chocolate chip cookie dough protein balls

Sometimes you just need a cookie when a cookie is the last thing you need.

I made these little cookie protein bites because I needed a cookie. Well, that’s nothing new, I always need a cookie.

But do you know what I mean? There are times when we think we need cookies, but really what we need is something nutritious and healthy{ier}.  So I made these little doses of protein, healthy fats and chocolate in a tiny little ball of sweetness. For when you need a cookie, but when you really don’t…

You will need a food processor to make these…. perhaps a blender would work, but I would be scared for the chocolate chips in a high-speed blender and well, just scared for the blender if you were using a standard blender.

I’ve suggested 2-4 tablespoons of almond butter here. (Any nut butter will do.) I’ve indicated a range because if I were you, I would add a tablespoon at a time and test and see if you need more. The almond butter provides the moisture to get these babies to come together as a dough. Too little and you will get crumbly little balls that don’t hold together, too much and they will be too soft and maybe even too greasy. It depends on the size of the dates you use and the size of the protein powder scoop in your protein powder. I’ve used a stevia sweetened, vegan, vanilla powder.

Add a scoop of nut butter, run the processor for a minute and see if the mixture comes together, if not repeat. Always letting the machine run for a bit in between additions to see if it starts to clump together and form a wad in the machine. (yep I just said that — you want a wad of dough in the machine).

Okay – maybe these instructions are better.. in between additions, test a teaspoon sized amount of the mixture and see if it will hold together in the shape of a ball. If not, throw it back in (or eat it – that’s a good option too, and more hygienic, so do it), add more almond butter, and run the machine for another minute or so, repeat if needed.

Once you have rolled them into balls, let them sit in the refrigerator for a few hours so they firm up a bit. Then just keep them cold and you can have a little ball of cookie anytime you want.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Protein Balls

a healthy, no-cook, high protein, chocolate-y snack
Prep Time1 hr
Total Time1 hr


  • 10 medejool dates
  • 1 cup cashews
  • 2 scoops vanilla vegan protein powder
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds
  • pinch of sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2-4 tablespoons almond butter or other nut butter, unsweetened, unsalted
  • 1/4 cup of ground almonds or finely flaked unsweetened coconut for rolling optional


  • Add cashews and dates to food processor and process until finely ground.
  • Add chia seeds, protein powder, sea salt, vanilla, and chocolate chips. Pulse processor several times to combine. Add 2 tablespoons almond butter and run processor for a minute or so, until well combined. If mixture begins to come together and will stick together into balls, stop here. Otherwise, add another tablespoon of almond butter, repeat process, checking to see if dough will hold and roll into balls, repeat if necessary.
  • Taking about 2 teaspoons of dough at a time, roll into balls. At this point each ball can be rolled in ground almonds, coconut flakes or cocoa powder, if desired.
  • Chill balls for at least 1 hour.
  • Keep refrigerated.
Trish Cowper