Coconut Snowballs {Recipe}

There are certain recipes that just taste like Christmas to me… this is one of them.  My mom has been making these Coconut Snowballs at Christmas for as long as I can remember.  Often, she would tint the coconut red or green for an extra festive touch.  In our house we have always called them Coconut Date Balls… I’ve adjusted the title for two reasons, one, for some reason many people are turned off by the thought of dates, and yet once they try these they change their mind!  Secondly, I’m not a super big fan of desserts called “balls”, and somehow sneaking it in next to “snow” works a bit better  =)

So, call them what you will, these little treats are sweet, crispy, flavorful and delicious!

Coconut Snowballs

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter

1/8 teaspoon salt (if using unsalted butter)

3/4 cup sugar

1 Tablespoon milk

1 cup finely chopped dates

1 egg, beaten

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 cups rice krispies cereal

Coconut (about 1 package)

Directions ~

1.  Combine butter, salt, sugar, milk and dates in a large saucepan.  Cook about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, and using a whisk to mash the dates a bit.

2.  In a small bowl, beat the egg with a fork, then add a spoonful of the warm date mixture to temper the egg a bit.  Add egg mixture to the saucepan, stirring constantly, cook about 2 minutes.

3.  Remove pan from heat, add vanilla and stir, then add rice krispies and stir.  Allow mixture to cool about 1 minute.

4.  Pour about a cup of coconut into a bowl, then use a 1 tablespoon sized cookie scoop (or a spoon) to scoop a ball of date mixture into the bowl of coconut.  Use your hands to press coconut onto the date mixture, until fully covered with coconut, shaping into a ball as you work.  Refill small bowl with coconut as needed.

5.  Set finished Coconut Snowballs on a baking sheet or casserole dish.  When all the snowballs have been made, serve immediately, or cover until ready to serve.  These can be stored (at room temperature) 3-5 days.  Recipe yields 30-34 balls.

Recipe Source- My Grandma (She has been making these over 40 years, previous source unknown)


For serving ideas, you can see how I’ve included these Coconut Snowballs in my

Vintage Pastel ChristmasTropical Luau Party, and Classic Holiday Dessert Table.


  1. I made these for my daughter’s birthday party – cat themed and we called them “hair balls” LOL but they were so delicious. Next time, I will cut the sugar in half and use a little less than 1/2 cup. I found it to be too sweet because the medjool dates I used were already very sweet.

  2. Deliciosa receta!!!
    Por favor el ingrediente fechas(dates) qué es. Vivo en Colombia y no sé cómo buscarlo.

  3. is this supposed to be cooked over medium heat or high heat? your recipe does not indicate

    • Since the recipe does not require any boiling, you can use any temperature that is hot, but below a boil. Medium to medium/high would probably be appropriate.

  4. Can't have Christmas without these, my mom has made these for years. We call them Humdingers though, haha! She has never used coconut though, just rolled them in powdered sugar. The coconut seems great, will definitely make this way!

  5. My grandmother used to make these as well, and I learned to just call them "Edna's Krispy Ccconut Balls" because of all the date-haters as well. But if they don't know what's in 'em, then they love 'em. One bite and they instantly transport me back to her kitchen during the Holidays.

  6. Couldn't be more perfect for those upcoming holiday parties!

  7. These are adorable! I love bite-sized snacks.

  8. These are beautiful! I love snowballs for the holidays and love your recipe! I like how you incorporate coconut.

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