Peanut Butter Bars
These no-bake peanut butter bars are such a delicious treat! So easy to make, & they taste just like a Reese’s, but better because they’re homemade.
Happy Thursday my friend!
We are almost at the end of the week! This is the 2nd week since my kids finished up school, so we’ve definitely gotten into the summer groove. It’s not easy working from home when you’ve got 2 energetic boys to look after, but I think I’m doing ok. Quick and easy recipes have been my salvation!
And whether you’re doing it as a business or just for fun, those quick and easy recipes are perfect for summer. When the weather is sunny and gorgeous, who wants to be stuck inside making food? Not me- I’d rather be lounging on a deck chair at the pool!
I’ve got lots of fun and easy no-bake dessert recipes on this site. Like this fluffy, creamy no-bake cheesecake, or these adorable Oreo balls, or how about this edible cookie dough? All of these recipes come together in a snap, with no baking required.
And today, I’m adding a new one to the list: these amazing peanut butter bars. I’m telling you, they take just 10 minutes to make and there are only 4 ingredients. Plus, they taste just like a Reese’s peanut butter cup. Only better! Because you made them yourself.
WHAT ARE CHOCOLATE PEANUT BUTTER BARS?
These scrummy bars consist of 2 layers: the peanut butter base and the chocolate peanut butter topping.
The base is so peanut-butter-y! If you have a peanut butter lover in your life, you’ve got to make them these. They’re not overly sweet and there’s just a little hint of crunch.
And the topping is smooth, creamy chocolate, blended with just a little bit more peanut butter.
They make a perfect dessert or mid-afternoon treat!
HOW TO MAKE PEANUT BUTTER BARS
Like I said, there are just 4 simple ingredients in this recipe!
- Graham Cracker Crumbs
- Powdered Sugar
- Peanut Butter
- Chocolate Chips, and
- a little more Peanut Butter
For the crumbs, you can grind up your own graham crackers in the food processor, or just buy the boxed kind. Since I’m all about easy recipes right now, I went for the box. I find them in my regular grocery store, right in the baking aisle. Or you can order them online. Here’s a link: Graham Cracker Crumbs.
And for the peanut butter, I just use regular creamy peanut butter. You could probably use the crunchy kind too if you like. I haven’t tried using natural peanut butter, but I think it would probably work ok if you’re looking for a more healthy option.
THE PEANUT BUTTER BASE LAYER
To make the bottom layer, just toss the graham cracker crumbs, peanut butter, and powdered sugar in a large mixing bowl, and stir everything together on low speed to get it combined.
At first, the mixture may look really dry. But if you keep stirring, it will come together!
See what I mean? Once it’s fully combined, it will have a texture almost like a firm cookie dough.
Next you’ll want to press this mixture into an even layer.
Once the bottom of your pan is completely covered, you can move on to the topping!
THE CHOCOLATE PEANUT BUTTER TOPPING
The topping is made by melting chocolate together with a little peanut butter.
You can do this in a double boiler, or in the microwave.
I chose to do it in the microwave. It only took about a minute. Just hit it with quick, 20-second bursts, stirring after each, until the mixture is smooth and luscious.
Pour the mixture over the base.
And then smooth it out with a spatula.
Now they are all set to go into the fridge!
Just allow them to chill until that top layer is set. In my fridge, this took about 1 hour.
Once they’re set, they can be cut into bars and enjoyed! Pretty easy, right?
GLUTEN-FREE PEANUT BUTTER BARS
To make a gluten-free version of this recipe, just look for gluten-free graham cracker crumbs.
These can also be made dairy-free if you use dairy-free chocolate chips.
CAN PEANUT BUTTER BARS BE LEFT OUT AT ROOM TEMPERATURE?
As long as it’s not really really hot in your house, these bars should be ok to sit out without melting. Once they’ve chilled in the fridge and the chocolate is set, it should stay that way, although they will be a bit softer at room temp.
HOW LONG DO PEANUT BUTTER BARS KEEP?
These peanut butter bars can be wrapped and kept on the counter for several days at least. In the fridge, they should last for around 2 weeks.
Here are a few more of my favorite bar recipes:
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These no-bake peanut butter bars are such a delicious treat! So easy to make, & they taste just like a Reese's, but better because they're homemade.
Place the graham cracker crumbs, peanut butter, and powdered sugar in a large mixing bowl and stir together until combined.
Press the mixture into an even layer in the bottom of a parchment-lined 9x13" pan.**
Place the milk chocolate chips* and peanut butter in a medium bowl and microwave*** in short, 20-second bursts, stirring until smooth.
Pour the mixture over the peanut butter base and smooth into an even layer with a spatula.
Chill for 1 hour, or until set, before cutting into bars.
*Dark or white chocolate chips may be substituted.
**Can also be made in an 8x8" or 9x9" square pan (bars will be thicker).
***May also be done over a double boiler.