actually never even tried them until I started making raw desserts. Your caramels are delicious! I absolutely love pine nuts. Yum!!

  45. Beth — May 20, 2011 at 11:15 am (#

    Great date score!
    I tried similar date rolls/balls while on the road a while back. Super yummy.

    I am a fan of dates, but not as much as 5-6 years ago when I was eating dates all the time. Natures candy!

    Enjoy your family dates & play time.

  46. marla — May 20, 2011 at 12:53 pm (#

    Oh I am soooo happy that you got your stash of dates. Can’t wait to hear about all the goodies you make with them. I know they are a BIG part of your recipes :) xo

  47. Krista — May 22, 2011 at 6:21 am (#

    I love medjool dates! I like to pop’em like candy of stuf them with almond butter. I’m not big on them baked into anything, though….Wierd, huh? ;)

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