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!

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.

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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?

159 comments on “Triple Peanut Butter Monster Cookie Bars”

  1. Made me smile: “I used my go-to blondie base, with a half-cup peanut butter stirred in, before stirring in the kitchen sink.” My sink is waaaay too big to fit into cookies!

    These bars look divine and they are perfect to make for this weekend, with my family coming to visit. I’ll make some tonight and freeze a bunch for Saturday. You’re making me wish I had leftover candy, but I do have sunflower seeds, chocolate chips, peanut butter, a little bit of shredded coconut (‘coconut dust’, Andy calls it), dried cranberries, and Nutella. Ha! All of that might be a strange combo- we’ll see what makes the cut!

    • Not a strange combo at all – I bet it would all be good in the bars! If you do use coconut, it will dry out your batter more than the other add-ins, so don’t use tons – or else cut back on the flour a bit. Enjoy!

      • I did end up making these bars last night and they’re delicious! I used everything that I listed above, minus the dried cranberries and plus 1/4 cup chopped milk chocolate and 1 Tbsp cocoa powder (I like chocolate-y bars!). The Nutella did make them a bit too moist, so they never seemed totally done. But I’ve just kept them in the fridge and they’re fine- better than fine, the flavor is amazing! Nutella + peanut butter + chocolate was such a good idea.
        Thanks for the inspiration :)

      • They sound wonderful! Nutella is thinner/drippier/runnier than PB so it takes longer to dry out in the oven so you can extend baking time in the future and tent pan with a sheet of foil if necessary to protect top surface from over-browning; or just keep them gooey and embrace it, which is what I would do :) Or add a little more flour. But I love the way they sound now. Thanks for LMK what you did & used!

  2. haha oh man I have a number of remnants from Trader Joe’s impulse buys that could go in these bars! I really don’t make bars enough – and they’re so simple!

  3. These look soo amazing! My only problem is I don’t have half-used bags in my pantry right now- so disappointing!

  4. Dude! Pass me the pan and leave me alone with it. PLEASE!

  5. Look at all this deliciousness! I just used 3 huge peanut butter jars up in 10 days for random recipes, and like you – I will never get sick of using it in my baked goods!! These bars are amazing. So perfectly soft and bursting with a bunch of good stuff. I adore the combination of Heath toffee and PB, Averie! They are gorgeous; so colorful and festive! I’d happily make these with peanut butter M&Ms, butterfingers, and honey roasted peanuts. Oh man! So good.

    • Using all that PB in 10 days reminds me when I wrote PBC. It was INSANE the amt I would buy. I chuckle now just thinking back to checking out at the groc store with literally gallons in my cart at once. And the combo of flavors you just listed – mmmm, so good!

  6. There is nothing about the title of this post that I dislike. I read it and saved reading this post for last. It’s like the dessert of my blog reading. :D

    See the whole random bags of this and that isn’t really a problem for me because….well, because when I buy a bag of candy, I eat the whole thing. I’ve made myself sick on pb m&ms (my absolute favorite candy of ALL TIME) more times than I can count or should admit to. I never would have thought to combine toffee and peanut butter.

    I think I blogged the same line today about chocolate and peanut butter pairing.

    • I seriously have a baking cabinet that you would die if you saw. I have seen your pantry in your recent pics. Mine looks…more like a professional restaurant, minus the organization – i.e. hoddgepodge

      I have so much stuff and I do use it all, but I wind up with random leftovers until said usage comes along. So these were perfect :) Not surprising you like PB M&Ms, me too!

  7. Oh my gooooosh I think I hate you right now! Cookies and bars are my two favorite things (obvi) and I think this combination is madness. Kind of mind blowing, actually!

  8. Averie, this is definitely the best cookie bar base, ever! I have a ton of left over candy ‘n chocolate chips at home. Maybe I should make this tonight…my waistline says no but my taste buds win out every time!

  9. Oh these look like PB perfection, I just want to sink my teeth into one! Love your combination of mix-ins too!

  10. Add all the peanut butter!!!! You’re are the complete PB Queen Averie! I’m so excited to try these soon!

  11. Wow, Averie these look amazing! I love all the flavors. And the colors in these photos are so fun! You are a kitchen superstar. :)

  12. Wow! Talk about rich and indulgent! These bars look insanely delicious and almost resemble fudge – candy fudge! Haha

  13. Time to go check out what I’ve got hanging out in the pantry. These bars are exactly what I need right now!

  14. It’s like going to the second hand store and finding cool bits and pieces and then getting them home to combine them into one killer outfit! Super score! We definitely have leftovers of things laying around that we could utilize to make these delicious treats. Gonna have to scour my pantry and fridge tomorrow! I love the colorful m&m’s and the doughy looking dough! Soooo yummy! :-)

  15. Oh my. It’s like eating a spoonful of peanut butter and shoving a handful M&Ms into my mouth. Love it!

  16. I’ve been waiting for you to post these!!! YUM!!! I’m totally going to buy M & M’s Just. For. These. That blondie base looks chewy and moist and peanut butter dreamy for REAL. Love love love this recipe Averie!!

  17. My mouth won’t stop watering! These look so delicious (just like everything else you have)! Thanks so much for sharing. Enjoy your day!

  18. I looove how simple and chock full of goodness these bars are!!

  19. I love the texture of these bars! They look so happy and colourful – like a birthday party that never ends. :D

  20. Oh Averie! These bars look incredible! You had me at peanut butter. And M&Ms. And cookies. Welcome to my brain. XO

  21. I saw “triple peanut butter” in the subject of your blog post email and started drooling.

  22. I need to do this! My pantry is horrible right now. Thanks for the idea!

  23. These were a big hit with my pb loving hubby and me too of course!

  24. So funny that you and Sally posted super peanut butter recipes on the exact same day! ;) Love it! I like my cookie bars dense and chewy and these look like they fit the bill. The outrageous pb flavor makes them even better!

    • She and I frequently post eerily similar recipes on the same day. Like yeast bread – rolls. One day I posted strawberry rolls and she posted another yeast roll, the same day. One day we’ll each post banana bread. We do it all the time!

  25. I love just throwing in a whole bunch of leftover goodies into bars and cookies – they always taste great! Pinned and shared on FB this morning :)

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