15+ Date Recipes

Explore this list of the best date recipes where dates are used as a natural sweetener in smoothies, baked goods, and desserts!

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I’ve rounded up some of my all-time favorite date recipes that showcase this natural sweetener’s versatility and richness. From quick snacks that keep you energized through the day to decadent desserts that satisfy those sweet cravings, dates do it all. Each recipe, be it a smoothie packed with nutrients or a batch of homemade maamoul cookies, brings out the unique caramel-like sweetness of dates in the best way possible.

Date recipes collage - featured image.
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Dates are the fruit of the date palm tree, and they are prized for their sweet flavor and chewy texture. Though most popular in Middle Eastern countries, this decadent fruit can now be enjoyed worldwide. But dates aren’t just delicious; they’re also incredibly versatile in the kitchen. And for those of you, like me, who lean towards healthier alternatives without compromising on taste, these date recipes are perfect.

Why You Should Make More Recipes with Dates

  • Gives a natural energy boost. Dates are a great source of quick energy due to their high carb content. Incorporating dates into your pre or post-workout snacks can give you the energy boost you need.
  • Helps to balance out the spice. Dates can help balance out strong or spicy flavors in dishes. Adding a touch of date sweetness can help tone down the heat and balance out the overall flavor. This is especially true in savory date recipes.
  • Adds natural sweetness. If you’re looking to reduce refined sugar consumption, dates offer a fantastic alternative. Their natural sweetness satisfies that sweet tooth without the need for refined sugars.
  • Versatility in dishes. Dates can be used in various dishes, from sweet desserts to savory date recipes. It adds depth of flavor and a chewy texture that makes any dish stand out among the rest!

Tips for Cooking with Dates

  1. Store properly. Store dates in an airtight container in a cool, dark place or in the refrigerator to keep them fresh. If you have a surplus of dates, you can also pop them in the freezer for longer storage.
  2. Soften dates. Most recipes call for soaking dates in warm water for 10-15 minutes to soften them before adding to recipes. This will make them easier to blend into smoothies and other healthy date recipes.
  3. Don’t forget to pit. Unless the package notes that the dates are pitted, remove the pits before using them in recipes. Simply slice them open lengthwise and remove the seed.
  4. Adjust sweetness. Taste your dish as you go and adjust the amount of dates added to achieve the desired level of sweetness. Different varieties of dates have different levels of sweetness so you may need to adjust accordingly.
  5. Don’t forget the savory date recipes. Add chopped dates to savory dishes like salads or roasted meats for a touch of natural sweetness and complexity.

Different Types of Dates

  • Medjool dates—The most popular are the Medjool dates, known for their large size, soft texture, and rich, caramel-like flavor. They are prized for their sweetness and are commonly eaten as a snack or incorporated into recipes. Most of my simple date recipes call for the Medjool variety because it’s the most accessible and affordable.
  • Deglet Noor dates—These dates have a firm texture and are generally drier than Medjool dates. They are a great option for dessert date recipes where the texture is appreciated, like cookies and bars. Deglet Noor dates have a slightly nutty flavor and are smaller in size.
  • Other dates – Less common dates but equally delicious are Barhi, Halawi, Ajwa dates, and more. These lesser-known varieties vary in size, texture, and flavor and add delicious diversity to recipes.

Best Date Recipes

Including dates in your recipes adds a touch of natural sweetness and rich flavor to your table. Whether you’re looking for simple date recipes that you can quickly pull together or you’re on the hunt for decadent dessert date recipes – I’m confident you’ll find what you’re looking for here.

Simple Date Recipes

  • Date Shake – Made with dates, banana, and peanut butter for a delicious and simple date recipe that tastes as indulgent as a milkshake but packs in natural sweetness and nutrients for a tasty treat any time of day.
  • Date Snickers – Made with just 4 ingredients, including Medjool dates, peanut butter, nuts, and dark chocolate, these are a perfect treat when you’re craving a candy bar but prefer something with better-for-you ingredients.
  • Date Bark – You will love this fun, healthier spin on a classic candy bar. It has all the flavors of date snickers but is conveniently made in a bark so you can break off as much or as little as you like – perfect for sharing or savoring all to yourself.
  • Coconut Date Balls – If you’re looking for simple date recipes, nothing is simpler than this 3-ingredient treat. Made with dates and pecans and coated in shredded coconut, these are a fun and delightful snack with natural sweetness and nutty goodness.
  • Stuffed Dates – Simple, quick, and easy to make, these stuffed dates make an excellent appetizer or dessert. Stuff them with savory fillings like goat cheese and pistachios for a tasty savory date recipe, or go sweet – you won’t regret making them!
  • Overnight Steel Cut Oats – Though the exact recipe for overnight oats doesn’t require dates but if you want to dress it up with chopped chocolate, a few tablespoons of almond butter, and a couple of pitted chopped dates, then you will love starting the day with this bowl!
6 image collage of simple recipes made with dates.

Healthy Date Recipes

  • Banana Date Smoothie – Naturally sweet, creamy, and satisfying, this smoothie is one of the best date recipes. It’s packed with healthy ingredients like bananas, rolled oats, and almond butter, so you can feel good about enjoying it any time of day.
  • Caramel Apple Granola Bars – This easy-to-make snack is made with no added sugar and naturally-satisfying ingredients like rolled oats, almonds, whole flaxseeds, and dried apples – no surprise these bars are one of the best date recipes.
  • Kale Coconut Smoothie– Made with coconut water, fresh kale, bananas, and dates used to sweeten this smoothie, this is one of the best healthy date recipes to add to your repertoire of easy morning smoothies.
  • Muesli – Made with old-fashioned oats, a selection of raw nuts, seeds, a hint of cinnamon, and naturally sweetened with dates and raisins, this is one of those simple date recipes that can be made well in advance and enjoyed for weeks to come!
  • Vegan Protein Bars – If you’re looking for healthy date recipes that will give that you an energy boost, these protein bars are your answer. Quick to make, gluten and dairy-free, and loaded with plant-based protein.
  • Bran Muffins – If you prefer simple date recipes that are subtly sweet, satisfying, and delicious, then you have to try these muffins. They’re a good source of protein and fiber while keeping the fat and sugar low.
5 image collage of healthy recipes made with dates.

Dessert Date Recipes

  • Toffee – This 5-ingredient toffee recipe has it all: crisp toffee base, smooth chocolate layer, crunchy nuts, and, of course – decadent dates! Perfect for all occasions and oh-so-good!
  • Date Brownies – These are such a deliciously fudgy treat. Sweet dates replace sugar, adding a rich caramel flavor that perfectly complements the cocoa, making it one of the best dessert date recipes.
  • Pecan Date Bars – If you’re looking for unique and healthy date recipes, these bars are your answer. A sweet date and nut mixture is tucked in between buttery crumb crust, making it the perfect dessert.
  • Date Cookies – You must add these to your repertoire of decadent dessert date recipes. They’re buttery, sweet, nutty, chewy, and completely irresistible – perfect for a tasty afternoon treat or a dessert after dinner.
  • Maamoul Cookies – These Middle Eastern cookies have the best buttery texture with a delicious date filling. These cookies have a special place in my heart and are consistently one of the best date recipes.
  • Pecan Pie – This isn’t your ordinary pecan pie. Most pecan pies are sweetened with sugar (or worse – corn syrup!), but why not take it a step further and make it with dates instead? A healthier version of a classic that I know you’ll love!
6 image collage of dessert recipes made with dates.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are some quick things I can make with dates?

Some of the best date recipes are also the simplest. A smoothie or a shake naturally sweetened with dates makes a great quick breakfast or post-workout snack. Other simple date recipes include stuffed dates, 3-ingredient coconut date balls, and even overnight steel cut oats topped with chopped dates.

Why do you soak dates first?

Soaking dates helps soften the fruit and makes it more pliable and easier to work into a recipe. This is particularly useful in recipes where a smooth consistency is desired like a smoothie, shake, or date paste. Keep in mind, not all of these healthy date recipes require soaking.

What’s the difference between fresh dates and dried dates in recipes?

Fresh dates have a higher moisture content and softer texture compared to dried dates. It is most common for recipes to call for dried dates as they are chewier and more concentrated in sweetness. Dry dates are also more suitable for long-term storage. Plus, dried dates are a great option for dessert date recipes because they hold their shape well during baking.

Date bark pieces in a bowl with tray of more nearby.

I hope this collection of the best date recipes will inspire you to include more of this dried fruit in your cooking. Whether you’re whipping up some healthy date recipes, sweetening up your desserts with them, or simply looking for an easy snack, this roundup lets this humble fruit shine!

Full List of Recipes

Check out the picture cards for all the recipes listed above. You can click on any of the recipes cards to take you directly to those recipes.

2 cups of date shakes with bowl of dates next to them
Breakfast

Date Shake

A date shake is a great way to start your day. Made with all natural ingredients and no added sugar, this date smoothie is packed full of protein and fiber
 
5 minutes
5 from 539 votes
Date Snickers on a round white plate topped with chopped peanuts on top, a small jar of creamy peanut butter with a spoon dipped in and a few chocolate pieces nearby.
Dessert

Date Snickers

These 4 ingredient Date Snickers "bars" are made with Medjool dates, peanut butter, nuts, and dark chocolate. Satisfy your sweet tooth with dates!
 
30 minutes
5 from 436 votes
Square image of date bark.
Dessert, Snack

Date Bark

This viral Date Bark recipe combines chewy Medjool dates with peanut butter, crunchy almonds, dark chocolate, and flaky sea salt. So good!
 
10 minutes
5 from 94 votes
Hand grabbing one of the coconut date balls from shallow bowl
Snack

Coconut Date Balls

Coconut date balls are little balls of nutrition made with dates and nuts and then coated in shredded coconut – an easy-to-make sweet & healthy vegan snack!
 
10 minutes
5 from 1694 votes
Large white plate of stuffed dates with different flavors
Appetizer, Snack

Stuffed Dates – 4 Ways

Simple, quick and easy to make, these stuffed dates make a great appetizer or snack, Choose from sweet or savory fillings everyone will love.
 
15 minutes
5 from 141 votes
4 bowls of overnight steel cut oats with different toppings
Breakfast

Overnight Steel Cut Oats

Overnight steel cut oats is perfect for make ahead breakfasts. Choose from four topping ideas and meal prep a batch of oatmeal for the week!
 
8 hours 5 minutes
5 from 471 votes
Two glasses of Banana Date Smoothie on a serving tray.
Smoothies

Banana Date Smoothie

This Banana Date smoothie uses frozen bananas, dates, nutty almond butter, warm cardamom, & creamy almond milk – this shake will keep you full all day!
 
5 minutes
5 from 118 votes
Hand grabbing one of the caramel apple granola bars on board with parchment paper
Snack

Caramel Apple Granola Bars

These delicious and easy to make caramel apple granola bars are a healthy and tasty fall snack. Made from natural ingredients they are vegan and gluten free.
 
35 minutes
5 from 27 votes
2 glasses filled with coconut kale smoothie, garnished with cinnamon and shredded coconut.
Smoothies

Kale Coconut Smoothie

This green kale coconut smoothie is made with coconut water, fresh kale, bananas and natural sweeteners. The nutritious ingredients are perfect for a morning boost!
 
5 minutes
5 from 9 votes
Homemade muesli in a labeled mason jar with the lid on and a spoon nearby overflowing with some.
Breakfast, Tutorial

How to Make Muesli

Learn how to make homemade muesli with a few simple ingredients! It's the cereal you can eat hot or cold with milk or yogurt and even soak overnight for a quick breakfast on the go!
 
25 minutes
5 from 6 votes
Close up shot of three vegan protein bars on parchment paper
Snack

Vegan Protein Bars

These vegan protein bars are a great post workout snack or great for a healthy energy boost. Made with no refined sugar, they are gluten-free and dairy-fee.
 
25 minutes
5 from 341 votes
Bran muffins in a cloth lined pan.
Breakfast

Bran Muffins

Fuel your morning with a wholesome bran muffin, packed with the goodness of dates and added sweetness of maple syrup.
 
32 minutes
5 from 33 votes
Stack of toffee on plate.
Dessert, Snack

Toffee

Enjoy this delicious toffee with chocolate, crunchy peanuts, and sweet dates. It's a tasty mix of textures and flavors that's hard to resist!
 
30 minutes
5 from 12 votes
Date brownie squares on a round plate.
Dessert

Date Brownies

Date brownies are a delicious fudgy treat! Sweet, sticky dates replace sugar, adding a rich caramel flavor that perfectly complements the cocoa.
 
1 hour 5 minutes
5 from 85 votes
stack of pecan date bars
Dessert, Snack

Date Bars

Pecan date bars are made with a gluten-free buttery oat crumb mixture and filled with naturally sweet dates and nuts; they're easy to make and so delicious!
 
1 hour
5 from 102 votes
Date cookies on a white plate
Dessert

Date Cookies

A fun mediterranean inspired cookie recipe, these buttery date cookies are sweet, nutty, chewy and completely irresistible – perfect for cookie exchanges 
 
30 minutes
5 from 601 votes
Maamoul cookies on a round decorative plate with extra walnuts dusted with powdered sugar.
Dessert

Maamoul

These Maamoul cookies are made with semolina flour + two classic fillings – creamy dates & crunchy walnuts – a delicious Middle Eastern treat!
 
13 hours 5 minutes
5 from 90 votes
Dessert

Pecan Pie

This easy pecan pie recipe is made without corn syrup and with dates instead. It's a healthier version of a traditional pecan pie but just as tasty!
 
1 hour 36 minutes
5 from 111 votes

For more similar roundup of recipes, be sure to check out: Easy and Healthy Oat Recipes, Most Popular Viral Recipes, Best Lebanese Recipes, and Recipes to Make with Pantry Staples.

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