There’s a new breed in chocolate, and it’s sure to win best in show.

Gearharts Fine Chocolates Peanut Butter Pups
Peanut Butter Pups.

Peanut Butter Pups, the latest creation from Gearharts Fine Chocolates, are the company’s first foray into the popular combination of chocolate and peanut butter. And these pups were made with a purpose.

Gearhart’s will donate 5 percent of Peanut Butter Pups sales to Companions for Heroes (C4H), a non-profit organization that pairs military veterans with shelter animals. The benefits of this organization are two-fold — aiding in the recovery of veterans while giving the animals safe, nurturing homes.

“Originally, we were trying to come at it from a shelter pet perspective,” Bill Hamilton, co-owner of Gearharts, says. “Tim Gearhart is a vet, so we’ve always been aware of the issue of veterans and wounded warriors. Finding C4H where they focus on both was just an added bonus.”

With their dark brown eyes and pointed noses, the Pups resemble small dachshunds. The candies are made with Virginia-based Reginald’s Homemade peanut butter, premium milk chocolate, and cream, then finished with a dark chocolate face and toasted almond ears. With no additives or preservatives, these finished-by-hand chocolates are quintessentially Gearharts.

Originally envisioned as a chocolate geared toward children, Gearharts chose to partner with C4H to bring attention to two very important causes on a national scale. The mass appeal of both peanut butter and puppies has made these treats wildly popular.

The Pups come in boxes of nine and are currently only sold at Gearhart’s retail locations in Charolettsville and Richmond, VA and online. The Pups have been so well-received, however, that there may be a wholesale option in the future.  

“For companies like ours that are really small it’s important to try something new,” Hamilton say, “that’s one of the great things about a small business — this kind of opportunity.”