Salted Tahini-Stuffed Chocolate Bar Recipe

A dessert that's dairy-free, gluten-free, and features healthy ingredients like sesame paste and coconut oil might not sound too decadent, yet recipe developer Deniz Vergara uses this word to describe these salted tahini-stuffed chocolate bars. While tahini and chocolate may seem like an unusual combination, it's no odder than chocolate hummus, and in fact, chocolate tahini is an increasingly popular combination. Tahini is sometimes added to sweet dishes like tahini chocolate chip cookies, too, so the idea of a tahini-filled candy bar these days isn't all that outré. 

In Vergara's opinion, "If you haven't had the opportunity to try the combination of tahini and chocolate, you are in for a treat." She says the base of the candy is similar to that of a Nestlé Crunch bar, thanks to the puffed rice, with the rest of the candy consisting of a smooth creamy tahini center, a salted chocolate topping, and a sprinkling of sesame seeds to give the candy some extra crunch. 

If you're unable to finish off all of the candy in a single sitting, Vergara advises that these bars should be stored in the refrigerator, while you could also freeze them if need be. She also notes that while the recipe makes four standard-sized bars, you can cut the candy into as many pieces as you wish: She chopped up the candy into 10 squares when she made it.

Collect the ingredients for the salted tahini-stuffed chocolate bars

To make these chocolate bars, you'll need to start with some chocolate bars (Vergara prefers dark). You're also going to need tahini, salt, puffed rice cereal, and sesame seeds, plus honey and coconut oil for the filling.

Step 1: Line a pan with paper

Prepare a loaf pan with parchment paper. Set aside.

Step 2: Put some chocolate in a bowl

To prepare the base, add 7 ounces of dark chocolate pieces into a heat-proof bowl

Step 3: Melt the chocolate

Heat and stir over a double boiler until melted.

Step 4: Add the tahini, salt, cereal, and sesame seeds

Once the chocolate is melted, stir in 2 tablespoons tahini, ¼ teaspoon sea salt, 1 cup crispy rice cereal, and 1 tablespoon sesame seeds.

Step 5: Spread the chocolate mixture in the pan

Pour the chocolate into the prepared loaf pan.

Step 6: Freeze the chocolate mixture

Put the pan in the freezer for 20 minutes.

Step 7: Make the tahini filling

In the meantime, make the filling by whisking ¼ cup tahini, 3 tablespoons honey, ¼ cup melted coconut oil, and ½ teaspoon sea salt in a bowl until smooth.

Step 8: Spread the tahini mixture

Pour the tahini filling over the base.

Step 9: Freeze the chocolate and tahini

Return the pan to the freezer for 40 minutes.

Step 10: Melt the remaining chocolate

After the first two layers have chilled for 40 minutes, make the chocolate topping by melting together 3 ½ ounces dark chocolate and 2 tablespoons tahini over a double boiler.

Step 11: Spread the tahini chocolate

Pour the melted chocolate topping over the top of the tahini layer and spread until smooth.

Step 12: Sprinkle salted sesame seeds

To make the crunchy topping, mix together 2 teaspoons sesame seeds and ¼ teaspoon sea salt and sprinkle on top.

Step 13: Refrigerate the candy

Place the pan in the fridge until the chocolate is set.

Step 14: Cut the candy into pieces

Use the parchment paper to lift the bar out of the pan, and then use a knife dipped in hot water to slice the chocolate bar into squares.

Step 15: Serve the chocolate bar

Serve, and enjoy!

What kinds of chocolate can be used for this recipe?

Vergara makes these candy bars with dark chocolate with 60% cacao since she wants something on the milder side to go with her tahini. The higher the cacao percentage, the bitterer the chocolate. Since tahini is known to have a slight bitterness itself, you want something that will echo the flavor without pushing it over the edge. Her preference is for chocolate in the 60% to 70% range, but you can use any kind that you prefer. If you don't care for dark chocolate, you can also use milk chocolate, and white chocolate, too, goes well with tahini, so that's yet another option you might want to explore.

You could also use chocolate chips, although these are different from baking chocolate because they may contain less cocoa butter. Chocolate chips also contain stabilizers that allow them to hold their shape better when baking, which is why they're typically used in recipes like cookies and brownies rather than recipes that call for melting the chocolate, like a ganache. Many people believe you shouldn't use chocolate chips for melted chocolate because the stabilizers might cause the resulting dish to have an uneven texture. Still, they will melt and solidify if you heat them in a microwave or double boiler, so you can certainly use them if that is what you have on hand. A recipe as full of different flavors and textures as this one doesn't require a completely smooth melt.

Can I substitute anything for the tahini?

The tahini, too, is something that can be replaced in this recipe. Vergara suggests that you could swap it out for peanut butter, almond butter, or sunflower butter, although other nut butters like cashew or seed butters such as pumpkin, poppy, or hemp would also work as tahini substitutes. If you want to venture further afield, you could use black sesame paste to make a rather dramatic-looking candy bar or try the Southeast Asian toasted coconut paste called kerisik. The latter ingredient is super-easy to DIY since all you need to do is toast some flaked coconut, then puree it in a food processor.

Of course, if you're in a make-it-yourself mood, from-scratch tahini is also a possibility. To make tahini at home, the process is similar to that of kerisik, only you'll use sesame seeds instead of coconut. After you toast and grind the seeds, you'll also need to mix in a little oil (either sesame oil or a neutral-flavored one) to smooth out the paste and give it the proper tahini-like consistency.

Salted Tahini-Stuffed Chocolate Bar Recipe
5 from 11 ratings
With layers of dark chocolate with crispy puffed rice, creamy smooth tahini, and crunchy salty sesame seeds, this easy chocolate bar is the perfect treat.
Prep Time
1.33
hours
Cook Time
10
minutes
Servings
4
Bars
chocolate candy with sesame seeds
Total time: 1 hour, 30 minutes
Ingredients
  • For the Base
  • 7 ounces 60% dark chocolate, broken into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 tablespoons tahini
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 cup crispy rice cereal
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
  • For the Tahini filling
  • ¼ cup tahini
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • ¼ cup melted coconut oil
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • For the Chocolate topping
  • 3 ½ ounces dark chocolate
  • 2 tablespoons tahini
  • For the salty sesame crunch topping
  • 2 teaspoons sesame seeds
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
Directions
  1. Prepare a loaf pan with parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. To prepare the base, add 7 ounces of dark chocolate pieces into a heat-proof bowl
  3. Heat and stir over a double boiler until melted.
  4. Once the chocolate is melted, stir in 2 tablespoons tahini, ¼ teaspoon sea salt, 1 cup crispy rice cereal, and 1 tablespoon sesame seeds.
  5. Pour the chocolate into the prepared loaf pan.
  6. Put the pan in the freezer for 20 minutes.
  7. In the meantime, make the filling by whisking ¼ cup tahini, 3 tablespoons honey, ¼ cup melted coconut oil, and ½ teaspoon sea salt in a bowl until smooth.
  8. Pour the tahini filling over the base.
  9. Return the pan to the freezer for 40 minutes.
  10. After the first two layers have chilled for 40 minutes, make the chocolate topping by melting together 3 ½ ounces dark chocolate and 2 tablespoons tahini over a double boiler.
  11. Pour the melted chocolate topping over the top of the tahini layer and spread until smooth.
  12. To make the crunchy topping, mix together 2 teaspoons sesame seeds and ¼ teaspoon sea salt and sprinkle on top.
  13. Place the pan in the fridge until the chocolate is set.
  14. Use the parchment paper to lift the bar out of the pan, and then use a knife dipped in hot water to slice the chocolate bar into squares.
  15. Serve, and enjoy!
Nutrition
Calories per Serving 828
Total Fat 63.2 g
Saturated Fat 32.0 g
Trans Fat 0.0 g
Cholesterol 2.2 mg
Total Carbohydrates 57.5 g
Dietary Fiber 11.4 g
Total Sugars 30.9 g
Sodium 328.0 mg
Protein 11.8 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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