Chocolate orange energy balls

Updated: Apr 8

Energy balls, also known as protein balls, are my absolute favourite healthy sweet treat. I'll usually make a batch every couple of weeks, but without a doubt, they'll be gone in a matter of days. These delicious chocolate orange vegan energy balls are packed with so much indulgent flavours (think Terry's chocolate orange meets Nutella), yet contain only healthy and nutritious ingredients.

If you're looking for a high protein vegan snack recipe, you've got one right here! These delicious protein balls contain 120g of roasted hazelnuts which have 18g of protein.

Total Prep and Cooking Time: 20 minutes

Equipment Needed: Oven and blender/food processor

Freezable: No


  • 100g of hazelnuts (preferably skinless/already peeled. Yo can also substitute for cashew nuts)

  • 100g of pitted medjool dates

  • 2 large oranges

  • 2 tbsp of cacao powder


1. Firstly, pop your oven on to 200 degrees C

2. Once your oven is hot, place your hazelnuts on a baking tray and put in the oven for 10 minutes to roast.

3. In the meantime, start to set up your bender and grate your orange to get 2 teaspoons of orange zest.

4. If your hazelnuts have a dark brown skin, put them in a container with a lid. Shake the container quite a lot to help get the skin off the hazelnuts. Once you've had a good work-out by shaking the container, take the hazelnuts out, trying to leave as much of the hazelnut skin in the container (they don't taste the greatest). Alternatively, you can massage the skins off once they've cooled down a bit (safety first).

5. Put the hazelnuts in the blender and blend. Once the hazelnuts have been finely blended, add your dates, cacao powder, orange zest and 2 tablespoons of fresh juice from the oranges. Keep blending until the dates have been finely chopped. You'll start to know when it's done as the mixture will all stick together and begin to form a ball while it's blending.

6. Remove the blade from the blender as it's time to make your balls! Get around 1 tbsp of mixture in your palm and start to create a circular motion with your other palm to help create your ball. You should be able to create around 10-12 protein balls.

7. Once all the energy balls are formed, eat straight away or pop in the fridge for later. Personally, I think they taste nicer after they've firmed up a bit from a couple of hours in the fridge. If you keep them in a sealed container, they should last for around 5 days (if you can resist them for that long!).

If you made this, I would love to hear from you! Comment below or get in touch on Instagram.

Here at Defying Hangry, we make easy vegan recipes. All our meals contain a range of nutritious and easily accessible ingredients - to make even the busiest of mealtimes easy, healthy and quick. Browse our collection of plant-based recipes today!