Saturday, February 11, 2012

Chocolate-Dipped Peanut Butter Pretzel Bites

       Happy (almost) Valensday Tine! Hehe, that's how my oldest niece used to say "Valentine's Day". I think it makes the holiday sound that much cuter. Just like these pretzel bites--aren't they adorable? What's great about these is that they're super simple, super cute, super addictive, and super fun to make. (Addictive is a positive thing, right?) For those of you looking for a quick, last minute treat, or even simply looking for a fun Valentine's Day project to do with your kiddos, these pretzel bites should definitely be kept in mind. And don't forget the other holidays! You only need to change the sprinkles to make these bites event-appropriate.
       Because of the brown sugar in this recipe, the peanut butter filling has a unique taste to it. The best way I can describe it is that it almost tastes slightly "mapley", though that's still not quite right. Either way it is tasty. Also, these are best kept chilled before eating for multiple reasons. One, they just taste better cold (like putting Reese's in the fridge or freezer), but that is technically my opinion. Two, keeping the bites chilled keeps them firm. Three, the chocolate doesn't smudge easily when they're cold. So, see? Keep them chilled if possible. It's for the best. If you're bringing them somewhere, just keep them chilled until you leave. By the way, here is where I found the recipe, and this is the original source of it.

Chocolate-Dipped Peanut Butter Pretzel Bites
Recipe originally from Foodaphilia

  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 2 tablespoons softened butter
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • Pretzels
  • 1 regular-sized bag of chocolate chips (I used milk chocolate)
  • Sprinkles (optional)
--Get two baking sheets ready by lining them with wax paper, parchment paper, or a silpat. Cover one of the pans with about 50 pretzels. These will be the bottom halves to your "sandwiches". Set pans aside.
--In a medium sized bowl, thoroughly combine the peanut butter and the butter. (You can use a stand mixture if you really want to.)
--Next, add the sugars and mix until combined. You may need to scrape down the sides of the bowl a few times if you're using a stand mixer.
--Once you can roll little balls in your hands without the peanut butter mixture sticking to your fingers, then it is ready. If it is still sticky, continue to add more powdered sugar in small doses.
--Roll the peanut butter filling into small balls and place on top of the pretzels on the prepared baking sheet. Top with another pretzel to form a "sandwich". Make sure the pretzels are facing the same direction.
--Once you have all the sandwiches made, chill them in the freezer for about 30 minutes. You want them to be firm when you dip them into the melted chocolate so they don't squish on one side. You'd get lopsided bites if you did that. Though still tasty, they wouldn't be as cute.
--Near the end of the 30 minutes, melt the chocolate chips. Either by a double-boiler method or the microwave. Be careful not to scorch the chocolate. (If using a microwave, first put the chips in for a minute, stir, then stir about every 30 seconds after that until successfully melted.)
--Taking a few pretzel sandwiches out of the freezer at a time (so the rest can stay chilled and firm), dip half of each pretzel into the chocolate and place on another lined baking sheet. If using sprinkles, sprinkle them over the chocolate now.
--Let the chocolate harden on the bites (easiest just to stick them back into the fridge or freezer again), then transfer them to a sealed container or snack-sized Ziploc baggies.
--Enjoy! Tell someone you care about you love them. =)
Happy Baking!

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