Treat Yo Self is a series that focuses on inexpensive indulgences that make you feel good without feeling guilty. Because when momma’s not happy, nobody is happy.
Guys, I have a problem when it comes to peanut butter cups. I think I always have. In college, my best friend and I were more than a little obsessed. We even started calling them lard cups, for some reason that escapes me at the moment. The point is, we were so close to peanut butter cups that we had a nickname for them.
Fast forward ten years. My metabolism is slower and child bearing has made hips that were already wide even wider. There is a pooch. There is a spare tire. I am working on these things, but I’ve realized there are some things I cannot deny myself. Chocolate is most definitely one of them. Cutting it off of my Can Eat list only makes me want it more and makes me binge harder when I inevitably slip up.
That said, I’ve found a few ways to make myself happy in the chocolate department in a healthier way. One of those ways is by making myself some bomb ass homemade peanut butter cups.
(Unrelated note: I almost edited the phrase bomb ass out since it’s not something I say regularly in conversation. Only these peanut butter cups are so good they deserve ridiculous emphasis. Also, if my husband happens to read this post that phrase will make him cringe. That means it stays.)
Self control is enforced so that I don’t devour an entire tray at once, but I’m cool with that. I know they’re there. I know they’re delicious. I know they won’t completely wipe out the calories burnt during my yoga workout. We’re old friends who can coexist peacefully.
OK, so how do I make them? It’s so stinkin easy.
First, I put about a cup or so of chocolate chips into a microwave safe measuring cup. I like the measuring cup because it has the little spout at the top—which makes this even easier—but you could totally use a bowl. You could also use bars of baking chocolate. I fully intend on trying this with some dark chocolate the next time I make them.
I add a heaping teaspoon of coconut oil to the top and put it all in the microwave for about a minute. While the chocolate is melting, I fill a mini muffin tin with wrappers.
Stir the chocolate/coconut oil mixture a bit when your minute is up and see if you can get all of the lumps out. If not, put your little mixture in for 15 second intervals until it’s all smooth and melted (you only do 15 seconds at a time at this point because ain’t nobody got time for burnt chocolate). The coconut oil helps to thin out the chocolate so that it’s easier to pour into your wrappers, which is what you’re going to do next.
Pour a little of the melted chocolate in so that it lines the bottom of the wrappers. If you want to be extra fancy you can swirl the chocolate around a little so that it coats up the sides of the wrappers. This will result in peanut butter cups that are entirely coated in chocolate on the outside instead of cups that show their layers. It doesn’t effect the taste at all so I skip this step most of the time (my daughters don’t really care about the presentation).
Next, add a dollop of peanut butter (I use natural. The only ingredients are peanuts and salt, which makes me feel good about eating it). As you can tell, I’m not extraordinarily precise about any part of this recipe. I just add enough peanut butter to cover my chocolate layer. Next, I cover the peanut butter with another layer of chocolate.
Sometimes I need to melt a bit more chocolate, but I’d rather have to make a little more than have way too much left over. Leftovers means fighting myself not to spoon it into my face before the measuring cup makes it to the sink.
Next, I pop those delightful little fellas into the fridge so they can harden. Once they’re solid, I store them in a Ziploc bag in the freezer. This way they stay hard and have a nice snap to them when you take a bite.
These guys might not look perfect, but take my word for it (because I know chocolate): they taste pretty friggin perfect.
So you know what? Treat yo self.