Peanut Butter Chocolate Bars

I wanted to make a treat for my friend who is a big fan of the taste combination of peanut butter and chocolate.  I was all set on brownies with Reese’s chips, then my mom asked if I had ever had these bars.  It’s a recipe modified from the popular Cake Mix Doctor.  A recipe from a box of cake mix?  That’s is fine by me because that eliminates a lot of mess and ingredients!  The result is a chewy mess of peanuts and gooey chocolate that satiates any peanut butter/chocolate craving!

Peanut Butter Chocolate Bars

Ingredients

  • 1 box plain yellow cake mix (Do not use “pudding in the mix” versions!  I know Duncan Hines makes a non-pudding box.)
  • 1 cup chunky peanut butter
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 12-oz package of milk chocolate chips
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk (Eagle Brand)
  • 2 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped, unsalted peanuts
  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees
  2. Line a 9×13 baking pan with heavy duty aluminum foil across the pan and out each side for handles to lift the bars from the pan after cooling.
  3. Spray foil with cooking spray to prevent sticking
  4. Melt the stick of butter, set aside
  5. For the crust, place the cake mix, peanut butter, melted butter and eggs in a bowl and beat on low speed for 1 minute.  Mix will be thick and a little greasy.
  6. Reserve 1 1/2 cup of the crust mix for later
  7. Spread the remaining crust  mix over the foil lined pan, pushing with your fingers until it is pressed evenly into the bottom of the pan.
  8. For the filling, place chocolate chips, 2 Tbsp butter, and condensed milk in a microwavable bowl and melt the chocolate in the microwave on high for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes, stopping to stir frequently to prevent the mixture from curdling.
  9. Stir in vanilla to the melted chocolate mixture, then spread over the crust.
  10. Top the chocolate layer with the reserved 1 1/2 cup crust mixture, crumbling it up with your fingers into crumbs the size of peas.
  11. Scatter the chopped peanuts over the top.
  12. Bake in the center of the oven for 30-35 minutes.
  13. Cool on a rack for at least 30 minutes before removing with foil handles.
  14. Place on a hard board (cutting board) and chill in the refrigerator 15-20 minutes or until the chocolate is set.
  15. Cut into bars and eat!

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