If you haven’t noticed, I have a thing for peanut butter and chocolate. The combination of the two is absolute perfection. My dad’s favorite candy is Reese Cups and when we were little, he had quite a few from our trick-or-treating bags. We used to scheme to hide them so we could have some too. The love for peanut butter and chocolate is in my blood. So you shouldn’t be surprised that I am bringing you another recipe that contains none other than peanut butter and chocolate!
I used to be scared of using it, but full fat coconut milk is my new best friend. I am amazed at how versatile it is when you need a good rich, creamy option. It has such a light coconut flavor that by the time you add other flavors to the mix, the coconut is nonexistent. I even blind tested my husband and had him try these and he had zero complaints. He is not a fan of coconut so this was a success!
Have patience with these bars. You will want to cut into them right away but they really do need time to fully set and firm up. If you don’t have a lot of time you can always chill in the freezer. This makes the chocolate layer a bit more likely to crack easily but if you don’t mind that, then go ahead. Also, you could really use any nut for the crust. I almost used pecans, but didn’t have enough on hand so went with the almonds.
Make sure you have someone to share these with because they are dangerously good!
Peanut Butter Cream Bars
- 1 1/2 cups raw almonds
- 1 cup packed medjool dates pitted
- 1 T water
- Dash of salt
- 1 cup full fat coconut milk refrigerated overnight
- 3/4 cup natural creamy peanut butter
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 T pure maple syrup
- 1/2 c coconut oil
- 1/2 c cocoa powder
- 3 T pure maple syrup
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- In a food processor, process almonds until a fine, grainy consistency.
- Add dates and salt and process until a dough is formed. Add the water if it seems a bit dry.
- Press dough firmly into an 8x8 pan and place in freezer for about 5-10 minutes.
- Separate the liquid from the firm coconut milk and place the firm cream into a large mixing bowl. Using a hand mixer, whip for about 1-2 minutes until thick and creamy.
- Add peanut butter and whip until combined.
- Fold in maple syrup and stir.
- Spread the mixture over the crust layer evenly and place back in the freezer for about 10 minutes.
- After 10 minutes, whisk together ingredients for the top layer until smooth.
- Gently spread on top of the peanut butter layer.
- Place in the refrigerator and chill for about 2-3 hours before serving.
- Refrigerate leftovers.