29 In Desserts

Oatmeal Raisin Cookie Dough Bites

The day we discovered these raw brownies from My New Roots changed the way we thought about desserts. It’s possible to make something sweet and tasty without sugar, flour, butter, or baking? It seemed like magic!

Well, it is kind of magic — magic by way of Medjool dates, that is. These dates are caramel-y sweet and the perfect base for a natural dessert.

These treats are nothing but dates + oats + raisins + spices. This makes them no bakevegangluten freenaturally sweet, with only 5 ingredients (minus salt), and they take about 5 minutes to make (not including clean-up…!). No bad!

There are many versions of raw cookies / brownies floating around the Internet; I based this recipe loosely on Heidi’s cookie dough bars. The main difference of our recipe below from other raw cookie / brownie recipes is that I chose to leave omit the nuts, which are generally a required ingredient. They turned out just as delicious, though you could add in a bit of walnuts for added richness if you’d like. (The only difference we noticed was that they became a bit harder in texture after a few days of keeping, but still tasted good!)

We loved them and will definitely be making them again and again. They’d be an especially great “treat” for kids, since they’re made fully of natural ingredients.

Other raw treats
Raw Brownies
Spiced Pumpkin Seed Truffles
Gingerbread Dough Truffles

Oatmeal Raisin Cookie Dough Bites
Serves: ~28 bites
What You Need
  • 2 cups oats
  • 1 cup Medjool dates
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ cup raisins
What To Do
  1. Remove the pits from the dates. In the bowl of a food processor, add the first 5 ingredients. Turn on the processor and blend until a dough comes together and all of the oats are thoroughly combined. If the dough is too crumbly, add a few additional dates.
  2. Add the raisins and gently pulse a few times to combine (do not over-process at this point, or the raisins will become chopped into pieces.)
  3. Remove the dough from the bowl of the food processor and shape into balls.
Medjool dates are a type of date that is exceptionally large and sweet; it is important to find the real thing for this recipe (other types of dates don’t lend the right taste or texture). We were able to find them sold in bulk at our local grocery; they are also available for sale online.


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  • Reply
    October 17, 2012 at 11:17 pm

    This sounds fabulous! I’m love making little healthy truffles using dates and cocoa, and this type of ‘cookie’ is right up my alley. Thanks for sharing!

  • Reply
    October 18, 2012 at 5:12 am

    I think I’m going to be making a batch of this this weekend, love the idea of having a stack of them on hand!

  • Reply
    Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar
    October 18, 2012 at 7:03 am

    These sound delightful! What a fun snack for on the go!…or at home :)

  • Reply
    October 18, 2012 at 11:42 am

    I find myself pinning all of your new recipes! This one looks yummy

  • Reply
    Loretta E
    October 18, 2012 at 5:27 pm

    I adore simple recipes like this. Sometimes you just need a quick fix before you grab something else and this is perfect for that. It’s great that it requires no strange ingredients either.

  • Reply
    Courtney Jones
    October 19, 2012 at 12:47 am

    Excellent snack to bring to work for mid-afternoon slump! :)

  • Reply
    October 21, 2012 at 11:20 am

    Hi! These sound great! What do you think would happen if I attempted to cook them?

    • Reply
      October 21, 2012 at 2:58 pm

      Hi Mikki! Cooking these bites isn’t recommended – they are meant to be a simple combination of dates and oats. Baking them would probably dry them out. If you like baking, I’d try a traditional baked cookie recipe!

  • Reply
    October 21, 2012 at 2:52 pm

    yummm These sound like a great little treat!

  • Reply
    October 21, 2012 at 9:28 pm

    These sound so (sooooo) delicious. I make a lazy girl peanut butter cookie with ground oats, dates and peanut butter – which are great, but they’re also pretty bland. Can’t wait to stock up on dates and try this recipe!

    • Reply
      October 24, 2012 at 8:47 pm

      I like the sound of lazy girl peanut butter cookies — we might have to try that variation too!

  • Reply
    Heidi @ Food Doodles
    October 23, 2012 at 6:46 pm

    I’m so glad you liked these! I need to make more treats like these, they are SO good for the kids(and me!).
    Thanks for the link :)

    • Reply
      October 24, 2012 at 8:37 pm

      You’re welcome — and thanks for the idea! :)

  • Reply
    October 30, 2012 at 5:43 pm

    Just made these, had a bit of trouble getting the mixture to clump, tried adding more dates (pre cut them as well as they weren’t chopping in my food processor), which eventually did work but it was still a struggle to press the dough into balls. Not sure what went wrong or if I’ll try them again. Since I added extra dates, finished product ended up tasting like dry chalky dates : o(

    • Reply
      October 30, 2012 at 5:59 pm

      Hi Nicola! Thanks for writing! Did you use Medjool dates, and were they room temperature? We also had to run the food processor for 1 minute or 2 for the dough to form up. We have tried the recipe several times, wtih good results each time. Let me know if it might be the dates or processing time, and if not, I’ll brainstorm another solution!

  • Reply
    Nancy S
    November 16, 2012 at 10:50 pm

    I stock up on medjool dates, and other fresh produce, through Green Bean Delivery. Love their service!!

    • Reply
      November 18, 2012 at 8:57 pm

      Oh neat – I didn’t realize Green Bean Delivery offered medjool dates! Perfect :)

  • Reply
    January 23, 2013 at 8:51 pm

    Loved this recipe. I didn’t have the proper dates so I added a couple of teaspoons of water and one teaspoon of molasses. They turned out so yummy!

    • Reply
      January 24, 2013 at 9:42 am

      Nice substitution in a pinch! Did you use a different type of dates, or did you just not have enough dates?

  • Reply
    January 29, 2013 at 4:47 am

    OMG I am so addicted to these! I’ve eaten an entire batch in two days… I have a problem. Oh well! Note: I used 12 deglet noor dates instead of medjool dates, and when I made my second batch, I used some coconut extract and they came out super yummy!!

    • Reply
      January 29, 2013 at 5:16 pm

      Haha, so glad you love them! Thanks for letting us know about using deglet noor dates. We’ve tried them with those and they didn’t seem to end up quite as sweet as with medjool — but glad to hear it worked out. Coconut extract sounds delicious!

  • Reply
    February 10, 2013 at 8:47 pm

    These sound fantastic! Would you happen to know the calorie count for these?

  • Reply
    March 9, 2013 at 11:03 am

    I was excited to try these but ran into a little problem I could not get them to stick together and I did buy the medjod dates. What I had to do was add coanut oil about 2 Tbs to get them to stick. Do you have any idea why they didn’t stick together?

    • Reply
      March 10, 2013 at 1:49 pm

      Hmm, this is interesting! I think that sometimes the dates can dry out, which makes them harder to stick together. I’ve had that problem using dates that weren’t “gooey” enough — usually fresh ones are very gooey and almost caramel-like. Do you think this could have been the problem? When this happens to me, I usually just add more dates and they come together. Let me know if you continue to have an issue!

  • Reply
    March 31, 2013 at 10:46 pm

    I tried these, and also had trouble with them being too dry. I live in Arizona, so they probably dry out quickly. I added a little sunflower oil and just a little agave syrup, and they started to come together. Then instead of raisins, I added 5 very moist & sweet prunes, and let them chop up pretty fine. They turned out really yummy! Thanks very much for the recipe. I’m sensitive to gluten and to dairy, so these are perfect ‘cookies’ for me. :-D

    • Reply
      April 3, 2013 at 9:24 pm

      Hmm, this is interesting – thank you so much for the feedback on the dry-ness! Now I’m thinking I need to have a few others I know in Arizona and drier climates try this out again too! We’ve never had a problem, but sounds like it might be a factor. Thanks for writing!

  • Reply
    July 8, 2013 at 10:23 pm

    I also originally had issues with it being too dry. To keep this recipe low fat all i did was add some almond milk to moisten it up enough to stick. It works fantastic this way and I make these frequently. They taste even better the next day after refrigeration. Hope this helps!

  • Reply
    April 27, 2016 at 11:35 am

    I’ve found your blog today through other blog and subsribed right away.I love it and can’t wait to try your recipes!I have a question regarding the vanilla ingredience.Do you mean an extra or a paste?Thank you.

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    Happy Cooking! ~ Sonja & Alex