Monday, April 16, 2012

Vegan Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Bites


Vegan desserts are notoriously tricky because of the substitutions you need to make for traditional dessert recipes to work. It can be difficult to come up with a dessert without eggs, milk, cream or other dairy products, especially if you aren't vegan but are cooking for people who are. Many people who are vegan are also health-conscious and prefer to keep their sugar intake low. Cooking a tasty but healthy dessert can seem difficult but isn't.

When you need something simple, delicious, healthy and vegan, chocolate peanut butter banana bites are a great option. Frozen bananas actually have a consistency and flavor similar to ice cream, but are much healthier. As an added bonus, desserts that only require microwaves and don't need any actual cooking or baking are always a great option when you're low on time.

For this recipe, you only need a few ingredients:

  • 4 bananas
  • 1 cup natural creamy peanut butter
  • 1 cup vegan dark chocolate chips
  • ½ cup unsweetened coconut shavings

For supplies, you'll need:

  • 1-quart microwave-safe glass bowl
  • Mixing spoon
  • Cutting board and knife
  • Cookie sheet
  • Parchment paper
  • Fork
Start by putting the chocolate chips and peanut butter in the bowl and microwaving them on high for a minute. Give them a stir to see if they're melted and smooth. If not, return the bowl to the microwave for another 30 seconds and heat them until you have a smooth mixture.

While the chocolate and peanut butter melt, peel the bananas and slice them into segments between one and two inches long. Cover a cookie sheet with a piece of parchment paper so the coated banana bites won't stick to it.




Now comes the fun part! Spear a banana chunk with your fork, dip it into the melted chocolate and peanut butter until it's totally coated, and, using another fork or your finger, place it on the cookie sheet. Repeat this process for the rest of the banana chunks, making sure none of them are touching. If the chocolate and peanut butter mixture begins to harden, give it a stir or return it to the microwave for another 30 seconds to melt it again.

When all of the bananas are coated, sprinkle the coconut shavings as much or as little as you prefer. Press the shavings gently to make sure they stick to the chocolate. Set the cookie sheet in the freezer for an hour or until the chocolate is completely hardened. If you're not going to serve the dessert right away, pop the bites into a freezer-safe container and store them for later. Freezing the bananas for at least four hours before serving ensures they will be completely frozen and more like ice cream.

Chocolate peanut butter banana bites are perfect for a party, but they will melt quickly, so make sure your guests are ready to snap them up after the entrée has been served. The bites also make a great snack for anyone in the family and even offer a health benefit as dark chocolate – in moderation – is good for you. Enjoy a healthy and filling snack any time of the day!


Joseph Baker writes on behalf of Sears and credits his local farmers' market in his journey towards whole food wellness.



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