With only 5 simple ingredients, these No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars are the perfect dessert to whip up for a party!
It’s been a little while since we’ve talked about books in this space, but I’ve actually been reading A LOT lately. I seem to go through spurts where I read like a T-Rex who can’t stop devouring every book in site, and then I hit a dry spell and don’t pick anything up for awhile. Luckily, the last few months I’ve been in full T-Rex mode, and have a few gems to show for it.
A couple months back, I picked up Kitchens of the Great Midwest. The book as a whole was not my favorite, but I really enjoyed the format. Each chapter is named for a food and tells the story of a person who is somehow linked to the main character, Eva Thorvald, a young and brilliant chef who we meet at the beginning of the book. Traveling around the midwest, each chapter gives us a glimpse into the foods and people that shaped Eva, including these Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars, made by Pat Prager, the epitome of a small town church lady.
Pat’s bars won first place at the state fair, but when she decides to submit them to a hoity-toity foodie bake-off, poor Pat finds herself having to defend her spectacularly simple and perfectly unhealthy bars to a slew of “enlightened” eaters.
Her bars contain only five ingredients, including horrifying grade A butter (the kind from actual cows!!), graham cracker crumbs (the gluten! Have mercy!), peanut butter (she couldn’t have at least used organic almond butter??), powdered sugar (good heavens!), and chocolate chips (not vegan. THE HORROR!).
I had to chuckle as I read. I have nothing against healthy food, of course, but there’s still something to be said for a good old fashioned dessert like this one. There’s not an ounce of fanciness or pretense here, it’s just an honest to goodness treat. If you love chocolate and peanut butter, these are going to be your new best friend. These are maybe the easiest desserts I’ve ever made. They’re completely no bake, and you can have them whipped up and ready to serve in less time than it takes to a watch an episode of The Good Place (which I’m loving, by the way).
These are pretty rich, so I like to cut them in small squares, but don’t be surprised if you find yourself reaching back for more than one small square! Save this recipe for one of those last minute dessert emergencies or put them on the menu for the Super Bowl. They will be a huge hit (as you can see), and, unlike Pat Prager, you won’t have to tell anyone they’re made with only five (very simple!) ingredients!
Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars
- 2 1/2 cups crushed graham cracker crumbs
- 1 cup melted unsalted butter
- 1 cup creamy peanut butter
- 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
- 1 cup milk chocolate chips with 1 tsp. butter (I substitute semi sweet chocolate chips sometimes)
- In a mixing bowl, mix together the graham cracker crumbs, butter, peanut butter, and powdered sugar. Press into a greased 9 x 13 inch pan.
- Place the chocolate chips and butter in a measuring cup and microwave, stirring every 30 seconds, until chocolate is melted and smooth. Spread the chocolate over the peanut butter layer. Place in the refrigerator until set. Cut into bars and serve.
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