This easy recipe for no-bake peanut butter chocolate bars is just the thing when you’re craving a quick treat made with the irresistible combination of chocolate and peanut butter!
Classic Peanut Butter Bars
This recipe for no-bake peanut butter bars or some version of it has been around for a very long time. There are usually at least a couple of good reasons that a recipe has that kind of staying power. In the case of these bars, it’s not only that they’re delicious, but they are also ridiculously simple to make.
Now, you’ve probably had these bars before, but if you haven’t, you can expect a texture similar to peanut butter cups, but a taste reminiscent of Butterfinger bars. They’re surprisingly delicious for the tiny amount of effort (and handful of ingredients) involved in making them. The hardest part of making these may be waiting on them to chill!
These peanut butter bars offer that often elusive dessert trifecta—simple, quick, and delicious. It’s the kind of recipe that you’ll find yourself making over and over because they’re great for sharing, but also easy enough to whip up whenever you’re craving some chocolate and peanut butter goodness.
What You’ll Need
Scroll down to the recipe card to find the ingredient quantities and recipe instructions. Here are some notes about the ingredients you’ll need to make these no bake peanut butter bars.
- Confectioners’ sugar – Also known as powdered sugar.
- Graham cracker crumbs
- Peanut butter – You can use creamy or crunchy, but either way, use the shelf-stable kind, not the natural varieties that need to be stirred.
- Unsalted butter – Learn more: Unsalted or Salted Butter: Which is Better for Baking?
- Salt – This is optional, but highly recommended. Even just a pinch of salt will add a bit more interest to this flavor party.
- Semisweet chocolate – Use chocolate bars or discs if you can, because they will melt better than chocolate chips.
How Do You Make Graham Cracker Crumbs?
You can find boxes of graham cracker crumbs in the baking aisle at the grocery store, but you can also make your own by pulsing graham crackers in a food processor until they’re finely ground. If you buy the kind that have 4 graham crackers per sheet, you’ll need approximately 12 sheets for 1 1/2 cups of crumbs.
How to Make No-Bake Peanut Butter Chocolate Bars
You’re just a few minutes away from the best peanut butter bars ever! Here’s what you’ll need to do.
Prepare. Lightly grease a 9 x 13″x 2″ pan. For easier removal, you can line the pan with parchment paper and then grease the paper.
Make the peanut butter layer. In a large mixing bowl, stir together the confectioners’ sugar, graham cracker crumbs, peanut butter, and melted butter until well-combined.
Chill. Spread the peanut butter mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan. Refrigerate for 10 minutes.
Melt the chocolate. Place the chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave at half-power in 30-second intervals until the chocolate is completely melted and smooth when stirred.
Add the chocolate layer. Use a rubber spatula or offset spatula to spread the melted chocolate over the chilled peanut butter layer.
Chill again, then serve. Place the pan in the refrigerator for at least an hour; when you’re ready to serve, let the bars sit at room temperature for about 10 minutes before cutting.
Tips for Success
There’s really not much to this recipe, but these additional tips will help you achieve peanut butter chocolate bar perfection.
- Don’t skip the chilling. If you spread the warm chocolate over the peanut butter layer without chilling it first, your layers will mix together.
- Add some salt. The salt is optional, but it takes these no-bake peanut butter chocolate bars to the next level. You can add salt to the peanut butter, or even sprinkle some flaky Maldon salt or fleur de sel over the chocolate before it sets.
- Make perfect squares. Let the bars sit at room temperature for at least 10 minutes to keep the chocolate layer from cracking when cut. Get out a ruler and make small notches in the bars to mark where you want to cut. Then, use a large chef’s knife to make quick, confident cuts through the bars.
This is the kind of recipe that’s quite amenable to tweaks and changes. You can add chopped peanuts, Reese’s Pieces, or chopped candy bars in the peanut butter layer or over the chocolate layer.
If you’d like to make these bars for someone with peanut allergies, sunflower seed butter works well as a substitute.
How to Store
Store no-bake peanut butter chocolate bars in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
Can This Recipe Be Frozen?
Yes, these peanut butter bars can be frozen. Place them in a single layer in an airtight container (or separate the layers with parchment paper) and freeze for up to two months. Let the bars thaw overnight in the refrigerator before enjoying.
24 Comments on “No-Bake Peanut Butter Chocolate Bars”
Despite my overpowering love of all things PB+Choc, somehow I have managed to not yet make these or any version of them. Look so good!
I’ve got to try these bars. Pinned.
BUTTERFINGER taste, you say??!!
oh man. I like the idea of these even MORE now!
YUM. These are going to haunt me until I make them!
Perfect for sharing on Valentine’s Day!
Hello peanut butter and chocolate bars! These are too easy which means they are too dangerous!
Jen- I’ve been making these bars for 20 years! They truly are fabulous and so easy. I mix everything up in a Cuisinart which makes it even easier! Everyone always loves them- a perfect go-to bar that takes about 10 minutes!!
I love it when you see something that looks so delicious, you scroll down and there’s a tiny list of ingredients. Sheer joy. Thanks for sharing such a tempting and easy recipe!
A cross between butterfingers and Reese’s…AND it’s no bake?! These are almost too good to be true!
Butterfinger? that’s all you needed to say. 🙂 Definitely making these! Pinned 🙂
We are making them today! Today is cookie bak day for family G I s. Gotta get them on the mail! Let me sample them too, OK?
These look great, and simple. I’ve made a very similar thing before, but with crushed corn flakes instead of graham crackers. I love the idea of graham crackers, though!
I made these last night & took them to a friend’s house- they were devoured, & I had to email everyone the recipe when I returned home. They taste EXACTLY like a Reese’s peanut butter cup. Absolutely fantastic recipe!
Really like the looks of the peanut butter & chocolate bar
This is pretty interesting, a little twist for an all time favorite snack bites.
I might suggest trying milk chocolate chips for the frosting instead of semi – sweet. This could depend on your preference for chocolate, however me being not a huge fan of semi – sweet feel this would be a nice alternative. Just a thought. I really enjoyed them otherwise. Thanks for posting the recipe!
I grew up on these I add a tsp of vanilla to the peanit butter mixture and i put 1/2 c peanut butter in with the chocolate lets them stay creamier. I use semi-sweet, milk, white, and butterscotch sometimes individually sometimes swirled. My personal favorite it the butterscotch
I was thinking.. maybe just use salted butter (perfect amount of salt for me) then you wouldn’t have to add salt?
Made these only difference I made a chocolate graham cracker crust layer then added the peanut butter layer & then the chocolate chip layer. Added a whole new dimension to the dessert.
I was thinking the same thing.
Can you freeze these?
Hi, Nancy. They should freeze well if wrapped tightly and sealed. Toppings like this one sometimes don’t look their best after being frozen, but the flavor and texture shouldn’t be affected.
Made them last evening for a group of 8. Everyone said they tasted good, but the peanut butter part texture was like they were mixed with sand.
Definitely making these! Looks so tasty!