Dealing with life is a piece of cake.

I honestly, fully, truly believe that peanut butter was invented to make my life better.  I love peanut butter.  Well, it’s more like I’m OBSESSED with peanut butter.  PB&J, peanut butter cookies, peanut butter and banana sandwiches, peanut butter toast, peanut butter pretzels, apples and peanut butter, and so on.

But there’s one thing that rules my obsession of peanut butter.  Chocolate and peanut butter.

Peanut butter cups, to be exact.  Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, to be exact-er.  It’s a shameful, cheap, fatty, magnificent love.  Why I love this candy so much, I’ll never know.  But there is just something about this combination that soothes my soul, and makes all of my troubles melt away.  So, so, so good.

I have suppressed the urge to make anything containing peanut butter for the sake of my waistline.  Not that I don’t look at recipes, though.  But that gets dangerous too.  That scenario goes something like this:
– “Ooh, that looks goooood.”
– “……………*peanut butter coma*…………
– *wipes drool*
– I do a  zombie-like stroll to the kitchen cabinet.
– I snap out of it and grab a celery stick before I start eating peanut butter by the  spoonful.
– I pick another recipe without peanut butter.

It’s like a daily war between my heart and my stomach.  My life is just too full of dilemma. 😉

March was a tough month for me.  So to celebrate the end of it, I decided to make myself a treat: peanut butter cups.  Ahhh I’m so excited!!!!

The recipe that I used is from Alicia Silverstone’s book, The Kind Diet. I had yet to make something from it, although I’ve really wanted to.  And it just so happened that she had a recipe for peanut butter cups in there.  I decided that I had stared at the recipe long enough, and so I whipped some up in no time!  They’re super easy to make, and they’re vegan!  Even better!

Don’t be scared of the “V” word, please.  Remember that just because it’s vegan doesn’t mean that it’s full of quinoa and tofu.  I’m not a vegan, although I would like to be.  Unfortunately, my undying love for cookies and cake full of fattening butter and eggs makes that goal far out of reach.  There’s a ton of vegan food out there that is DELICIOUS, and far better than any dairy-containing food I’ve ever had.  Even my carnivorous boyfriend has eaten vegan food and liked it.  If he can like it, so can you.

These might be vegan, but they are not by any means good for you, which is why they taste so good.  I wish things like this had magical ab-defining powers.  One can only dream, right?

So forget about your long to-do list at work, the dishes in the sink, and the bills sitting on your coffee table.  It’s time to take a breath and enjoy one of life’s greatest pleasures.

Enjoy the peanut butter.  Enjoy the chocolate.  It’s as simple as that.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups

Filling:
1/2 cup Earth Balance butter
3/4 cup crunchy peanut butter (preferably unsweetened and unsalted) (I just used JIF because it’s awesome)
3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs
1/4 cup maple sugar or other granulated sweetener (I used powdered sugar)
(I also added 1 tsp of vanilla)

Chocolate coating:
1 cup nondairy chocolate or carob chips (You can find these at any grocery store)
1/4 cup soy, rice, or nut milk (I used soy because I already had some)
1/4 cup pecans, almonds, or peanuts (I used pecans because…well…because I wanted to)

1. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners.

2. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat.

3. Stir in peanut butter, graham cracker crumbs, vanilla, and sugar and mix well.

4. Remove the mixture from the heat. Evenly divide the mixture, approximately 2 tablespoons per cup, among the muffin cups. Set aside.

5. Combine the chocolate and milk in another pan. Stir over medium heat until the chocolate has melted.

6. Spoon the chocolate evenly over the peanut butter mixture and sprinkle with nuts.

7. Place in the refrigerator to set for a few (at least 2) hours.

A few tips/advice:
I used powdered sugar and creamy peanut butter because I wanted a smoother texture. The graham cracker crumbs gave enough crumbly texture for my taste.

Make sure the chocolate is melted. When I put my chocolate mixture over the filling, it was a little too thick and I had some trouble spreading it. I had to make more. And honestly I think it worked out. I think if I had used the amount called for, the peanut butter to chocolate ratio would be all wrong. I like it pretty even!!

As you can see, I couldn’t even manage to get a picture without taking a bite.

I think I have a problem…but I am soooo okay with it.

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