Ahhh, Spring is in the air! Spring is, no doubt, my favorite time of year. The air is fresh, birds are chirping, it feels so warm after a long cold winter, and there are no bugs yet. When I was a kid, I used to say I liked Easter even better than Christmas. Now I’m not so sure it’s my favorite holiday, but it’s definitely great.
This year, I started thinking “why does Christmas get all the baking love?” and decided to do some baking and candy-making for Easter. These chocolate covered peanut butter eggs were the first thing I made.
There are certain Easter candies that I love and MUST HAVE at Easter time (though with my frugal nature, it’s usually a few days after Easter when I buy them on clearance). Number one on this list is Reese’s Peanut Butter Eggs. I love that the chocolate coating on them is just a little thinner than on regular Peanut Butter Cups, so the peanut butter is really the star of the show.
Surprisingly, these eggs are actually really easy to make. The peanut butter filling only has 4-5 ingredients (salt is added only if you use unsalted butter). Graham cracker crumbs are used to give the peanut butter a slight “crunch”. I would have liked to use ground peanuts instead (which is what I’m sure Reese’s does) but I didn’t have any when I decided I absolutely needed to make these RIGHT NOW. If you are on a gluten free diet, just use an equal amount of ground peanuts.
When the peanut butter filling is mixed, it is very soft and absolutely impossible to work with as it is. There is no way you’re going to be cutting anything out of that.
It’s a simple fix though – just roll it between two sheets of wax paper to roughly 1/2″ thick and stick it in the freezer for 15 minutes or so.
When you take it out, it is firmed up nicely so that you can take a cookie cutter to it. Of course, the traditional shape is an egg, but feel free to make any shape you want. You have to work quickly, or the dough will start to soften again. Once you have all your shapes cut, stick them back into the freezer before coating them with chocolate.
The chocolate coating is just as easy to make. Just melt down some chocolate wafers (I used milk chocolate chips since I couldn’t find wafers) with a little bit of oil or shortening (I used coconut oil). Melt it in a double boiler (or bowl set over a pot of simmering water) until it’s smooth. Dip the frozen eggs in and coat quickly. If they’re sitting in the chocolate too long, they will melt and completely disintegrate into the chocolate.
Set the coated peanut butter eggs back on a baking sheet that has been lined with wax paper. If you want to decorate the eggs with sprinkles, now is the time. When the sheet is full, put it back into the freezer to firm up again.
Once the chocolate has set, grab a paring knife and trim up any of the edges where the chocolate ran, if needed.
Since they do melt when they get warm, it’s best to store them in the freezer or fridge until needed. I wouldn’t recommend using these for an outdoor Easter Egg Hunt if it’s warm either.
My next few posts will all be about fun Easter treats that you can make for your family. There are just under 2 weeks left until Easter. Plenty of time to make these delicious sweets!
- 1¼ cup peanut butter creamy - not natural
- 4 Tbsp salted butter softened (see note)
- 3/4 cup graham wafer crumbs see note
- 1 cup icing sugar
- 12 oz chocolate dark or milk
- 1 Tbsp coconut oil
Mix peanut butter, butter, graham crumbs and icing sugar together until uniform. Transfer mixture to a sheet of wax paper. Cover with a second sheet of wax paper and roll into a sheet about 1/2" thick. Place on a baking sheet and move to freezer to harden, about 20-30 minutes.
Cut into eggs, or other desired shapes using cookie cutters or a knife. Re-roll scraps and freeze to re-harden. Place cut eggs onto a baking sheet lined with wax paper. Allow to harden again in the freezer.
Melt chocolate and coconut oil in a double boiler or glass bowl set over a pot of simmering water. Dip eggs into melted chocolate with a fork, working quickly so peanut butter mixture doesn't melt. Shake off excess chocolate and replace on the wax paper lined baking sheet. Move chocolate covered eggs to fridge or freezer to set.
When chocolate is hardened, use a paring knife to cut any excess chocolate from the edges of the eggs. Store in fridge or freezer until ready to serve.
Instead of graham wafer crumbs, ground peanuts can be used. In that case, this recipe would be gluten free.