Vegan Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups

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About: I'm a designer, writer, and artist based in upstate NY.

These peanut butter cups are super easy to make, only take a few ingredients, are completely vegan, and taste very much like the OG Reese's cups.

I need to mention, however, that these are not "healthy" vegan peanut butter cups. Just like Reese's cups, these are full of sugar and loads of unhealthy stuff. I sometimes get mean/nonconstructive comments on my vegan recipes that say, "these are full of processed crap, they are not healthy." And, hey, I have never -- not once in my decade-plus of veganism and prior vegetarianism -- have tried to be an ultra-healthy, restrict-all-sugar-from-my-diet, only-eat-lettuce vegan. That all being said, these are extremely tasty, and in moderation, they make for a great treat.

To make these peanut butter cups, you'll only need three ingredients:

  • Creamy peanut butter (I use the natural, just-peanuts-and-salt kind)
  • Vegan chocolate bars (or chocolate chips, etc. -- it's most likely going to be dark chocolate, check the labels to make sure they don't have "trace amounts of milk" on the ingredients list)
  • White frosting (make sure it's vegan by looking at the ingredients)

You'll also need baking cups, like cupcake/muffin liners.

Step 1: Step One: Melt the Chocolate

Set up a double boiler by filling up one large pot halfway with water. Place a slightly smaller pan on top of that water. Heat on medium until boiling and then lower the heat.

While the water starts to boil, break up one chocolate bar and place all the pieces inside the pan. Stir while they melt until they turn into a smooth consistency.

Step 2: Step Two: Spoon Chocolate Into the Cups

Spoon about 1 tablespoon of melted chocolate into a baking cup. Pick up the baking cup and tilt it around so the melted chocolate spreads around the sides a little. I used 1 whole chocolate bar (3 oz.) for the bottoms of 10 cups. Then transfer all of your cups into the freezer. I put them all on a baking sheet to make this easier.

Step 3: Step Three: Make Filling

While the chocolate is solidifying in the freezer, mix 3 parts peanut butter to 2 parts white frosting. I didn't measure, but I did put three heaping spoons of peanut butter and two heaping spoons full of frosting into a cup and stir until it turned into a peanut butter fluff type of consistency.

Once you check on the chocolate in the freezer and see the bottoms have solidified, take them out. Make sure your hands are clean and roll a ball of the peanut butter-frosting mixture the size of a ping pong ball (I guess? just eyeball it) in between your hands. Press the ball into the cups on top of the chocolate.

Step 4: Step Four: Melt More Chocolate

Heat your double boiler back up and melt another bar of chocolate. Spoon melted chocolate on top of the peanut butter-frosting mixture. Tilt the cups around until all of the peanut butter is covered in chocolate. Place all the cups back in the freezer until they solidify. It should only take about 10 minutes.

Step 5: Step Five: Eat Your Peanut Butter Cups

Once the chocolate has solidified, they're ready to eat! For ultimate flavor and consistency, I recommend leaving one out on the counter for a couple of minutes before devouring. They do melt in your hands though, so I also recommend keeping the wrapper under the cups so you can keep your hands clean while you eat them. I always keep mine in the fridge and my husband and I eat them within the span of a few days. I'm sure they'd also be fine on the counter in a closed container. I don't do that because we have many pets and I'd rather be safe than sorry.

I've made these peanut butter cups several ways: I've tried several different chocolate bars, I've used chocolate chips instead of bars, I've melted the chocolate in the microwave instead of a double boiler, and I've used a couple of tablespoons of maple syrup in place of the white frosting. While all of those options were fine, this is the most "authentic" tasting peanut butter cup recipe I've made to date. Not healthy, but very tasty.

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    4 Discussions

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    JustineM32

    6 days ago

    Nice job!
    I wonder if a homemade frosting would work in place of canned?
    This is a great, easy idea for a homemade Reese's!

    2 replies
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    elewis03JustineM32

    Reply 6 days ago

    And like I mentioned in the post, I once used a couple of tablespoons of (real!) maple syrup in place of the frosting. It tasted just fine, but not authentic.

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    elewis03JustineM32

    Reply 6 days ago

    Sure! I don't see why not. The reason canned frosting works really well it's because it's thick. So as long as your homemade frosting is thick, it should work just fine!

    1
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    jessyratfink

    7 days ago

    Ohhhhhhh those look so good! I think I'll have to make some with soynut butter. Craving them :D