I promised a recipe soooooo… Here’s a goodie! 😀 AND it’s vegan which one of my colleagues loved, I do so much baking and take it into the office and she always misses out, so I was happy that she could eat these. They’re also low FODMAP, no dairy, low in sugar and gluten free (if you use the right rice bubbles) but they are also very tasty so you don’t feel like you’re missing out on anything. If you like peanut butter, these are definitely the treat for you so make sure you read on.
The thing I like most about these bars is that they’re super easy to make. All you need to do is melt together the base ingredients, mix through the rice bubbles and spread them in the baking tray, then melt the chocolate and peanut butter and spread on top. Set in the fridge and they are ready to eat!
I really love the addition of the peanut butter, because it gives the rice krispies a delicious flavour, but also a bit more of a chewy texture so they don’t crumble everywhere. I used an olive oil based spread (Olivio) but you can use any sort of margarine/butter/coconut oil you want, as long as it starts as a solid fat that you melt with the other ingredients. If it’s not, if you just use an oil or similar, they won’t hold together so well. If you want it to be sugar-free, you could use any sugar-free liquid sweetener of your choice, e.g. sugar-free maple syrup, stevia, xylitol, etc. My only warning is that for those with IBS or other bowel issues, you need to be very wary of sweeteners and for this group I would recommend just using maple syrup. Lastly, you could also use honey but that wouldn’t be vegan and it’s not low FODMAP, so choose what will work best for you. 🙂
Do you guys ever remember having chocolate crackles when you were younger?? They might be quite a New Zealand thing, I’m not sure, but literally every children’s party or school fair, there would be a plate of chocolate crackles. Even though they bring back good memories and even though they were made with chocolate, I must say I was never a big fan. I think because they always used to be made with vegetable shortening (or coconut shortening, called Kremelta in NZ) and I always thought that gave them a funny taste. These remind me a lot of chocolate crackles, but they are sooooooo much tastier! I would definitely recommend stepping away from the Kremelta and giving these a whirl for your next party, they are just as easy and (in my opinion) way more delicious! I hope you like these as much as I did, happy baking.
- [b]Peanut butter base[/b]
- 2½ cups rice bubbles
- ½ cup peanut butter
- ⅓ cup maple syrup
- 2 Tbspn margarine (vegan, i.e. Olivio)
- ½ tspn salt
- [b]Chocolate topping[/b]
- 180g dark chocolate, chopped
- 2 Tbspn peanut butter
- Line an 20x20cm (8in) square baking pan (or double the recipe and use a 35x20cm or similar) with baking paper and spray with non-stick spray.
- Pour the rice cereal into a large mixing bowl.
- In a medium sized saucepan, combine the peanut butter, maple syrup, (vegan) margarine, and salt over medium-low heat. Whisk to incorporate and melt the margarine.
- Once the mixture is thick and completely combined (1-2 minutes), remove from the heat and pour over the rice cereal. Be careful not to cook too long.
- Stir the sauce through the rice cereal to combine completely, making sure to coat all of the cereal.
- Pour the mixture into the prepared pan and use your hand or a spatula to press the bars down firmly. Set aside to let it firm up.
- Place the chopped dark chocolate and peanut butter in a microwave safe bowl and microwave in 30 seconds increments, stirring between each, until it’s smooth and melted.
- Pour the chocolate over the peanut butter crispy bars and spread, using the back of a spoon.
- Let firm up in the fridge for at least 30 minutes before cutting into squares, or overnight.
- These bars will keep in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 1 week.