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Healthy Food Trend: Dates for Dessert

Mini Chocolate Covered Dates Snickers Bars on a Plate with Bowls of Almonds Beside

The following recipe was created by Heinen’s Chief Dietitian, Melanie Jatsek, RD,LD. Photography was provided by Christina Musgrave from Tasting with Tina.

I can’t remember how old I was when I stopped going trick-or-treating, but that doesn’t mean I don’t still have a favorite candy. In case you’re wondering, it’s a Snickers bar. The combination of chewy caramel and crunchy peanuts covered in velvety chocolate makes my mouth water just thinking about it.

Of course, the dietitian in me goes right to the ingredient list—corn syrup and artificial flavors are among the biggest offenders in most candy bars. You may be thinking, “It’s a candy bar, Mel! It’s not supposed to be healthy.” But who says you can’t have the best of both worlds?

Mini Chocolate Covered Date Snickers Bar Ingredients in their Packaging on a Neutral Colored Surface

A trending recipe that recently caught my attention was for chocolate covered peanut butter-stuffed dates. Believe it or not, they taste just like a candy bar.

Now, don’t be intimidated by dates! They’re actually a natural sweetener that has gained a lot of popularity in recent years! The chewy flesh of this premium fruit is moist and plump with a rich, sweet flavor that can be likened to caramel.

Close up of Mini Chocolate Covered Dates Snickers Bars on a Plate

In only 10 short minutes and with five simple ingredients you can whip up your very own better-for-you candy bars. They’re just too good to resist! And because they’re made with Fx™-approved ingredients, you don’t have to.

Mini Chocolate Covered Dates Snickers Bars on a Plate with Bowls of Almonds Beside
Healthy Food Trend: Dates for Dessert
Prep time:
Total time:

12 Mini Healthy Candy Bars


  • 12 Fresh Energy Medjool dates
  • 1/3 cup Heinen's fresh ground peanut butter or almond butter
  • 1/4 cup Heinen's unsalted peanuts or raw almonds, chopped
  • 1/2 cup Equal Exchange bittersweet chocolate chips
  • 1 tsp. Heinen's coconut oil
  • Pinch of Maldon sea salt flakes (optional)


  1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Cut a slit in the center of each date and remove the pit.
  3. Stuff the inside of each date with peanut or almond butter and sprinkle with the chopped peanuts or almonds. Place on the baking sheet.
  4. Combine the chocolate chips and coconut oil in a small saucepan and heat on low. Stir occasionally until melted. Alternately, you can add the ingredients to a small bowl and melt in the microwave for 30 second increments until smooth and combined.
  5. Drizzle the chocolate over the dates to coat. Sprinkle with flaky sea salt (optional).
  6. Refrigerate stuffed dates until the chocolate has fully hardened, about 30 minutes.

These mini “candy bars” will keep in the refrigerator for up to two weeks…but I doubt they’ll last that long!

Recipe adapted from Two Spoons. 

Mini Chocolate Covered Dates Snickers Bars on a Plate with Bowls of Almonds Beside

Melanie Jatsek
By Melanie Jatsek RD, LD
Heinen's Chief Dietitian, Melanie Jatsek, RD, LD believes that the answer to a strong, healthy and vibrant body lies within. As a published author with over 20 years of experience in wellness program development, health coaching and professional speaking, Melanie offers expert guidance through Heinen's Club Fx program to help customers take inspired action to build the healthy body they were meant to live in without giving up their favorite foods.

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