Gooey Peanut Butter & Chocolate Swirl Cookie Bars
Oh man, you guys, these gooey peanut butter & chocolate swirl cookie bars are irresistibly soft and gooey and full of that delicious peanut butter and chocolate combination. It’s a go-to treat that’s sure to be a favorite in your house.
I was looking up recipes to make the other day and was drawn to a bunch of lemon ones. The reason being, I just bought several jars of lemon curd and was curious as to what to do with them. So I was reading options out loud to Mitch one night: Lemon Crumble Bars, Lemon Tart, Lemon Crumb Cake…and on and on. Mitch wasn’t too responsive. You see, I love lemon desserts but his favorite picks would be anything peanut butter or banana. So I surprised him and made these bars. Granted, something with lemon curd will be hitting the blog soon, I’m sure, but for now: peanut butter and chocolate. 😉
I found this recipe in an Amish cookbook which is filled with random recipes that kinda make me nervous. See, when Amish cook or bake, they do it for a crowd so these recipes include wording like, “Mix in 2 BAGS of chocolate chips, 6 cups of oatmeal, 4 cups of sugar…” stuff like that. And they also are typically vague recipes. “Mix together first 5 ingredients then bake for 20 minutes.” Wait…what temperature? How long should I mix it?? You see what I mean? Recipes have definitely come a long way in this Pinterest-crazed world in which we live. But when I read the recipe for these peanut butter and chocolate swirl bars (sans pictures, mind you), I knew I couldn’t go wrong. Because, really, is there any better combination that peanut butter and chocolate?
From a little research I did, it sounds like this recipe is originally from off the back of a Nestle chocolate chip bag from over 40 years ago, so people have been making and enjoying these for quite some time. It’s the first time I’ve ever made them though and my guys were super impressed. All three of my boys said I need to make these bars again really soon! I cut into the bars while they were still warm, so the boys got them at their finest–warm and ultra gooey, as you can see.
Mitch had his treat after work, which was when they were fully cooled but he also raved about them. It’s a simple no-fuss recipe that is mouth-watering and will satisfy any peanut butter and chocolate craving you might have. I used crunchy peanut butter for some extra texture and my favorite chocolate chips–Ghirardelli. I used the 60% cacao for these and they turned out AMAZING. I highly recommend springing for some good quality chocolate when baking. It does make a huge difference.
You make the batter the same way you would cookies–cream the butter, sugars, eggs, vanilla then add the dry ingredients. The chocolate is added after you spread the batter into a pan. I used an 8×8″ pan here. I got out my 9×13″ and dumped the batter in and my oldest son said right away, “Mom, I don’t think you have enough batter there.” Smart kid. And I agreed. So I got out the smaller pan, sprayed it with oil, and spread the dough out in that. Then I took the bag of chocolate chips and sprinkled them evenly on top of the dough. (My bag was a 10 oz bag.) Now the fun part: you bake the bars for 5 minutes then take them out and swirl the chocolate through the dough. Stick them back in the oven for 15-20 minutes and you’re done. Just be sure to not overbake these guys! You want them gooey…so a little underbaked is what you’re shooting for. 🙂
SO yummy. Try them today. If you’re a peanut butter and chocolate fan (which, who isn’t?!) you’ll love these bars. Especially if you eat them warm. Messy? YES. Worth it? DEFINITELY.