These bars are full of dark chocolate, peanut buttery and oat-y goodness. They are so quick and easy and totally customizable.
I’ve made a lot of goodies. I’ve mixed and stirred until I’m blue in the face. I’ve been doing this almost a year, so you’d think I would stop swooning over something I’ve baked. I should’ve known I would always swoon. Because these are genuinely one of the best bars I’ve ever made.
I realized I’m a bar girl. I absolutely love bars. I mean, I love cookies and I love cake, but I do sure love bars. These are no exception.
If you look at the list of ingredients and the recipe and see that you have to blend/food process a few things, never fear! This recipe is actually really quick and easy and those steps just take a few extra minutes. Here’s how you can make these beauties, because I’m assuming at this point in time I’ve enticed you enough that you’re dropping and everything and sprinting into the kitchen to make them.
You should have everything in your cupboard. You just need to melt some butter. Then you mix in the cup of peanut butter so the peanut butter is nice and melty too. I thought peanut butter was great alone, but it turns out that peanut butter and melted butter is basically heaven.
In a food processor or mixer, process/blend/pulse six sheets of graham crackers until they’re a fine crumb. Dump those into a bowl. Then add the old fashioned oats to the blender and pulse two or three times. You just don’t want them so thick and big, but you definitely still want to see the lovely oat grain in the bars. Place the oats in the same bowl as the graham crackers.
Then in a separate bowl where you dumped out the graham crackers and old fashioned oats, you mix all of the dry ingredients together. The key here for the lovely color of the bar is the cocoa. The cocoa is the kicker. I used Hershey’s Special Dark, but any cocoa would work! I do this because it’s easier to evenly mix things into the peanut butter and melted butter. When you add separate ingredients, sometimes things can get unevenly dispersed and that’s no good.
And then you’re done! You just need to pat them into a 9 by 13 and freeze them! After about thirty minutes in the freezer, cut them into the desired size and enjoy. I find they’re best frozen, but they’re also great room temperature.
Really, these are some of the best bars I’ve ever had. You basically can’t mess them up. And the best part? They’re so easily customizable! A few suggestions for you to try:
- Add butterscotch chips! Another idea is to melt the butterscotch chocolate chips and pour them over the bars to form a nice little layer of butterscotchy goodness. (Peanut butter + butterscotch = one of the best combos ever.)
- Use almond butter or chocolate peanut butter instead of peanut butter.
- Omit the cocoa.
- Make these into cute little truffles.
- Add some peanuts or almonds.
- Make them gluten free by using gluten free graham crackers and gluten free oats. Or, get rid of the graham crackers altogether, and put in an extra cup of powdered sugar. Delicious! They’d be very similar to these bars.
- This recipe knows no bounds!
- 1 and 1/2 sticks of butter (12 Tablespoons), melted
- 1 and 1/2 cups peanut butter
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 1/4 cup chocolate cocoa powder
- 1 cup graham crackers*, crushed into a fine powder
- 1 cup old fashioned oats, pulsed once or twice
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup white chocolate chips
- 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
- Place six sheets of graham crackers into a blender or food processor. Pulse into a fine crumb. Clear out the graham crackers (don’t worry about leaving behind some residue) and place the oatmeal into the blender. Pulse two or three times or until they’re just a bit finer but not like a flour. You will still want to see the oat grains.
- Next, in a large bowl, melt the butter in thirty second intervals. It should take about a minute total and then stir out the unmelted chunks. They will melt once you stir them.
- Add the cup of peanut butter to the melted butter and stir until incorporated.
- In a separate bowl, add the powdered sugar, cocoa powder, graham crackers, old fashioned oats and brown sugar. Mix together until everything is evenly incorporated. Then add to the peanut butter/butter mixture.
- Mix the dry ingredients and the peanut butter and butter with a hand mixer until everything is evenly incorporated.
- Add the white chocolate chips and dark chocolate chips until evenly dispersed.
- Spray a 9″ by 13″ pan and line with parchment paper. (The parchment paper isn’t necessary.)
- Pat the mixture into the pan. At this point, I added a few extra chocolate chips on the top to decorate them a bit. Then transfer the mixture to the freezer.
- Let freeze for about a half hour, then into bars directly in the pan. Then, after cutting the bars, remove them from the pan and enjoy!
- They’re best kept in the freezer, but they’re also great at room temperature.
- *Make them gluten free by using gluten free graham crackers and gluten free oats. Or, eliminate the graham crackers all together and use an extra cup of powdered sugar instead!