No matter how hard I try to be consistent in regards to healthy eating, fighting my insatiable cravings for chocolate is a hopeless and futile agenda. I don’t even bother to care most of the time. It’s a losing battle. That doesn’t mean I’m constantly stuffing myself silly with chocolate confections. But the notion of having an allergy to chocolate would almost be apocalyptic, heaven forbid. Considering how I make and serve chocolate treats weekly, I am not concerned about that at the moment. I could only compromise on so many treats. I am not ready to surrender my love for chocolate yet. Thankfully, there are so many ways to make chocolate treats tasty and healthy. I always welcome healthier alternatives for the sake of my teeth, waistline, and strong adversity to processed “goods” which have been persona non grata in my pantry. Just because I won’t buy these commercial treats doesn’t mean I won’t attempt to make them myself. Snickers bars are no exception.
Snickers bars come in second place to peanut butter cups on my list of favorite chocolate treats. The combination chocolate and caramel wins me over almost every time. Nothing beats sweet and savory in one bite. At first, I was skeptical about the idea behind healthy snickers bars. It almost seemed like an oxymoron considering that the ingredients in snickers bars consist of corn syrup, partially hydrogenated oils, and artificial flavors; ingredients I try to avoid consuming in any possible way I can. Vegan snickers bars seemed most tangible to my dietary needs. If I could make homemade chocolate peanut butter cups from scratch, then I can only imagine how simple making homemade raw snickers bars would be. Words don’t even begin to describe the elation I felt when I learned that not only making healthy snickers bars was possible, but is as easy as well.
Veganizing snickers bars almost seems like an abomination. The flavors of these raw snickers bars are just as sinful but I feel that I would be doing a lot of injustice to myself by eating the commercial bought version. While these raw snicker bars may seem like an overly-simplified way to make nougat for a candy bar, it works 100 percent for me as it will for you. The heroes of this candy bar are the caramel made from dates, peanuts (I used pecans) and dark chocolate coating anyway – this simply adds a healthier, not-too-sweet base to bind all the goods together. Sugar-free and gluten-free, these vegan homemade raw snickers bars are loaded with only all-natural ingredients and plenty of fiber therefore you don’t have to worry about the hidden sugars and unhealthy fats. The results are so decedent that you won’t miss the processed version. I do plead guilty to eating processed snacks occasionally but I no longer have to worry about binging on them now that I’ve learned how to recreate a healthier version.
For this recipe, you will need:
- 1 cup of peanut or almond butter
- 2-3 tablespoons of maple syrup or honey
- 1 cup of hazelnut or almond flour
- 2 tablespoons of vegetable or coconut oil
- 1 tablespoon of low-fat milk of your choice
- 1/4 teaspoon of salt
- 1/2 – 1 cup of caramel sauce
- 1/3 cup of chopped peanuts, walnuts, or pecans
- 16 onces of bitter or semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 4 tablespoons of trans-fat free margarine
For ther nougat base, combine the first 6 ingredients in a bowl. Then press the dough onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, and use your hands to create a uniform rectangle shape that is about 1/2-inch thick. Place in the freezer to set. Once firm, distribute caramel sauce evenly. Sprinkle chopped nuts over the top of the caramel layer, and use your hands to gently press the chopped nuts into the caramel filling. Freeze for another 30 minutes to set. Melt chocolate chips with margarine in a microwave or double boiler. Remove candy bars from freezer and slice into 6 or 8 full size bars. Coat each bar from top to bottom with a spoonful of melted chocolate. Return bars to freezer and allow them to freeze for another 15-20 minutes before serving. The longer these bars freeze, the firmer they become.
Yields 6-8 snickers bars