When I looked at the photos I’d taken of these chocolate cherry bombs, I realized they look exactly like meatballs. Don’t be fooled. These sweet lumps bear no resemblance to a ball of meat as far as taste and nutrition. I found a version of this recipe on OhSheglows.com. Angela Liddon is a creative genius when it comes to vegan food. She calls her version dark chocolate cherry energy bites. I changed the name to chocolate cherry bombs because they are the size of cherry bombs we used to ignite when I was a kid. (Also, remember when people used to say “it’s the bomb” as a compliment?)

All the ingredients were available in the bulk food section of my grocery store, so I was able buy the exact amounts of each item. I could only find Deglet Noor dates instead of the Medjool dates that Angela uses, and since I don’t know anything about dates I made the substitution. (I later read that the Deglet Noor dates are less sweet.) I also added oatmeal to make it seem more breakfast-like. In addition to breakfast, these are great anytime as a snack. Perfect with a cup of coffee or tea.

The meatball photo reminded me that I need to work on my food photography skills, but I’m thinking about getting a cat instead. Cats always do funny things that make for great pictures.

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Chocolate Cherry Bombs

  • ½ cup old fashioned oatmeal (not instant or quick-cook)
  • 1 cup walnut pieces (or almonds)
  • 8-9 pitted Medjool or Deglet Noor dates
  • ½ cup dried sweetened cherries
  • 3 tbsp dark or semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • ¼ cup raw pecans
  • Kosher or sea salt, to taste
  • 1-2 tsp of water, if needed

  1. In a food processor, process the oatmeal until coarse, not powder. Remove. Put the walnuts in the food processor and pulse until finely chopped. It’s ok if some bigger pieces remain. Just be sure not to pulverize it into a flour as you want some texture.
  2. Remove ⅓ cup of the processed walnuts and set aside with the oatmeal for the final step.
  3. Now, add the pitted dates in (along with the walnuts already in the processor) and process until finely chopped and sticky. A dough will start to form. Add cherries and process again until combined. The mixture will likely form into a large ball. If this happens, break it up with a spoon and process more if necessary.
  4. Add in the chocolate chips and pecans and process until they are just chopped. Add salt to taste. Pulse in the oatmeal and reserved ⅓ cup walnuts for texture, being careful not to process them too much. Roll into small balls. (If your mixture isn’t sticking together, try adding a tsp or two of water.) Makes about 12-15 balls. Place in a container or baggie and store in the fridge or freezer.