"Peanut" Butter & Jelly Bars

Growing up, many of us likely experienced the pure delight of a good ol' PB & J sandwich: the perfect ratio of peanut butter to jelly, all smooshed between soft white bread. Well now, you can have your PB & J and eat it, too! This twist on the classic favorite gets a healthier makeover (they're gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free, and if you use a seed butter can even be nut-free!) and a brand new look! 

A buttery shortbread crust is topped with creamy nut butter, and the shining crown of glory is in the "jelly", made simply of fresh fruit and quality grass-fed gelatin. Throw it back to those childhood memories with these delectable bars. You'll never want a regular PB & J sammie again after trying these bad boys!  

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"Peanut" Butter and Jelly Bars

(Gluten-free, Grain-free, Dairy-free, egg-free, Paleo)

 

Ingredients: 

For the shortbread crust: 

For the nut butter layer: 

  • 1/2 cup nut or seed butter of choice (my personal favorite is this truly raw, sprouted almond butter)
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1 Tbs raw honey (can be omitted altogether for less sweetness)
  • 1-2 tsp coconut flour (use less for nut butter that is thicker, and more for more oily nut/seed butters)
  • pinch of salt, varying based on saltiness of your nut or seed butter

For the jam layer: 

 

Directions: 

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. In the bowl of a food processor* (easiest option), add cassava flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar. Pulse to combine. *Alternatively, you can combine all ingredients in a bowl, whisk to combine, then incorporate step number 3 with a fork or pastry cutter. 
  3. Add ghee, coconut oil, or butter. You want it to be solid, not melted (just freeze or refrigerate for a few minutes if it's not). Pulse slowly until just combined and forming a crumbly consistency. Don't over-mix! 
  4. Dump your crumbly crust into a square 8x8 or 9x9 pan and press down with your fingers to distribute evenly to about 1/4" thickness (varies depending on pan size used)
  5. Bake for 12-15 minutes or until brown. Remove and let cool completely. Once cooled to room temp, place in the fridge to firm up completely. 
  6. Rinse your food processor bowl and add in all ingredients for the nut butter layer. Pulse to combine until smooth. Again, you can do this step without a food processor! Just add ingredients to a bowl and mix well. 
  7. Add nut butter layer to cooled shortbread, spreading to all corners of the crust and smoothing. Refrigerate or freeze. 
  8. In a small bowl, add approx. 3 Tbs water and sprinkle your gelatin on top. Whisk with a fork and let set aside to "bloom."
  9. Add sliced strawberries or raspberries to a small saucepan over medium heat. Once berries begin to sizzle, reduce heat to medium low. 
  10. Add maple syrup and stir. Using a potato masher or a fork, mash your berries until they're an even consistency. Let simmer for a few minutes. 
  11. Add lemon juice and bloomed gelatin. Whisk to combine, then turn off heat and let sit until completely cooled. 
  12. Remove crust and nut butter layers from the fridge and add cooled berries. Refrigerate until firm, approx. 30 min. 
  13. Slice, serve, and enjoy! Keep uneaten bars in a sealed container in the fridge.
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These tasty treats are perfect for sharing! Whip up a batch for your next backyard bbq or just to share with friends and family. They're sure to be loved by all! 

In loving health, 

 

Ashley

 

 

 

 

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