Chocolate–Peanut Butter Candy Bites from The Vegan 8 by Brandi Doming are a delicious treat for Halloween, holiday parties, or anytime you’re in need of something sweet! They’re oil-free and gluten-free.
From the “jokes” I see on social media, it seems that most people think that healthy food is boring and bland. While, yes, some healthy food can be a little on the tasteless side, it’s totally possible to make meals that are both nutritious and delicious. And Brandi Doming is here to show us how with her new cookbook The Vegan 8.
As the name suggests, the recipes in Brandi’s cookbook can all be made with eight ingredients or fewer. That “eight ingredients” doesn’t count salt, pepper, and water, but those are all things that everyone has in their kitchen anyway. All of the recipes are vegan, of course. Most are oil-free and gluten-free, and there are nut-free options as well, so the book the book is suitable for those with various dietary restrictions.
If you’re new to healthy vegan cooking, Brandi begins The Vegan 8 with just about everything you need to know about getting started. There are tips for baking, lists of ingredients that might be unfamiliar to you, and information on equipment that might be handy to have on hand in your kitchen.
If you’re a vegan cooking pro, you can skip right ahead to the recipes. These aren’t boring dishes. Brandi focuses on veganized versions of classics and comfort food, making it easy for vegan newbies to transition their diets.
This isn’t a book full of recipes for kale salads and green smoothies. You won’t find crazy “superfoods” listed in the ingredients, either. These dishes are made with ingredients that can easily be found at any grocery store, and they’ll appeal to everyone. I don’t know anyone who wouldn’t be happy with a plate of Baked Mac ‘N’ Cheese, a bowl of Ultimate Broccoli-Cheese Soup. or a few Crowd-Pleasing Brownies!
- The Vegan 8 Kitchen
- Scrumptious Snacks & Appetizers
- Time-Crunch Lunches
- Sauces & Dressings
- Easy Entrées
- Comforting Soups & Stews
- Sides & Dips
- Crowd-Pleasing Desserts
Since I’m crazy for chocolate and peanut butter, the first recipe I made from The Vegan 8 was Chocolate–Peanut Butter Candy Bites. These sweet little treats were super easy to make, and I already had all of the ingredients on hand.
I used a small scoop to make my Chocolate–Peanut Butter Candy Bites, and I was able to make 11 bites. (Brandi’s recipe says it makes 8.) I found that the chocolate-peanut butter balls were a little too soft to roll in the melted chocolate. But that was easily solved by popping them into the freezer for a few minutes.
If you’re looking for healthy and easy-to-make comfort food classics, The Vegan 8 is the book for you!
Chocolate–Peanut Butter Candy Bites
- 1/2 cup (128g) smooth peanut butter
- 3 tablespoons (18g) unsweetened natural cocoa powder
- 3 tablespoons (60g) pure maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon (5g) vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon (2g) fine salt
- 1/2 cup (80g) roasted, salted peanuts
- 1/4 cup (40g) coconut sugar
- 3.5 ounces (100g) 70 to 72% dark chocolate chips or bar, finely chopped
Line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Set aside.
Add the peanut butter, cocoa powder, maple syrup, vanilla, and sea salt to a bowl, and stir until it comes together into a thick batter and is completely smooth. Roll about a heaping tablespoon of the dough into small balls, creating 8 balls total. Place the balls on the prepared pan.
To prepare the coating, add the roasted peanuts and coconut sugar to a food processor, and process until the mixture is in very small pieces but not as superfine as a flour consistency. Add this mixture to a wide, shallow bowl. Set aside.
Add the chopped chocolate to another small microwave-safe bowl. Melt in the microwave on HIGH for 30 seconds or in a double boiler. If microwaving, stir, and then heat in 10- to 15-second intervals until the chocolate is almost all melted. Be careful not to let it burn. Stir the chocolate until it is completely melted and smooth.
Place 1 ball into the melted chocolate and use a fork to rotate and coat it completely. Tap the fork gently on the side of the bowl, letting the excess chocolate drip off. Immediately place the ball into the peanut coating mixture and rotate it multiple times with the fork until coated well. Place the ball back on the pan and repeat with the remaining balls.
Place the pan in the fridge to set for about 20 minutes. Store the balls in the fridge to retain their shape. They can be set out at room temperature after they’re fully set for parties, but they will become softer and less crispy as time passes
Tip: Be sure to use a peanut butter without added oil or sugar. To make these nut free, sub the peanut butter with sunflower seed butter, if you don’t mind having that as a strong taste in these bites. With this sub, the batter may be a tad more wet and may need to chill in the fridge for 15 minutes before adding the chocolate.
Recipe reprinted with permission from The Vegan 8 by Brandi Doming.
If you enjoyed this recipe, you might also like:
- Vegan Tahini Truffles
- Sunbutter and Chocolate Pretzel Pie
- Chocolate-Peanut Butter Truffle Mini Tarts
- Chocolate-Almond Date Truffles
I have a copy of The Vegan 8 for one lucky winner. Follow the instructions below to enter. Contest ends at midnight on October 16th. U.S. and Canadian residents only, please. Good luck!