dessert gluten-free vegan

Healthier Chocolate Turtles

December 31, 2013

The title of this post may be slightly misleading. I had every intention of healthifying one of my favourite holiday treats but was set back by the fact that I was completely out of pecans. My house never runs out of nuts, ever. I actually pride myself on the fact that my pantry is stocked with every type of nut and seed under the sun, except brazil nuts because I don’t know what those are. All I wanted were some damn chocolate turtles, but it just wasn’t going to happen.

healthier chocolate turtlesFortunately chocolate tastes awesome with any kind of nut and when you slather it with caramel date sauce, any thoughts of authenticity go out the window. In fact I may even go as far as to say that these are better than the original. Besides the fact that all those weird, unpronounceable ingredients are omitted, you really can’t go wrong with peanuts and chocolate.

healthier chocolate turtles 2These also make for the perfect last-minute gift or New Years party potluck dish. Even though I spend my days saturated with food I always struggle with what to bring to potlucks. There’s no question I will bring something sweet, but it’s an internal debate over whether I should keep things healthy or go balls-to-the-wall with butter and sugar. Ideally you can get both aka these Healthier Chocolate Turtles. If you’ll be at the same New Years party as me tonight, here is your dessert. I hope you enjoy them and please forgive me for running out of pecans!

Healthier Chocolate Turtles

by The Healthy Maven

Prep Time: 2 hours

Cook Time: 30 mins

Keywords: no-bake blender dessert snack gluten-free vegan chocolate peanut

Ingredients (Yields: 30 turtles)

  • 1 cup peanuts
  • For the “caramel”:
  • 1 cup dates (covered with water and soaked for 2 hours)
  • 2 T reserved date water
  • 2 T coconut oil, melted
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • For the chocolate:
  • 1 cup dairy-free chocolate chips (I use Enjoy Life brand)


1. After 2 hours of soaking, remove dates from water and place in food processor. Do not toss the date water.

2. Process for 1 minute or until dates have broken down into pea size.

3. Add in date water, coconut oil, vanilla and sea salt and process until all comes together in a smooth mixture. This may take several minutes.

4. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat.

5. Place clusters of 4-6 peanuts on baking sheet. It should make around 30 clusters.

6. Using a spoon, top each cluster with date “caramel” sauce until peanuts are covered.

7. Place in freezer for at least 15 mins.

8. Melt chocolate using a double-boiler or carefully in microwave.

9. Remove turtles from freezer after 15 mins and using a spoon coat each with chocolate until completely covered.

10. Place in freezer for at least 1 hour and keep in freezer before serving.

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Featured On: Wellness Weekend
healthier chocolate turtles 3

I hope you all have a fabulous New Years Eve and ring it in in style. Great things to come in 2014 🙂

What’s your favourite nut? Do you have a go-to potluck dish?


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  • Reply
    Heather @ Kiss My Broccoli
    January 20, 2014 at 12:42 am

    Ha! My favorite nuts are pecans, Brazil nuts, and peanuts! Yeah, I can’t just narrow it down to one…what can I say, I’m a nutty girl! 😉 And you are so right, you can NEVER go wrong with chocolate and peanuts!

  • Reply
    [email protected]
    January 18, 2014 at 12:09 pm

    Um so these sound freaking delicious. I wish I was at that New Year’s party. Since I wasn’t I pinned them.
    I love the use of dates and can’t wait to take these puppies out for a spin.

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