I’m always trying to think of creative and fun new ways to use all the dates I have laying around in my fridge. When a friend of mine, one of the outstanding Chefs at Eat Omnivore, realized how many dates we get every year from my in-laws, he suggested stuffing and baking them with a mixture mainly composed of mascarpone cheese. At the time, that combination sounded amazing and I’ve had it on my list of things to make since then. Well…four years passed by, and I have yet to make them. Of course by now, as you all know, I am Vegan, so I set out to make my own delicious version. I came up with this wonderful combination of flavors – Dark Chocolate Covered Dates Stuffed w/Orange Cream, made two different ways!
Someone had once mentioned how delicious dark chocolate covered pieces of dates were. So going along with this idea, I decided to turn these stuffed dates into dessert instead of the savory baked ones I initially intended on creating. This was also around the same time when we had large home-grown navel oranges pouring into our kitchen from both my parents’ and my in-laws’ backyards. Remember a few months back, when I posted a series of orange-inspired recipes (Orange Julius Popsicles, Orange Pepper Tofu, Orange Blueberry Vanilla Overnight Oats)? Yep…these stuffed dates were created around the same time, after all, as good as it is, there’s only so much fresh orange juice you can drink.
Let me just tell you now…this Orange Cream is delicious! I was licking my bowl clean, and the kids and I even enjoyed the leftover orange cream by itself or drizzled with a tiny amount of dark chocolate as dessert with a spoon! It was the perfect blend of freshly squeezed orange juice, shredded coconut, and soaked cashews. I didn’t want it to be too sweet since the mixture was being stuffed into dates.
Make this easy orange cream, stuff it into some dates, dip the ends into melted dark chocolate, and sprinkle the tops with a tiny amount of orange zest, sea salt, and/or shredded coconut. All you need is ONE of these heavenly treats and you’re set to go for the day, and not to mention that aside from the dark chocolate chips, it’s all naturally sweetened. I delivered some to a few friends and my son’s teachers, and they loved them. And just look at them!! Not only do they taste divine, they also look beautiful and would make the perfect sweet treat to take to a friend’s house or dinner party. That is, if you can keep yourself from devouring all of them before sharing! =)
If you make these stuffed dates, be sure to let me know in the comments below, or Tag me on Facebook or Instagram @vegetariangastronomy , #vegetariangastronomy, so I don’t miss it!
Dark Chocolate Covered Dates Stuffed with Orange Coconut Cream
- 20-24 Medjool dates
- vegan dark chocolate , Enjoy Life Dark Chocolate Chips
For the Cashew Cream:
- 1 cup raw unsalted cashews , soaked in water for ~2-3 hours then drain and discard the water)
- 1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
- 1/2 cup orange juice , freshly squeezed if possible
- 1/2 teasp vanilla extract
- pure maple syrup , optional
- orange zest
- shredded coconut
- sea salt
To Make the Orange Cream:
- Add the soaked and drained cashews, unsweetened shredded coconut, orange juice, and vanilla extract into a blender (such as a Vitamix ).
- Blend completely until thick, creamy, and slightly chunky (I used my tamper for this process). This should not take too long. Stop once you feel like all of the cashews are completely blended in. Do not blend too long otherwise you will start to make cashew butter.
- Depending on the sweetness of the orange juice and your preference, you may or may-not need a little maple syrup blended into the cream for some added sweetness. Note that this cream should not be overly sweet since it's being stuffed into dates (see notes below). Set the orange cream aside.
To Prepare the Dates:
- You have one of two options: (1) Cut a thin section across the wide end of the date to cut the end. Using clean sharp tweezers, going in from the cut end, pull out the pit to create a port to stuff. OR (2) Using a knife, make an incision across the length of the date and carefully remove the pit, creating a 'boat' to stuff. (see notes below)
To Stuff the Dates:
- If using option (1) above, using a condiment dispenser , piping bag , or syringe, completely fill the hole created inside the date with the prepared orange cream. If using option (2) above, use a small spoon or knife to stuff the dates where you made the incision. With this option, you will stuff more of the orange cream and it will be visible on top. (see pictures above)
- Once you've stuffed the dates with orange cream, melt the dark chocolate chips over a double broiler or in small increments in the microwave.
- Line a baking sheet or plate with wax paper. If using option (1) above, simply dip the dates half way up covering the open side of the date. If using option (2) above, simply drizzle the melted chocolate across the dates on top of the stuffed orange cream.
- Place on the prepared plate/baking sheet, sprinkle the top of the dates with a tiny amount of orange zest, unsweetened shredded coconut, and/or sea salt, and place in the fridge until the chocolate is completely solidified.
- Store in the fridge in an airtight container until ready to enjoy!
WOW! This recipe was definitely worth the wait. I love teeny tiny cocktail food/ desserts and this looks like the perfect dessert or sweet snack to take for a dinner party. Love it! and I am pretty darn sure they taste fabulous!
Great job Anjali 🙂
P.S – I have made your strawberry overnights oats, it was delicious but i may have killed the taste a little bit with the cocoa powder. I didn’t have the cocoa nibs to add it but it was still delicious!
Thank you for all the great recipes.
You truly inspire us all x
Thank you Reshana! Means a lot coming from you! I may make these for our xmas party this year =)
SOO awesome you made the overnight oats!! One of my favorites, and I’m excited to hear you liked them. Did you add too much cocoa powder? Pretty much use the overnight oats recipe as a guide to add anything or modify anything you want. Thank you for always motivating me to keep creating! It’s followers such as yourself that get me excited to post here!!
Thanks for the reply Anjali
Yes i think i may have been a little light handed with the cocoa powder but i will sure making it again.
I love your blog and enjoy it immensely. Its bloggers like yourself that inspire us all.
Aww that is so sweet of you. Well it’s honestly followers and friends I’ve met through this process such as yourself that make everything I do worth it and motivate me to create in the kitchen! Thank you!!
Rebecca @ Strength and Sunshine
These look like little dream bombs of deliciousness :O
Haha LOVE your description! That’s exactly what they are =)
Sounds like the perfect sweet snack!
Thanks Jenn! They are AMAZING! The orange coconut cream itself is to-die-for…I love eating the leftovers drizzled with some chocolate on top =)
Sophia | Veggies Don't Bite
Dates are such a great healthy way to satisfy that sweet craving! I love them with chocolate as well, I stuff mine with peanut butter and then put chocolate on top. I’m not much of a citrus and chocolate fan, so I’d skip the orange flavor but the coconut cream sounds delicious!
The coconut cream in this recipe isn’t made with the traditional version using the thickened part of coconut cream. The orange coconut cream base is actually made from cashews and unsweetened shredded coconut and it’s delicious. You could probably sub any fruit instead of the orange flavor. Oranges + dark chocolate are my absolute favorite! It’s actually what happens with any leftover melted chocolate I have…dark chocolate covered orange slices!
OMG! These sound AMAZING. As if dates aren’t good enough as they are, you’ve gone and made them even more delicious.
Thanks Aimee…these ARE amazing!! Packed with flavor and really takes it up a notch. Plus they’re gorgeous and make great gifts!!
Mel @ avirtualvegan.com@
What a lovely flavour combination. I could quite happily eat way more than I should of these!
Same here…I intend on having just one, and then swipe another whenever I walk past the fridge =) they are dangerous to have around ha!
Sound very cool.perfect for sweet crave! I like dates and tried several dates sweet, this is completely new to me!
You would love them Uma! The orange coconut cream inside is delicious enough, and then pair that with the dates and dark chocolate and they’re amazing!
Manju | Cooking Curries
The orange, coconut, dark chocolate, dates – im loving it all! I am so gonna make this for the next party.
Thank you! You’ll love them!
That orange cream sounds amazing! I bet I’ll be licking my fingers clean, too. And chocolate-covered dates? Yum!
Now if this is not one of the best clean eating snacks I’ve ever seen, what will be?? These dates look soooo good, wow 😀
Thanks Hauke! They are delicious and clean, but dangerous to have around because one is never enough ha!
Kelly @ TastingPage
Can I just come directly over to your house right now to have one of these. I don’t think I can wait to make them myself. They look amazing!
Yes!! Come on over =) They’re delicious and very easy to make!
Linda @ Veganosity
I love that you made an orange cream with this. The sweetness of the date and the bright citrus of the orange, plus the chocolate sounds incredible.
Thanks Linda! The orange cream pairs perfectly, especially since it’s not too sweet, but sweet enough and made with coconut and cashews. I could actually eat the coconut orange cream by the spoonful itself ha!
Wow this is a great treat, love orange and chocolate!
Thanks Michelle! Orange and chocolate pair so well together!
How cute are these and love the chocolate covered version. I’m sure it must be delicious!
Thanks Molly! They make the perfect gifts or treats to take for a dinner party!
Hi I tried the recipe but my cream is very liquidy and not thick. What can I do to thicken it?
Hmm…I just made these again a few weeks back for some teachers and it was not liquidly at all. The only liquid in there is 1/2 cup OJ and that’s it…just throwing out a few checks – did you drain out the water from the soaked cashews? Did you end up adding a lot of maple syrup (I don’t typically add much if any)? How long did you blend for? Basically you should blend until all the cashews are completely blended in and then stop. If you blend for too long (a few minutes), then the cashews start to turn into cashew butter and the shredded coconut releases more oil. Do you think this was the issue?
If none of these jumps out, then I’m not sure why it would be very liquidly with 1/2 cup OJ and that many cashews and shredded coconut. You could throw it back into the blender and add some more soaked cashews and shredded coconut (no OJ) and blend to thicken it up that way (you may need a little maple syrup to adjust the sweetness if you do this). Also, it may thicken up slightly in the fridge. Hope that helps! To fix the current batch, do what I suggested…add more cashews and shredded coconut and adjust sweetness with maple syrup. Let me know what happens or if you have any other questions!
Dates are very good.it is a good combination.loved orange cream.