I was really late to the peanut butter game because it just wasn't a thing in Ireland, which is where I was born and lived for a short time until my family emigrated to Canada and then later to the U.S. I could be mistaken but chocolate and peanut butter still don't seem to be a thing on the Emerald Isle and I'm pretty good at scoping out chocolate on each my trips (my last one was late 2017). I don't remember exactly when the good old Reese's Peanut Butter cup first graced my lips but I do know that I'm thankful for it because wow. Those things are dangerous.
It turns out that peanut butter packs some great health benefits, as long as you look for a brand that has minimal ingredients and no hidden preservatives or filler oils. I actually have been a Vitamix owner for years and loooove that blender, but I only made peanut butter from dry roasted peanuts for the first time very recently. I had this idea in my head that it was going to be a madly messy process so I just didn't do it. I was wrong- it wasn't! It took me all of 3 minutes to go from a jar of dry roasted peanuts to a jar of creamy peanut butter and clean up was a snap!
With Valentine's Day around the corner, these dark chocolate bites filled with coconut and peanut butter would make a nice homemade treat. They're rich, decadent and clean eating with no refined sugar or filler ingredients.
Here's what you'll need:
(makes approximately 15-20 chocolates)
-3/4 cup unsweetened coconut (flaked or shredded)
-12 pitted dates
-1/3 cup unsweetened baking cocoa
-1/2 cup peanut butter
-2 TBS maple syrup
-1 x 10 oz package of dark chocolate chips (use a vegan dark chocolate if you want the entire recipe to be plant based)
Place the dates, peanut butter, baking cocoa and coconut into the bowl of a food processor and pulse/process until it begins to come into a crumbly mixture. Then slowly drizzle in the maple syrup while you run the food processor on low until the mixture begins to come together and clean from the sides of the bowl.
Line a cookie tray with parchment paper. Using your hands, roll the mixture into balls approximately 1 TBS in size. Once all of the mixture is rolled, place the tray in the freezer to set for approximately 30 minutes (it's fine if you leave them in longer- you can break up the steps here). Start to melt the dark chocolate in a double boiler about 5 minutes before you plan to take the prepared mixture from the freezer. Roll each ball into the melted chocolate and return to the parchment paper lined cookie tray. Drizzle the extra melted chocolate across the tops and then return the tray to the freezer to set for 30-60 minutes. Store the finished chocolates in the fridge in an air tight container.
New England wife, mom & home baker. Faith, food, fitness, baking, cooking and constantly cleaning my kitchen.