Self-identifying as a dessert person, I don’t believe desserts are evil. As Claire Saffitz puts it, no meal is complete without something sweet at the end. There’s always room for dessert. When I find practical recipes that have no processed sugars, are gluten-free, and dairy-free like these Homemade Peanut Butter Twix Bars, I just enjoy them, guilt-free. I hope you do, too.
When I first saw these nutty, chocolatey bars from Half-Baked Harvest I knew I had to try them. They have two layers and then they’re dipped into a pool of chocolate and topped with flaky salt. If you like caramel, chocolate, peanut butter all combined, this is just the right amount of each. So easy to put together, these twix bars don’t call for any unusual ingredients or special techniques. It’s just a comfort dessert, so don’t worry about getting them too perfect. You may find the shortcake base to be a little crumbly when cutting the bars. Make sure to use a sharp knife and hold it under hot running water for a few seconds before slicing it into bars – it’ll make it much easier.
This is a vegan recipe, but feel free to substitute the maple syrup for honey. The original recipe calls for coconut flour as well as almond flour for the shortcake, but I’ve only tried it with almond flour. It’s very delicate, light, and a little bit crumbly. That’s not an issue, though.
The peanut butter layer comes together as the shortbread bakes. All you need to do is add all the ingredients in a saucepan and cook until thick. You’ll want to use 100% natural creamy peanut butter for the best results and the right flavors and texture. When buying, make sure it has no additives salts, or sugars.
Pour the peanut layer over the almond cookie base, then freeze the bars. 30 minutes to 1 hour will be enough, but you can also make them ahead of time and feeze overnight. Freezing the bars guarantees a cleaner cut and they need to be solid to dip into the chocolate. If they’re too frozen, the chocolate will set up really quickly. I prefer it that way, but you can also take them out of the fridge a few minutes before so they’re only chilled enough to be easy to work with.
Once frozen and cut, quickly dip the bars into the chocolate and sprinkle with flaky salt. The flaky salt not only elevates the final look, but it also enhances the flavors.
a quick step-by-step
If you want a quick step-by-step on how to assemble the bars, this little video might help! (also maybe hit that follow button?)
Homemade Peanut Butter Twix Bars
For the almond shortbread:
- 1 1/3 cup almond flour
- 1/3 cup melted coconut oil
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp flaky sea salt
- 3/4 creamy peanut butter
- 2 tbsp almond butter
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1/4 cup melted coconut oil
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 12 oz dark chocolate, chopped
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
For the peanut butter caramel:
For the chocolate:
- Preheat the oven to 350° F. Line an 8×8-inch square baking dish (or an 8×4-inch loaf pan) with parchment paper.
- Make the shortbread layer: in a medium bowl, mix the almond flour, coconut oil, maple syrup, vanilla, and salt until combined. Press the mixture into the prepared baking dish.
- Bake 10-12 minutes, until lightly golden and toasted.
- Make the peanut butter layer: in a small pot, mix the peanut butter, almond butter, maple syrup, coconut oil, and vanilla. Bring to a gentle boil over medium heat, stirring constantly. Cook 2 minutes, then remove from the heat.
- Pour over the crust. Freeze 30 minutes to 1 hour, until firm.
- Cut bars into 2-inch thick bars.
- Prepare the chocolate: melt the chocolate and coconut oil in the microwave until melted. Let cool 10 minutes.
- Dip each bar in chocolate, sprinkle with salt.
- Freeze 10 minutes, to set the chocolate. Eat or store in the fridge.
Tips & Tricks: Store the bars in the fridge. If you leave them out on the counter, they’ll get a little melty.
If you make this Homemade Peanut Butter Twix Bars please be sure to leave a comment! I’d love to hear from you and I love responding to every comment. And don’t forget to also tag me on Instagram. I’d love to see your photos!