Healthy “Reese’s” Candy (allergy & sugar-free options)

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Love Reese's Peanut Butter Cups? Here's a healthier, dairy and sugar-free version you can make yourself! Chocolate and Peanut Butter lovers - celebrate with these Homemade Peanut Butter Cups - Yummmm!

Stop the presses!

Do you love Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups?

I can’t imagine anyone saying “no.”

I’ve got a real treat for all of you Chocolate and Peanut Butter Lovers out there.

A delicious Chocolate and Nut Butter Candy that gives Reese’s® Peanut Butter Cups a real run for the money.

I’ve always loved those Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, but my oldest son has a life-threatening peanut allergy and well, as with all of the other things that I like to make from scratch, some of those ingredients in Reese’s version aren’t too desirable.

Get a load of this:

Milk Chocolate contains Sugar, Cocoa Butter, Chocolate, Nonfat Milk, Milk Fat, Lactose, and Soya Lecithin and PGPR (as Emulsifiers), Peanuts, Sugar, Dextrose, Salt, and TBHQ and Citric Acid (to Preserve Freshness)

Ugh -what are those initials for anyway?

… First of all, TBHQ is tertiary butylhydroquinone, a heavy duty preservative.  There is some mixed information on the internet about this substance, but I think I’d rather just avoid it.

Second, PGPR is polyglycerol polyricinoleate. It’s a yellowish, viscous liquid comprised of polyglycerol esters of polycondensed fatty acids from castor oil.  It’s basically used to reduce the fat content of less expensive chocolate products while keeping the “full fat” taste.  I don’t know about you, but I’d sure rather have the real fat.

So.  In case the fun of making homemade chocolates isn’t enough for you, I hope you now have more reason to do so :-).

 

Finally, after many many attempts at making these chocolates, everyone in my very-patient family said that they were wonderful.  I personally (ahem) couldn’t really keep out of them, which makes them a winner in my book.

My youngest especially liked the filling.  He’s had the real thing (should I really call Reese’s the real thing?) and said that since I made mine with carob  he said that they’ll never taste like Reese’s.  Very insightful.  (I’m avoiding chocolate as much as possible since, if you remember from my Facebook page, it is my undoing anytime I eat it and also because the stimulants in chocolate aren’t a great thing to eat if you have adrenal fatigue (or boys, for that matter :-)).

I think these stand up well against any store bought filled chocolate and they were sure fun to make!

And I’ll keep working on the peanut butter – er – almond butter cup recipe and will be back when it’s done.

Looking for some other yummy ways to treat those you love on Valentine’s Day?

Other Healthy Treats:

What is your favorite candy?

Sources:  Because No One Asked
Candy Recapper

This post contains affiliate links.  Please read my disclaimer.
Shared at Diet, Dessert, and Dogs.
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  1. These look delicious! And beautiful!!

  2. how much does a scoop of stevia extract pwder measure out to?

  3. Hi, Andrea. Thanks for this great recipe! Question – why first mix the nut butter with the coconut oil, powdered sweetener, and salt rather than simply using it on its own?

    • Hi Pamela. Do you mean why didn’t I just fill the chocolates with plain nut butter? If that’s what you mean, I tried making these this way several times and while they were good, this was by far the tastiest option. Of course, you could make it “au naturel” also :-). My husband LOVES almond butter and he could be found slathering almond butter on the almond butter-filled creations that I made throughout the week :-).

  4. These look great, and I definitely want to try them – in the filling part of the recipe, there’s no measurement unit for the powdered sugar. should that be 1/2 cup? I’m so intrigued by the idea of making my own powdered sugar. That’s always an issue for me in recipes.

  5. That’s a great recipe! I love the little snippets you share about your process of making them and experimenting.

    Definite success–and I’m right with you about the need to avoid chocolate, it being a downfall..

    • Hi Ela! I’m still working on purchasing the mesquite and lecithin – can’t wait to try your recipe as well!

      • I hope you find them and try it, Adrienne! Two more ideas for making the chocolate more “milk chocolatey” would be to use cashew butter, or to use coconut cream powder (like Wilderness Family Naturals has). I’m really careful with it, because it has 1% casinate (a milk derivative) as an anti-caking agent and otherwise I totally avoid dairy, but it’s fantastic for white chocolate making!

        • That sounds great! My son can’t have cashews, and maybe not the caseinate either. He’s gotten a reaction from it before. Oh well. The almond butter in the carob made it pretty close, I think…never should have let my son have the “real” thing.

  6. A great peanut butter substitute would be sesame seed tahini. as long as there’s not an allergy to sesame seeds, i buy in bulk, roast them and make the tahini in my vita mix…..i’ve ate it with raw caco chocolate and it is wonderful, tastes just like a reeces.

  7. Yum!

  8. Yummy! I would love for you stop by and link up at my linky party via: http://ourdelightfulhome.blogspot.com/

    Mrs. Delightful
    Ourdelightfulhome.blogspot.com

  9. Thank you! I am currently sugar free and often peanut butter and chocolate obsessed but my attempts are not very professional and sugar free versions in the store don’t taste great. This looks wonderful and tasty!

  10. Thanks for linking your great post to FAT TUESDAY. This looks delish! Hope to see you next week!

    Be sure to visit RealFoodForager.com on Sunday for Sunday Snippets – your post from Fat Tuesday may be featured there!
    http://realfoodforager.com/fat-tuesday-february-14-2012/

  11. These little heart molds are adorable and these chocolates look amazing!

  12. This dessert looks great! I would love it if you linked up this recipe to my blog hop for a chance to win a cookbook prize package: http://bit.ly/wJSl1h

  13. Thank you thank you – my little one will appreciate this!!

  14. Yummy! I’d love for you to link it up to my party. You earn a chance for free jewelry just for linking up: http://trophyw.blogspot.com/2012/02/will-craft-forfree-jewelry.html

  15. Stopping by from Fitness Friday. I saw a picture of chocolate and the word healthy. Had to check it out. They look delicious!

  16. What a gorgeous treat – I could eat a dozen of these :-)

  17. Hi Adrienne, thanks so much for linking this recipe up to Allergy-Free Wednesdays! I have never been brave enough to make my own candy, but I may be inspired to do it now :)

  18. This looks sooo good. Thanks for sharing!!

  19. They look soooooo darn YUMMY!!!

    Would you please link this up on my blog?? PLEASE?!
    http://thediydreamer.blogspot.com/2012/02/from-dream-to-reality-linky-party-3.html

  20. Fabulous! I love the healthy and allergy conscious options too!

  21. Your peanutbutter hearts look lovely and delicious! I continue tweeking recipes too. :)

  22. They look delicious Adrienne! Great job!

    Thanks for linking to a Round Tuit!
    Hope you have a fabulous week!
    Jill @ Creating my way to Success
    http://www.jembellish.blogspot.com/

  23. I just came across your site and must say genius!!! In two days I have made half of your desert recipes and they ALL taste amazing. I am a health food junkie and love your ideas! Just a question, do you list serving size or nutritional value anywhere?

    • Hi Ashley. My understanding was that it would cost a lot of money to do that, but I have found a site that you can do it on. I don’t know that I could handle the extra work load, but I could consider it. I’ve always found serving sizes to be arbitrary, but it’s an option. You’re the second person who has asked. One problem is that I think when you are looking at more “whole food” recipes, the fat level tends to be higher and it would steer folks away from it, when in fact it is healthy. So that would be a real concern that I would have about listing nutritional info. What are your thoughts?

    • Here is a link to the site if you’d like to try it out yourself in the meantime:

      • Hi Adrienne, Thanks for the response, I completely agree about the fat content and your right most people don’t know that although it’s higher fat its good fat and doesn’t get stored as fat in the body, rather gets used as energy. I just wanted a rough estimate on the portions and such. I keep track of daily nutrition for school/ fitness comps.

        Also, I think you forgot to post the link!

        Thanks again. I’m making the mint ice cream tonight, I can’t wait!

        • Did I not send it in another reply? Just let me know. I am busy most of the rest of the night but I’ll try to get back to you. Hope you like the ice cream!

  24. Adrienne,
    This is a great recipe. This post is featured on the Living Well Blog Hop post on Jo’s Health Corner today. Thanks for sharing this with us.

  25. Hi Adrienne,
    What lovely Chocolates and a very special treat. I have noted the correction in the recipe to 1/2 cup pwd. sugar. I can’t wait to make this treat! Thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday. Hope you have a great week end and come back soon!
    Miz Helen

  26. Since I live in the Buckeye state and its football season, we make “buckeyes” which are peanut butter balls dipped halfway up in chocolate. Since I’m doing low carb, sugar free, I had to figure out how to make them legal. Ended up similar to your version. Used my silicon heart molds and baby muffin tins which looked like mini Reese’s. my question is, why is nut butter mixed in the chocolate coating? Before I make my next batch, which will be your recipe, I just wanted to make sure I actually mix the nut butter w/chocolate AND have my nut butter mixture for the middle of the candy? Thanks so much. i absolutely love your recipes and hard work to make healthy homemade alternatives of all our “bad” favorites!!!

    • You know, I am not sure why I did that now :-). But they sure do taste good. Of course, you could use any chocolate coating that you like! Thanks for the kind words!!

  27. One more question….on the 1/2 cup sweetner – does that mean like 1/2 cup powdered erythritol? Thanks

  28. I’m a little new to all of this, so 2 questions: (1) Is that 1 cup chocolate POWDER or roasted carob powder? Both are powders? If I can’t get either, is cocoa powder okay? (2) I only have one mold, so if I have chocolate left over, should I reheat it on low later to make more? Will that wreck it? Better to dip some pnut butter balls into it right away and use it up? Thank you!! =]

  29. This is too funny. I just got this email from my sister to your link for this recipe, only, I just made this exact thing (hearts and all!) and they are in the freezer as I type. These are SO good!

  30. For the chocolate coating can I use raw honey as the sweetener? Can I also substitute the powder stevia with a liquid? If so, how much do you think?

    • I think honey should work just fine. You mean sub w/ liquid stevia drops? I don’t use them much but of course you can. I would try maybe 2-4 drops for 1/32 to 1/16 of a tsp extract. Hope that helps.