I was feeling naughty today. Nothing tastes naughtier to me than Reese’s Peanut Butter cups. Ahhh……my fond childhood memories of my favorite candy. When feeling the emotional teenage angst, nothing soothed me better than a good old Reese’s cup. ( To be honest, nothing made me feel guiltier afterwords but that is for a whole other post) Obviously, Reese’s are no longer a viable option for me because of this:
Yikes! Why they gotta ruin perfectly good chocolate and peanut butter like that??!! So I decided to make my own Paleo friendly version. I say Paleo friendly because I have yet to find store bought chocolate made with a Paleo sweetener and does not contain soy. Bare in mind, I am being naughty here, so like any treat, these are not a health food! These are, however a healthier version of the original due to a lack of preservatives, no peanuts, no soy and Paleo friendly sweeteners (outside of the chocolate). One of these days I will venture into making my own chocolate to see if I can make a chocolate with no soy and sweetened with sweeteners I feel more comfortable with. If you have a nut allergy you can even make these nut free by using sun butter instead of almond butter! Genius!!! This really couldn’t be any easier. Here’s how I made them.
- 1 10-12oz package of Paleo friendly chocolate. I made 2 versions. In one I used Enjoy Life chocolate chips which are soy free, dairy free and nut free. The other I used Whole Foods brand 72% Dark Chocolate bars because they are also soy free and have a higher cocoa content. My kids prefer the taste of enjoy life because it is not as dark as the 72% cocoa bars. Each batch made 12 mini-cupcake sized cups.
- About 1 cup of almond butter (or any nut or seed butter you prefer) I make my own almond butter but any store bought butter that does not contain icky oils or preservatives will work. Honestly nut butters and nut milks are so easy to make, that homemade is a much better option than store bought.
- Optional: 1 tbs of coconut oil to blend with your chocolate (just introduces some good MCT oil to add to the healthfulness of your chocolate)
(If you want to make your own almond butter, all you need is raw or unsalted dry roasted almonds, a food processor or super powerful blender like a VitaMix or Ninja. Optional is a bit of honey and a pinch of sea salt. Toss it all in the processor or blender and just let that baby whirl until you have butter! I find my Vitamix is a little easier because I can use the plunger thingy to force the nuts onto the blade which makes it a quicker process. When you use a food processor you may need to stop the process from time to time to redistribute the nuts around so it blends evenly. This almond butter making process took me about 7 minutes.)
First start by melting the chocolate (and coconut oil if you are using it, again, totally optional) I used the microwave but feel free to use a double boiler. I put my chocolate and coconut oil in a glass bowl and set my microwave for 1 minute at first then took it out to stir it up. Then I put it back in for 30 secs and stirred again, then another 15 secs was all it needed. You just want to make sure you don’t burn the chocolate by heating it too long at one time.
You will need a cupcake pan and liners. I used mini cupcake pans so my cups were a little smaller. Liners make getting these babies out of the tin much easier. The first time I made these I did not have liners and forcing these out was pretty tough. You may be able to do this without a cupcake pan and just using liners. Maybe double up on the liners to make them stronger. I imagine you will want to be careful about how full you fill the liners if you are not using a pan to support the weight of the chocolate.
Once your chocolate is melted use a spoon to scoop enough chocolate to fill each cup about 1/4-1/3 of the way full. Put it in the freezer for about 5 minutes to let it firm up.
Next scoop enough almond butter into each cup to fill each cup about 3/4 of the way full but leaving a little room along the outside edge so that when you add the rest of the chocolate on top it will enrobe the almond butter all the way around.
Once you have almond butter in each cup. Fill each cup with enough of the remaining melted chocolate to cover the almond butter completely.
Put the cupcake pan in the freezer for another 10 minutes to let the chocolate firm up and chill completely.
Here is one that is sliced open. You can use less chocolate, bigger cups, different nut butters, whatever floats your boat! Enjoy your naughtiness!!!