Peanut Butter Cup Gooey Bars are chocolate chip cookie bars filled with peanut butter cups and gooey peanut butter filling! The best peanut butter bars recipe EVER!
Oops, I did it again…I turned my chocolate chip cookie gooey bars into PEANUT BUTTER CUP GOOEY BARS.
I. Just. Can’t. Even.
So, funny story. Tomorrow I have to make cookies for a 40th birthday party. Inappropriate cookies, if you catch my drift.
Most of the desserts I’m making are totally G rated, but the other gals and I want to have a little fun at the birthday girls’ expense, which is how I found myself searching “<insert inappropriate food blog term here> cookie cutter” on Amazon.
(So far, the image hasn’t chased me around the internet, thank goodness.)
I’m making sugar cookies with different, um, shades of royal icing frosting. I am thinking, normally, the baking and frosting would take several hours, and I’d leave the cookies out to firm up (hahaha) at room temperature.
The problem is I have a 10-almost-11-year-old living in my house. So…if you need me I’ll be hiding in my garage, piping cookies.
Needless to say, I won’t be sharing those photos on this blog. Luckily, I’m sharing these instead.
Peanut Butter Cup Gooey Bars
You guys: Peanut Butter Cup Gooey Bars. These are going to be your BFF, promise.
Y’all know how much I like my gooey bar recipes. I’m constantly dreaming up new versions because… Can’t stop won’t stop.
Today I married my Chocolate Chip Cookie Gooey Bars and my love of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.
Also, in case you were wondering, MEL ATE THESE. (<— That’s a sadly small amount of links, isn’t it? My husband is…interesting.)
How To Make Peanut Butter Cup Gooey Bars
To make the Peanut Butter Cup Gooey Bars, you start by making my favorite chocolate chip cookie dough. That recipe is my old standby and it produces the best chocolate chip cookies ever. They’re made with brown butter and tons of brown and white sugar. Starting a cookie recipe with melted butter gives it amazing flavor.
I like to use mini chocolate chips in my cookie recipes because you get more bang for your buck – the chocolate gets more widely distributed all over the cookie. For these bars, I used part mini chocolate chips and part chopped Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups Miniatures.
That’s peanut butter #1.
Then the fun happens: the sweetened condensed milk. I mixed it with even more peanut butter.
And that would be peanut butter #2.
Peanut Butter Cup Gooey Bars are simple to assemble: just press half the dough in the bottom of the pan. It’s pretty easy to do this, since it’s a pretty liquidy dough right after mixing. The peanut butter sweetened condensed milk gets drizzled over the top, and the rest of the dough gets dropped all over the top.
When they bake up they become rich and gooey and so peanut buttery! Each bar is like a little meal that you can’t stop eating. Get out your glass of milk with these babies!
I can think of 100 reasons why you need to make the Peanut Butter Cup Gooey Bars recipe today. #1: because you just can’t NOT make them.
Peanut Butter Cup Gooey Bars
- 1 cup unsalted butter
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup light brown sugar packed
- 2 large eggs
- 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup mini chocolate chips
- 30 Miniature Peanut Butter Cups unwrapped (about 1 cup chopped)
- 1 14 ounce can fat-free sweetened condensed milk
- 1/4 creamy peanut butter
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 9x13” baking pan with foil and spray with cooking spray for easy removal.
- Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring often, about 6 minutes, until it becomes brown in color. It will foam, reduce, then foam again. Once it’s done cooking the foam is a light brown and it will dissipate after you remove it from the heat. Once it starts to brown, keep stirring so it doesn’t burn. Let sit for about 5 minutes to cool.
- Pour butter into an electric mixer fitted with paddle attachment. (You can also do this with a hand mixer.) While still hot, add both sugars and mix on low until combined. Let sit to cool for a few minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing completely. Mix in vanilla extract, salt, and baking soda. Mix flour in slowly. Stir in chocolate chips and peanut butter cups. Note: if you’re using a stand mixer, there is no need to chop the peanut butter cups because the mixer will do it for you. If you’re using a hand mixer, give them a rough chop before adding to the batter.
- Pour the sweetened condensed milk into a small bowl and add the peanut butter. Stir until smooth.
- Note: if the dough is too soft to handle, you can chill it for 20 minutes before continuing.
- Press half the cookie dough in the prepared pan. (Spray your hands with nonstick cooking spray so it won’t stick to you.) Pour sweetened condensed milk mixture over the top of the bottom layer (be careful to leave about 1/4” edge around the pan so the milk doesn’t touch the foil), then break up the remaining cookie dough and place on top of milk. Press with your hands to flatten. It will mostly cover but not completely cover the bottom layer.
- Bake for about 30-35 minutes until the tops of the bars just start to get golden brown. Cool completely before slicing into bars.
- Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days or freeze for up to one month. These are best served room temperature.
Nutritional information not guaranteed to be accurate
All text and images © DOROTHY KERN for Crazy for Crust. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or link back to this post for the recipe. Disclaimer: Nutrition information shown is not guaranteed to be accurate.
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Published on: January 31, 2016