5.10.2017

Coconut and Chocolate Peanut Butter Nut Bars



Wow! That title is a mouthful.  I just couldn't quite come up with a shorter title for these fabulous little bites.  They contain ingredients from most of my favorite food groups.  Please tell me you have created your own food pyramid.  I have!  My food groups are:  1) Dark chocolate 2) raw cacao nibs, yes, they are their own group  3) Nuts of all kinds, 4) Coconut, 5) Smoothies/smoothie bowls  6) fabulous salads without Ranch dressing or ice berg lettuce and lastly 7) Cookies.  This pretty much sums up my diet.

I have wanted to create a healthy snack bar that would satisfy my daily chocolate fix as well as a post workout protein snack.

If you're a nut freak like me, you should love these tasty little bites.  They are super simple to make.



Line an 8 x 8-inch pan with plastic wrap.  Set aside.



For these nut loaded bars you will need:

3/4 cup unsweetened coconut ribbons
2 tablespoons raw cacao nibs
1/2 cup almonds, roughly chopped
1/2 cup pecans, roughly chopped
1/4 cup hazelnuts, roughly chopped
1/2 cup cashews, roughly chopped

All of the nuts are raw and not roasted, of course.


You will also need:

2/3 cup fresh ground peanut or almond butter, Natural peanut butter from a jar will work
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
2 tablespoons raw cacao powder or cocoa powder
2 tablespoons coconut sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons coconut oil
1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon pink Himalayan seat salt, if using fresh ground unsalted


Toss all of the nuts, coconut, and cacao nibs in a bowl.


Place peanut butter, maple syrup, cacao powder, coconut sugar, coconut oil, and sea salt in a small sauce pan.  Place over medium heat and bring to a low simmer.  Whisk ingredients together and cook until mixture begins to thicken.  Remove from heat and pour over the nut mixture.

 

Mix until all ingredients are thoroughly coated.


Pour into prepared pan.


Cover with another piece of plastic wrap and press firmly.


I like to use the bottom of a cup or glass to tamp the mixture down firmly.  Refrigerate while making the chocolate topping.


For the chocolate topping you will need:

1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chunks or chips,  I'm using vegan chocolate
1 1/2 tablespoons fresh ground peanut butter
1 teaspoon coconut oil
2 tablespoons unsweetened shredded coconut



Melt over low heat and whisk until creamy.


Pour over chilled nut mixture.  Spread the melted chocolate evenly over nut mixture.  Sprinkle with coconut and return to the refrigerator until set.


Once the chocolate has hardened, remove nut mixture using the plastic wrap to lift from pan.  Using a sharp knife, cut into 1 x 1.5-inch bars.  You can make them larger, of course.  I just like to start with a little bite.  I generally go back for another bar because they are just that addicting.

Place cut bars in a container with a lid and refrigerate until ready to eat.  Store in the refrigerator.  I like my bars frozen so I keep them in my freezer.

That's it!  Pretty simple.  Pretty healthy. Pretty nutty!




Coconut and Chocolate Peanut Butter Nut Bars

1/2 cup almonds, crushed
1/2 cup cashews, crushed
1/2 cup hazelnuts, crushed
1/2 cup pecans, crushed
3/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
2 tablespoons cacao nibs
1/2 cup maple syrup
2 tablespoons coconut sugar
2/3 cup fresh ground peanut or almond butter
2 tablespoons coconut oil
2 tablespoons cacao powder
1/4-1/2 teaspoons sea salt (depending of if nut butter is salted or not)

Topping:
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1 1/2 tablespoons fresh ground peanut or almond butter
1 teaspoon coconut oil
2 tablespoons unsweetened shredded coconut
1 tablespoons cacao nibs


Line an 8 x 8-inch pan with plastic wrap.  Set aside.  In a large bowl combine, nuts, coconut flakes, and cacao nibs.  Stir to combine.  Set aside.  In a small saucepan add maple syrup, peanut butter, coconut oil, cacao powder, and sea salt.  Bring to a slow boil over medium heat.  Whisk until smooth and continue to to cook for an additional minute or two until mixture is creamy and starting to thicken.  Pour hot mixture over nut mixture and stir to combine.  Press firmly into the prepared 8 x 8-inch pan.  Cover with another sheet of plastic wrap and tamp down more using the bottom of a drinking glass.  Place in refrigerator until cooled and set.

To make the chocolate topping over low heat melt chocolate chips, peanut butter and coconut oil. Stir until creamy and smooth.  Spread over the top of the nut bar mixture.  Smooth top and sprinkle with coconut and cacao nibs.  Return to refrigerator until firmly set then cut into bite size bars.  I like to cut them 1 x 1 1/2-inches.  Store in refrigerator or freezer.  I like them frozen, personally.


Print recipe





3 comments:

  1. Once I saw the photos, I knew I had to make these! They are delicious! Sadly, my husband is a Betty Crocker guy and was hoping for a "traditional brownie". Old ways die hard. I did make a couple changes.
    Didn't want to buy coconut sugar for the 2 Tbsp. the recipe called for so I substituted honey. I didn't sprinkle cacao nibs on the topping and used kosher salt instead along with the shredded coconut. Mine didn't set up very well and were pretty gooey. Still good, though! One other comment; the printable version of the recipe doesn't tell when to add the maple syrup and coconut sugar. I went back to the step-by-step guide and found that you add them both along with the peanut butter, coconut oil, cacao powder and sea salt in the saucepan. Thanks for a delicious treat!

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    1. Oh my goodness. Thank you for pointing out the issues with the recipe. I'll correct that right away. Try boiling the mixture just a bit longer that just might help with them being gooey. Refrigerating does help. I think the honey is a brilliant substitution. Thanks for your comment. So greatly appreciated.

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