Salted Peanut Butter Cup Bars.
Chocolate peanut butter bars are basically my dream dessert.
Seriously. Is there ANY better combo?! I think not.
Yes, there are other delicious things like brown butter and sage, tomato and basil and salt and vinegar, but peanut butter tops ALL for me.
A dip of a peanut butter spoon into chocolate chips solves everything.
Solves all. I swear.
That’s why peanut butter bars should totally happen for you this weekend! They are the perfect indulgent treat that everyone loves.
Errr, almost everyone. Can you believe that Eddie doesn’t love chocolate peanut butter?! I mean. HOW?! WHY?!
Does not compute for me.
These bars are a big bite of nostalgic. We ate these bars ALL the time as kids. They remind me of my grandma’s two toned fudge at christmas, but better, because… chocolate peanut butter of course. Mother Lovett rarely made peanut butter treats. All of the kids loved them, but the adults preferred more “grown up” flavors (as I called them), like butterscotch and chocolate walnut. Anytime peanut butter made an appearance, it was literally a treat.
My favorite part of these bars? The graham cracker crumbs in the crust. They provide a little bit of texture and add some graham-like flavor that I adore. I love graham cracker crusts in general, so mixing them into this base is just delicious. There is a bit of a crunch and it’s perfect.
These bars are no-bake but do require a little bit of fridge time. You can make them in a 9×13 inch dish for thin bars, or a 9×9 dish for thick bars. I suggest cutting them into tiny square because they are RICH! And indulgent.
What are your Halloween plans this year?! Trick or treating is still on here, and we may plan on a safe distanced trick or treat, depending on the week. But I also am allll about making some treats at home that bring in the good feels. Things that taste like our favorite candy, but better! Think this almond butter snickers tart and these bars here.
Pretty sure we’re all set!
Salted Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars
Salted Peanut Butter Cup Bars
- 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 1 cup creamy peanut butter, (do not use natural PB!)
- 2 cups graham cracker crumbs
- 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups milk or dark chocolate chips, your preference
- 1 teaspoon coconut oil
- 1 tablespoon flaked salt
- Line a 9x13 inch pan (for thin bars) or a 9x9 inch pan (for thick bars) with parchment paper.
- In the bowl of your electric mixer, beat together the butter, peanut butter, graham cracker crumbs, sugar and vanilla until combined. Press the dough into the bottom of the pan.
- Melt together the chocolate and coconut oil. I like to use the coconut oil because it helps firm the chocolate, but if you don’t have it/like it/are allergic, you can skip it. Once the chocolate is melted, pour it over the peanut butter layer and spread it evenly. Sprinkle with flaked salt.
- Refrigerate for at least 1 to 2 hours before serving. To serve, cut into small squares. These are rich and decadent, so a small piece goes a long way!
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This bite is everything.
34 Comments on “Salted Peanut Butter Cup Bars.”
This looks like the grown up version of Hollywood squares from when I was a kid! I loved (and still love) those things.
Which size pan did you use for the pictures? Those are exactly the thickness I want – thanks for your help!
You and your recipes are the best – thanks! 🥰
I’m leaving work early today so I’m totally going to have to make these! I’m excited for our Halloween (bc it takes very little human interaction for me to be excited lately) – we’re having a couple of friends over that are in our COVID bubble with a fun fall menu. And we have kids bussed into our neighborhood normally for Halloween so we’re creating one of those PVC pipe slides that we’re going to make look like a mummy and put caution tape on our porch so we can safely send candy to the kids!
oh my gosh yesssss! love that!
Can you replace the coconut oil with canola oil?
no, if you don’t have coconut oil, you can just leave it out! it just helps firm up the chocolate layer. canola won’t work because it isn’t solid at room temp like coconut is!
You could probably replace the coconut oil with shortening if you have that, but you definitely want something that is in a solid form at room temperature. Adding gives the chocolate a little bit of a softer bite when it cools and firms up, so that it does get so hard that you cannot bite through it.
Hi!! Wondering if these need to stay in the fridge when not being served, or if they can be kept at room temp. Thanks!
i suggest storing them in the fridge! they are fine to sit out for a bit, but i like to serve them chilled!
Thank you!! Can’t wait to try them :)
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Feeling extra grumpy about being diagnosed with gestational diabetes after seeing these, haha.
gah!!! hang in there!
Any idea what additions would be needed to use natural PB instead? That’s what we have in hand and I prefer it to the other option.
hi!! the only reason it doesn’t work as well is because of the natural separation – and the bars don’t hold together as well. if you don’t mind if they aren’t perfectly firm and store the bars in the fridge, then it’s okay! another solution is to add more of a binder like oats or almond flour, or use more powdered sugar, and i def wouldn’t want to add more sugar!
That makes sense! The separation of natural PB is a pain. I hope to make these soon with your suggested tweaks!
I was going to ask the same thing! I only use natural PB. I’m going to try ground oats. 😊
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well i’m sorry, but you have to divorce your husband. who doesn’t LOVE PB? (kidding obvs!) i go thru a jar a week. by myself. the obsession runs deep :) and these look like perfection. cannot wait to make!!
I made them Friday for my family and today Sunday I’m making another pan for a small friend get together. These are the best treat we have tried all year!
I made this yesterday – super easy and can’t go wrong with the chocolate/peanut butter combo. I was just wondering about the texture. I melted my better, per recipe notes, and my pb mixture was very soupy. There was no “pressing the dough into the bottom of the pan”. It just ran right in. I figured during the fridge time it would firm up – and it did – but the texture seems not quite right. Should it be softened butter instead of melted? It tastes good as-is though. :)
This happened to me as well! I melted the butter as the recipe says. Mine are cooling now. Hoping that helps.
My ‘dough’ was also looser than expected. I’m wondering if it should be 1 stick of butter instead of 1 cup? I added a little extra powdered sugar, PB and cookie crumbs to thicken it up. Fingers crossed!
My dough was gloppy also! Have it in the freezer right now to firm up before I try to spread on the chocolate. I wonder also if it should be softened butter and not melted? Dough tastes great though!
They are in the fridge RIGHT NOW! Come onnnn, two hours!
I’ve been impatiently waiting to bake these since you posted the recipe in October!! They look so good. Made them this am….just wondering if it should be one stick of butter instead of one cup? The mixture and firmness looks different than your picture! Thanks!
it’s def 1 cup! i just added a video to the post above the recipe so you can see step by step!
Got it! Thanks so much! You are wonderful!
Hi Jessica, I just watched the video and it looks like one stick of butter and not 1 cup. I may be wrong but I wanted to try this recipe again as I had a “delicious” fail with the first draft recipe that called for 1 cup melted butter. You have since changed it to 1 cup softened butter. I apologize if I am wrong but it looks like 1 stick on my computer.
Made these for Christmas and EVERYONE loved them. So addictive. And easy!! Which, frankly, is what we all need during the holidays. This recipe is a home run!
These are perfect. So easy to make and delicious. After I made the PB base, I let that chill in the fridge while I melted my chocolate. That helped me smooth out the top immediately before pouring the melted chocolate. I used Guittard chocolate and it was a bit hard to cut once set in the 9×9 size (I think because it’s thicker than if covering a 9×13 base), but nothing a knife in hot water couldn’t solve.