Friday, August 8, 2014

chocolate + peanut butter chip cookie bars...

My husband and I are two totally different people when it comes to how we like to eat our cookies. 

He has this weird thing where he'll dip his cookie into a glass of milk and then immediately suck all the milk out of said dipped cookie. It makes this ridiculous sound that honestly, kind of creeps me out. Then he'll take a bite and do it all over again. I've never known the full point of eating a cookie that way. A tiny amount of cookie flavored milk, maybe? 

I, on the other hand, like to dip my cookie into a nice cold glass of milk for no longer than 5 seconds, immediately take a bite out of that milk-saturated bit, chew once or twice, and then take a swig of milk before finishing to chew bite and swallowing. Maybe that's weird too. I'll tell you why I do it my way though- it makes a delicious bite sized cookie mouth milkshake. And I love that. Haha. I'm so gross. Then I'll dip another bit of cookie into the milk and do it all over again. 

Bill HATES that I swig mouthfuls of milk after each bite. Maybe that's because we're ridiculous and share everything, including ONE glass of milk for all our cookies. You'd think we'd learn. Going on 13 years together folks.

Another weird thing? This is my fourth bag of those dang peanut butter chips from Trader Joe's. But my first recipe using them. As soon as my beady eyes saw them, I snatched up two bags (you know, to bake with), opened one up to try and finished the whole bag within a few days. I meant to bake with the other bag, but you know....hormones happened and all my brain wanted to snack on for days on end were those blasted peanut butter chips. By the way, they are AMAZING sprinkled over salty fresh popped popcorn! That bag was a goner.

The next time I was at my beloved Trader Joe's I snatched up two more bags, swearing this time I'd bake with them...but between Bill and I (and a few stressful weeks) one bag was dunzo before we knew it. Enough was enough and for peanut butter chip's sake I needed to bake something with those chips! I needed to show you guys how delicious they were (in something)! 

So before another hormonal or stress filled week hit us, I whipped up some cookie bars for two sweet birthdays coming up. My mom and I were headed to my godmother's house to celebrate hers one weekend, so they were a must for that. Then, my very, very, very dear friend Amy was right after. Now, Amy loves cookies like no other. I recently called her the "real life cookie monster" to which she replied, "that's the sweetest thing anyone has ever said to me!" Haha. Love that girl. 

I didn't want to show up to these loved one's birthday's with just some basic cookies though; it was their birthday for goodness sakes! So I got the best dark chocolate chunks I could find, the best butter I could find, added a full cup of my hoarded and addicting peanut butter chips, and then baked some ooey gooey cookie bars for all their birthday eating pleasures. 

Makes 18 bars
For printable recipe, click here

  • 2 sticks (8oz) sweet cream unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup granulated cane sugar
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 (10oz) bag peanut butter chips (I got mine from the beloved Trader Joe's), or about 1 1/3 cups
  • 1 (10oz) bag dark chocolate chips (or chunks the size of chips), or about 1 1/3 cups

1. Lightly grease the sides and bottom of a 9x13" baking pan. Line sides and bottom with enough parchment paper so that it hangs off sides a little (to grab later and help remove bars). Preheat oven to 375°F.

2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, fitted with a paddle attachment, cream your butter and sugars on medium high until light and fluffy in color- about 3-4 minutes. 

3. Stop, scrape down sides and bottom of bowl, and then beat in your eggs, one at a time. Make sure to stop mixer and scrape down after each addition. Add in your vanilla extract. 

4. In a separate bowl, whisk together the all purpose flour, baking soda and sea salt. Add dry mix to the butter mix and stir on low speed until just combined. Stop mixer and scrape down sides and bottom of bowl.

5. Finally, add in the peanut butter and chocolate chips and mix again until just combined.

6. Remove dough from bowl and place into the prepared baking dish. With very lightly damp hands, press out dough so that it covers entire bottom. Make sure to really get it into the sides and corners well, as well as spread out into a nice even layer. 

7. Place pan into oven, on the center rack, and bake for about 25-27 minutes, turning pan around half way through baking to ensure even browning. Bars are done when the center has puffed and entire surface is a nice light amber brown color.

8. Let bars cool in pan completely before trying to remove. Once cool, simply use the little overhang of parchment to pull entire thing out of pan. You can also chill entire pan in fridge, once cool to the touch, until totally cold for super easy cutting and slicing. 

9. Once you're ready to slice, peel back parchment paper and with a large, sharp knife cut bars into as many or few servings as you'd like! I got 18 bars (6 across, 3 down) with one pan. Can easily be cut smaller if need be. 

Serve bars room temperature for best flavor! You can also make dough ahead of time, press into pan and wrap in plastic wrap to freeze for a later date. Allow to sit in fridge overnight before baking. Baking time will increase. You can also bake ahead of time, wrap in plastic, and store in fridge for up to 3 days. Allow to come to room temperature before serving.

Super easy to transport to your friend's house or anywhere for upcoming bbq's or picnics!

Crispy and crunchy around the edges, chewy and gooey in the center. These cookie bars are every chocolate chip and peanut butter loving cookie monster's dream come flipping true. Now, where's my ice cold milk?


  1. I am salivating.
    drooling actually YUM!

  2. These look delicious! I eat chocolate chips right out of the bag allll the time too:)

  3. abby - little city adventuresAugust 8, 2014 at 5:38 PM

    mmmmm that looks super yummy! But I think it would be dangerous if I bought peanut butter chips ha

  4. So glad I'm not the only one. The peanut butter chips are dangerous!

  5. Oh man do I know! It is dangerous! They tasted just like reese's pieces!

  6. OH MY LANTA! Drooling. Girl you have got to move here so I can be your taste tester. ;)

  7. These look so amazing! My day is calling for some of those. I need all things sweet and chocolaty.

  8. Oh dear, do I know that feeling well. So hope you find time to make a batch or even a half batch!


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