Today we're channeling our inner funky monkey with the time honored combination of peanut butter, bananas and chocolate. The rich decadence of these bars makes them more of a special treat than an everyday snack, but they're great to serve to people who think that vegan food is all cardboard and dandelion leaves.
The peanut butter layer is easy enough to whip up with a mixer. Try to spread it in the baking dish as evenly as possible.
Once the peanut butter layer is done baking, add the bananas on top while it's still warm. This causes the bottoms of the banana slices to "melt" and stick in place.
The chocolate topping is basically a ganache. It only involves melting chocolate chips in some soy creamer, but try to melt them as gently as possible so the ganache doesn't burn. Use just enough heat to melt the chocolate until it's smooth, whisking often. If you have a hot stove, you might want to lift the pot up slightly while you stir.
Once the chocolate is ready, it gets drizzled thickly over the bananas, and the chopped peanuts are sprinkled on top. It needs a few hours in the fridge to set up. I like to pass these treats out to my friends. Otherwise, I can hear them calling my name from the kitchen, taunting me with their yummy goodness.
Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Bars
Makes 16 bars
2 1/4 cups flour
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups brown sugar
1/2 cup peanut oil
3/4 cup peanut butter
3/4 cup plain vegan yogurt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large, ripe but firm bananas, sliced
2 cups vegan chocolate chips
1/2 cup soy creamer
1/2 cup roasted peanuts, chopped
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Lightly spray a 9x13” baking dish with nonstick spray.
- Combine flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl and set aside.
- With an electric mixer, combine oil, brown sugar, peanut butter, vegan yogurt and vanilla.
- Add dry ingredients in batches while mixing at a low speed until a thick, smooth batter forms. Press evenly into bottom of baking dish.
- Bake for 25 minutes or until the top is golden and the edges are lightly browned. Arrange banana slices in a single layer over the top. Allow to cool.
- Prepare the chocolate topping. Bring soy creamer to a boil in a small saucepan. Add chocolate and stir until melted. Pour evenly over bars, then sprinkle with chopped peanuts.
- Allow bars to cool at room temperature or chill in fridge until topping is set. Cut into 16 squares and serve.