Background: World production of dates was almost 9 million tons by 2010, with almost 960 thousand tons of date pits being discarded. This huge amount of waste has shown to be a rich source of carbohydrate, fiber, protein, fat, antioxidant, phenolic, and minerals like potassium, phosphorus, and magnesium. Not only is it an excellent source of nutrients, but has also shown to have health benefits such as reducing the side effects of certain therapeutic drugs, and otherfunctional uses, like used as a coffee substitute for a caffeine free drink. Like date pits, chocolate is a natural functional food which has shown to have a favorable effect on human health especially on the cardiovascular disease and it is one of the most consumed food among all age groups.Objectives: The main objective of this study is utilize date pits as an additive to chocolate and produce improved functional food product and evaluate its sensory features.Method: Commercial date pit powder, dark chocolate, and milk chocolate was purchased from local Qatari markets. The commercial powder was further grinded using a regular household blender and sieved into 300 and 150 μm using electronic sieve. The developed products had varying percentage of date pit powder: chocolate ratio (1:9, 3:7, 5:5 and 7:3). The chocolate products cross-section was observed under microscope, sensory analysis for 8 attributes and thenutrient content for each product was done using USDA food composition tables and food label of the commercial date pits purchased from Deyma.Results: Dark and milk chocolate with 150 μm date pits, (1:9) ratio had the highest homogeneity under the microscope. The quality test for functional chocolates of 1:9 and 3:7 ratio made with 150 μm rated as very good but 5:5 and 7:3 required lots of improvement. Sensory evaluation and hedonic test showed that dark chocolates made with 150 μm date pits was the most liked products. Finally, the calories and the fat content decreased as the date pits concentration increased.


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