Triple Decker Peanut Butter Squares
I’ve never been one to eat first thing in the morning.
Oh, I know that breakfast is the most important meal of the day and trust me, I never skip that. Only, I tend to have it a little later than most, maybe.
The thing is, my tummy just ain’t in the mood for food when it’s just woken up. It’s like it needs at least an hour to realize that it’s no longer asleep. Before that, food just isn’t appealing to him. And I’d much rather eat when my tummy actually enjoys the experience, you see.
That “condition” of mine wouldn’t be so bad I guess if I didn’t happen to work out first thing in the morning.
There are a lot of people out there who are saying that it’s actually a good thing to exercise on an empty stomach, as one tends to burn more fat that way.
I’m not too keen on that idea… I feel if I want to go somewhere with my car, I need to put gas in it BEFORE I actually get behind the wheel, and it should be the same when it comes to my body. To me, I need to put a little food in it before I ask it to start jumping around, cycling or lifting heavy weights…
Maybe it’s a question of respect…
That’s why I like having little bars such as these around.
They are a perfect bite for my grumpy tummy to enjoy right out of the comfort of his bed. This is the only kind of food that he will accept besides coffee. Yeah, I think he sees coffee as food… at least in the morning, he does!
Just one of these little squares before a workout and I feel I’ve at least given my body a little something to get it going.
Of course, after my workout, I have a more substantial breakfast… now that Mr. Tummy is wide awake and fully responsive and ready to accept food. Usually, by that time, he’s even grumbling quite audibly, as if very dissatisfied and blaming me for not feeding him
As if it were my fault. 😉
Now these irresistible little squares here were inspired to me by Jessica over at Chockohlawtay. As soon as I saw her decadent looking Chocolate Peanut Butter Fudge Bars, I knew I had to get them inside me. It was only matter of time before it happened.
While the recipe looks quite extensive and fairly complicated, it’s really not that bad, and trust me, these little squares are worth every single second that you will spend working on them. They are extremely rich and intense in flavor, both in the chocolate and peanut butter department. Plus, their super chewy and dense texture makes them super filling and satisfying.
You wouldn’t really guess from biting into one of these that they are actually super healthy.
Hey, if they will support me through a workout, guess it’s safe to say that two or three pieces would make for a very good breakfast or a great healthy morning snack.
One lonely little square could also make a good little dessert, for those of you who like to enjoy a teeny sweet bite after having had lunch.
By all means, don’t let the long list of ingredients put you off. I swear, these little guys will no doubt win you over as soon as you sink your teeth into one of ’em.
They sure got me… and grumpy tummy!
Triple Decker Peanut Butter Squares
- ¼ cup coconut cream, the canned variety
- ¼ cup coconut butter, I used home made
- ¼ cup date paste
- 1 scoop vanilla flavored whey protein powder
- 1/3 cup dark cocoa powder
- 1 cup soy flakes, you can use oats if you don't want to keep these grain free
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
Peanut Butter Filling
- 2 scoops plain or vanilla flavored whey protein powder
- ¼ cup date paste
- 1/3 cup peanut butter
- 2 tbsp coconut cream, the canned variety
Top Chocolate Layer
- 1 scoop vanilla flavored whey protein powder
- 3 tbps dark cocoa powder
- ¼ cup peanut butter
- 2 tbsp date paste
- 2 tbsp coconut cream, the canned variety
- 1 tbsp peanut butter
- ½ scoopvanilla flavored whey protein powder
- 1 tbsp coconut cream, the canned variety
For the bottom layer
- Add all ingredients except soy flakes to the bowl of your food processor and process until the mixture turns into a sticky paste.
- Add soy flakes and process until well combined. You might have to scrape the sides and push the mixture down a few times to help it get in the blades.
- Press to the bottom of a 8 x 8 square pan lined with parchment paper
For the peanut butter filling
- Add all ingredients to the bowl of your food processor (no need to clean it...) and process until smooth and well incorporated.
- Press that mixture evenly on top of the first layer. It will be on the dry side and will need a little bit of persuasion to get in its place. Use a flat rubber or metal spatula to help even it out.
For the top layer
- Do exaclty what you did with middle layer. Add all ingredients to food processor, process until smooth and press on top of middle layer. Use a flat spatula to help make the frosting nice and smooth.
For the drizzle
- In a medium mixing bowl, mix all the ingredients together until smooth. It might look like it's never gonna happen at first, but it will eventually get there.
- Transfer that mixture to a small plastic bag (ziploc style) and make a little hole in one corner.
- Push all the mixture to that corner and press to drizzle mixture over the top layer. Make 2 passes, diagonally one way and then over the other way.
- Refrigerate the bars at least 4 hours before cutting into 30 squares.
- Keep refrigerated for up to a week.
- These bars freeze really well and are just as good straight from the freezer.
If you’ve tried this recipe, please take a minute to rate the recipe and let me know how things went for you in the comments below. It’s always such a pleasure to hear from you!
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30 Comments on “Triple Decker Peanut Butter Squares”
These look unreal, and perfect for breakfast with a huge glass of milk. I love the contrast of the layers and drizzle over the top. Just superb 🙂
Thanks Miryam, I truly appreciate your kind comment. Hope you’re having a fantastic vacation! 🙂
I love the ingredients in these! And they’re so pretty. Especially the drizzle! Do you prefer these or the peanut butter chocolate energy squares? I got protein powder just for that but still haven’t used it. I’m kind of scared of it. Oh and I like to have a little something in my tummy before exercising in the morning too (not that I’ve had so much experience with that :))
To be honest, I barely remember the other ones… it has been a while since I made them… I remember really liking them, though. I think I prefer this recipe as the bars are lower in fat, higher in protein and grain free! And they still taste awesome! 🙂
Why are you so scared of using the protein powder? Are you afraid of cooking with it or is it the thought of consuming it that you don’t like? I know I couldn’t be without mine. Well, I could, but I would be consuming close to no protein and since I’m trying to get as close as I possibly can to 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight per day, I need all the help I can get! 😉
Oh my….these are almost too pretty to eat. I love having easy to grab breakfast food on hand, especially for my boys. I will definitely be giving this one a try!
Oh man, these look AWESOME!
Do you think that quinoa flakes would work instead of the soy or oats? I can’t eat either of those 😉
I can’t wait to give this a try!
Thanks Kate! I really don’t see why quinoa flakes wouldn’t work, although they wouldn’t bring that same “crunch” factor that the soy flakes have, but it should definitely work. In fact, I think any kind of flakes would work… barley, rye, spelt, kamut… all would be good alternatives, so long as one doesn’t care to keep the squares grain free!
Make sure you let me know how they turn out if you end up trying them! 🙂
Mmm, I love these little squares, Sonia. They are just beautiful! I used to be able to get up and eat a huge breakfast but I find the older I’m getting, the more I’m gravitating toward a small smoothie with water, protein powder and 1/2 a piece of fruit. That’ll usually hold me over until lunch time, unless I’m working out that morning. I love the idea of a little square to get things going!
Ooooooh, so that’s what it is! I’m getting old! 😉 No, wait. That’s not it. Never been one to have breakfast upon waking up. Phew. I feel better (and younger) now. 😉
Joking aside, seriously, you can do that small a breakfast and not eat again until lunch time? I would be starving! I tend to have HUGE breakfasts, once my stomach is wide awake and hungry. Mind you, most my breakfasts happen to be post workout, so that might explain why I’m a tad hungrier and tend to crave carbs… I really wish I didn’t like carbs so much!
Holy Fazoli, you are talking my language! Anything peanut-butter chocolate-I LOVE!
Oh, my gosh. These look so amazing, it’s really unbelievable. Oh, the peanut butter drizzle is to die for! *faints*
As I posted those triple decker fudge squares, I KNEW they were high in sugar but they were just so good and everybody loved them, I couldn’t resist sharing the recipe. I love how you made them sugar free without sacrificing flavor, texture or appearance. Date paste is a great idea, I definitely have to try that. But seriously, back to the peanut butter drizzle. It makes me so happy just looking at it. PINNED!
LOL! You’re too funny Jessica! I’m so happy to hear that you like what I did to your amazing creation! Of course, the look and feel is extremely different, but the general idea is basically the same. Although yours look a lot more decadent, even without the drizzle. 😉
I really think you should give date paste a try. I get the feeling that you would get totally, completely hooked on the stuff!
And seriously, PINNED? WOW! Thanks! I am honored!
These look incredibly decadent! But the ingredients list is perfect… Ahh, this is why I love your blog 😀 These look like they would be perfect little bites for before a workout – I’m the same as you, I don’t like to eat right away but I like to workout right away and I always need a bite of something first.
Awww, thanks Heidi! That is such a huge compliment! Love that you agree with my choice of ingredients! It’s so good to be able to have a little “treat” like this first thing in the morning and have it support you for a while, as opposed to give you a quick boost and send you crashing after a while… And did I mention they’re awesome right out of the freezer? So handy!
This isn’t food, this is art. Such a beautiful design.
Tender, you are a true gem! Thank you so much for putting yet another smile on my face!
these look fantastic – can you please also provide how much fiber per bar? thanks!
Sorry Denise, don’t have that info… wish I did!
that’s ok – if/when I make them, I’ll post what it is. 🙂 Thanks for responding so quickly! Your recipe site is just plain awesome!
Aww, thanks so much Denise. I hope you do give the bars a try! (you got me curious as to fiber content…) 😉
Well, I’m a Weight Watcher, and our Points Plus system is calculated on fat, fiber, protein and carbs. So, Once I have all of this, I will post not only the fiber but the points per square too. 🙂 Also – one last question…the recipe calls for “scoops” of the protein powder – how much is this scoop? I’d like to try it using my WW smoothie powder mix to see how it goes… Of course – that would change the PP for what I make, but I bet it would still be close…
Scoops of protein powder generally run around 30 to 35 grams each, depending on brand. The ones I used were at 35g a piece. I can’t wait to see your numbers now! Had 2 of those yummy squares again today and I can confirm again that they are really super good. Nothing healthy tasting about them, not even close! 🙂
You have me so inspired! I just found out about your blog on Monday and I’ve already made coconut butter, nutella, and date paste! I am having so much fun! I do have a question though…I tried making these decadent bars, but mine did not firm up properly. Any advice? After 24 hours in the fridge they are still a sticky, spreadable texture.
Thank you so much Brittni, that is so nice to hear! You are a true gem for saying that! Hope you’re liking the Nutella and date paste!
Now as far as the bars are concerned, you have me really puzzled because mine were never spreadable to start with. Like I mentionned in the instructions, all layers had to be pretty much “convinced” to flatten out into a thin layer. The mixtures were on the dry and crumbly side. I wonder what it is that we did so differenlty? Did you substitute any of the ingredients?
Hmm, it’s been a while now so I don’t quite remember. I didn’t sub any ingredients, but I do remember the texture was super sticky so it was hard to spread, but it definitely was not a dry/crumbly texture. I will try making them again and see if I can get it right!! I want those bars in my belly! lol
Hmmmm… I hate when a recipe doesn’t turn out like that. I think I’ll have to try it again too, just to make sure! Not that I’m complaining! 😉 I really wonder what could’ve made such a big difference in texture, though. Obviously, it would be a moisture issue… maybe your date paste was more liquidy? Or your coconut milk was not quite as thick as the one I used?
I’m hoping that the bars were good still and that you were able to eat them… 🙂
Loved them Sonia! The perfect mix between a sweet treat (although only barely sweet) and a protein bar. I made the date paste, coconut butter and peanut butter one after the other and was pleased with them all. Didn’t waant to wait overnight for dates so poured hot water on them and let them soak 30 minutes instead – worked a treat. My drizzle was definitely a paste but I gather yours was too. Quite fun to squirt out. A great wee gift for workout-keen friends too. I’m inspried to use date paste more – I really liked it. Thanks!
Oh yes! So very happy to hear, Christina. Thank you so much for your awesome feedback. It really is music to my ears. And thanks for sharing that infor about the date paste. Good to know that one can make “instant” date paste! I’ll keep that in mind for those days when I’m caught unprepared. 😀
You’ll see, once you start using that date paste, you’ll want to use it everywhere! It’s become my sweetener of choice, by far! I think it’s addictive! 😉
Chocolate & Peanut Butter … YES!
I am having this this weekend.