Do you ever have a mad hankering for a food that you know isn’t the best option?? Sometimes it just happens and mine is usually a sweet thing, often including chocolate and maybe some caramel or peanut butter or ooo both!
I’m pretty good about managing cravings by eating enough of the good stuff to crowd out the need for treats, but I’m also okay will letting myself have an occasional one. Meaning I can handle having 1 piece of chocolate and being totally satisfied and thus over it. I’ll buy a chocolate bar (one of my fav’s Reese’s Peanut butter cups) I’ll eat one of the cups and Gideon gets the rest! Win win.
Now that I’ve said that its okay to have the occasional tasty crap food, I still believe that the less we have, the better! Keep in mind “occassional” may be different from one person to the next….I haven’t had a Reese’s Peanut Butter cup since last Halloween (so once every 6 months?)! If the “occasional” becomes a little more frequent, why not at least make the treats out of ingredients that can also provide the body good nutrients instead of just sugar and empty calories!?
I am all for trying to make something healthier so I came up with these Choco Peanut Butter Bars as a beautyfood version of the commercial peanut butter cup. Some of the star ingredients include:
dark chocolate– antioxidants (flavanoids, polyphenols), benefit heart health
dried cranberries and apricots– fibre, more antioxidants (Vit. A and C), iron
almond flour – another antioxidant (Vit.E), lower carb, source of protein and fibre
peanut butter – more Vit. E! protein, healthy unsaturated fats
I am super happy with how they came out, I had to share! But do keep in mind, they are still treats, so eat in moderation and not half the pan over a weekend like I may have…
Choco Peanut Butter Bars
Makes 12 bars
GF, Vegan (if using vegan chocolate)
1 1/2 cups gluten-free oats (can use regular rolled oats)
2/3 cup almond flour
1 Tbsp coconut flour (can use more almond flour in place)
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
3 Tbsp natural smooth peanut butter
1/4 cup chopped dried apricots (about 4 apricots)
1/4 cup chopped dried cranberries
1 1/2 Tbsp coconut oil
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp butter extract (or use more vanilla)
For chocolate topping:
1 cup chopped dark chocolate
1 tsp coconut oil
1. In a high speed blender, blend the oats into a fine flour. Set aside
2. In a large bowl, combine the oil, peanut butter, syrup, extracts and beat with wooden spoon until smooth. Add the flours and salt and stir until well combined. Fold in the dried fruit.
3. Prepare 8×8 square pan with parchment paper. Pour peanut butter mixture into pan and press down into even layer.
4. In a medium sized microwave safe bowl, add the dark chocolate and coconut oil. Microwave on medium heat for 25 seconds. Remove and stir. Microwave again for 25 seconds. Remove and stir until all the chocolate is melted.
5. Pour melted chocolate over the peanut butter layer, scooping the sides of the bowl with a spatula. Even out layer with spatula. Place in freezer for 10-15 minutes.
6. Remove from freezer and cut into 12 bars. Enjoy! OR share with your friends, family, web designers or freeze for later!