Mini Peanut Butter Cups in a Jar

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Last week on Twitter, I asked you guys if you’d rather see a main course or dessert recipe for the upcoming Easter holiday.

Of course, many of you vegan goblins said you wanted BOTH!

I like the way you think.

Actually, the majority vote was for the main course recipe, easily by a 80/20 split. Does that surprise any of you? It’s interesting to note this because my most popular recipes (or should I say, the ones that are clicked on the most) tend to be dessert recipes. Maybe it’s the case that people enjoy drooling over pictures of desserts, but in reality, we tend to make more savoury, main course recipes.

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Well, let me tell you, this isn’t a dessert that you should just look at. You should make this now. And be sure to take a picture because they last much longer.

sigh.

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That was the damage I did immediately after the photoshoot. HA!

Imagine a cross between a peanut butter cup and a chocolate peanut butter torte, with a healthy, vegan twist. This is it! My obsession with this idea started when I came across a peanut butter cup recipe over at The Purple Spoon. I couldn’t get it out of my head for days!

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I wanted this dessert to be mini to keep the portion size in check, so I used these cute and portable 125ml mason jars. They worked like a charm! I picked mine up from Canadian Tire. You can find different sized mason jars at many home hardware type stores, as well as Wal-Mart. If you don’t want to use jars you can use ramekins, but the dessert won’t have nearly as much height to it. Or you can easily double the amount that goes into each dish.

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The first thing you do is make a chocolate graham cracker crust with graham crackers, maple syrup, coconut oil, and cocoa powder. If you don’t want to use coconut oil, you can sub in Earth Balance and you can also sub the maple syrup for another liquid sweetener. I added a couple tablespoons of the crust into 5 mason jars and then pressed it down with my fingers until even.

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Fool proof.

For the second step, I whipped up the insanely creamy and buttery peanut butter filling. I feel all flustered just looking at the picture again!

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My goal for this filling was to make it high in volume, so I used silken/soft tofu to add thickness and body with minimal calories. It was my first time making a dessert with soft tofu and I was a bit hesitant (ok, a lot), but it worked amazing and I could not detect it at all.

Now portion about 3 heaping tablespoons of filling into each jar:

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And place the jars in the freezer for about 30 minutes.

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Now go do some busy work or you will drive yourself insane peeking into the fridge every 45 seconds. I’ve been there…the minutes pass like days.

After the filling sets, melt the chocolate and coconut oil and then spoon a teaspoon of melted chocolate on top of each. Now, quickly twist the jar all around to coat all sides with chocolate. Chill in the fridge or freezer until the chocolate sets. I prefer to enjoy it cold from the freezer, but I let it thaw for about 10 minutes first..if I can wait that long.

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Mini Peanut Butter Cups in a Jar

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Yield: 5 (125ml) mason jars

For the crust:

  • heaping 1/2 cup + 2 tbsp graham cracker crumbs (10 squares) or use homemade PB graham crackers
  • 1.5 tbsp pure maple syrup (or other liquid sweetener)
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil (or Earth Balance)
  • 2.5 tsp cocoa powder

 

For the filling:

  • 200 grams soft/silken organic tofu, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup natural peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup Sucanat or brown sugar, processed into powder (or 3-5 tbsp icing sugar)*see question #6
  • 1 tbsp almond milk
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • salt, to taste

 

For the chocolate shell:

  • 2.5 tbsp dark chocolate chips
  • 1.5 tsp coconut oil (or Earth Balance)

 

1. If making homemade powdered sugar, add 1/2 cup of Sucanat (or brown sugar) into a high-speed blender and blend until a powder forms. Set aside, but leave the lid on as it needs to settle.

2. In a food processor, process the crust ingredients until crumbs are a bit damp. Add 2 tablespoons of the crust into each jar. Spread out evenly and flatten with fingers.

3. Quickly wipe out the processor bowl. Now add the filling ingredients and process until silky smooth, scraping down the sides as necessary.

4. Add 3 tablespoons of filling into each jar and spread gently with a spoon. Place jars into freezer, uncovered, for about 30 minutes to firm up a bit.

5. Remove jars from freezer and melt the chocolate on the stove-top or microwave. Spoon 1 teaspoon of melted chocolate on top of the filling. Quickly, twist the jar around to coat all sides. Repeat for the rest. chill in the fridge or freezer to firm up the chocolate or just dig in as is!

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Ingredient/Allergy Questions you may be wondering about:

1. What if I can’t have nuts? If you can’t have nuts, I suggest using sweetened sunflower seed butter as a swap for the peanut butter. You may also need to swap coconut oil for Earth Balance and be sure to check all other ingredients.

2. What if I can’t have gluten? For a gluten-free crust that works amazing (I even tried it myself), try using this pecan based no bake crust. Of course, double check all other ingredients to ensure they are GF.

3. What if I can’t have soy? That is a tricky one for this recipe. My first thought is to use banana (or banana soft serve!) because it’s sweet, easy, and blends super smooth. You may also want to reduce the sugar.

4. What if I don’t have coconut oil?

Feel free to sub Earth Balance for coconut oil.

5. What if I don’t have maple syrup?

Feel free to sub any liquid sweetener of your choice.

6. How do I make homemade powdered sugar?

As I’ve seen on Lesley, Ashley and Katie’s blogs, it’s very easy to make homemade powdered sugar. Simply add Sucanat, brown, or white sugar into a high-speed blender and blend until a powder forms (you can also add a bit of cornstarch to it, but I didn’t bother to for this recipe). Allow it to sit in the blender for at least 5 minutes to settle. There tends to be a huge white cloud when you take off the lid, so it’s a bit messy, but it’s a great, natural swap for confectioner’s sugar so I’m not complaining too much. I didn’t measure how much 1/2 cup Sucanat made, so if you are using store-bought powdered sugar I would start with 3 tbsp and add to taste from there. Sucanat also gives the filling a nice golden tone.

7. What if I don’t have mini jars?

Feel free to use ramekin dishes, but I suggest doubling the ingredients since ramekins are a lot bigger.

I imagine they can also be heated up, but I didn’t get that far…

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Whew, am I chatty today or am I chatty today?

Must have been that 6am hot yoga class…I’m bouncing off the walls here.

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{ 241 comments… read them below or add one }

Abby @ Fig & Fork April 3, 2012

I don’t know what it is about Mason jars, but everything is more to eat out of them!! Dessert in a jar – I love it!

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Katy April 3, 2012

Looks delicious! The idea of small jars is great… portion control!

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Laura April 3, 2012

Mason jars are THE best thing ever. ONLY container I ever use for food storage! Walmart even carries 1.9L ones sometimes…you can store so much quinoa or steel cut oats in one.

oh…and next time I see dbf for the weekend I’m totally making these. Amazing!

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joanna April 3, 2012

looks so delicious!! thank you for adding the alternative ingredients at the end!

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laura April 3, 2012

Nomnomnom chocolate and pb is the best combo. :)
What kind of hot yoga do you do?

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Pure2raw twins April 3, 2012

oh yum! love mini mason jars :) love the presentation of these too!!

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PoochesForPeace(Anna H.) April 3, 2012

yay! Cant wait to try this. i had a several month streak of cooking the majority of my meals, mostly vegan. and working out regularly, but the past 7-8 weeks have fallen off the wagon a bit due to trying to settle in to a new job! but im noticing how much less energy i have and how “blah” i feel sometimes lately, and i really think its because of my diet and excercise not being regular right now. I need to start enjoying healthier versions of dessert again such as this and revert to making all your yummy main courses again!

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Abby @ Change of Pace April 3, 2012

Can’t wait to make this recipe!
I love the addition of the questions at the bottom…no need to try and figure out the answer myself and risk ruining the glorious dessert!

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Izabela (yoginiselfportrayal.wordpress.com) April 3, 2012

OMG-I will make sure to make it tomorrow!!!Looks delicious. Hey Angela where do you practice yoga in Oakville?

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Kari @ bite-sized thoughts April 3, 2012

I share your fluster on looking at these pictures. I now have a voice in my head demanding that these be made. I sense it won’t be quiet until I obey! They look amazing!

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Sathya April 3, 2012

Gotta try this one soon :) your food photography is getting amazing day by day ! Thanks for all the posts ..

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Leah April 4, 2012

These looks INSANELY delicious!

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Olya April 4, 2012

I have no words… that’s just beautiful

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greenthyme April 4, 2012

This is a GENIUS idea! I love it! Glad you tried the tofu. I was afraid to use it in dessert the first time too. I used it to make a raspberry chocolate ‘cheesecake.’ I didn’t tell anyone what was in it (only after they devoured a slice). Everyone was shocked :) It works so well because it gives it a creamy consistency. I can’t wait to try this! I agree with whoever it was above that said it would be a great dessert send off!

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Vegan April 4, 2012

This is perfect desert this coming Easter Sunday. My family will love this, that’s for sure. We all love peanut butter. This is a must-try recipe. Thanks for sharing!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) April 4, 2012

I hope you all enjoy it!

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Karine F April 4, 2012

Gosh!! This looks so yummy! I’m thinking about this non-stop since yesterday night…. I will have to make those today or tomorrow for sure. Thanks!

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LizAshlee April 4, 2012

Wow, you have taken peanut butter and chocolate to a new level..this looks so amazing!! Is 1 jar 1 serving bc I don’t think I could stop myself!

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Helene April 4, 2012

I actually had a dream about these peanut butter cups last night.

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Somer April 4, 2012

Holy Moly Deliciousness. You inspire me Angela! So grateful for your blog!

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Kelly April 4, 2012

Yes please! I will be making these today….I already had planned a run to the store so no excuses not to! :)

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Sabrina April 4, 2012

I would like to try this dessert. What can I substitute for the silken tofu??
thanks

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Angela (Oh She Glows) April 4, 2012

Hey Sabrina, please see my suggestions in the post. Other commenters suggested young thai coconut or cashew cream too.

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Ashley F. April 4, 2012

YUM! No other words are necessary!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) April 4, 2012

that’s for sure ;)

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kath April 4, 2012

Genius recipe!!!

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Hong Mei April 4, 2012

Made this tonight. Made it with the suggested nut crust. Didn’t put the chocolate on top because my husband doesn’t like chocolate. He ate three servings. Guess he liked it.

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Angela (Oh She Glows) April 4, 2012

hah that is usually a good sign ;)

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Nicole @ giraffelegs April 4, 2012

So basically you made heaven in a jar?

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Amy April 4, 2012

Lent can’t end fast enough!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) April 4, 2012

heh sorry to tease… :) Hope you like them if you end up making it!

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Brittany@FloydsKitchen April 4, 2012

OH MY! im completely out of words for once in my life.

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Jen April 4, 2012

I made a chocolate mousse once with silken tofu and it worked. Ya its not the same as real chocolate and lots of eggs but it was good enough. I am going through my pantry in my mind to see if I can recreate your recipe :-)

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Angela (Oh She Glows) April 4, 2012

Ive heard that is fantastic!

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Jamie April 4, 2012

These look amazing. I cannot wait to try them. This recipe comes just in time for Easter.

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Angela (Oh She Glows) April 4, 2012

Thank you Jamie, I greatly appreciate it!

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Zoe@lose weight and gain health April 4, 2012

Oh my, they look fantastic. I MUST make those soon :-)

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Robyn April 4, 2012

Purrfection….in the freezer…brilliant!

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Kelly April 4, 2012

I made these last night!! DELICIOUS!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) April 4, 2012

glad to hear that!

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Dawn April 4, 2012

I was curious about carob powder. I was getting ready to buy some online and I saw Bob’s Red Mill only sells “Toasted” Carob Powder, do you think there is some difference because it’s “toasted”?

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Angela (Oh She Glows) April 4, 2012

i called the Bulk Barn where I buy my carob powder and the lady said it doesn’t say that it’s toasted….so I guess I am buying un-toasted carob powder! Im not sure how much the taste differs. It might be worth googling to see if there is any info on it.

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Heathy April 4, 2012

Oh wow this looks so yummy! Love peanut butter and chocolate together!

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TeenyLittleSuperChef April 4, 2012

Oh sweet jesus, this sounds delicious! I can’t wait to give it a try. You pretty much had me at peanut butter but then I read further and now I’m totally in love with this idea. It never ceases to amaze me at your ability to keep coming up with new and totally awesome recipes all the time. You are a culinary genius :)

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Desiree April 4, 2012

This looks AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!!! i CAN’T WAIT TO TRY IT! Angela I LOVE your blog!!!!!!!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) April 5, 2012

Thank you so much, I appreciate your kind words Desiree.

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Kara April 5, 2012

Ohhhh my gosh this would be a perfect dessert to make for my sister’s bday this weekend!! Thank you :)!

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Anastasia@healthymamainfo.com April 5, 2012

Peanut butter is my husband’s favorite food. Thanks for the recipe!

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Vanessa April 5, 2012

So very excited about trying these this Easter weekend :)

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Erika - The Teenage Taste April 5, 2012

Oh my gosh, I don’t even have words for this other than YUM and WANT! :-D

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