Pretzel Peanut Butter Chocolate Bars

My childhood experience with homemade peanut butter bars was painful.  Dry, crumbly and needy (refrigerated coddling at all times) are descriptors that come to mind while reminiscing.

Even worse was when my friend’s parents used to paint the sweet, peanut-y centers with a boldly dark, bitter chocolate causing my highly desensitized teenage pallet to cringe.

I was a milk chocolate purist.  The mere peep of a parent beginning their lecture about getting older and everything tasting sweeter so that even a half of a peppermint tic tac becomes a sufficient dessert…

Whoa- almost nodded off there.  Yeah, nothing has changed 15 years later.

Today I have for you the bar I never had as a kid, but kicked up a notch.

It’s a sweet and light peanut butter filling sandwiched between an exciting, unexpected salty pretzel crust and a creamy, dreamy milk chocolate top.

Let me show you how this Pretzel Peanut Butter Chocolate Bar gets made…

Let a pretzel prove it can do anything a cookie can.

Help some crunchy become some creamy.

Syrup glue quality control.  See if your hand sticks.  Evaluate while licking.

Then you take the peanuts and you spread ’em, you spread ’em.

Down the hatch!  Well, maybe slice them first.

Come to mama!

Pretzel Peanut Butter Chocolate Bars

It’s that scrumptious peanut butter and chocolate pairing, but with a new friend along for the ride.  Subtly salty and assertively crisp, the pretzel crust is a welcomed surprise in this sweet dessert bar.  These will be your go-to recipe for the kids after school- or the parents after work.

Ingredients

Crust

  • 1 C very fine salted pretzel crumbs
  • 5 T butter, softened
  • 2 T granulated sugar

Syrup Paste

  • 2 T brown rice syrup
  • 1 T peanut butter

Filling

  • 1/2 C butter
  • 1/2 C peanut butter
  • 4 graham crackers
  • 1 C powdered sugar

Topping

  • 1 1/2 C chocolate chips- milk or semi sweet

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F and grease an 8×8 pan.
  2. In a food processor, blend pretzels, sugar and butter until completely combined.  Press into bottom of pan and bake in preheated oven for 10 min.
  3. Mix together the syrup and peanut butter.  This is the “glue” that holds your peanut butter filling to the crust.  Allow the crust to cool to warm and then add the syrup and peanut butter mixture to the top of the crust.  Spread carefully so as not to disrupt the crust surface, but while still covering most of the crust layer.
  4. To make filling, blend the grahams in a food processor until they become fine crumbs.  Add other three ingredients and blend until combined.  Spread this mixture over the crust evenly.
  5. Finally, melt the chocolate chips over a double boiler.  Spread evenly on the peanut butter filling and allow to cool to room temperature.  You can put it in the fridge for an hour to expedite this process if desired.  Slice and enjoy!
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