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Bite-Sized Bliss

November 20 2008 by Kristin at The Kitchen Sink in Dessert,Recipe » 37 comments

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I’ve been intrigued by almond butter for a while and within about five seconds of screwing off the lid of the jar I bought for this recipe, I was half-a-spoonful in and ready for more. That stuff is absolutely delicious. Where have I been? It’s grown-up peanut butter, basically, but I think you’d be hard-pressed to find a kid who would turn the stuff away. And it’s addictive, too, so I’m glad I had a recipe to fold almost the whole jar right into. I am fully aware of the holiday-induced caloric uptick in my near future; no need for a head start by way of almond butter straight from the jar.

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Just like almond butter is a more grown-up take on peanut butter, these bars are very similar to—but a bit more sophisticated than—the peanut butter-chocolate chunk blondies that I completely love and previously thought could never be rivaled.

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But swap out the peanuts (in both nut butter and chopped form) for almonds, and these new bars give the peanut butter blondies a run for their money. The almond version is sweet and rich and dense and chewy, with a slightly salty edge.  In short, bite-sized bliss.

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While I’ll never truly forsake the peanut butter blondies, these bars also have the advantage of being easier to make. Just whir the almond butter, sugar, butter and egg right in the food processor. Fold in the chocolate and chopped almonds, press into a pan and bake. That’s it. As we head into the (holi)days of elaborate food (particularly in the dessert category), this recipe will be a welcome quick go-to.

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Chocolate-Almond Bars
Food & Wine

Printable Recipe

1 cup salted almond butter
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 large egg
3/4 cup semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup salted roasted almonds, coarsely chopped

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line a 9-by-13 inch metal paking ban with foil.

In a food processor, combine the almond butter with the sugar, butter, baking soda and egg and pulse just until creamy; don’t overmix or the fat will separate. Transfer the dough to a bowl and stir in the chocolate chips and almonds.

Press the dough into the prepared pan and bake for 18 to 20 minutes, until the top s shiny and lightly browned and the center is a bit soft. Transfer the pan to a rack and let cool for 10 minutes. Slide the bar with the foil onto a work surface. Discard the foil, cut into 1-inch square bars and serve.

37 comments so far. »
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  1. sammyw says on November 20 2008 at 10:23 pm:

    Mmm these remind me of the chocolate toffee bars from Starbucks

  2. megan says on November 20 2008 at 11:17 pm:

    your photos are absolutely wonderful. i’m craving these like crazy now! i think i might make these for the bake sale my sorority is putting on in a few weeks :)

  3. Polly says on November 21 2008 at 12:16 am:

    I think I made the same noise when I saw this photo as I did when I saw 007 with his shirt off in the theater the other night! Another “adult” peanut butter if you have not tried it yet — sunflower seed butter.

  4. thekeybunch says on November 21 2008 at 1:40 am:

    Yummmm, They look fantastic. Wish I could lay my hands on them NOW!

  5. kaz says on November 21 2008 at 1:45 am:

    These look so awesome. I will make them for christmas. Thanks!

  6. canarygirl says on November 21 2008 at 1:58 am:

    Sweet jeeeeeebus those look delicious! Almond butter. Yum.

  7. FamilyFirst says on November 21 2008 at 2:18 am:

    This looks perfect for my potluck party this weekend! thanks for sharing.

  8. Eunice says on November 21 2008 at 4:33 am:

    That is MEAN DELICIOUS!!!!! I can almost smell it…I love it! The pictures are amazing.

  9. JEP says on November 21 2008 at 4:56 am:

    I will be on the hunt for a jar of almond butter…what brand do you recommend? Mmm.

  10. lucysmom says on November 21 2008 at 6:19 am:

    Just wondering why there isn’t any flour in it? What is the consistency like then? Are they gooey and chewy?

  11. Emily says on November 21 2008 at 6:20 am:

    These look amazing… Have made and inhaled your peanut butter blondies, these are headed to the top of my list.

  12. tiffany says on November 21 2008 at 7:52 am:

    These look so delicious, I’m going to try them as soon as I get home…I’m thinking to add a dried fruit, perhaps cranberries or cherries….

  13. eggsonsunday says on November 21 2008 at 8:30 am:

    I *love* almond butter! I’m going to have to try swapping for pb in the next blondies I make. Great idea, yum! -Amy

  14. Ali says on November 21 2008 at 11:07 am:

    DUDE…. YUM!

  15. Mia says on November 21 2008 at 11:23 am:

    I love love love almond butter! These bars look great. And you are so right – almond butter is like peanut butter’s sophisticated older sibling. Much more intriguing, I think.

  16. whitneyinchicago says on November 21 2008 at 12:04 pm:

    Almonds are my favorite nut…add that to butter form and chocolate…yum!

    I might have to make a batch of these to get me through this finals season. I got my tax take home yesterday and the first part to the first question kinda made me want to cry a little :( Eeek!

  17. Hillary says on November 21 2008 at 12:06 pm:

    Oh my goodness – I’ll have to add that to my list of recipe for our holiday cookie baking party!

  18. Dawn in CA says on November 21 2008 at 2:33 pm:

    2 cups of powdered sugar and no flour? Yikes, these might be a bit too sweet for me. Then again, I don’t know if I can resist anything with nut butter and chocolate!

  19. rhodeygirltests says on November 21 2008 at 2:55 pm:

    oh my this looks insanely good!

  20. ardie says on November 21 2008 at 3:56 pm:

    Hazelnut butter is tremendously awesome as well. Unfortunately I only found when I went to Holland, haven’t found it here yet. Anyone know where I might look ?

  21. shynsweetlilme says on November 21 2008 at 9:06 pm:

    I really want to make this but have no idea where to get almond butter, and I do not own a food processor.

  22. tikulicious says on November 21 2008 at 10:51 pm:

    wow super delicious ..soooooooooo yum thanks for such a great recipy ..will try it sooon .this is really sinful :)

  23. mormonsoprano says on November 22 2008 at 12:40 am:

    I think I just gained 5 pounds reading this and looking at those photos!

    BTW, Costco sells almond butter in bulk.

  24. Kristin at The Kitchen Sink says on November 22 2008 at 7:51 am:

    Thanks, everyone!

    Polly, Ardie: Can’t wait to try those other butters.

    JEP: I used MaraNatha and it was mind-bogglingly delicious. It was my first jar, though, so I haven’t done any extensive comparisons.

    lucysmom: They were chewy, but not overly gooey. Kind of like a slightly underbaked chocolate chip cookie. I kept them in the fridge, which I think firmed them up a bit.

    tiffany: Ooh! You’ll have to let us know. It’s sort of an adult take on PB&J, then!

    Dawn: They were indeed sweet. I too gasped at the amount of sugar. That’s why I cut them into one-inch squares, rather than the much larger servings called for in the original recipe. I would say you could reduce it, but because there’s no flour, I’m not sure how that would affect the texture. If you play around, let us know!

    shynsweetlilme: I think you could use a stand mixer or hand mixer in place of the food processor and be fine. I found the almond butter at Whole Foods. I think any natural food store would be a good bet (and I know my “regular” grocery stores have started implementing natural foods “aisles” — so you might try there).

    mormonsoprano: Thanks for the Costco tip. Though, I might be nervous to have that much almond butter on hand!

  25. Tarah says on November 22 2008 at 7:55 am:

    Mmm, looks great! I’d love to have one of those right now! I’ll have to look for almond butter or make some of my own ;]

  26. Karen @ Mignardise says on November 22 2008 at 12:17 pm:

    As much as I love peanut butter and chocolate, my favorite thing in the whole world is a chocolate covered almond. I am SO making these! Thanks.

  27. Ashley M says on November 22 2008 at 4:34 pm:

    THIS IS MY DREAM TREAT! such beautiful photos, too!

  28. cassie says on November 23 2008 at 10:19 pm:

    i just made these tonight for a pre-thanksgiving dinner. they were so … toothy! haha, i can’t even think of another word to describe it. either way…so delicious! thank you thank you !

  29. Kristin at The Kitchen Sink says on November 24 2008 at 10:25 am:

    Tarah: I know you can grind your own at Whole Foods (or my Whole Foods, at least).

    Karen: That’s probably my favorite chocolate covered nut too (though, really, who am I kidding? all chocolate-covered nuts are good).

    Ashley: Thanks!

    cassie: Yay! I’m glad to hear someone else tried them. And I know exactly what you mean by “toothy.”

  30. Aysegul says on November 24 2008 at 10:31 am:

    Hi Kristin,

    This looks so yummy! I might just try it for thanksgiving weekend! You have great recipes and nice post, I’ve enjoyed reading your blogs for sometime now.

    Smiles..Aysegul @ nysdelight.com

  31. Nick says on November 24 2008 at 11:37 pm:

    What a simple recipe, I gotta try these. I’d have to disagree with you about almond butter, I’m not sure why but I just don’t like the stuff. I’ve bought it twice now and have not been a fan… However, I did just win a jar of chunky almond butter (Barney butter to be exact) so I’m waiting to see if it strikes me any differently. That being said, I can’t imagine these bars tasting anything short of amazing, but for being the peanut butter addict I am and loving almonds I can’t figure it out…

  32. zbelljegger says on November 30 2008 at 12:20 am:

    Your second paragraph contains an error. It should read “Just like almond butter is a more grown-up take on peanut butter, these bars are very similar to—but a bit more sophisticated than—the peanut butter-chocolate chunk blondies that I completely love and previously thought could never be rivaled.”

  33. Kristin at The Kitchen Sink says on November 30 2008 at 11:04 am:

    Aysegul: Hope you gave it a try!

    Nick: Maybe you’d like almond butter in a recipe, rather than straight up?

    zbelljegger: Thanks! Just fixed it.

  34. whitneyinchicago says on November 30 2008 at 4:13 pm:

    I made some of these last night. YUM. They were still a little soft after I cut a few bars off so I put them back in the oven for a bit.

    def. sweet but perfect with a tall glass of milk

  35. bunnygotblog says on December 02 2008 at 1:55 pm:

    wowowow they look so yummy.

  36. Rrrick says on January 17 2009 at 2:48 pm:

    I just made them and they are yummy. I’m not sharing.

  37. Kristin at The Kitchen Sink says on January 21 2009 at 9:55 pm:

    Rrrick: Wonderful! Thanks for reporting back.

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