Peanut Butter Bars Recipe

5 from 4 votes
9 Comments

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This Peanut Butter Bars Recipe with chocolate frosting reminds me of the yummy homemade bars served with school lunch in my hometown. Only 30 minutes to make!

3 Peanut Butter Bars on a white plate
Featured with this recipe
  1. Ingredients in Peanut Butter Bars
  2. Regular or Quick Oats?
  3. Tips for Perfect Squares
  4. Chocolate Topping Ideas
  5. Frequently Asked Questions About Peanut Butter Bars
  6. Peanut Butter Snacks
  7. More Peanut Butter Recipes
  8. How to Make Peanut Butter Bars
  9. Peanut Butter Bars Recipe Recipe

When I was a kid, one of the best parts about school lunch was dessert, especially when the lunch ladies would make homemade peanut butter bars. I know some kids make fun of school lunch, but honestly, there were a lot of great things to eat. And even kids who didn’t really like to each school lunch still loved the peanut butter bars. Flash forward several years and I realized I missed those peanut butter chocolate bars of my youth. So when my sister made these peanut butter bars the other day and I think I ate about half of the pan all on my own. Ah! Sweet, delicious memories. Now you can enjoy these peanut butter cookie bars yourself — no lunch tray needed.

Ingredients in Peanut Butter Bars

All you need are a few pantry staples and some chocolate frosting on top of the peanut butter layer and you’ll have a pan of delicious lunch lady peanut butter bars in no time!

Regular or Quick Oats?

Thanks to our awesome readers, here are a few tips and tricks to making these delicious cookies. For starters, you can use either quick oats or regular oats. The texture will change slightly, depending on which you choose. With regular oats the texture will be a little more coarse, which some people prefer. With quick oats, it’s a little more smooth.

Tips for Perfect Squares

To get those perfectly cut peanut butter squares here are a few tricks to do while making a batch:

  • You don’t have to grease the pan, but it doesn’t hurt if you do. Use some cooking spray if you’re concerned about easy cleanup.
  • Line a square baking pan with parchment paper so that the layers can be removed easily.
  • After baking, let the baking dish cool completely, then cover with foil and place in the refrigerator to chill before cutting with a knife.

Chocolate Topping Ideas

For these delicious bars the topping can be completely up to you! I’ve topped them with frosting, but you can use these other ideas:

  • Make your own icing with our Easy Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
  • Spread the top of the bars with melted semi-sweet chocolate chips. Just melt them in a microwave-safe bowl in the microwave for about a minute or so, stirring until melted.
  • Use chocolate melts and follow the same instructions as melting the chocolate chips.
  • Sprinkle the top with graham cracker crumbs or a dusting of powdered sugar.
  • A reader suggested spreading melted chocolate chips with a few dollops of peanut butter on top until it all melts together. YUM!

Frequently Asked Questions About Peanut Butter Bars

Should I frost these cookies right out of the oven or wait until it cools?

If using buttercream frosting, wait until the cookie layers cool completely before frosting. If melting chocolate chips on top, you can melt directly on the warm cookie.

Can these cookie bars be frozen?

Yes! Cover completely with foil and store in the freezer for up to two months.

Are peanut butter and oats good for you?

All things in moderation, of course, but yes! The oats and peanut butter combo is a good source of carbs, fat and protein. These bars will fill you up and are most definitely healthier than other cookie options out there.

READ MORE: 100+ Snack Ideas for Kids

Peanut Butter Snacks

Seriously, peanut butter makes so many things taste better, not just school lunch. Have you ever put peanut butter on a pancake? Or smeared some peanut butter on a banana for a quick and filling snack? Of course there’s the classic Bugs on a Log, featuring celery slathered with peanut butter and topped with raisins. And when you need a quick dollop of protein to keep your hunger at bay before dinner, I’ve been known to enjoy a spoon full of plain peanut butter.

More Peanut Butter Recipes

How to Make Peanut Butter Bars

3 Peanut Butter Bars on a white plate

Peanut Butter Bars Recipe

5 from 4 votes
This Peanut Butter Bars Recipe with chocolate frosting reminds me of
the homemade bars that used to be served with school lunch in my
hometown. Only 30 minutes to make!
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 12 mins
Total Time 27 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 36

Equipment

  • Cookie Sheet Pan
  • Conventional Oven

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Blend butters and sugars together, then stir in eggs and vanilla.
  • In a separate bowl, stir flour, salt, baking soda, and oatmeal together.
  • Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and mix well.
  • Press dough evenly onto an ungreased cookie sheet/jelly roll pan.
  • Bake at 350-degrees for 12-14 minutes (do not overcook).
  • Allow to cool, then spread chocolate frosting evenly over the bars.

Notes

  • You don’t have to grease the pan, but it doesn’t hurt if you do. Use some cooking spray if you’re concerned about easy cleanup.
  • Line a square baking pan with parchment paper so that the layers can be removed easily.
  • After baking, let the baking dish cool completely, then cover with foil and place in the refrigerator to chill before cutting with a knife.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 179kcalCarbohydrates: 23gProtein: 3gFat: 9gSaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 19mgSodium: 142mgPotassium: 83mgFiber: 1gSugar: 16gVitamin A: 131IUCalcium: 11mgIron: 1mg

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Elise Donovan

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Comments

    1. You can use quick or regular oats. The cookie bar will be a little more coarse with the regular oats, which I like, or a more fine and smooth with the quick oats. Enjoy!

  1. I make something like this, but my topping is different. After it cools for maybe five minutes I sprinkle chocolate chips, and sometimes add a few dabs of peanut butter, on the top. Let it melt for a minute and spread it around. So, so good. I am going to compare my recipe to yours and try switching it up.