Monday, April 22, 2013

SRC: Peanut Butter Cup Bars

This month's Secret Recipe Club assignment comes from Mele Cotte which apparently means "Baked Apple" in Italian.  I learned something new!  And I am so extremely glad to have found Christina's blog.  She has the most amazing looking desserts which made it oh-so-hard to pick a recipe this month.

I ended up letting my husband pick the recipe and no surprise that it involved his favorite combination of flavors...peanut butter and chocolate!  What made me happy was the fact that this recipe came together ridiculously quickly and easily.  All it requires is melting the ingredients on the stove top, pouring it into a pan, and allowing it to set in refrigerator.  Perfect for the novice chef or busiest of people looking to impress.

The concept is a peanut butter cup but in bar form.  It delivered!  My husband originally told me to take the pan of treats to work but after one taste, he changed his mind and hoarded them.  My father-in-law said it was the best "fudge" he has ever eaten and happily went for seconds.  What set these apart for me was the slightly crunchy texture that came from the graham crackers.  Who would've known?

Oddly, I don't have an 8x8 pan in my kitchen so used a 9x9.  This works fine but results in a thinner bar and more squares (yah!).  The thinner bar I actually enjoyed because any thicker it would be too rich for me to enjoy.  However, the increased surface area made my chocolate layer suffer slightly.  In the future, I'd increase the amount of chocolate layer and have noted these changes below.  In the spirit of being lazy and not wanting to buy a bag of peanut butter chips just for decorating, I used straight-up peanut butter that was melted slightly in the microwave.  Delicious and pretty, too!

One Year Ago: Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Stuffed Cinnamon Rolls (my first Secret Recipe Club time flies!)
Two Years Ago: Churro Bites
Four Years Ago: Grandma B's Spaghetti Meatballs

Peanut Butter Cup Bars

Peanut Butter Cup Bars

  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 3/4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 cup smooth peanut butter
  • 3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips (or chopped chocolate)
  • 2 Tablespoons smooth peanut butter
  1. Line a 9x9-inch square pan with foil, leaving enough to hang over the sides.  Butter the foil and set aside.
  2. In a medium saucepan, melt the 3/4 cup of butter over low heat. Once melted, remove from heat and stir in the powdered sugar. Add 1 cup peanut butter and graham cracker crumbs and stir until combined and smooth. Transfer the peanut butter mixture into the prepared pan, even out and smooth the top with a rubber spatula or by tapping it gently on the counter top.
  3. In the saucepan, melt the 1/3 cup unsalted butter. Add the chocolate and stir until almost completely melted, remove from heat, and continue stirring until completely smooth. Pour over the peanut butter layer and smooth into an even layer using a rubber spatula.
  4. Put the remaining 2 Tablespoons of peanut butter to a zip lock bag.  Microwave for about 30 seconds.  Snip the corner of the bag and drizzle in a decorative pattern on top of the chocolate layer.
  5. Refrigerate the Peanut Butter Cup Bars at least 30 minutes to set. Remove from the pan by lifting the foil and place on a cutting board. Cut into 25 bars (5 rows by 5 columns). Store in an airtight container.
Source: Slightly adapted from Mele Cotte

Secret Recipe Club


Denise Browning said...

My kind of dessert, definetely!!!! I love bars and if there is peanut butter in it, it's for me.

Anonymous said...

Love, love, love PB and chocolate, and these look SO easy! Thanks fr sharing with SRC.

Melissa said...

Peanut butter and simply can't go wrong with those 2 ingredients!

Bubbe Bites said...

Love peanut butter! What a great recipe and looks super tasty. Glad to be part of SRC group C with you!

Debra Eliotseats said...

I have seen so many peanut butter posts this month!

Chelsy Ethridge said...

Ummmmmmmmmm love love love! I'm a peanut butter addict so these would be gone in a sec!

Chris said...

ooh! Yeah!
Thanks for perusing my blog this month! This is always so much fun for me - to see what others choose.

I am so glad you and the guys enjoyed these bars. They are one of my go-tos.


Chris (

Lisa | Authentic Suburban Gourmet said...

You had me at peanut butter! Your dish looks and sounds incredibly tasty. Glad to be part of SRC group C with you!

Anonymous said...

I too love the chocolate & peanut butter combo. And I love that these are completely made on the stove- an easy way to get your dessert fix.

Trisha said...

These bars look crazy good and I love how simple they are to put together. They'd be perfect when you need to serve a crowd. Stopping by from Group A!

I'm hosting a giveaway on my blog and would love for you to be a part of it -

Anonymous said...

Oh yum, these look and sound so good!

Deanna - Teaspoon of Spice said...

See, I'm with your husband and think peanut butter and chocolate are the most amazing paired foods ever! These bars look divine.

Tandy | Lavender and Lime ( said...

I love peanut butter! and the top of the bars looks amazing :)

Veronica Miller said...

Oh, they sound and look so delish! I love the decorations you swirled on top with the peanut butter too-so pretty!

Unknown said...

i like a thinner bar too - like you said, desserts like this can be pretty rich and one big mouthful is not nearly as good as a ton of little ones ;)
Happy SRC reveal from a group C member!!

Teri said...

You had me at peanut butter cup! Great recipe!