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Peanut Bars

With peanut butter in both the batter and frosting, plus chopped nuts sprinkled on top, these treats have triple the goodness. It's one of my favorite recipes for peanut bars. —Ren Reed, Tavares, Florida
  • Total Time
    Prep: 20 min. Bake: 20 min. + cooling
  • Makes
    4 dozen


  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup 2% milk
  • 3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 3-3/4 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 5 to 6 tablespoons 2% milk
  • 1 cup chopped unsalted peanuts


  • Preheat oven to 350°. Grease two 13x9-in. baking pans.
  • In a large bowl, cream butter, sugar and peanut butter until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla. In another bowl, whisk flour and baking powder; add to creamed mixture alternately with water and milk, beating well after each addition.
  • Transfer to prepared baking pans. Bake 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Meanwhile, for frosting, in a large bowl, beat peanut butter and butter until blended. Beat in confectioners’ sugar alternately with enough milk to reach spreading consistency.
  • Remove cakes from oven; place on wire racks. Spread frosting over warm cakes; sprinkle with peanuts. Cool completely.

Test Kitchen Tips
  • To soften butter super-quick, partially unwrap the butter (use the wrapped half as a handle to keep your hand clean) and shred it using the largest holes of your box grater. The butter will reduce to a fluffy heap and soften faster. Shredded butter is ready to use in your recipe right away.
  • Can't resist a taste before the party begins? Cut the bars and arrange them on a plate. Your guests will never guess there's a piece missing.
  • Hungry for more? Try these seriously good peanut butter desserts.
  • Every editorial product is independently selected, though we may be compensated or receive an affiliate commission if you buy something through our links.

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    • CarolYako
      Jan 4, 2019

      Made only one instead of two pans for a friend that loves peanut butter cake for her birthday. Itbwas delicious.

    • tiffanykorn
      Jan 31, 2017

      Made these and took them into work. Everyone loved them. They were simple to make but were very delicious. They were like a bar cookie mixed with sheet cake. Would totally make this recipe again!

    • Jenna092
      Aug 19, 2015

      I made these bars for a church fundraising event and they were a hit! Everyone loved how soft, creamy, and decadent they tasted! Very easy to make, and very quick, too!