Last Updated on March 14, 2022 by Anne-Marie
These no-bake homemade peanut butter cups are easy to make and perfect for gift giving.
Why this recipe works
Make this copycat Reese's Peanut Butter Cups recipe more wholesome and tasty than the candies you find in the store.
That's because you'll be using your favorite chocolate, good quality peanut butter, and your favorite sweeteners.
You can even make them dairy free and vegan!
How to make peanut butter cups
1. Prepare the baking tins by adding muffin liners or using silicone baking liners. Set the muffin tins aside.
2. In a medium bowl, combine 1/2 cup of peanut butter, butter, powdered sugar, and salt until smooth.
(Wondering if that old bag of powdered sugar in your pantry is OK to use? Read: How does powdered sugar go bad?)
3. Place the chocolate and remaining peanut butter in a microwave-safe bowl. Heat the bowl in the microwave for a minute. Then stir the melted mixture.
Continue heating the chocolate mixture for 10 to 20 seconds at a time. Stir the mixture after each microwave heating.
Repeat until the chocolate is completely melted.
(Could you melt the chocolate mixture using a double boiler? Sure, if you prefer that method.)
4. Using a cookie scoop, add the melted chocolate to the lined muffin cups.
5. Top each chocolate layer with 1 teaspoon of the peanut butter mixture.
You can also roll it into balls. Then flatten the ball with your hands before adding to the chocolate layer.
6. Add the remaining spoonfuls of the chocolate mixture on top of the peanut butter layer with a spoon.
7. Place the filled muffin cups in the refrigerator to set for 10 minutes or so.
8. Store the peanut butter cups in an airtight container in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
Wasn't that a fun way to make copycat Reese's Peanut Butter Cups candy?
What kind of peanut butter should I use?
Natural peanut butter is terrific, but you don't want to spend time blending it or dealing with clumpy peanut butter.
Instead, use peanut butter that's already blended and ready to go.
My favorite is Kroger Natural Creamy Peanut Butter. You can find this store-bought peanut butter in any Kroger affiliate grocery store.
Not only is it the least expensive, it only contains roasted peanuts and salt! No palm oil, no sugar, and no molasses unlike “natural” versions of Jiff and Skippy brands.
Plus, it's certified to be gluten free. Love it!
What kind of chocolate chips should I use?
My favorite is Enjoy Life Baking Chocolate Semi-Sweet Mini Chips since gluten free, dairy free, and vegan.
But if allergens aren't of concern, you can use any type of milk chocolate or semisweet chips. I prefer milk and semisweet chocolate over dark chocolate because they're sweeter.
I feel that dark chocolate would be too bitter. However, you could add a bit of brown sugar to the recipe if you want to use dark in your chocolate mixture.
Could you use white chocolate? Some people find that that white chocolate is too sweet, though you could use sugar free peanut butter in the peanut butter mixture to balance it out.
However, using white chocolate may make your cups look a bit stodgy. (Like baby poop? I know, I know, stop it, gross!) So experiment and let me know what you think if you try it.
How do I get my peanut butter cups to look like Reese's?
If you want the little ridges like Reese's PB cups, you need to make these candies in ridged cupcake liners in muffin tins. Just peel off cupcake liners after the candies set.
You can also use silicone baking cups, which I use in my Pumpkin Fudge candies and Hash Brown Sausage Muffins.
I love using them since you can reuse them after baking since they wash up with a little soap and hot water.
The silicone baking cups are so cute and colorful, you'll be tempted to serve the copy cat Reese's candies right in the cups.
You could also use a silicone muffin pan and pop out the candies onto a plate or platter. But you won’t get the cute little ridges like Reese’s has.
Can I use a sugar-free substitute?
Yes, you can use a sugar-free powdered sugar substitute like Swerve Confectioners Sweetener or Powdered Lakanto Monkfruit Sweetener.
Both are excellent natural, no-calorie substitutions for confectioners sugar. However, this recipe won't be 100% sugar-free because the chocolate does have sugar in it.
You could get a lower sugar dark chocolate, but you'd have to overcompensate by adding more sweetener to avoid bitterness. You'll have to experiment to get the balance just right.
Can I make vegan peanut butter cups?
Yes, this recipe can be with the right vegan substitutions.
Peanut butter: use a certified vegan peanut butter if you want to make 100% sure the brand you're using is vegan.
Since Kroger Natural Creamy Peanut Butter only contains roasted peanuts and salt, you shouldn't worry about it containing any animal products like honey.
Butter: use your favorite dairy free buttery spread like Earth Balance or coconut oil that's solid at room temperature.
Chocolate: use Enjoy Life Baking Chocolate Semi-Sweet Mini Chips for both the chips and the milk chocolate bars since these dairy free chocolate chips are certified as vegan.
Can I use another nut butter?
Yes, you can use replace peanut butter with almond butter to make this a peanut-free candy.
Or use creamy sunflower butter to make this completely nut free!
How do I store homemade peanut butter cups?
Store the cups in an airtight container in the refrigerator until they're ready to serve.
More easy to make candies
Add this to your Best Candy & Gifts for Gluten-Free Easter Baskets.
All these candy recipes make terrific homemade gifts for the holidays or teacher appreciation gifts:
- Candied pecans are sugar free and can be added to salads or served as snacks.
- Candied ginger can be used in baking or in cocktails.
- This Easy Fudge Recipe is a crowd-pleaser at Christmas.
- My kids love helping me make gluten free chocolate bark for gifts.
- This Easy Microwave Brittle can be made with pistachios or peanuts.
Homemade Peanut Butter Cups
These easy no-bake homemade peanut butter cups are gluten free. This best copycat Reese's Peanut Butter Cups recipe can be made vegan.
- 1 cup creamy peanut butter, divided
- 1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 (11.5 ounce) bag chocolate chips, semi-sweet or milk chocolate
- 4 (1.55 ounce ) milk chocolate bars, coarsely chopped
- Add cupcake liners to a muffin tin and set aside.
- In a medium bowl, combine 1/2 cup peanut butter, butter, powdered sugar, and salt until smooth.
- In a microwave-safe bowl, add chocolate chips, chocolate bars, and remaining peanut butter.
- Heat for 1 minute, then stir. Continue heating for 10-20 seconds at a time, stirring after each heating and stopping just before the chocolate is completely melted.
- Stir until the chocolate is completely melted.
- Using a cookie dough scoop, add chocolate into paper liners,
- Top each with about 1 teaspoon of the peanut butter mixture. You can also roll it into balls. Then flatten the balls with your hands before adding to the chocolate.
- Add remaining melted chocolate on top with a spoon.
- Place in refrigerator to set for 10 minutes or so.
- Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
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Serving Size:1 candy
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 142Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 4mgSodium: 131mgCarbohydrates: 11gFiber: 1gSugar: 8gProtein: 4g
Nutritional information is automatically calculated per the ingredients list. Serving size may not be accurate. Please double-check with your preferred nutritional app for the most accurate information.