Cheap candy has long been a weakness of mine. Generally speaking, I’m pretty good about not eating processed foods, but packaged candy is one of those foods that I can’t seem to shake. It tempts me at checkout aisles, calls to me at movie theaters, and I can rarely resist it. Peanut butter egg season in particular is something that I look forward to every year.
Most years, I buy a few packages of those yellow wrapped eggs at the grocery store and Andrew and I demolish them well before Easter. This year, in an effort to be good, I didn’t buy a single package. I thought maybe I could go the year without them—that is until I saw a photo of these homemade peanut butter eggs by the Minimalist Baker on Pinterest.
Once the idea was planted, I had to try making my beloved peanut butter eggs at home. I took a less healthful approach than the Minimalist Baker, who uses dates to sweeten the eggs instead of cane sugar, simply because I didn’t have any dates on hand. I made a few tweaks to another recipe I found online and while they are not guilt-free (everything in moderation, right?), they are far superior in quality than the store-bought version.
The peanut butter centers are made with natural/organic peanut butter, butter, and sugars, and the chocolate coating consists of quality milk chocolate melted with a bit of virgin coconut oil.
Forming the eggs and dipping them in chocolate is half the fun of making these peanut butter eggs. (Obviously, the other half is eating them). The peanut buttery dough is like a stickier version of Play-Doh and the melted chocolate is so smooth and velvety, you may be tempted to sip up the leftovers.
Once completed, these indulgent little eggs have the perfect balance of sweet and salty just like the original version–except that the homemade ones taste a heck of a lot better!
A few tips for making these eggs: If you find the peanut butter dough too sticky to work with, place it in the fridge for a few minutes to firm up a bit. Working quickly also prevents the dough from sticking to your hands. If you have trouble shaping the dough into eggs, try molding them directly on the baking sheet. Also, dipping the eggs in chocolate is much easier if they are very cold and completely firm (place them in the freezer if you need to).
Peanut Butter Centers:
1 cup natural no-stir peanut butter
1/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups confectioners sugar, sifted
Fine grain sea salt to taste
12 ounces good quality milk chocolate, chopped
1 tablespoon virgin coconut oil
Place the peanut butter, butter, and light brown sugar in a medium saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until the mixture is completely melted and just starts to bubble.
Take the saucepan off the heat and stir in the vanilla extract. Then stir in the confectioners sugar, 1/4 cup at a time, stirring well after each addition. Taste the mixture and stir in as much salt as needed to balance out the sweetness of the mixture. Set aside to cool to room temperature.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Once the peanut butter mixture has cooled, take about 2 tablespoons of dough at a time, shape them into eggs, and place them on the lined baking sheet. Once all the eggs are formed, place the baking sheet into the fridge until the peanut butter eggs are firm, about 30 minutes.
Once the eggs are firm, make the chocolate coating. Place a glass bowl over simmering water to create a double boiler (making sure the bottom of the bowl doesn’t touch the water), and melt the chocolate and coconut oil together, stirring constantly. Once completely melted, remove the bowl from the heat.
One at a time, drop the eggs into the chocolate and use a fork to turn the eggs to coat them completely. Use the fork to scoop up the eggs, holding them for a few seconds to drain off any excess chocolate, and place them back onto the lined baking sheet. Once all the eggs are coated, return the baking sheet to the refrigerator until the chocolate has hardened, about 30 minutes.
Makes about 15-20 eggs depending on size.