Triple Peanut Butter Monster Cookie Bars

I make my fair share of treats, and have the hodgepodge of random add-ins in my pantry to show for it.

Half-used bags of chocolate chips, peanut butter chips, and a random assortment of candy were taking over the cupboard so I found a home for them.

Triple Peanut Butter Monster Cookie Bars - Soft, gooey bars loaded with M&Ms, chocolate and made for serious peanut butter lovers! So good!

In these bars.

They’re the perfect bar to toss in everything but the kitchen sink.

Triple Peanut Butter Monster Cookie Bars - Soft, gooey bars loaded with M&Ms, chocolate and made for serious peanut butter lovers! So good!

Use this flexible and forgiving dough base as your opportunity to stir almost anything that’s plaguing your pantry into it.

What else are you going to do with 1/3 cup chocolate-covered sunflower seeds from your last Trader Joe’s impulse buy or that small handful of butterscotch chips from your last batch of cookies, or a few stray marshmallows.

Use up last year’s Halloween candy or Easter candy. Those Fun-Size Twix bars are begging to be diced and tossed in. Don’t pretend you don’t discover random candy from months ago. Well, I do. Life of a food blogger.

Triple Peanut Butter Monster Cookie Bars - Soft, gooey bars loaded with M&Ms, chocolate and made for serious peanut butter lovers! So good!

The bars come together in 5 minutes in one bowl, no mixer needed. Unlike making cookies, there’s no dough to chill, and they’re ready in under 30 minutes from start to finish.

I used my go-to blondie base, with a half-cup peanut butter stirred in, before stirring in the kitchen sink.

Triple Peanut Butter Monster Cookie Bars - Soft, gooey bars loaded with M&Ms, chocolate and made for serious peanut butter lovers! So good!

I had partially used bags of Peanut Butter M&M’s, peanut butter chips, chocolate chips, chocolate chunks, toffee bits, and included them all.

Because peanut butter is used three times – peanut butter that’s stirred into the dough, Peanut Butter M&Ms, and peanut butter chips – they pack a bold, peanut buttery punch.

Triple Peanut Butter Monster Cookie Bars - Soft, gooey bars loaded with M&Ms, chocolate and made for serious peanut butter lovers! So good!

They’re very moist and soft. The edges turn slightly chewy, while the interior remains a squishy, soft heaven.

The crunchy candy coating of the M&Ms and their firmness, coupled with Heath toffee bits, are the perfect texture contrast to the buttery, peanut buttery, dense, melt-in-your mouth dough.

Triple Peanut Butter Monster Cookie Bars - Soft, gooey bars loaded with M&Ms, chocolate and made for serious peanut butter lovers! So good!

There’s plenty of chocolate, too. Chocolate and peanut butter just go together. The abundance of melted chocolate chips is practically mandatory with all that peanut butter.

Soft, chewy, fast, easy, peanut butter used three times, and you can clean out your cupboards. That’s success.

Triple Peanut Butter Monster Cookie Bars - Soft, gooey bars loaded with M&Ms, chocolate and made for serious peanut butter lovers! So good!

And let’s face it, any time you can bake candy into a dessert, you won’t hear too many complaints.

Cleaning out your pantry never tasted so good.

Triple Peanut Butter Monster Cookie Bars - Soft, gooey bars loaded with M&Ms, chocolate and made for serious peanut butter lovers! So good!

Triple Peanut Butter Monster Cookie Bars - Soft, gooey bars loaded with M&Ms, chocolate and made for serious peanut butter lovers! So good!

Print Print Recipe

Triple Peanut Butter Monster Cookie Bars

Peanut butter is used three times in these dense, rich, moist, fast, and easy bars. There's peanut butter stirred into the dough, Peanut Butter M&Ms, and peanut butter chips, so the bars pack a bold, peanut buttery punch. There's plenty of chocolate, the perfect compliment to all that peanut butter. Use the dough base as a blank canvas and start cleaning out your pantry - butterscotch or white chocolate chips, nuts and seeds, dice old holiday candy and toss it in. Mix and match with the add-ins you have on hand rather than buying new. Cleaning out your pantry never tasted so good.

Yield: one 8x8 pan, 9 to 12 generous squares

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:

1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick), melted
1 large egg
1 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
heaping 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter (use Jif, Skippy, etc.; don't use homemade or natural - too runny)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup Peanut Butter M&Ms (or Peanut, Plain, or favorite variety)
3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips or chunks, or a combination
1/2 cup Reese's Peanut Butter Chips
1/3 cup Heath Bar Toffee Bits

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line an 8-by-8-inch baking pan with aluminum foil, spray with cooking spray; set aside.
  2. In a large, microwave-safe bowl melt the butter, about 1 minute on high power.
  3. Wait momentarily before adding the egg so you don't scramble it. Add the egg, brown sugar, vanilla, and whisk until smooth.
  4. Add the peanut butter and whisk or stir until smooth and incorporated.
  5. Add the flour and stir until just combined, don't overmix.
  6. Add all remaining add-ins and fold to incorporate.
  7. Turn batter out into prepared pan, smoothing the top lightly with a spatula. I like to strategically place a few M&Ms on the top of the batter for a nice visual effect.
  8. Bake for about 25 minutes, or until top is set. A toothpick inserted in the center should come out clean, or with a few moist crumbs, but no batter. Allow bars to cool in pan for at least 30 minutes before slicing and serving. Bars will keep airtight at room temperature for up to 1 week, or in the freezer for up to 6 months.

Recipe from Averie Cooks. All images and content are copyright protected. 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 simply link back to this post for the recipe. Thank you.

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What’s the last pantry cleanout recipe you’ve made? What do you put in your Monster Bars?

   

137 Responses to “Triple Peanut Butter Monster Cookie Bars”

  1. #
    51
    Jaclyn — July 26, 2013 at 9:59 am

    These look perfect! Loaded and perfect!

    Reply

  2. #
    52
    Eva | Adventures in Cooking — July 26, 2013 at 10:40 am

    I am trying to eat healthy during the weeks leading up to my wedding, but looking at this is making that a whole lot more difficult haha. They sound DELICIOUS! And I’m so glad you liked the Saint Paul post, I had an amazing time there and was just awestruck by the beauty while I was flying over the state. I definitely want to get back there to do some hiking!

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — July 26th, 2013 at 11:24 am

      I adored the post. Such a trip down memory lane – college, my family, my childhood. Thank for posting it and glad that MN was better than you thought it was going to be. If it wasn’t for the winters, it really is a wonderful place!

      And congrats on your upcoming wedding!

      Reply

  3. #
    53
    Karly — July 27, 2013 at 5:07 pm

    You must know how much I love these cookies, they are fabulous! Thanks for linking up with What’s Cookin’ Wednesday!

    Reply

  4. #
    54
    Eilish — July 28, 2013 at 2:45 pm

    Hi,
    I just wanted to say that every recipe I’ve made of yours is wonderful! And these are possibly the best! I used your base, then added chocolate chips, white chocolate chips, sliced almonds, peanut butter cups, and marshmallows! So much for eating healthy for cross country, haha! But you are a very good baker and I plan to make most if not all of your recipes!

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — July 28th, 2013 at 5:35 pm

      Thanks for LMK you’ve tried other recipes and these are your new fave! All your add-ins sound great! If I would have had any PB cups, I would have used those, too! Mmm, marshmallows – I bet they were a little bit like PB smores! If you try other recipes, please come back and LMK how it went!

      Reply

  5. #
    55
    Nora @ Buttercream Fanatic — July 29, 2013 at 12:51 pm

    I, too, am the Queen of The Freezer Full of Mismatched Quarter-full Bags of Candy, Nuts, and Other Miscellany! I do this all the time with cookies – just throw in everything. But from the looks of it, I am missing out by not using your bar base here, though. It looks divine.

    Reply

  6. #
    56
    Bethany @ 3SonsPlus1...and... — July 30, 2013 at 4:52 am

    Pinning…these look FABULOUS!! Thanks for sharing! =)

    Reply

  7. #
    57
    Ala — July 30, 2013 at 7:40 pm

    Outdoing yourself every time–I feel like I might be tempted to lick the kitchen sink after this, yick! :) thanks for sharing, Averie!

    Reply

  8. #
    58
    Amelia — August 1, 2013 at 11:26 am

    Wow!! These were amazing!!! Thank you so much for sharing this great recipe!!

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — August 1st, 2013 at 1:44 pm

      Thanks for trying these, Amelia, and so glad they turned out amazing!

      Reply

  9. #
    59
    Nutmeg Nanny — August 1, 2013 at 6:30 pm

    Oh WOW! These bars look intense :) I can’t wait to taste this

    Reply

  10. #
    60
    Baking Beginner — August 13, 2013 at 5:37 pm

    I made these once and they were delicious!! …but I’m a fan of the orignal monster cookie so do you think you could substitute old fashioned oats for the flour? If so, would it be a 1:1 ratio of flour to oats?

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — August 13th, 2013 at 7:24 pm

      If you’re talking cookies vs. bar cookies, it’s not that easy to just ‘swap’. This recipe was written to make these to be pressed into a pan, not baked as actual cookies and b/c there is no baking soda or baking powder, they would likely spread thin and flat and not work. If you wanted to use some oats in these bars, feel free to add a cup or so, and reduce the flour by maybe 3/4 cup.

      If you’re looking for oatmeal cookies, I have at least a half dozen really solid oatmeal cookie recipes. Browse and then add your favorite add-ins to whichever base you choose. http://www.averiecooks.com/category/dessert/cookies

      Reply

      • Baking Beginner replied: — August 14th, 2013 at 7:02 pm

        Sorry I wasn’t clear. I still want to make bars but i wasnt sure if it would work to use oats instead of flour. I will try adding 1 cup of oats and taking out 3/4 cup of flour. Thank you so much for your quick response! Very impressive

  11. #
    61
    Jenny — August 22, 2013 at 5:36 pm

    I think these sound and look incredibly delicious- but I have to say, I’m not sure how anyone has peanut butter M&M’s just left over without eating them. That never happens around here! :)

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — August 22nd, 2013 at 5:37 pm

      Lol – after writing a 100+ recipe PB cookbook, I have SO MUCH pb-related products in my house – you cannot even imagine :) I am always finding odds and ends! lol

      Reply

  12. #
    62
    Sarah Carroll — August 28, 2013 at 11:41 am

    I would like to contribute the recipe for the cookie bars to our newest church cookbook. I made them for our homeschool back to school bash. I put them in my Longaberger bread basket and renamed them: “Schoolbox Brownies” – the colors reminded me of a child’s crayon box!

    The bars were devoured, of course!

    I would like permission to submit this great recipe! I would not be using any images.

    Thanks,

    Sarah Carroll

    Reply

  13. #
    63
    Katie — September 1, 2013 at 5:24 am

    Hi there…I made these bars yesterday and they are DELICIOUS! I had one problem though…they were very greasy/buttery on the bottom. I put them back in the oven thinking they weren’t quite done. Do you think they’d come out the same if I used less butter next time? Or maybe margarine? I served them with a paper towel on the platter and that helped to soak up some of the butter. Any suggestions will be appreciated. I’m definitely going to make these again! : )

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — September 1st, 2013 at 5:29 am

      Greasy..hmm, could have been the type/brand of PB used. I used Jif in mine. Or could have been the butter. You could reduce either the Pb or the butter, slightly, maybe 2 tbsp or so if you wanted. Or you could add maybe 2 to 4 tbsp more flour. Or you could bake them slightly longer. However, they’re not exactly a ‘light’ treat so some grease is normal :) But sounds like you would benefit most from slightly more flour. Lmk what you do when you remake them and how it pans out!

      Reply

  14. #
    64
    Miranda — September 1, 2013 at 12:50 pm

    I have these in the oven as we speak! They look awesome and the dough was delicious! ;-) I agree that they were very greesy. I added 1.5 cups flour instead of just one. Hope they turn out! They look like they will!

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — September 1st, 2013 at 1:11 pm

      Thanks for trying them and I’m sure you’re going to love them!

      Reply

  15. #
    65
    Dawn — September 4, 2013 at 4:55 am

    These were packed full of peanut buttery goodness.. Thanks for this.. I made this one weekend with my God-Child and we had a blast making as well as eating..

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — September 4th, 2013 at 5:39 am

      That is so sweet that you made them together. Lucky kiddo and glad you loved the recipe! Thanks for LMK!

      Reply

  16. #
    66
    Natalie — September 8, 2013 at 12:56 pm

    I made a version of these to give as a birthday gift – they were fab! Have just written about them here – http://hungryhinny.com/2013/09/08/peanut-butter-mm-blondies/

    Thanks for the recipe! :)

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — September 8th, 2013 at 1:42 pm

      So glad you enjoyed them and just commented on your post!

      Reply

  17. #
    67
    Alexis V. — September 22, 2013 at 3:55 pm

    Yumm! The fourth recipe I’ve tried of yours, and just like the other three, it turned out excellent! I loved how easy it was, and it was a great way to get rid of leftover old candy. I did have to leave it in the oven for an extra ten minutes or so before it was done, but other than that this turned out great. Thank you for another great recipe!!

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — September 22nd, 2013 at 4:12 pm

      So glad you were able to clear out some random candy and that you’re batting 4 for 4 with my recipes – love that! And yes, baking time is variable based on candies used and just how loaded up they were, oven variances, etc. So glad you’re enjoying them!

      Reply

  18. #
    68
    Erica — November 5, 2013 at 6:52 pm

    These are DANGEROUS. So easy, so yummy, and so addictive! Your recipes are so tempting to make because they come together so well and are scrumptious but I have to get them out of the house the next day or I’d eat the whole batch!

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — November 5th, 2013 at 8:30 pm

      Thanks Erica for trying these and for the sweet compliments about my recipes and being easy and user-friendly. I try really hard with that and glad it’s working for you! And yes, I have to re-home and donate most of what I make, too – or I wouldn’t be able to fit thru the door. LOL

      Reply

  19. #
    69
    Ashley — April 20, 2014 at 2:26 pm

    Woah, woah, woah, these look amazing. Everything looks so melty and moist. Pinned, and now I have to try ASAP!

    Reply

  20. #
    70
    Deb — April 27, 2014 at 4:02 am

    Awesome as always! Loved these so much. I used a full bag of peanut butter egg shape m&m’s from Easter as the mix in and left out the peanut butter chips and toffee bits since I didn’t want to create more partial bags of things. I also needed to use up the m&m’s. The peanut butter ones are my favorite and any left unused would be eaten – not that a few weren’t used for quality control while baking. Super soft, dense, delicious. Would make again exactly the same, but yet I want to try other combinations and exactly as written. I’m sitting here now trying to think if I make another batch today who can I take them to so I don’t eat them all. I know I’ve commented before, but it is worth repeating that you make winner recipes.

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — April 27th, 2014 at 9:01 am

      Deb thanks for taking the time to comment again and so glad you loved these bars and want to make them again (and again!) and use up your candy stash. They’re a great pantry clean-out bar :) Glad you’re happy & thanks for the praise about my winner recipes!

      Reply

  21. #
    71
    monyhussein — May 5, 2014 at 11:15 am

    good

    Reply

  22. #
    72
    monyhussein — May 5, 2014 at 11:23 am

    هنا
    here
    here

    Reply

  23. #
    73
    Stefanie — July 24, 2014 at 2:10 pm

    Can your recipes be doubled and baked in a 9×13 pan instead of 8×8 or 9×9? Our family is getting together and the 25 of us looooove sweets! I have literally spent the past 3 days looking at recipes on your site and am having the hardest time deciding on just one!

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — July 25th, 2014 at 10:06 am

      Most recipes yes can be doubled to bake as a 9×13 rather than an 8×8. Most of them I don’t personally test that way because I bake 5-7 days a week for a very small family and don’t need the excess but in theory, it should work; and many readers do double and write in to say it works fine. LMK what you end up making and how it goes!

      Reply

  24. #
    74
    Brianna — August 23, 2014 at 2:19 pm

    Do you have any suggestions for high altitude baking??

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — August 23rd, 2014 at 6:08 pm

      I’m not an expert at all on it but the King Arthur flour website has a great section on it (google for details).

      Reply

      • Brianna replied: — August 24th, 2014 at 10:13 am

        Thank you very much!

  25. #
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    Ellie — October 1, 2014 at 3:12 pm

    HELP! I was planning to make this recipe for a bake sale, but I accidentally mixed the flour and the brown sugar together instead of mixing the brown sugar with the melted butter! They’re mixed really well together, there’s no going back. I really don’t want to throw out and waste the ingredients (especially since I used pricey organic brown sugar). Can I still proceed with the recipe? If not, are there any other recipes I can use the flour/brown sugar mixture for?

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — October 1st, 2014 at 3:21 pm

      So you mixed a cup of brown sugar with a cup of flour? At this point if you haven’t already carried on with the rest of the recipe, I would toss it and start over. I wouldn’t continue on, knowing you’re going to put more $$ ingredients in, knowing full well you’ve already screwed up…that would guarantee then everything is going to be a mess in the final analysis. You should cut your losses now.

      Generally flour and sugar don’t go together unless you’re making a streusel topping at which point you’d cut in butter. You could make these or something along these lines… http://www.averiecooks.com/2014/09/fudgy-oatmeal-chocolate-chip-cookie-bars.html

      Reply

  26. #
    76
    Missy — October 23, 2014 at 11:13 am

    HI!

    I’m wondering if I can make these Triple Peanut Butter Monster Cookie Bars in a 13×9 pan?

    Thanks!

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — October 23rd, 2014 at 3:40 pm

      I haven’t tried but I’m sure it will be fine. Just double the recipe.

      Reply

  27. #
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    Jenny — December 15, 2014 at 5:56 pm

    Can I use this recipe but make balls and cook into cookies instead of bars?

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — December 15th, 2014 at 7:33 pm

      Possibly but I have not tested it that way to know for sure!

      Reply

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