Anyone who knows me well knows that I am obsessed with peanut butter. Seriously, if I could create a recipe that involved a jar of peanut butter and a spoon, with the only instructions being to dip the spoon in the jar, eat and repeat, and still be viewed as a credible foodie, I totally would. But for the sake of this post, I’ll offer you a recipe with a little more substance and a whole lot of satisfaction. Introducing homemade peanut butter cups. So much better than the store-bought version with less preservatives, additives and mystery ingredients. They aren’t healthy, low-fat or anything like that. Instead, they are decadent, delicious and one of the things that makes life so sweet. And who doesn’t need a little more sweetness in their life?
Peanut Butter Crunchy Cups
Makes 20 mini cups
1 bag dark chocolate chips
1 tbsp Nature’s Balance*
3/4 cup natural smooth peanut butter
1/4 cup maple sugar
1 cup graham cracker crumbs
*Feel free to substitute unsalted butter.
1. Line a mini muffin tin with paper liners and set aside. I strongly suggest using parchment paper liners which will make it so much easier to take off later.
2. Place the chocolate in a microwavable bowl and heat in 45-second intervals, stirring between each interval until completely melted. You can also melt the chocolate in a double boiler, if you prefer.
3. Using a kitchen brush, paint the inside of each muffin liner with the chocolate, making sure to cover the sides in a thick coat of chocolate. When each liner has been coated, place in the fridge to set for about 20 minutes. Place the remaining chocolate aside and try to resist sneaking a taste, you’re going to need every last drop of the remaining chocolate.
4. In the meantime, prepare the peanut butter filling. In a small saucepan, melt the Nature’s Balance over medium heat. Add the peanut butter and stir to combine. Add the maple sugar and graham cracker crumbs and combine. It should look a little crumbly, but stick together when pressed between your fingers. Set the mixture aside for about 10 minutes to cool. If it’s too hot, the peanut butter mixture will melt the chilled chocolate shells.
5. Take the chocolate shells out of the fridge and divide the peanut butter mixture equally among the shells, pressing the mixture down with the back of a spoon to even it out and make it more compact. Next, reach for the melted chocolate. If it has hardened, microwave it for a few seconds to warm it up. This will make it much easier to spread over the peanut butter cups.
6. Spoon the melted chocolate over the peanut butter, making sure to reach the sides so that the chocolate seals the cups. Return the cups to the fridge for at least 20 minutes to completely harden. Serve chilled.