Guest Post: Vegan Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups
Looking for a sweet treat to bring to holiday gatherings? Look no further. Guest blogger Jackie Clark’s Vegan Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups will no doubt be a big hit.
I started as a vegetarian 15 years ago. Giving up meat was not hard for me at all. My beliefs in the fair treatment of animals conquered any cheeseburger cravings I had after viewing a documentary on the meat-eating industry. I could easily get the protein nutrition from other sources and save a few cows, chickens and pigs along the way. However, the recent birth of my second son who, coincidentally, has shown an allergy to lutein (a protein in cow’s milk) has required me to go vegan for the time being. You see, I’m kind of a hippie mama when it comes to nutrition and strongly believe in the importance of breast-feeding for as long as possible. Therefore, I had to take the leap into vegan-ism, even though the prospect scared me greatly. How could I give up my beloved pizza? And ice cream. And worse yet, CHOCOLATE?! That is like telling me I had to suddenly cut off a finger! I had chocolate every day, even if it was just a Hershey’s kiss. So I started on a mission to find easy, yet edible, chocolate recipes. The one below is one of my most favorites. All of the ingredients are vegan and easy to find at any Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, Sprouts, or other specialty chain. It’s simple, yummy, and heck, even your doctor would approve! Oh and the best part? My oldest son loves them, too. Nothing like getting good, nutritious food into him without his knowledge! Even my husband, Mr. Meat Head, likes these.
1/2 cup Earth Balance butter
3/4 cup crunchy peanut butter (preferably unsweetened and unsalted)
3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs or 10 graham cracker squares
1/4 cup maple sugar or other granulated sweetener
1 cup grain-sweetened, nondairy chocolate or carob chips
1/4 cup soy, rice, or nut milk
1/4 cup chopped pecans, almonds, or peanuts
1. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners. Set aside.
2. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat.
3. Stir in the peanut butter, graham cracker crumbs, and maple sugar and mix well.
4. Remove the mixture from the heat. Evenly divide the mixture, approximately 2 tablespoons per cup, among the muffin cups.
5. Combine the chocolate and milk in another pan. Stir over medium heat until the chocolate has melted.
6. Spoon the chocolate evenly over the peanut butter mixture.
7. Top with chopped nuts.
8. Place in the refrigerator to set for at least 2 hours before serving.
If after trying these you don’t think they are insanely good, please step aside from the rest of us. Reece’s peanut butter cups, say hello to your little “better” friend!
About the Author:
Jackie joined the Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance in 2009 as research assistant after graduating with a bachelor’s degree in English and a minor in fitness and nutrition. Jackie’s experience in technical and medical research has allowed her to assist in the development of medical content and outreach efforts, with specializations in alternative care, cancer support programs, and social media campaigns.