By Chef: Megan McMurray
Posted: June 22, 2012


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Chocolate covered pecan turtles have been around since the 30’s when a major candy company trademarked them and started producing them en masse. In this recipe the only sweeteners you’ll find are naturally sweet dates and clear, raw unprocessed agave. A layer of fresh date and lucuma caramel and crunchy raw pecans are coated thinly in a rich dark cacao dipping chocolate. You can either completely submerge your turtles in the chocolate dipping sauce or just add a dolup to the top for a stacked effect. These raw chocolate pecan turtles are sure to impress!

Yield: 45 turtles


Caramel Layer:

  • 1 lb of fresh dates
  • 2 tablespoons of lucuma
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean powder

Dark Dipping Chocolate:

  • 1 Cup cacao butter
  • 1 Cup cacao powder
  • 2 Tablespoons lucuma
  • pinch vanilla bean
  • 1/2 cup clear agave or sweetener of choice.
  • *Optional- superfood powders 1 Tablespoon collectively.

You will also need:

  • Whole pecan halves (4 for each turtle)


Caramel Layer:

1) First make date paste by pitting 1 pound of dates.

2) Put in a food processor with 2 tablespoons of lucuma and 1 teaspoon of vanilla powder and make into a paste.

*If you use store bought dates and they are dry and tough, soak in spring water for 30 minutes before putting them in the food processor.


1) Measure out 10 gram pieces of date paste. Roll into a ball. *It is helpful to keep a small bowl of warm water near you when working with dates. If you keep your hands wet the dates won’t stick to your hands.

2) Flatten out the ball into a flat round circle.

3) Press 4 unbroken pecans to the underside of the caramel round. You want the round side of the pecan to show out from the edge of the caramel. (You could also use cashews)

4) Set in the fridge for an hour or so before covering in chocolate.

5) Make a batch of dipping chocolate or white chocolate. (recipe below)

*You have two options when finishing your turtles.

A. With a teaspoon, carefully spoon chocolate on to the turtle, leaving some of the caramel showing.

B. With a dipping fork, dip the entire turtle in chocolate.

6) Set chocolate covered turtle on a parchment papered plate, making sure there is no chocolate collecting at the bottom (if you chose option B.)

7) Set in the fridge….and enjoy!

*Store in an airtight container lined with parchment paper.

Dark Dipping Chocolate:

1) Using a low heat source, melt the cacao butter, preferably in a glass bowl. At the same time, place your sweetener in a dish and heat that up as well. I prefer to use my dehydrator for this.

2) Sift all powders in the melted cacao butter (This includes any superfood powders you may want to add.) and whisk together.

3) Place cacao butter/powder mixture back into the dehydrator for 5-10 minutes.

4) Take heated cacao mixture and add the heated sweetener. Whisk vigorously.

5) After the mixture is thoroughly combined, you have a chocolate that is ready to use for dipping or drizzling.