These peanut butter and chocolate bars have a crunchy base and topping and are just oozing with the flavor of rich, dark chocolate combined with decadent sweetened condensed milk. The gooey bars are my new favorite way to indulge when I get a yen for a Reese’s peanut butter taste combo.
Anyone who reads this blog knows how much I love chocolate and peanut butter. It is, hands down, my favorite dessert combination. I’m always on the lookout for new ways to combine the two ingredients, and a few more, that I have not yet tried.
The bars are sort of like a fancy, smancy peanut butter cup. In fact, the base and topping taste just like the center of a Reese’s cup. If you want a Reese’s taste in a dessert this is the one for you. The delicious flavor of this candy forms the center of these amazing bars!
Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups are the most popular candy brand in the USA. They were created by a man named H. B. Reese, who was a dairy farmer and shipping foreman for Milton S. Hershey. He left his job at the Hershey company to start his own candy business and Reese’s PB cups were born!
So many home baked desserts are made with the flavor of the peanut butter cups for a good reason. They taste just so darn good! This recipe is something like Magic Bars since the dessert is made in layers.
Making these Peanut Butter and Chocolate Bars
These peanut butter chocolate chip bars are so easy to make. Just a layer of the base mix, topped with the filling and the remainder of the base mix crumbled on top.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter until creamy at medium speed. Mix in the brown sugar and beat until it is well combined and then add the eggs, one at a time, until you get a nice creamy mixture. This is the start of the peanut butter dough.
Add in 2 cups of creamy peanut butter and the vanilla extract and beat until well combined. This sort of reminds me of the center of a giant peanut butter cup. Tie me down, or I’ll just dive in there right now, I think!
As much as I’d like that bowl to be the whole dessert, it needs some flour so I can have a base and topping! In a separate bowl, whisk together the dry goods so that they are well combined. Turn the mixer down to low and gradually add in the flour mixture. The mixture will now be quite thick.
Ready for the Reese’s flavor? To make the chocolate and peanut butter filling, heat the sweetened condensed milk, chocolate chips, peanut butter/chocolate chips, and 2 tbsp peanut butter over a low heat, stirring occasionally, in a heavy saucepan. Remove to cool and add the vanilla.
Measure out 2 cups of the peanut butter dough and set it aside for the topping. Press the remaining dough into the prepared pan. Spread the chocolate filing over the dough.
Crumble the reserved dough over the top of the filling and sprinkle with the dark chocolate chips.
Pop the pan in a preheated oven and bake for 30 minutes. The top will be a light golden brown and the peanut butter topping with be light and fluffy, making a nice resting spot for those chocolate chips. Be sure to let the pan cool completely before you try to cut it into bars.
These bars are THICK! That means you get more bang for your buck on each slice. Even cutting them into 24 bars, you get quite a large size dessert.
Tasting these peanut butter bars with chocolate chips
Each layer of these delicious chocolate peanut butter bars is flavor after flavor that reminds you of Reese’s peanut butter cups. From the peanut butter base to the chocolate peanut butter filling and on to the crunchy peanut butter topping that lets the chocolate ooze through, the flavor spells decadence.
The bars are so amazing, with their rich chocolate center. Every bite is so gooey with the taste of deep dark chocolate and peanut butter and the extra rich taste that comes from the condensed milk. The crunch on the top and bottom of the bars makes you wonder whether this is a cake or a cookie since it has the texture of both. But with these flavors, who cares what we call it?
These peanut butter chocolate layer bars are rich. Decadent. Delicious. But that comes with a price. It’s a once in a while dessert working out at about 450 calories a bar. Eat them slowly and enjoy every single calorie. If you can force yourself to cut the pan into 30 bars instead of 24, you’ll save about 90 calories a bar.
Serve these peanut butter chocolate bars for pot luck dinners or take them to bake sales and watch them disappear. Try a batch today. They would be perfect for both Memorial Day and 4th of July Picnics! Your family will love them and you’ll get your Reese’s fix, as well!
More peanut butter chocolate desserts
For more peanut butter and chocolate desserts, try one of these:
- No bake chocolate peanut butter bars
- Chocolate Brownie whoopie pies with peanut buttercream
- Easy dark chocolate peanut butter fudge
- Reese’s peanut butter cup fudge
- No bake peanut Butter chocolate oatmeal cookies
Admin note: This recipe first appeared on my blog in March of 2014. I have updated the post with all new photos, a step by step tutorial and nutritional information.
For the base and topping:
- 1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks), at room temperature
- 1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- 2 cups creamy peanut butter
- 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 3 cups all purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp Kosher salt
- 1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
- 1/3 cups of peanut butter chips
- 1 1/2 cups semi sweet chocolate chips
- 2 tbsp creamy peanut butter
- 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup miniature chocolate chips (or 1/2 cup of regular chocolate chips)
- Preheat oven to 350 F. Line a 13 x 9 baking pan with parchment paper to make the bars easier to remove when they are baked.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter until creamy at medium speed. Add in the brown sugar and beat until it is well combined. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, until they are well combined.
- Add 2 cups of creamy peanut butter and 2 tsp of vanilla; beat until combined.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt. Turn the mixer down to low and gradually add in the flour mixture, a little at a time, until it is completely combined and dough comes together. Be sure to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl to get all the flour mixed.
- To make the filling, heat the sweetened condensed milk, chocolate chips, peanut butter/chocolate chips, and 2 tbsp peanut butter, stirring occasionally, in a heavy saucepan over low heat until the mixture has melted and and is creamy. Remove from heat and add the 2 teaspoons of vanilla. Let it cool slightly.
- Measure out 2 cups of the peanut butter dough and set it aside to use for the topping.
- Press the remaining dough into the prepared pan. Spread the chocolate filing over the dough. Crumble the reserved dough over the top of the filling. Finally, sprinkle with the dark chocolate chips.
- Bake for 30 minutes or until the topping is light golden brown. Cool in the pan on a wire rack.
- Remove the bars from the pan, using the foil as handles. Place it on a cutting board and allow to cool completely. Cut into bars.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 451 Total Fat: 26.5g Saturated Fat: 11.1g Unsaturated Fat: 2.8g Cholesterol: 38.3mg Sodium: 225.9mg Carbohydrates: 53.9g Fiber: 3.3g Sugar: 34.4g Protein: 9.3g
Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are "affiliate links." This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive a small commission from the sale, but the price is the same for you. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."