A chocolate bar (Commonwealth English) or candy bar (some dialects of American English) is a confection containing chocolate, which may also contain layerings or mixtures that include nuts, fruit, caramel, nougat, and wafers. A wide variety of chocolate bar brands are sold. A popular example is a Snickers bar, which consists of nougat mixed with caramel and peanuts, covered in milk chocolate.Source: Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chocolate_bar)
Which bar comes to mind when you think of a classic chocolate bar? Snickers was definitely the first bar which I thought of. Obviously, the authors of the above Wiki entry did too 😉 A while back I started craving the salty-sweet taste of Snickers to accompany my afternoon coffee break and set about looking for a recipe. Little did I know that there are so many out there in the baking blogosphere! Yet many of them use desiccated coconut or coconut oil in the base which I wasn’t keen on. Don’t get me wrong, I love coconut but not in Snickers.
So I was really happy when I came across this fantastic Snickers recipe by Jules from The Easy Vegan without coconut.
Before I continue with the recipe I want to say “Jules! Are you okay? Come back, please!” After discovering his great blog – and loving his cringey humour – I was surprised to see that the last recipes were from 2019. On Instagram, fans are also wondering where Jules is and if he is okay. His Snickers recipe was sponsored by a counselling company and Jules explained that he has suffered from anxiety in the past. I do hope you are well! #comebackjules
I’ve actually made this recipe a few times now but as so often I am behind with my blog. These Snickers really are a taste sensation! They are not as sweet as the original and you really can taste all the different ingredients like the chewy date caramel, the salty peanuts and the dark chocolate. In direct comparison, the original bar is just so terribly sweet with no real taste distinction. I’ve made these Snickers for friends, family and neighbours and all just said “Wow! These are so delicious. Please do share the recipe!”
You’ll need a good food processor as you’ll be blitzing cashews and oats. For the date caramel, I found using an immersion blender easier than pouring the mixture into the blender as Jules does in his video. But if you don’t have one, no worries.
For the base
– 150 g raw cashews
– 150 g rolled oats
– 50 g maple syrup (Jule’s used agave)
– 200 g smooth peanut butter
For the caramel peanut layer
– 200 g pitted dates
– 150 g non-dairy butter or margarine
– 150 g soft light brown sugar
– 2 tsp caramel flavour or vanilla essence – optional
– 200 g roasted salted peanuts
For the chocolate coating
– 500 g non-dairy chocolate (I use dark chocolate)
– 50 g smooth peanut butter
Line a square baking dish with greaseproof paper (base and sides). The one I use isn’t quite square, 24 x 20 cm so don’t worry if yours isn’t either.
– Blend the cashews and oats in your food processor until they are very fine and transfer into a mixing bowl
– Add the syrup and peanut butter
– Using a fork mix until well combined and then use your hands to thoroughly knead the mixture until it comes together in a ball. *)
– Roll out your base with a rolling pin until it is about the shape of your baking dish and approx. 1 cm thick. See the Notes below – If your mixture is crumbly then just transfer it into the baking dish and flatten it out to fit the dish using a spatula or the back of a spoon.
– Cover with a piece of greaseproof paper and set aside.
Date caramel layer
– Add the butter/margarine to a saucepan and heat for a few minutes until it starts to melt. Add the sugar and dates and stir until the butter/margarine has fully melted and the sugar has dissolved.
– Take off the heat and either blend using an immersion blender or pour the mixture (careful hot!) into your blender and blitz until smooth.
– Add the peanuts into the mixture and stir until well combined. If using a blender, pour the mixture back into the saucepan and add the peanuts then.
– Spread the filling over the base evenly and freeze for 3 hours. **)
– Melt your chocolate in your preferred way. Some people like the microwave, I prefer melting mine in a metal bowl over a saucepan of hot water.
– If you have left your base in the freezer overnight then take it out before you start melting the chocolate. Otherwise take it out now.
– Remove the nougat/caramel mixture from the baking dish and place it onto a cutting board. You can remove the paper if you like but I like to leave it underneath. Cut the mixture into a typical chocolate bar size. I find them so filling that I actually cut them into half that size now.
– Place a piece of greaseproof paper onto a large plate to put your Snickers on.
– I found the best way to cover the bars with chocolate was to put them onto a fork and then spoon over the melted chocolate. You can drop them into the chocolate if you prefer but this way is a little messy and there is a lot of excess chocolate to wipe off. Place each bar on the plate and then put into the fridge for about 15 minutes for the chocolate to set.
Excess chocolate: There is always some chocolate left over. Jules added nuts & cornflakes to his to make little crispy bites. Great idea and so delicious; I like to add raisins as well.
Be prepared to never want to eat an ordinary Snickers again once you’ve made these! Tag me on Instagram and/or Facebook if you do make them.
*) Although I’ve made this recipe a few times now my nougat base has never turned out so soft as Jule’s does on his video. Mine is always still quite crumbly despite kneading it for a long time, adding some extra peanut butter and syrup. Maybe the German oats are different from the UK ones? Also I like to use a pair of thin rubber gloves for the kneading as the mixture is a little sticky at first.
**) If you are pushed for time this is a great time to stop as you can chocolate coat the Snickers the next day. Cover your dish with greaseproof paper or some foil if you do leave it in the freezer overnight. The mixture doesn’t freeze rock solid so don’t worry.
Original recipe by Jules: https://www.theeasyvegan.org/vegan-snickers/