No-bake peanut butter cup bars (vegan, gluten-free)

Last week Min and I were invited to a friend’s son’s first birthday, where among a lovely spread of fresh fruit, cheese and veggies, there was a delicious gluten-free dessert (in addition to birthday cake, of course!)

The no-bake peanut butter cup bars my friend made were gluten-free and sweetened only with pure maple syrup. And I ate like, three on my drive home.

Yes, that was in addition to what I ate at the party. Don’t judge me!

She shared the recipe with me (which you can findĀ here) and the only sort of lengthy part is waiting for the crust and middle layers to freeze. Other than that, the ingredients and method are super simple.

As with most recipes, you can tweak the ingredients to suit your needs. I used much less sweetener than what the original recipe called for and also added cream scraped off the top of cow’s milk yogurt.

Here’s what you need:

Chocolate Crust:

– 3/4 cup ground almond meal (also called “almond flour”)

– 2 tablespoons raw cacao powder

– 1 to 2 tablespoons natural sweetener of choice: raw honey/pure maple syrup/pure unrefined stevia/agave nectar etc.

– 1 tablespoon melted coconut oil

– Pinch of Himalayan pink sea salt to taste

Peanut Butter Filling:

– 1/2 cup freshly ground peanut butter or creamy natural peanut butter (no added salt or sugar)

– 2 tablespoons natural sweetener of choice

– 1 tablespoon melted coconut oil

– Pinch of Himalayan pink sea salt to taste

Chocolate Topping:

– 1/4 cup raw cacao powder

– 1/4 cup melted coconut oil

– 1 to 2 tablespoons natural sweetener

The raw cacao powder can have a strong/bitter taste, so it’s a good idea to start with smaller measurements. You can play with the cacao and sweetener ratio until you get the taste you like.

What to do:

Line a standard loaf pan with parchment paper.

In a medium bowl, stir together all of the chocolate crust ingredients until a moist dough is formed. If the crust isn’t ‘doughy’ enough, add a few tablespoons of water starting with one tablespoon first.

Press dough evenly into the bottom of the lined loaf pan, and put in freezer.

Now on to the filling!

Put peanut butter, sweetener of choice, melted coconut oil and salt in the same bowl and stir. Once combined, use a spatula to spread the filling evenly over the frozen crust and then put the loaf pan back in the freezer to set.

For the top layer, mix the cacao powder, melted coconut oil and sweetener of choice and whisk to break apart any clumps. You want this mixture to look like chocolate sauce. Again, if it’s not the consistency you want, you can slowly add water.

Once smooth, pour it over the peanut butter layer and return to the freezer for a few hours. Once the bars are firm, just pull out the parchment paper and use a sharp knife to cut your bars into squares, or rectangles!

Serve and enjoy!

(Store in fridge for 10 days, or in freezer for a month)

no-bake peanut butter bars (gluten-free)



2 thoughts on “No-bake peanut butter cup bars (vegan, gluten-free)

  1. sounds amazing! I ran out of cocoa so now I am wondering if I can use strawberries and banana as a substitute for the chocolate part of the recipe. Also, would you use olive oil instead of coconut oil? again, ran out :s

    1. Linda, all that sounds yummy! I’m sure you could use any oil you like. Let me know how they turn out!

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