Crunchy dark chocolate peanut butter cups

Crunchy dark chocolate peanut butter cups

HERE ARE SOME QUESTIONS I AM CONSTANTLY NOODLING OVER: DO YOU SPLURGE OR DO YOU HOARD? DO YOU LIVE EVERY DAY AS IF IT’S YOUR LAST, OR DO YOU SAVE YOUR MONEY ON THE CHANCE YOU’LL LIVE TWENTY MORE YEARS? IS LIFE TOO SHORT, OR IS IT GOING TO BE TOO LONG? DO YOU WORK AS HARD AS YOU CAN, OR DO YOU SLOW DOWN TO SMELL THE ROSES? AND WHERE DO CARBOHYDRATES FIT INTO ALL THIS? ARE WE REALLY ALL GOING TO SPEND OUR LAST YEARS AVOIDING BREAD, ESPECIALLY NOW THAT BREAD IN AMERICA IS SO UNBELIEVABLY DELICIOUS? AND WHAT ABOUT CHOCOLATE?” – NORA EPHRON

Yeah, what about chocolate? And peanut butter? Together.

Easy no-bake cookies

Chocolate mousse pie with peanut butter whip + pretzel crust

Hot fudge peanut butter pie

Peanut butter cookies with chocolate-peanut topping

Salted chocolate-pretzel peanut butter cookies

And now, crunchy dark chocolate peanut butter cups. Because I finally broke up with my nightly pack of Justin’s after a few too many that were filled with peanut butter that had a consistency reminiscent of chalk.

HAPPY WEEKEND, FOLKS.

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Notes: Using creamy peanut butter is pretty crucial to getting a consistency that’s smooth and not too crumbly. However, I did use Justin’s almond butter and enjoyed the texture but added a tablespoon of warm almond milk to help thin it out and omitted the nut meal (but mixed in 1-2 tablespoons of chopped almonds, instead). Speaking of other nut butters, feel free to use any one you can get your hands on. If you don’t have small paper liners, you can easily use cupcake liners but I highly recommend trying to get your hands on the little guys. I like my peanut butter cups to be chock-full of peanut butter goodness, but if you’d prefer something with a bit more chocolate, reduce the peanut butter to just one scoop (instead of 1 1/2).

This post is sponsored by ALOHA. All opinions are my own, and I think ALOHA chocolate is delicious.

CRUNCHY DARK CHOCOLATE PEANUT BUTTER CUPS

4 ounces ALOHA original dark superfood chocolate, roughly chopped
2 tablespoons refined coconut oil
1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
1 tablespoon Grade B maple syrup, cold
3-4 tablespoons peanut meal
1 tablespoon dry roasted peanuts, roughly chopped
Pinch of fine sea salt

Line a small baking sheet with parchment paper and #5 paper candy cups; set aside. In a double boiler over medium heat, melt the chocolate and coconut oil. Transfer mixture to a small cup with a spout and put aside to cool for about 10 minutes. In a small mixing bowl, stir together the peanut butter, maple syrup, peanut meal, roughly chopped peanuts, and sea salt. Using a 1 1/2 teaspoon cookie scoop, drop the peanut butter mixture onto the prepared baking sheet (if you don’t have anymore room on your sheet, drop them onto a flat surface lined with parchment paper).

Once the chocolate has cooled, pour enough into each liner so that the bottom of each candy cup is completely covered. Take 1 1/2 of the peanut butter balls and roll them between your palms until they’re perfectly round. Flatten just slightly and place into the liners, but make sure not to press too firmly or else the peanut butter will displace the chocolate and be visible once unwrapped. Once you’ve filled all the cups with peanut butter, covered with chocolate until the peanut butter is no longer visible and sprinkle with chopped peanuts, if desired. Transfer the baking sheet to the freezer for about 20 minutes, or until set. Peanut butter cups can be enjoyed immediately or stored in a container in the refrigerator for up to four weeks (but I doubt they’ll last that long).

Yield: 14 mini peanut butter cups

36 Comments

  • Reply Angela 22 May 2015 at 6:38 AM

    I’m always in awe of how perfect your treats look. Flawless. Seriously, you have some mad skills (and patience). Really love these photos!
    Really love that quote…I struggle with that question daily.

    • Reply Angela 22 May 2015 at 6:43 AM

      Apparently I really love many things today hah. Note to self, refrain from commenting with iPhone.

  • Reply Alexa [fooduzzi.com] 22 May 2015 at 6:53 AM

    Oh HECK yes! Peanut butter and chocolate are the perfect pair, as far as I’m concerned. I love that you added some texture to these PB cups!

  • Reply Erica 22 May 2015 at 7:04 AM

    Oh chocolate and peanut butter. I’ve spent too many days with a peanut butter spoon sprinkled with chocolate chips. But no regrets. Nada.
    These are beautiful. Really digging that peanut butter to chocolate ratio too, I’m all for a little extra peanut butter.
    P.S. Made your chocolate mousse pie with the pretzel crust this week for my roommate’s birthday and it was a HUGE hit amongst the friends! That pretzel crust is to die for.

  • Reply Kiley 22 May 2015 at 7:40 AM

    These look great! I’m having a BBQ tomorrow, do you think they’re okay to stay out on the countertop inside the house during the party or do they need to be kept in the fridge?

    • Reply Ashlae 23 May 2015 at 8:54 PM

      Hi Kiley –

      Sadly they have to stay in the fridge, otherwise they turn into a melty mess.

    • Reply Luisa 28 May 2015 at 2:27 PM

      HI Kiley,

      If you take the extra step of tempering the chocolate, they’ll be fine to stay out at room temperature. Though this is raw chocolate, so I don’t know if you care about maintaining that…you’d have to raise the temp of the chocolate to about 114 -120 F, which is not too much higher than (I think) the raw standard of 110 F. Hope that helps!

  • Reply Ksenia @ At the Immigrant's Table 22 May 2015 at 8:12 AM

    The combination of dark chocolate and peanut butter is always a winner in my books… And these look just delicious.
    But to reference the question you opened your post with, I’d say everything is important in moderation. Some days, we splurge, and on others we hold back. That way, nothing ever becomes boring and those moments of extravagance feel all the more frivolous and exciting!

  • Reply Gemma 22 May 2015 at 8:57 AM

    Oh my gosh! Your recipes always make me drool but this one…oh my! This one is really tempting!!!
    These PB butter cups are super cute and they have a perfect texture and beautiful center! =)

  • Reply cynthia 22 May 2015 at 9:30 AM

    Yes. Just yes.

  • Reply Mercedes 22 May 2015 at 12:03 PM

    another beautiful recipe that is so well worked out. I love the simplicity of this recipe and am really looking forward to trying it

  • Reply Lauren 22 May 2015 at 12:27 PM

    ok YES to that Justin’s PB cup chalkiness comment! Every single one of those I’ve ever had has been dry as efffffffff and so chalky. I thought that’s just how they were, and the fact that so many people love them CONFOUNDED me. What the heck Justins, what. the. heck.

  • Reply Elizabeth 22 May 2015 at 1:05 PM

    dayummmm those are the prettiest homemade PB cups i ever did see!

  • Reply The Vegan Cookie Fairy 22 May 2015 at 1:55 PM

    Ugh they look PERFECT. I’d gobble them all up in no time if I was there, haha!

  • Reply Cady 22 May 2015 at 3:03 PM

    YIS ELAINEDANCING! My parents used to tell me I danced like Elaine throughout my time as a socially awkward adolescent and I was not even mad about it. :) PS your cross-section game is immaculate. Making the heck out of these.

  • Reply Shelly @ Vegetarian 'Ventures 22 May 2015 at 3:27 PM

    UM THANK YOU FOR THIS RECIPE! I am addicted to PB cups and making our own just makes so much sense!

  • Reply Randle 22 May 2015 at 3:36 PM

    ::faints::

  • Reply Kasey 22 May 2015 at 4:03 PM

    That is such an amazing quote. Gimme ALL the bread and ALL the chocolate (+ peanut butter). xoxo

  • Reply Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar 22 May 2015 at 5:50 PM

    Ok, these look PERFECT!! Love this recipe!

  • Reply Marissa @ In My Yellow Cardigan 22 May 2015 at 9:10 PM

    OMG THESE LOOK AMAZING! Pinning now as these are going to be perfect for fall birthdays and holiday gifts later this year. So excited too to know where to get those paper cups (always thought they were exclusive to restaurant people :)!

  • Reply Kayla 22 May 2015 at 9:16 PM

    You’re the best…!

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  • Reply l mend 23 May 2015 at 6:24 AM

    these look great. in a pinch, you might want to try theo’s dark pb cups in the future. we like them better than justin’s and as a bonus, they do not contain soy (no affiliation with them, just sayin).

    • Reply Ashlae 23 May 2015 at 6:39 AM

      Hi Imend –

      While I do love Theo’s chocolate bars, I’m not a fan of their peanut butter cups. Maybe I’ll have to give ’em another try.

  • Reply Linda | A La Place Clichy 23 May 2015 at 2:50 PM

    I am so excited to see this recipe! I absolutely loooooove dark chocolate peanut butter cups and I have always wanted to make my own. I’ll be giving this a try soon definitely

  • Reply Cassie 23 May 2015 at 2:57 PM

    I love superfood chocolate! This is amazing!

  • Reply Kate 24 May 2015 at 2:59 AM

    Homemade peanut butter cups always and forever. I add cocoa nibs to mine for extra crunch :-) x

  • Reply Sara 24 May 2015 at 10:53 AM

    I made these for a BBQ tomorrow and had to sneak one. They are so much better than store bought! I’m going to try them next with almond butter. Thank you for sharing such delicious creations! Every recipe I’ve tried has been a hit.

  • Reply Deb D 25 May 2015 at 7:21 AM

    These looks amazing! Where do you buy peanut meal?…

    • Reply Ashlae 25 May 2015 at 8:42 AM

      Hi Deb –

      I make it in my food processor or spice grinder. You could also make it by putting peanuts in a plastic bag and smashing the heck out of them with a rolling pin. :)

  • Reply dishing up the dirt 25 May 2015 at 10:56 AM

    Life is too short to avoid amazing bread and eat “chalky” peanut butter cups. I’ll be whipping these puppies up this week to satisfy my sweet too. They’ll taste great with a little bourbon too! Thanks for the recipe girl!!

  • Reply Sarah F 25 May 2015 at 11:56 AM

    These look amazing! Thank you for sharing. Love the Justin’s PB cups *most* of the time–when they’re good, they are effing GOOD– but have had the same off-putting experience with chalkiness a few times now. Can’t wait to try these (but might have to hide them from my guy, who goes through an entire 35oz jar Woodstock PBevery week).

  • Reply Abby 25 May 2015 at 6:16 PM

    I adore this Ashlae, and your photos are incredible! <3

  • Reply Dani | salt sugar and i 28 May 2015 at 5:26 PM

    These look so delicious! You can’t find peanut butter cups around here much at all, it’s only the reese ones which are imported from the states. These will be a must try! I made homemade snickers over the weekend and far out homemade tastes so much better!! I think I need to buy a stand mixer just so I can keep a stash of them on hand :)

  • Reply Jessie 3 June 2015 at 9:45 AM

    Made these last night – seriously so easy, I think it took about 15 minuted start to finish. And they’re really really good. (Gonna keep mine in the freezer though, they got to melting pretty quickly in my hands. Which, as far as problems go, is the best problem.)

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