Saturday, February 8, 2014

Healthy Peanut Butter Cups Recipe

healthy peanut butter cups

Valentine's Day is coming up and there is a lot of excitement in our house! I have to say, Valentine's Day really is a lot more fun with kids. We've been making these fun semi-homemade Valentines, decorating valentine mailboxes, and getting ready for class parties.  The girls also know Valentine's Day means sweet treats. They've seen the shiny pink and red packages at stores, but we have resisted. While it wouldn't be the end of the world for the kids to have special Valentine's Day treats, I would rather have healthy treats around the house. Because after the kids go to bed, I really cannot be trusted around Reese's peanut butter cups. And it's so easy to make healthy sugar free treats - not to mention a fun activity to do with your kids. Here's what we did... 

Continued after the jump! 



I recently discovered these amazing chocolate chips that are sweetened with stevia. I stay away from sugar (most of the time) and artificial sweeteners (all of the time - almost all are known carcinogens) so I was excited about these. And they are gluten free and vegan - yay! You can find them at many health food stores like Whole Foods, or on Amazon. I've made my own sugar-free chocolate before with raw cacao, coconut oil, and stevia, but using the chips is so much simpler. 

I was concerned they wouldn't melt well, but check out that glorious creamy flowing chocolate!
peanut butter cups recipe
We melted the chocolate in the microwave at 30-second intervals, let it cool slightly, and then piped into mini baking cups I first tried spooning the chocolate and peanut butter filling, but made a huge mess - piping is much easier.

We also dipped some pretzels in the melted chocolate and added some sprinkles. So fun! If you're sensitive to gluten, you can use gluten free pretzels and sprinkles. 


Healthy Peanut Butter Cups Recipe 
printer friendly recipe 

Yield: about 10-15 peanut butter cups, depending on size

Ingredients:

  • 1 (9 oz.) bag sugar free chocolate chips (Lily's are gluten free and vegan, others may not be) if you can't find them, try this recipe) 
  • about 1/2 cup peanut butter (add more if needed) 
  • liquid stevia, optional to sweeten peanut butter (I prefer Trader Joe's brand) 


Instructions:

  1. Place chocolate in the bowl of a double boiler or in a glass bowl. Melt in the double boiler or microwave in the bowl. If microwaving, heat for 20 seconds, then stir, repeating until chips have melted. Let chocolate cool slightly. 
  2. Transfer chocolate to a piping bag or sandwich bag with the tip snipped off, or use a small spoon to scoop melted chocolate into a mini muffin tin or baking cups. 
  3. If a sweet peanut butter center is desired (think Reese's), add a few drops of liquid stevia to taste and stir to combine. Spoon or pipe a peanut butter center on top of the bottom layer of chocolate. 
  4. Spoon or pipe a layer of chocolate over the peanut butter. Place in the freezer for 30 minutes to harden.

*Gluten-Free Option: Be sure to only use gluten free sprinkles and gluten free pretzels if using those ingredients.

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