Hallo thare friends.
No, sorry, I was talking to the healthy sea salt dark chocolate bars. Because a chocolate bar that is made with healthy ingredients (everybody say hiii to the friendly oats, coconut, nuts, and seeds) and wrapped up in peanut butter and deep, fudgy, dark chocolate and sprinkled with sea salt to perk up your mouth with a bang – that’s the kind of chocolate bar that I want to be friends with now and forever more till death do us part. That’s normal, right?
These no-bake, extremely low-maintenance sea salt dark chocolate bars of wonder *pause to really think about that and now let’s go for a fist bump* are ready super fast, require very few ingredients, have significantly less refined sugar than your average chocolate treatster, and are stored in the freezer or fridge for easy access during Chocolate Emergencies. I’m having a flashback to the Inner Goddess Chocolate Truffles and remembering how much we love healthier, more wholesome chocolate bliss together.
If I had a real freezer right now, it would be filled to the max with ALL THE CHOCOLATE THANGS. But instead, this:
The reality is that our fridge is officially sitting out in the driveway right now waiting to be hauled off the refrigerator graveyard, looking sadder, crustier, and more 1950s than ever before. And our new base of cooking operations is DRUMROLLLLLLLLLL the basement!
This is both good and bad news because 1) it means that I have to get really creative and force myself to not just drive to the closest bakery for a large cinnamon roll every morning, and 2) it means that the kitchen remodel is finally, for real, almost a year later, actually happening. Like, today.
Oh hey I just said KITCHEN. REMODEL. Also – when did I become a person who does adult things? This is so fun and weird.
I am totally the kind of person who would use a kitchen remodel as a very good excuse for eating out three times a day, seven days a week. But I am giving myself a challenge to just be okay with the chaos (HA HA says my real life self) and try to keep things at least 1% normal by having our breakfasts, lunches, and dinners at home on most of these kitchen remodel days.
So we packed up the kitchen and currently (like, literally, right at this moment that I’m writing to you) we are existing out of the basement, which is made up of four brick walls, cement walls, and exposed ceiling beams <– totally sounds cool, so I’ll let you think what you want. I am trying so hard to be resourceful and not fall into the eating out all the time trap which means we’re going to live off of a microwave, mini-fridge, slow cooker, blender, panini press, toaster, and rice cooker for the next 6 weeks.
Everything is happening so super speedy fast and I feel like I’m on some sort of wild ride to nice, normal kitchen functionality. Since the recording of that video less than 48 hours ago, demo has started in the most amazing, knocking-walls-down way possible annnd it sounds like our house might come falling down at any moment. Like literally right now as I sit here (in the basement, duh) and type this. WHAT ARE YOU GUYS DOING UP THERE.
Yesterday I put a ceremonious picture of me majorly smashing the wall (okay fine, majorly smashing, barely denting, whatev) on Facebook and Insta, but you guys know the real truth about us.
We are computer and food people and that’s where the skills reach a sharp decline. So we have a phenom team of guys that are doing the demo and installation of the new kitchen for us and I’m pretty sure that is the best decision we’ve ever made. I’m also pretty sure that they think we are the most bizarre, food-bloggy, work-from-home-dwellers. I mean, nothing screams weirdos like people who just wander around during a remodel, filming them actually doing work, filming ourselves pretending to do work, and still wearing the work from home attire of sweats and hoodies and slippers when they leave at the end of the day.
Dear Team, thank you for dealing with everything about us.
Sea salt dark chocolate bar, anyone?
Flaky sea salt, why you be so nummy?
I fully intent to exist off of sea salt dark chocolate bars loaded with oats and nuts and dried fruit and peeeeannnnuuuuut butttterrrrr for the remainder of the remodel. And/or life. It took me a couple tries to get them just right, because the first few rounds involved so many rolled oats that my mouth was like WHAT ARE YOU FEEDING ME. Not chewable. Stop with the large rolled oats.
So the trick for these is to pulse most of your “filling” — all the healthy nums including the oats — in the food processor to get a really nice, small, easy-to-eat texture that feels less like eating some grains you foraged in a field and more like yum yum yum yum yum yum yum perfectly textured peanut buttery sea salt sprinkled chocolaaaaate.
Thanks for reading and following along with our kitchen remodel and not judging me for being awake or showered for 20+ hours when we filmed episode one (always a really good idea) and making + devouring yummy desserts together.
You make me happy in my heart.
But no, I was talking to the chocolate.
- 1 cup peanut butter
- ½ cup salted butter (coconut oil is a good alternative)
- ⅓ cup raw honey
- 4 ounces bittersweet dark chocolate
- 1¾ cups rolled oats
- 1 cup nuts, coconut, or seeds (I used ½ cup pecans and ½ cup coconut)
- 1 cup dried fruit (I used figs)
- coarse sea salt to taste
- OPTIONAL (but highly recommended): In a food processor, pulse 1 cup of the oats, your filling, and your fruit. This really helps the texture of the bars not to feel so much like chunky health bars and more like a well-mixed yummy chocolate bar. For my filling, I ended up using ½ cup nuts and ½ cup coconut and I pulsed them both through the food processor as well as my figs - see picture in the step-by-step photo above. I left ¾ cup of oats un-processed to add variety to the texture.
- Put all your oats, filling, and fruit in a large bowl. Line a 9x13 or smaller pan with parchment paper.
- In a small saucepan, melt the peanut butter, butter, and honey over low heat. Add the chocolate and stir until melted. Remove from heat and pour the mixture into the bowl with the oats, nuts, and dried fruit. Mix well (and work quickly so it doesn't start to get too sticky on you). Press into the prepared pan, sprinkle generously with sea salt, and chill for 2-3 hours to harden (I put mine in the freezer). When solid, cut into 24 bars and store leftovers in the fridge or freezer.