Oh these bars are good. You know Dave and I are peanut butter junkies--it's Dave's favorite for desserts and right up there with chocolate for me. So a peanut butter blondie stuffed to the gills with peanut butter goodies? I'll take two, please. We had game night with our friends Felise and Nick, so I made these bars when we went to their house. These bars have everything--peanut butter, peanuts, peanut butter chips, milk chocolate chips, toffee candy bits, and peanut butter M&Ms. They are so loaded with peanutty mix-ins that there's barely any batter--which is just fine. There is exactly enough batter--peanut butter flavored, that is--to keep all the tasty bits and candies together. So much so I wouldn't be surprised if Dave asked for these for birthday baking. Or because it's a day that ends in 'y'. One of those.
Two recipes from Averie this week! It wasn't intentional, but Averie is quickly becoming one of my new favorite bloggers over at Averie Cooks, with so many great recipes and lots of delicious desserts. There are two things about monster bars. First, they are loaded with more goodies, bits, candies and mix-ins than you think any bar can handle--but it can. And second, they are an amazing way to clean out the pantry of those half, third and quarter cup bags of bits remaining from recipes past. So I dug out all my peanut flavored bits and peanut butter-friendly mix-ins and got to work. I added actual peanuts and used milk chocolate chips, but otherwise used Averie's blondie base for these bars, ending up with an amazing bar that we just couldn't get enough of. Part of me can't wait to gather up a bunch of half used bags of peanut butter goodness just to have an excuse to make these bars again. But really, I don't think I need an excuse.
Peanut Butter Lover's Monster Bars
1/2 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1 cup flour
1 cup peanut butter M&Ms
1/2 cup milk chocolate chips
1/2 cup peanut butter chips
1/3 cup Heath toffee bits
1/3 cup peanuts, chopped
Melt butter in a microwave safe bowl and allow to cool slightly. Add egg, whisking constantly to temper (and not scrambled the egg), then add brown sugar and vanilla extract, whisking to combine. Whisk in peanut butter.
Stir in flour just until incorporated.
Add M&Ms, chocolate chips, peanut butter chips, toffee bits and peanuts. Fold in to distribute throughout.
Transfer batter to a foil lined 8 x8 inch baking pan, lightly sprayed with cooking spray. Press into an even layer.
Bake at 350 degrees F for 25 minutes, until top is set and a tester insert just comes out a clean. Allow to cool in pan for 10-15 minutes, then lift using foil as handles and transfer to wire rack to cool completely before cutting into bars.
Makes 12 bars.
The Cookie Princess
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