Sure, they're ugly, but they're also tasty and full of nutrition. Image credit:
Sure, they’re ugly, but they’re also tasty and full of nutrition. Image credit:

Dates are a tasty and nutritious fruit of the type known as “drupes,” in which an outer flesh layer surrounds the pit or stone, which in turn contains the seed. They grow, naturally, on the date palm tree known as Phoenix dactylifera. The date is believed to have originated in Africa along the banks of the Nile and Euphrates rivers and is now cultivated in warmer climates around the world. Dates have a flavor similar to sugary syrup or honey.

Growing Dates

This might be a fun thing to try if you’re into indoor gardening. This person found a way to grow her own dates.

Health Benefits Of Dates

  • A source of quick energy. Dates are a favorite breakfast staple in some countries because they give the body’s metabolism a jump-start with simple sugars. Eat as part of a well-rounded breakfast for best results.
  • Rich in dietary fiber. Dietary fiber helps slow or prevent the absorption of cholesterol, making dates a good food for people who want to cut their risk of heart attack and stroke.
  • Contains antioxidants called tannins and flavonoids. Tannins help fight inflammation and infections and also helps fight hemorrhaging. Flavonoids fight free radicals that can contribute to cancer.
  • Rich in Vitamin A. Vitamin A is also an antioxidant and helps fight oral and lung cancer.
  • Also contains important minerals like an impressive 40% RDA for copper, 11% RDA of iron and 6.5% RDA of calcium. Iron and copper help build red blood cells. Calcium is important for building strong bones and teeth.
  • Contains many essential vitamins like B vitamins, Vitamin K and niacin, which helps the body metabolize protein, carbohydrates and fats, improves bone structure and provides coagulant factors in blood.

Chicken Triangles With Dates

Date Triangles. Image credit California Dates
Date Triangles. Image credit California Dates


  • 1/2 cup dates finely chopped
  • 1/2 medium onion finely chopped
  • 1 Tbsp margarine,2 tsp fresh ginger
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 cup apricot nectar
  • 1 cup chicken cooked and shredded
  • 1/3 cup chopped walnuts
  • 2 Tbsp cilantro chopped
  • 2 9″ pie crusts
  • 1 Tbsp powdered sugar


Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. In a skillet, brown onion in butter until just brown around the edges. Stir in ginger, 3/4 tsp cinnamon, cumin, salt and pepper. Add apricot nectar; heat through and cook 3 minutes until nectar is thick and syrupy. Add chicken, walnuts, cilantro and dates; stir until well-mixed and coated. Allow to cool slightly. Cut each pie crust into 6 equally sized triangular pieces. Evenly divide chicken mixture between 6 of the triangles. Top with remaining six triangles and pinch together edges until sealed. Make a few small slits in the top of each triangle. Bake about 15 minutes until crust is slightly browned. Top with remaining cinnamon and powdered sugar.

Spiced Chicken and Date Delight

Image credit California Dates
Image credit California Dates
  • 2 skinless boneless chicken breasts halved and flattened
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 12 baby carrots trimmed
  • 1 cup sliced sweet onions
  • 2 Tbsp honey
  • 2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 8 ounces dates chopped
  • 3 cups cooked rice
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds toasted
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/4 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp ground cayenne
  • vegetable spray


Mix together spices & use to coat chicken. Spray with vegetable spray. Sprinkle coarse salt over chicken. Boil chicken stock, onions and carrots to skillet; reduce heat and simmer until vegetables are tender-crisp. Add honey, lemon juice and dates; stir well to blend and heat through. Brown chicken in a separate skillet until cooked through. Slice chicken into thin pieces. Put the cooked rice on a platter; top with chicken, sauce and date mixture. Garnish with almonds. Serve hot.

Date Cheesecake

Date cheesecake. Image credit California Dates
Date cheesecake. Image credit California Dates


  • 15 graham crackers crushed
  • 2 Tbsp butter melted
  • 4 8-ounce packages cream cheese
  • 1 cup diced dates
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray 9″ pie pan with non-stick cooking spray. Mix graham crackers and butter and press into bottom of pan to form the crust. In large bowl, blend cream cheese until smooth. Mix in milk, eggs, sour cream, vanilla and flour; blend until smooth. Pour mixture into crust. Add dates, pressing in slightly to insure they are evenly distributed. Bake for one hour. Turn oven off; allow cake to cool in oven for 5-6 hours to prevent cracking. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Dates – The Awesome Fruit

Dates are a fun fruit to eat. They’re versatile enough to go into appetizers, main dishes, salads and desserts. They can also be chopped up and put in your breakfast cereal or just eaten plain. They’re packed with a lot of good nutrition to keep you going. So be sure to stock up on dates the next time you go shopping and you’ll have a versatile food for any occasion.

More About Dates