Sugar Free Chocolate or Carob Peanut Butter Cups. Instructions included to make recipe free of Seeds & Nuts. Recipe is Gluten Free, Paleo & Vegan. (Dairy/Soy/Corn/Egg/Grain Free)

by Brittany on October 26, 2011

Post image for Sugar Free Chocolate or Carob Peanut Butter Cups. Instructions included to make recipe free of Seeds & Nuts. Recipe is Gluten Free, Paleo & Vegan. (Dairy/Soy/Corn/Egg/Grain Free)

Peanut Butter Cups are my all time favorite thing! I didn’t think it would be possible to enjoy them this year.

I have mentioned in many post’s prior that I’m on a strict diet these days void of Sugar, Grains, Dairy, Soy , Eggs , Nuts and seeds to get my hashimotos disease under control. For awhile now I have been thinking about throwing together an easy Peanut Butter Cup recipe but was hesitant for one good reason: It would be utterly impossible for me to make this favorite candy of mine and restrain from eating it.  I don’t care how much I love something. Its simply not worth the symptoms that follow. I will not be adding fuel to my already rampant autoimmune fire. You shouldn’t either! Health is FAR more valuable than a Reeses Peanut Butter Cup.

Yesterday morning I received an email from one of my wonderful recipe testers  mentioning the idea for Stevia Sweetened Chocolate Chips. What an idea! I had to give it a try. These DELICIOUS Peanut Butter Cups are the result.  I know many people aren’t crazy about the Stevia flavor. I’m so pleased to tell you that when used with Chocolate or Carob it literally loses it “stevia-ness”.  The richness of the chocolate cover up its after taste. You literally will only taste sweet chocolate. Don’t be nervous to use a lot of stevia in this recipe- the chocolate needs it especially. Otherwise you’ll end up with very bittersweet chocolate.

Then I thought.. well wait a minute. Not everyone can have Nuts or Seeds.. I sure can’t. So I created another butter made from Coconut Flakes, Stevia and a little Coconut Oil. It has the same creaminess that I previously enjoyed with nut butters. I think you might like it too. Sure, it takes the traditional peanut butter cup in its own very different direction. But heck- if you can’t eat nuts and seeds and you wan’t candy on Halloween- please indulge. Pictured below is what this Coconut Butter looks like.

To make the Coconut Butter: Combine 1- 1/2 Cups Coconut Flakes (or powder) Sweetened or Unsweetened with 1-2 TBS Coconut Oil and Stevia to taste. Combine in a coffee Mill, Small Food Processor or Vitamix/Blendtec. Make the butter to a thick consistency so it can be shaped into little balls to go into the candy cups. You won’t need to follow the directions below in regards to adding additional coconut flakes. Once this butter is made its ready to go into the the candy.  Feel free to add some powdered sugar instead of stevia is that is your preference.

Another issue for many is caffeine! So for the caffeine sensitive please feel free to sub in place of the Cocoa powder, Carob Powder. Make sure to read your Carob Powder labels though, sometimes some not so great ingredients sneak their way in.

For those of you not worried about Sugar- Pick up a bag of Chocolate or Carob Chips! They will do the job too! Enjoy Life Chocolate Chips are usually my go to choice as they are completely allergy free.  To use them just temper the chocolate and use it in place of the sauce recipe I provide below. * PLEASE NOTE that you do not need to add any coconut oil or additional sweetener to the melted chips- they just need to be melted*

If you don’t want to be bothered with stevia and coconut you could also just use Powdered sugar in the filling. This could be refined free powdered sugar. To make that just throw any unrefined granulated variety into a coffee mill.

Sugar Free Peanut (or other) Butter Cups

 Chocolate or Carob Coating

1 Cup High Fat Cocoa Powder or Carob Powder
3/4 Cup of Coconut Oil Melted (Highly recommend Living Foods Virgin Coconut Oil)
Liquid Stevia to taste (at least 5-6 dropper fulls) Highly recommend NuNaturals Vanilla Liquid Stevia.
1/4- 3/8 Tsp. Salt (to taste)
1/2 TBS Vanilla Extract
Optional: up to 3 TBS of Heavy Coconut Milk to make the chocolate  smoother. (the chocolate will freezer get harder texture wise the more coconut milk you add)


1/4 Cup Nut or Seed Butter
Stevia to taste (liquid or powdered)
Salt to taste
Powdered Coconut OR Powdered Sugar as needed. (if using sugar omit the stevia)

1.  Make the Chocolate or Carob Sauce. Combine all the ingredients and give it a taste- continue adding stevia until the chocolate reaches the level of sweetness that you like. If the sauce feels too thick pop it in the microwave for 20 seconds.  If you feel the chocolate sauce is too bitter stir in up to 3 TBS of Heavy Coconut Milk.

2. Prepare Cupcake Liners or mini Candy liners by placing them in muffin tins (using the muffin tins is not neccesary- but makes for easier work). Drizzle in enough chocolate to just fill the bottoms of each cup. Place in freezer to harden.

3. Prepare the Peanut or other butter filling. Combine the butter of your choice and mix it with powdered coconut flakes and stevia (to taste) OR with powdered sugar (white or a homemade unrefined variety). You want this mixture to be thick enough that you can shape it into little balls without it sticking to your hands.

4. Remove the hardened chocolate cups from the freezer. Place a little ball of filling in each cup. Leaving the edges free and clear. (see photo below).

5. Fill the cups with the remaining chocolate sauce – give the tray a tap on the counter to make sure the surface is even. Place in freezer until hard.  (If the sauce has gotten thick while its been sitting around – this would be a good opportunity to throw it in the microwave briefly. The thinner and smoother the chocolate is the cleaner appearance your candy will have).

Store Candy in the Fridge or Freezer. Since the chocolate or carob uses coconut oil the candy is proned to melting when held long enough in warm hands. Yields about 16 mini cups or 8 large cups.

For some fun variety try spooning a little bit of jelly on top of the peanut butter before adding the chocolate coating! Who wouldn’t like candy filled with peanut butter and jelly?

Also I wanted to note that you can use this chocolate or carob recipe to make “chips”. All you need to do is pour the liquid chocolate (or carob) onto a parchment covered baking sheet, place in the fridge or freezer until chill. Coarsely chip the hardened chocolate and reserve in the freezer for another day. 

Hope you enjoy my indulgent, delicious and healthy twist on this classic recipe.

Happy Halloween!!



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{ 23 comments… read them below or add one }

Alta October 26, 2011 at 5:06 pm

These look good! I have only tried to stevia-sweeten chocolate once, but I didn’t think to do the cocoa powder+coconut oil version – I used unsweetened baking chocolate and it just didn’t really work. Yours looks as though it set properly – congratulations! I hope these hit the spot for you. Happy Halloween!


Brittany October 26, 2011 at 6:14 pm

It crossed my mind to try unsweetened baking chocolate too! I was actually going to try that first and then got lazy and didn’t go to the store. I happened to have cocoa powder and coconut oil in house. I was amazed when it worked on my first try. It set really nicely- and quickly! Very Excited for Halloween now! :) xoxo


Iris October 26, 2011 at 5:46 pm

Can’t wait for the day when I can try these!


Brittany October 26, 2011 at 6:13 pm

Technically we can eat this now. Made with Carob and the coconut filling its totally safe for us!! :)


Deanna October 26, 2011 at 5:50 pm

Yummy. I did some stevia and coconut sugar sweetened chocolate last Christmas, and yah, it really worked.


Brittany October 26, 2011 at 6:12 pm

Its amazing isn’t it?? I thought it was a bit of a far fetched idea. Was totally surprised when it worked like a charm! Plus it gives the advantage of not having add a ton of liquid to the chocolate which of course will screw with the texture of the chocolate.


Heather October 26, 2011 at 6:03 pm

These look great! However, I have to add coconut to my list of things I can’t eat. I don’t do experimental cooking enough to know if there would be a good substitute for the coconut ingredients in this recipe. Any suggestions?


Brittany October 26, 2011 at 6:11 pm

Nope. HAHA. I’m tapped out of ideas. If you cant use Nuts, seeds or coconut then for today I’m at all loss. You could always do jelly or other fruit fillings- but as far as a nut replacement I’m not sure what to tell you. Sorry.


Heather October 26, 2011 at 10:28 pm

I can eat most nuts…peanuts in particular, so I could use natural peanut butter. I guess I was thinking more what could I use to replace the coconut oil and coconut milk? Maybe it’s something as easy as using cow’s milk and canola oil, but you probably haven’t made this recipe with those ingredients, huh? :) Maybe I’ll just try it and see how it turns out!


Brittany October 26, 2011 at 10:47 pm

Canola oil will not work. Coconut oil is the only oil that gets really hard in cold temperatures. You will have a disaster on your hands if you try anything but. The only thing I can think to suggest would be to use a block on unsweetened baking chocolate- melt it down and add stevia. But in all honestly your best bet is to just buy some chocolate chips.


julie October 27, 2011 at 6:38 am

We cant use coconut here, anything else we could use? Looks so yummy!!


julie October 27, 2011 at 6:40 am

Never mind I read above!


Brittany October 27, 2011 at 12:27 pm

Yeah Sorry! You can go the CHocolate CHip Route- which does not need additional oil. Instead of coconut in the filling use powdered sugar.


Hailey October 27, 2011 at 6:02 pm

Hey, to anyone who hasn’t made the yummy nut butter cups, MAKE THE CHOCOLATE SAUCE! I fiddled around with Brittany’s recipe and tried the enjoy life chips. They clumped and are prone to burning. They made the base of my cups. Thankfully I ran out of melted chips and had to make sauce. I did equal parts cocoa powder and coconut oil, a splash of vanilla, a squeeze of honey, and a splash of coconut milk creamer. The cups turned out pretty well. The second sauce is creamy and yummy like the filling in a truffle. Thank you for this recipe, the folks in my Neuroethology class will love it!


Heather @Gluten-Free Cat October 30, 2011 at 1:08 pm

Brittany, these sound amazing!!! Thankfully the only thing I HAVE to stay away from is gluten, but I’m always looking for ways to “health up” sweets and treats. Wonderful results, my friend!


Brittany October 31, 2011 at 2:22 pm

Thanks so much Heather :)
You are lucky to only have issues with gluten! That seems like a rare thing these days. Xoxo


naomi devlin November 2, 2011 at 4:59 pm

Wow! I really, really want to sink my teeth into one of those right now!

x x x


Brittany November 6, 2011 at 3:48 pm

Its dangerous having these in my freezer :) xo


Faye@RawLawyer November 6, 2011 at 2:34 pm

Hi Brittany,

Maybe this is a simplistic question, but how do I know if my carob powder is high fat? Does it make a significant difference if it’s high fat or not?

(these look great!!)


Brittany November 6, 2011 at 3:48 pm

HI Faye! The Carob powder does not have to be high fat! (Any brand should work). :) I should note that I made these once with regular old cocoa powder (not high fat) and they worked great that way too!


Meagan January 2, 2012 at 3:07 pm

I’ve made homemade pbutter cups before and they are fab! My recipe experiment was pbutter + organic palm oil shortening + raw honey + salt + vanilla (for the filling) and unsweetened baking chocolate melted with grassfed butter and raw honey (for the chocolate). THEY were great! My best one yet. Yours look great. I love rolling the pbutter into a ball idea. Also, I never knew how to make coconut butter (or at least no one explained it to me in 4 easy sentences like you did).


Shelley October 13, 2012 at 3:37 am

Okay this may be the dumbest question but I am confused with the filling its 1/4 c of whatever nut/seed butter plus the coconut butter or it that the option for nut/seed free? Sorry I think it’s the lack of sleep that’s making me draw a big what?? Ha
Thank you for you response


Shelley October 14, 2012 at 1:14 am

Disregard my last comment. It helps to read the intro haha ugh


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