When he was small, my youngest son had a habit of filling his pockets with treasures he encountered in his daily adventures. I didn't always understand the value he saw in his chosen objects -- really, how many rocks and sticks could one boy keep? In his eyes, though, each one was beautiful and important. Life is just like that on a larger scale, isn't it? We gather up the precious bits of our experiences and save them all to learn from and enjoy later. Perhaps you'll find a little something here that you'd like to keep in your own pockets. Thanks for visiting.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Chocolate cashew butter cups

Back when I was younger and didn't give as much thought to what I ate, I used to loooovvve Reese's Peanut Butter cups.  Every now and then I find myself craving that delicious combination of chocolate and nut butter, but I resist because I know my body would not be happy with me for indulging in such a sugary treat.  This week I was thrilled when my attempts to create a healthier version of nutty, chocolatey goodness resulted in these ridiculously delicious mini cashew butter cups.  Our family is really excited about this latest addition to our collection of homemade holiday sweets!

Chocolate Cashew Butter Cups
(inspired by this chocolate peanut butter and jelly cup recipe from With Style & Grace)

2 cups chopped dark chocolate (at least 70% cocoa)
1 tsp coconut oil
1 cup natural cashew butter
6 pitted dates
finely chopped raw cashews, for garnish

Line a 24-cup mini-muffin tin with paper baking cups.  Add the cashew butter and dates to a food processor and process them on high speed, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl a few times, until these two ingredients are well-combined and smooth.  Place the mixture in the refrigerator to chill.

Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, melt the chopped dark chocolate over low heat, stirring often.  Add in the coconut oil and stir to combine it with the melted chocolate. 

Spoon about one teaspoon of the chocolate mixture into the bottom of each baking cup.  Gently tilt the cups so that the chocolate spreads out all over the bottom and slightly up the sides of each one.  Once all the cups have been coated with chocolate, place the muffin tin in the freezer for approximately 30 minutes.

After the 30 minutes, remove the muffin tin from the freezer and the cashew butter mixture from the fridge.  Carefully spoon about one teaspoonful of the cashew butter mixture into the centre of each chocolate cup.  Tap the muffin tin on the counter a few times to help level out the cashew butter mixture.  Place the muffin tin back in the freezer for another 30 minutes or so.

When these 30 minutes are up, remove the muffin tin from the freezer once again and spoon another teaspoonful of the melted chocolate mixture over the top of each cup.  Sprinkle a small amount of finely chopped raw cashews on top of the chocolate.  Place the muffin tin back in the freezer one last time until the chocolate is set. 

Remove the paper liners from the chocolate cashew butter cups and serve them.  Leftovers are best stored either in the refrigerator or the freezer.

These delightful little goodies are a bit on the messy side to eat, but no one in my family seemed to mind that at all!  If you prefer the cashew butter mixture to be contained within the cup, you can use a small, clean paintbrush to brush the chocolate all the way up the sides of the paper liners in the first step.  I personally like the visual interest of the layers in the version pictured here.

I will warn you, after the four of us taste-tested these yummy chocolate cashew treats, I had to put the rest of them out in our garage freezer in the interest of making sure we'd have any left for Christmas!  If you're popping by for a holiday visit, we just might share.  ;)


  1. You can get chocolate molds that would work well for making these more tidy. You could also probably put the nut butter mixture in a piping bag and keep the filling centred. Other than that, these look so yummy!

  2. Do you know if almond butter would work?

    1. Hi Tracyann. I haven't tried making these with almond butter before, but a friend of mine did and said it worked well (and that they were delicious, too!) Please let me know how they turn out if you try the almond butter -- I hope you enjoy them! :)

  3. Wonderful! I will give them a try this week and let you know!