To a food processor add pitted dates, cocoa or cacao powder, peanut butter (or other nut/seed butter), rolled oats, salt, and vanilla (optional).
Note: If you don’t have a food processor you can try using a blender, but dates can be tough for blenders due to their sticky nature, so use a low speed if possible and pulse rather than blending.
Pulse until the mixture is well blended and starts to clump together (~30 seconds - 1 minute). If it’s too dry or crumbly and it doesn’t stick together when pressed between two fingers, add more nut butter or pitted dates (just ensure your dates are sticky and fresh, or it will only further dry out the mixture.)
Scoop out 1 ½ Tbsp amounts (we love this scoop) and gently roll into balls. As the original recipe is written, ~12 balls.
Enjoy immediately or store leftovers covered in the refrigerator up to 2 weeks, or in the freezer up to 1 month. Let come close to room temperature before enjoying for best texture (in our opinion). Top with extra peanut butter for a “frosting” effect. You probably won’t regret it.
*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated with the lesser amount of unsalted peanut butter and without optional ingredients. *Adapted from our original No-Bake Cookie Bar recipe.