Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookie Bars

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It’s no secret I love peanut butter.

Between Peanut Butter Comfort and the peanut butter recipes on my blog, I’ve got hundreds.

Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookie Bars - A creamy PB layer sandwiched between PB cookie dough! Peanut butter lovers will go nuts over these!!

So when there’s a layer of creamy peanut butter fudge sandwiched between peanut butter cookie dough, I’m in my peanut butter glory.

If you like big, bold, unabashed peanut butter flavor with rich, buttery undertones, you’re going to love these.

Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookie Bars - A creamy PB layer sandwiched between PB cookie dough! Peanut butter lovers will go nuts over these!!

Last week I made Fudgy Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars and had a half can of sweetened condensed milk left. It would have been a shame to throw out 65 cents worth of sweet milk when I could take a pound of butter and peanut butter and make something new. Makes perfect sense. 

The bars are a peanut butter twist on last week’s bars and I tweaked my trusty no-mixer, easy blondie base by adding peanut butter like I did here as well as peanut butter chips. Some of the mixture forms the crust and the rest is crumbled on top.

Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookie Bars - A creamy PB layer sandwiched between PB cookie dough! Peanut butter lovers will go nuts over these!!

The rich, creamy peanut butter filling is made with melted peanut butter chips and a half can of sweetened condensed milk. Make Fudgy Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars7-Minute Microwave CaramelsPeanut Butter Cup Cookie Dough Crumble Bars, or Milky Way Chocolate Cookie Crumble Bars with the other half can.

The base layer is extremely soft and moist with while the top layer has more texture. There’s a slight salty-and-sweet vibe too, which I love.

Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookie Bars - A creamy PB layer sandwiched between PB cookie dough! Peanut butter lovers will go nuts over these!!

The cookie dough is saltier while the peanut butter fudge layer is sweeter, and it’s a great contrast to bite into, both in terms of texture and flavor.

The bars are hearty, dense, rich, and if you’re having peanut butter cravings, they’ll be squelched in no time.

Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookie Bars - A creamy PB layer sandwiched between PB cookie dough! Peanut butter lovers will go nuts over these!!

Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookie Bars - A creamy PB layer sandwiched between PB cookie dough! Peanut butter lovers will go nuts over these!!

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4 from 2 votes

Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookie Bars

By Averie Sunshine
If you like big, bold, unabashed peanut butter flavor with rich, buttery undertones, you’re going to love these. There’s a layer of creamy peanut butter fudge sandwiched between peanut butter cookie bars. The base layer is extremely soft and moist with while the top layer has more texture. There’s a slight salty-and-sweet vibe, too. The cookie dough is saltier while the peanut butter fudge layer is sweeter, and it’s a great contrast to bite into, both in terms of texture and flavor. The bars are hearty, dense, rich, and if you’re having peanut butter cravings, they’ll be squelched in no time.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 1 8x8 pan, 9 to 12 generous squares
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Ingredients  

  • ½ cup unsalted butter, 1 stick, melted
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • heaping 1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • pinch salt, optional and to taste
  • one 10-ounce bag peanut butter chips, divided (3/4 cup stirred in and 1 cup melted)
  • half of one 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk, just eyeball it

Instructions 

  • Preheat oven to 350F. Line an 8-by-8-inch baking pan with aluminum foil, spray with cooking spray; set aside.
  • In a large, microwave-safe bowl melt the butter, about 1 minute on high power.
  • Wait momentarily before adding the egg so you don’t scramble it. Add the egg, brown sugar, peanut butter, vanilla, and whisk until smooth.
  • Add the flour, optional salt, and stir until just combined, don’t overmix.
  • Add 3/4 cup peanut butter chips and stir to combine, don’t overmix or they’ll start to melt.
  • Turn between two-thirds and three-quarters of the dough out into prepared pan, smoothing it with a spatula to form a crust; reserve remainder and set aside.
  • In a medium microwave-safe bowl, add the remaining 1 cup peanut butter chips, pour sweetened condensed milk over the top, and heat on high power until the chips melt and mixture can be stirred smooth, about 1 to 2 minutes total, but stop to check and stir every 30 seconds so mixture doesn’t scorch.
  • Evenly pour peanut butter mixture over crust, smoothing the top lightly with a spatula. Work somewhat quickly because mixture begins to set up after a couple minutes.
  • Evenly crumble the reserved peanut butter dough over the top. I find it easiest to make heaping 1-tablespoon-sized ‘blobs’, and after all the blobs are in the pan, smoosh and smooth them together with a spatula. The entire surface will barely be covered and there will be some gaps.
  • Bake for about 27 to 29 minutes, or until top is just set; it should be very pale in color for soft bars and the darker it gets, the more crumbly the bars become. Allow bars to cool in pan for at least 1 hour 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.

Nutrition

Serving: 1, Calories: 492kcal, Carbohydrates: 62g, Protein: 11g, Fat: 23g, Saturated Fat: 11g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 10g, Cholesterol: 51mg, Sodium: 172mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 49g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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Please note: I have only made the recipe as written, and cannot give advice or predict what will happen if you change something. If you have a question regarding changing, altering, or making substitutions to the recipe, please check out the FAQ page for more info.

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Comments

    1. How so, I mean what stage are you at…sounds like you’re done if they’re delicious but maybe you under-baked, under-floured, over-sweetened cond milked, used a greasier form of PB than I did..lots of variables. Sounds like you were probably *almost there* and a slight tweak here or there and they’d set up better.

  1. Just got a chance to bake these this afternoon after seeing the recipe on September 9th. It’s been about 105 here in CA for over a week and just too darn hot to turn the oven on….but today, it’s only 85 degrees! So why not give them a try?

    Good news bad news…Good news, DELICIOUS! Bad news…..hubby loves them too! hahaha Guess I’ll have to share!

    These were easy to make and I just love bar recipes that are baked in an 8×8 pan…enough for two but not as overwhelming as those 13×9 desserts!

    Thanks Averie!

    1. Thanks for trying these and glad they came out great. I live in San Diego and I was being pummeled for the past 10 days with 92F temps and I have no a/c and bake for a living. Yeah. Not good.

      Glad that both you and your hubby love these, well, that means sharing though :)

      And yes to 8×8 pans! Almost all my bars are 8×8 pans b/c I don’t have an army to feed either! https://www.averiecooks.com/category/dessert/bars

      1. There are SO many of those beautiful bar recipes I want to make! If I make the Lemon Lemonies, they’ll be mine, all mine! Hubby is not fond of lemons!

        Next on my list are the Honey Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Honey-Cinnamon Dip…meal, side dish or dessert? hahaha

        I can’t imagine no A/C and baking for a living! A true testament to how much you love what you do.

        We just moved to CA from MA and it’s a definite change; but in a good way!

      2. meal, side dish or dessert? = all three!!

        Welcome to CA. I moved here 11 years ago and will never look back (grew up in MN and then Chicago) but yeah, the no a/c thing. It’s very common here because it ‘never gets that hot’ except for those 2w a year you’re dying in!

  2. Oh mylanta, do these ever look GOOD! All of that peanut butter goodness! I can only imagine how wonderful these tasted!! ;)

  3. Hi Averie! I am drooling over this recipe. Can I use peanut butter instead of PB chips for the fudge layer. If yes, how much?

    1. Hmmm, not sure because it’s much runnier than chips will be (they set up more firm than PB). I haven’t tried but I would go with between 1/2 cup and 3/4 cup and see how it goes. Again, just a hunch and not sure if it will work for sure.

      1. Hi Averie – Thanks for the quick reply. So I tried the crust/base of this recipe and the chocolate fudge part from you chocolate chip oatmeal bars. It was delish with the whole taste combo of peanut butter and chocolate, and surprisingly not to sweet. I got in to work this morning, and the cookie bars didnt stay till noon.

      2. Sounds like they came out great for you and you have lucky coworkers! Sounds like there weren’t any leftovers which is a good sign :)

  4. My peanut butter loving family will seriously LOVE these cookie bars! That filling, oh my word! PINNED :)

    1. I need your crew to help me eat down everything I’ve been making lately. Baking/holiday season 2014 is full underway over here already :)

  5. My mouth just started watering. I need two of these and a cold glass of milk…STAT. These look amazing Averie! Pinned!

  6. Between the sweet fudge and the salty cookie dough, my taste buds are about to break into a song! These bars sound FABULOUS!!
    I’m thinking, Peanut Butter Comfort Part Deux!! :-D

    1. I’m thinking, Peanut Butter Comfort Part Deux!! <--- LOL because I'm not. Cookbooks, the most.epic.tasks.ever.

  7. The best thing about peanut butter is that you can have some with every meal and never get tired of it. These look rockin’.
    Pinned!
    Happy Wednesday!

    1. Thanks for pinning & I totally agree with your sentiment! Even after writing a cookbook solely devoted to PB, I am not sick of it!