We Made an All-Local Candy Bar to Celebrate Independence Day

June 23, 2019

Today, we celebrate Independence Day- this isn’t just an excuse to skip school or miss work, but a holiday that gives us the opportunity to acknowledge our roots, and appreciate all things Filipino.

Pepper Filipino Chocolate Bar2

The Philippines has so much great things to offer, especially its produce. We always seem to take pride in the imported, but sometimes it’s best to celebrate the homegrown. For Independence Day, we decided to try and make a candy bar with main ingredients that were local products, or honored local flavors.

Pepper Filipino Chocolate Bar3

For the bar, we decided to use coco jam, Chocnut, Malagos dark chocolate, and local desiccated coconut. The bottom layer mimics a rice krispie treat, but is bound together by a sticky, sweet coco jam. The gianduja, traditionally a thick mousse or paste made with hazelnuts, becomes local by replacing the nuts with a chocnut butter, and Malagos chocolate. All these layers get topped by a light cream filled with coconut, which enhances the nuttiness of the chocnut gianduja and the coco jam krispie. Cover everything in a glaze of local chocolate, and you’ve got a badass candy bar. Make this, and you’ll forget you ever ate a Snickers bar.

Pepper Filipino Chocolate Bar1 Independence Day Candy Bar

Total Time:
Yield: One 9×9 inch pan (about 8 bars)

Ingredients: Coco Jam Rice Krispie Treat

  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 5 oz mini marshmallows
  • 3 cups Rice Krispies
  • 1/3 cup coco jam

Procedure: Coco Jam Rice Krispie Treat

  1. Melt butter in a large, non-stick saucepan over medium heat.
  2. Add the marshmallows and stir until melted.
  3. Add the coco jam halfway through the melting process.
  4. When fully incorporated, add the Rice Krispies and combine.
  5. Transfer immediately to a sprayed/battered 9×9 inch pan, and press down until flat.

Ingredients: Chocnut and Malagos Chocolate Gianduja

  • chocnut butter (see below for recipe)
  • 3.5 oz Malagos unsweetened chocolate

Procedure: Chocnut and Malagos Chocolate Gianduja

  1. Melt the Malagos chocolate in a double boiler. Add to chocnut butter.
  2. Mix until combined.
  3. Pour over the coco jam rice krispie layer and spread evenly.

Ingredients: Chocnut Butter (for the Chocnut and Malagos Chocolate Gianduja)

  • 2 cups Chocnut
  • 1/8 cup softened butter

Procedure: Chocnut Butter (for the Chocnut and Malagos Chocolate Gianduja)

  1. Place Chocnut in a bowl and crush.
  2. Pass through a fine sieve to get a powdery consistency.
  3. Add softened butter to the Chocnut and stir thoroughly, until it reaches the consistency of peanut butter.
  4. Add more butter if needed.

Ingredients: Coconut Chantilly

  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup desiccated coconut
  • 2 tbsp granulated sugar

Procedure: Coconut Chantilly

  1. Combine desiccated coconut and granulated sugar, separating any large clumps of coconut.
  2. Whip heavy cream to a medium peak.
  3. Slowly add in sugar and coconut mixture and continue to whip to a stiff peak. Be careful not to over mix.
  4. Layer chantilly over the Chocnut gianduja and spread evenly.
  5. Place the pan in the refrigerator to set for at least two hours or overnight.

Ingredients: Malagos Chocolate Glaze

  • 10 oz Malagos chocolate
  • 5 oz shortening

Procedure: Malagos Chocolate Glaze

  1. Melt shortening in the microwave or on low heat.
  2. Pour liquefied shortening into the chocolate, and stir until melted. Strain out any lumps.
  3. Prepare just before glazing, or keep in the refrigerator and microwave when ready to use.


  1. Remove pan from the refrigerator and carefully loosen the edges with the back of a knife.
  2. Cut the square in half, and then cut into two inch strips the opposite way. This should yield eight 4.5×2 inch bars with some leftover.
  3. Take the bars and place them on a glazing rack.
  4. Using a ladle, spoon the Malagos Chocolate glaze over each bar, making sure to cover all the sides.
  5. The glaze should set almost immediately.
  6. Glaze over each bar two to three times.
Pamela Cortez Pamela Cortez

Pamela Cortez writes about food full-time, and has honed her craft while writing for publications such as Rogue, Town and Country, and The Philippine Star. She once rode on a mule for a mile just to eat mint tea and lamb in Morocco, and has eaten a block of Quickmelt in one sitting. Her attempt at food photography can be viewed online @meyarrr.

5 comments in this post SHOW

5 responses to “We Made an All-Local Candy Bar to Celebrate Independence Day”

  1. TM says:

    Rice Krispies (Kellogs) and MArshmallows are american products, am i right?

    • Pamela Cortez says:

      Hey TM! In the article it says: ‘For Independence Day, we decided to try and make a candy bar with main ingredients that were local products, or honored local flavors.’ We were going to use puffed native rice, and show you how to make your own marshmallows, but the process is too complicated, and deserve entire posts on their own! We’ll be coming up with recipes for those soon, so you can apply to this recipe if needed.

    • Kenneth says:

      marshmallows here are used in place of sugar, and a thickening agent- it’s a base ingredient in several pastry recipes i think

    • Gaia says:

      Hello there, Mr./Ms. Literal.

      • TM says:

        what do you mean “literally”. i quote “For Independence Day, we decided to try and make a candy bar with main ingredients that were local products”. what’s the sense of putting ALL-LOCAL in the title of the article if you’re not gonna use local products. why not use pinipig instead of Rice Krispies.

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