These vegan peanut butter cacao crunch date caramel truffles are everything. That cold chocolate shell crackles and gives way to a fudge-like peanut butter layer. Then, the peanut butter layer sinks into a dense, peanut butter caramel that pops with a cacao nib crunch.
These treats are intensely satisfying and naturally sweetened with dates, making them the perfect healthier alternative to more traditionally wrought candy bars.
Instead of Never Have I Ever, let's play a game of Have You Ever?
Have you ever tried Minimalist Baker's recipe for 5-Ingredient Salted Caramel Peanut Butter Truffles?
If your hand if raised, then you're already feelin' my vibe. If your hand is not raised, I suggest you whip up a batch of those before proceeding so that you can taste that bliss.
After making them 5+ times (easily), I started tinkering with the recipe, and this particular variation came to be.
These remixed truffles have salted peanut butter cacao crunch date caramel centers. Trust me when I say that sounds way more complicated than it actually is.
To make it, you'll add pitted medjool dates to a food processor and process until fairly smooth. Then, you'll add in a couple dollops of peanut butter, a splash of vanilla, and a hearty pinch of sea salt. Process until thick and caramel-like...
Add in cacao nibs and pulse to incorporate...
Place the entire food process bowl in the freezer to set the caramel to a scoopable texture. Then, scoop out heaping tablespoons of the caramel, roll into balls, indent the tops with your thumb, and reshape like so...
The truffles above may look a little strange, but their goofy indentations have grand peanut butter plans.
You'll make a quick peanut butter "magic" layer (magic because it sets quickly and tastes pretty amazing too) by melting together peanut butter, a dab of coconut oil, and pure maple syrup until smooth and glossy. Then, drizzle generous teaspoons of it into those goofy, volcano-like indentations in the date caramel.
After a quick set in the freezer (the peanut butter layer sets quickly thanks to the coconut oil), you'll scoop heaps of melted chocolate over the peanut butter layer before chilling in the freezer one more time.
Then, it's time to sink your teeth in. The cold chocolate crackles and gives way to a fudge-like peanut butter layer. Then, the peanut butter layer sinks into a dense, peanut butter caramel that pops with a cacao nib crunch.
I cannot get enough of these at the moment, and quite content with that fact. Just in time for Halloween. ♥
Peanut Butter Cacao Crunch Date Caramel Truffles
Peanut Butter Cacao Crunch Date Caramel
- 2 cups pitted and packed sticky medjool dates
- 2 tablespoons natural peanut butter
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
- ¼ cup cacao nibs
Peanut Butter Magic Layer
- 3 tablespoons natural peanut butter
- 1 tablespoon virgin coconut oil
- ½ tablespoon pure maple syrup
- 1 cup chopped high-quality dark chocolate
- 1 ½ tablespoons virgin coconut oil
- Add the dates to the food processor. Process until the mixture is roughly smooth and creamy. Dates have a tendency to ball up as they process, so pulse and stop to break up the ball as needed to achieve a smooth date caramel. Add in the peanut butter, vanilla, and sea salt, and process for another 30 seconds or until smooth and incorporated. Add the cacao nibs and pulse to distribute throughout the caramel.
- Chill the caramel in the freezer, food processor bowl and all, for 30 minutes to set. Meanwhile, line a small baking tray with parchment paper.
- Scoop out heaping tablespoons of the caramel, roll into a ball, and drop on the cookie sheet. Use your thumb to gently indent the top of the caramel and then scrunch the sides in a bit, forming a small well. Repeat. Transfer the tray to the freezer for 15 minutes to set.
- Meanwhile, make the peanut butter magic layer by whisking together the peanut butter, coconut oil, and pure maple syrup in a double boiler or bain marie until smooth and glossy. Spoon teaspoons into and over the indentation in each mound of caramel. Return to freezer for 5 minutes to set the peanut butter magic shell.
- Meanwhile, prepare the chocolate coating by making the homemade chocolate or whisking together the chopped dark chocolate and coconut oil in a double boiler or bain marie until smooth and glossy.
- Spoon a generous tablespoon of chocolate over the top of each truffle, allowing it to run down and coat the sides. Alternatively, you can dip the truffles, but I find this to be too messy to be worth the trouble. Return the pan to the freezer for 15 minutes to set.
- These are best stored in the freezer and kept frozen until ready to enjoy as the chocolate melts quickly at room temperature.