No-Bake Chocolate Pepita Crunch Bars

No-bake Chocolate Pepita Crunch Bars | Zoe Bakes photos by Zoë François

These No-bake Chocolate Pepita Crunch Bars are a candy and a brownie all in one. There is no baking, so they are a perfect holiday treat to go along with all the cookies you’ll be trading at your cookie swaps this season. I created this recipe for the wedding of a chef, Jorge Guzman, who wanted a Mexican inspired dessert plate to be served to his guests, in addition to a cake. I kind of fell in love with them and when Bake From Scratch invited me to create some cookies for their Holiday Cookie Issue, I knew instantly that this would be in the mix. The crunch comes from both the toasted pepitas (pumpkin seeds) and feuilletine flakes (which are paper thin cookies that are broken up into what can best be described as dessert-cereal). The pepitas and feuilletine flakes are folded into a chocolate and hazelnut mixture, set firm, covered with ganache and then decorated with more pepitas and edible gold leaf. The result is a sophisticated chocolate bar that is regal enough for a wedding, a holiday party or just a midnight snack. You can watch me make these bars in my instagram video.

Scroll to the bottom of the post to see the Pinon Mexican Wedding Cookies, Chestnut and Honey Madeleines, Caramelized White Chocolate Sables with Sea Salt and and Hazelnut Spice Speculaas I developed for this Special Holiday Cookie Issue.

No-bake Chocolate Pepita Crunch Bars | Zoe Bakes photos by Zoë François

No-bake Chocolate Pepita Crunch Bars

by me for Bake From Scratch’s Special Holiday Cookie Issue 

Watch me make the bars in my instagram video

12 ounces (340g) dark chocolate, finely chopped

12 ounces (340g) chocolate hazelnut spread

2 cups (180g) Feuilletine Flakes

2 cups (240g) toasted pepita seeds

Ganache

4 ounces (113g) dark chocolate, finely chopped

4 ounces (113g) heavy cream

Edible Gold Leaf Sheets for decorating

Sea Salt for sprinkling top

  1. Prepare a 9 x 9 Inch Cake Pan Square with butter and line with parchment that comes up the sides
  2. In a large bowl over a double boiler melt the chocolate. Stir in the hazelnut spread, until well combined. Remove from heat and add the feuilletine and 1½ cups (180g) of the pepitas to the chocolate mixture. Spread evenly in the prepared pan. Press the top flat with a piece of plastic wrap. Refrigerate until set, about an hour or overnight.
  3. In a small saucepan, heat the cream to a simmer. Turn off the heat and add the chocolate. Swirl the pan so the chocolate is submerged. Allow to sit for 3 minutes and then gently whisk until the chocolate is smooth. Cool to nearly room temperature, but still pourable.
  4. Run a fork over the surface of the set feuilettine mixture, so the ganache will stick to the surface. Pour the ganache over the surface and spread evenly. Bang the pan a few times to smooth out the surface. Sprinkle the remaining pepitas over the ganache and sprinkle a few flakes of sea salt. Refrigerate to set, about 30 minutes.
  5. Remove from the cake pan by running a hot knife around the edge of the pan. Use a hot knife to cut into pieces, then decorate with gold leaf.

No-Bake Chocolate Pepita Crunch Bars
Author: 
Recipe type: Desserts
 
These No-bake Chocolate Pepita Crunch Bars are a candy and a brownie all in one. There is no baking, so they are a perfect holiday treat to go along with all the cookies you’ll be trading at your cookie swaps this season.
Ingredients
  • 12 ounces (340g) dark chocolate, finely chopped
  • 12 ounces (340g) chocolate hazelnut spread
  • 2 cups (180g) Feuilletine Flakes
  • 2 cups (240g) toasted pepita seeds
  • Ganache:
  • 4 ounces (113g) dark chocolate, finely chopped
  • 4 ounces (113g) heavy cream
  • Edible Gold Leaf Sheets for decorating
  • Sea Salt for sprinkling top
Instructions
  1. Prepare a 9 x 9 Inch Cake Pan Square with butter and line with parchment that comes up the sides
  2. In a large bowl over a double boiler melt the chocolate. Stir in the hazelnut spread, until well combined. Remove from heat and add the feuilletine and 1½ cups (180g) of the pepitas to the chocolate mixture. Spread evenly in the prepared pan. Press the top flat with a piece of plastic wrap. Refrigerate until set, about an hour or overnight.
  3. In a small saucepan, heat the cream to a simmer. Turn off the heat and add the chocolate. Swirl the pan so the chocolate is submerged. Allow to sit for 3 minutes and then gently whisk until the chocolate is smooth. Cool to nearly room temperature, but still pourable.
  4. Run a fork over the surface of the set feuilettine mixture, so the ganache will stick to the surface. Pour the ganache over the surface and spread evenly. Bang the pan a few times to smooth out the surface. Sprinkle the remaining pepitas over the ganache and sprinkle a few flakes of sea salt. Refrigerate to set, about 30 minutes.
  5. Remove from the cake pan by running a hot knife around the edge of the pan. Use a hot knife to cut into pieces, then decorate with gold leaf.

 

Here are some more of the cookies I made for the article:

Pinion Mexican Wedding Cakes | Zoe Bakes photo by Zoë François

Pinon Mexican Wedding Cookies

Chestnut Madeleines | Zoe Bakes photos by Zoë François

Chestnut and Honey Madeleines

Hazelnut Speculaas | Zoe Bakes photo by Zoë François

Hazelnut Spice Speculaas

caramelized white chocolate sables cookies | Zoe Bakes photo by Zoë François

Caramelized White Chocolate Sables with Sea Salt