This chocolate peanut butter tart is a grown up, supremely satisfying answer to the (non-vegan) Reese’s peanut butter cups that were my all-time childhood favorites—the candies I cherished and saved carefully for last in my bucket of loot each October.
Note: For the vegan butter, I always use Earth Balance. If you use coconut oil in the crust, add 1/2 teaspoon salt to the dough. Also, I used Tofutti cream cheese (which you can find in any Whole Foods), but any health food grocer will probably carry a few vegan cream cheese brands. —Gena Hamshaw
To make the crust, preheat your oven to 375°F. Place the butter and cane sugar in a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Mix on low speed for a minute, then add the vanilla. In two batches, add the flour and cocoa powder. When the dough is evenly mixed, turn off the mixer and form the dough into a ball. Flatten it to a disk and wrap in plastic. Refrigerate for 30 minutes, or until it’s slightly firm.
Roll the dough into a large circle and transfer the circle to a nonstick tart pan. It’s fine if the dough breaks as you move it; it’s supposed to be similar to sugar cookie dough in texture. If this happens, just arrange pieces of the dough in the tart pan rather than transferring it in a perfect circle. Use the heels and palms of your hands to spread the dough into an even layer along the bottom and sides of the pan. Use a fork to prick the bottom of tart (about 8-10 pricks), then transfer the tart to the oven. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the shell looks dry and solid throughout. Remove the shell from the oven and allow it to cool entirely.
To make the peanut butter filling, blend the peanut butter, cream cheese, coconut cream, maple syrup, vanilla extract, and sea salt in a blender or food processor until smooth. Pour the filling into the tart shell, then transfer the tart to the fridge and allow it to chill for at least 3 hours and up to overnight.
To make the glaze, warm the milk and sugar in a small saucepan till they’re hot but not yet simmering. Pour the hot milk over the chocolate and stir until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is glossy. Pour the glaze over the top of the tart, stopping when it reaches, but doesn’t cover, the edges of the tart shell. Transfer the tart back to the fridge and chill for at least 1 hour, or until the top is set. Slice and serve.
Gena Hamshaw is a certified nutritionist, recipe developer, and food blogger. She shares her latest culinary adventures at The Full Helping. She's the author of two cookbooks, Food52 Vegan (2015) and Choosing Raw (2014). She enjoys yoga, sweet potatoes, cashews, and things that are smothered in sauce.