Homemade peanut butter cups for a heart healthy Valentine's Day

Homemade peanut butter cups for a heart healthy Valentine's Day

Who says dessert always has to be sinful? If you take the guilt out of a guilty pleasure, you just have pleasure.

Recently a friend and I made a healthier version of peanut butter cups, and it tasted even better than Reese's. With less sugar, you don't get that crude burn in your throat, and the coconut oil gives it a melt-in-your-mouth smoothness.

This Valentine's Day, think beyond heart-shaped boxes and do something great for your actual heart. These confections not only have less sugar, but the coconut oil features healthy fatty acids, has antimicrobial effects and is great for your hair and skin. Not to mention they're tastier than anything you'll find in a heart-shaped box!

healthy peanut butter cup

Since COVID-19 has limited our ability to enjoy a night out or jump on a plane for a romantic getaway, gift these sweet treats en masse to spread the love. People could really use it these days. It being the dead of winter during a pandemic and all. Let them know that they can have seconds or thirds without regret. What better way to show you care?

Healthy Peanut Butter Cups

Ingredients for top layer

Ingredients for bottom layer

  • 1/3 cup smooth, natural peanut butter
  • 2.5 tablespoons melted coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • muffin liners

Instructions

  • Line a muffin tin with 12 muffin liners. Spray with coconut oil cooking spray and set aside.
  • In a bowl, stir all ingredients for the bottom layer until smooth. Set aside.
  • In another mixing bowl, stir all ingredients for the top layer until smooth. Set aside.
  • Scoop a heaping 1/2 tablespoon of the chocolate layer into each muffin cup. Then, pick up the muffin tin and shake and tap until the layer is set evenly. 
  • Repeat the same with the peanut butter layer, plopping around 1/2 tablespoon on top of the chocolate layer. Pick up the entire muffin tin one last time and shake and tap until your cups are even.
  • Sprinkle each cup with Himalayan sea salt.
  • Place muffin tin in the freezer until firm.
  • Keep them in the freezer fo freshness - we'll see how long they last!

Happy Valentine's Day!

happy couple

    February 07, 2021 by Fayeruz Regan

    Homemade Valentines for the Family

    One of the best things about being a parent is re-living your youth through the eyes of your children. Christmas and Halloween haven't been this fun since I was a kid myself. Bring on the paper snowflakes and fridge art!

    Right now, boxes of pre-printed Valentines line the shelves at grocery stores. You know the type; perforated tear sheets featuring Minions or those ubiquitous Frozen characters. My son loves this time of the year, as he can re-stock his candy stash now that his Halloween leftovers have been reduced to Smarties.  I lay awake at night wondering who these neighbors are, and how their life experiences have prohibited them from knowing that no one. Likes. Smarties.

    But I digress. Valentine's Day, for me, is a chance to show I care in a personal way. But keep it simple; the holiday only lasts a day and usually lands on a weeknight!

    Ideas:

    Grab a sheet pan, stack tortillas in a heart shape, and pile on nacho toppings. It's a fun nacho night for the family! Or you can do a tongue-in-cheek nacho gift for your loved ones, using scoop-shaped tortilla chips (pictured above).

    Roll out a ball of pizza dough, shape it into a heart and load on your family's favorite toppings. Imagine their surprise when you pull it out of the oven!

    Bake a tray of brownies, and use a heart-shaped cookie cutter to pop out heart-shaped bites.

    Use that same cookie cutter to punch out pieces of a grilled cheese sandwich or garlic bread, to serve with warming tomato soup. I'd be more than happy to gobble up the leftover edges.

    For older kids, you can always let them know how much you care with a funny towel. Or this one. Or this one. They'll use it on the daily, and think of you every time they're in the kitchen - the best place in the house.

    Here's to a simple and delicious Valentine's Day!