Peanut Butter Cup Pretzel Cheesecake Bars.

Thick peanut butter cheesecake filling on top of a salty pretzel crust, stuffed with Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, and a chocolate drizzle on top.

Peanut Butter Cup Pretzel Cheesecake Bars. All of my favorites in one! sallysbakingaddiction.com

I’m really sorry for doing this to you today.  Really, I am.

Apparently I’m all over the place this week. Sunday night I treated myself to a Wendy’s Frosty. Yesterday I made a large detox smoothie.  Today I’m stuffing my face with peanut butter cup cheesecake bars.

If there is such a thing as dessert A.D.D. – I have it.

Pretzel Crusted Peanut Butter Cheesecake Bars. Salty, crunchy crust with a decadent and creamy peanut butter cheesecake filling.  Topped with a decadent chocolate drizzle! sallysbakingaddiction.com

I adore the combination of peanut butter, chocolate, and pretzels. A-DORE. I have plenty of recipes on this website filled with desserts combining the three!  It’s the perfect trio. Salty, sweet, chocolatey, crunchy, peanut buttery, decadent.

I probably love cheesecake as much as I love peanut butter (yes, it’s true!), and these scrumptious bars have been on my to-do list for ages.  They will totally blow your diet, but they are worth every single minute on the treadmill!

You’re going to start with a pretzel crust. Yes, a buttery crust made from pretzels!  Crushed pretzels, sugar, and melted butter. Told you – this is not diet food!  You’ll need 1.5 cups of crushed pretzels, which is about 3 cups of actual pretzels.  Grind the pretzels up as much as you can. And make sure no one is sleeping in your house when you do so.  Hard pretzels in a food processor is L-O-U-D. Sorry I woke you up, Kevin. ;)

How to make a Pretzel Crust for pies and dessert bars. Read more at sallysbakingaddiction.com

Mix the ground up pretzels with the melted butter and sugar and press into your pan.  Bake the crust for about 10-12 minutes as you prepare the filling.  This salty pretzel crust can also be used for my S’mores Brownie Pie, Key Lime Pie Squares, or these Snickers Cheesecake Bars (yum!).

The pretzel crust is sort of crumbly.  There’s no way around it.  Pretzels cannot be ground up as finely as graham crackers, so just expect a few crumbs when you cut into and bite into these bars. Have a napkin handy!

The cheesecake filling is easy peasy. Cream cheese, egg, sugar, vanilla extract, and creamy peanut butter.  Beat all that together until smooth and mix in several Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups (the more, the merrier!). Pour on top of your pretzel crust.  Bake for 30ish minutes.  Chill the bars for 3 hours before cutting into squares. Waiting is torture. Pure torture.

Peanut Butter Cup Pretzel Cheesecake Bars. Unbelievably good. sallysbakingaddiction.com

A little chocolate drizzle is the cherry on top, no?  Melt a few chocolate chips with some peanut butter (yep, more peanut butter), and drizzle on top of each cheesecake bar. The drizzle is completely optional, but I never say no to more chocolate and peanut butter.

These cheesecake bars are so good it’s scary.  If you do NOT like sweet and salty desserts, this recipe is not for you.  The crust is made from salty pretzels, so yes – the crust will be salty!  The peanut butter cheesecake filling is undoubtedly the creamiest cheesecake on the planet. And there’s enough peanut butter cups mixed inside the filling to make my No-Bake Reese’s Bars jealous.

What I love most about these bars is how thick the filling is.  You won’t even believe it will fit into a tiny 8×8 pan. It will practically fill the entire pan.  These bars are so thick and monstrous.  It’s glorious.  They’re crunchy, creamy, salty, sweet, and dangerously addicting.  Quite frankly, I think I found my new favorite dessert!  And yours, too. ;)

Peanut Butter Cup Pretzel Cheesecake Bars. Unbelievably good. sallysbakingaddiction.com

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Peanut Butter Cup Pretzel Cheesecake Bars

Baking a cheesecake as bars is so much easier than an entire cheesecake! This recipe makes 16 cheesecake bars.

Ingredients:

Pretzel Crust

  • 1 and 1/2 cups (120g) very finely ground salty pretzels (about 3 cups whole pretzels)
  • 3 Tablespoons (35g) granulated sugar
  • 7 Tablespoons (100g) unsalted butter, melted

Peanut Butter Cheesecake Filling

  • 16 ounces (448g) cream cheese, softened to room temperature (not fat free)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup (125g) creamy peanut butter
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 10 regular sized Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, chopped (or 20 small)

Chocolate Drizzle

  • 1 Tablespoon (15g) creamy peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup (45g) chocolate chips

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350F degrees. Line bottom and sides of an 8x8 or 9x9 baking pan with aluminum foil, leaving an overhang on all sides. Set aside.

For the crust: In a food processor or blender, pulse salty pretzels into a fine crumb. See photo above for how it will look. Stir the pretzel crumbs, sugar, and melted butter together in a medium sized bowl. Press evenly into the lined pan. Bake for 10-12 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to slightly cool as you prepare the filling.

For the filling: Beat cream cheese, egg, sugar, peanut butter, and vanilla extract together with a hand or stand mixer until smooth and creamy, about 3 full minutes. Fold in the chopped Reese's cups and spread the mixture over crust. Bake for 28-32 minutes, or until the cheesecake has set up and the edges are lightly browned. Allow to cool completely in the refrigerator for at least three hours. Lift the foil out of the pan and cut into squares.

For the drizzle: Melt the peanut butter and chocolate chips together in a small bowl in the microwave. Stir until smooth and drizzle over squares.

Store bars in a covered container for up to 10 days in the refrigerator. Recipe can easily be doubled and baked in a 9x13-inch pan, baking time will vary - about 45-55 minutes.

© Sally’s Baking Addiction. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or link back to this post for the recipe.

 

 

Try my Snickers Cheesecake Bars next!

8 Ingredient Snickers Cheesecake Bars - no one can resist these!

 

Here are 15 Sweet & Salty Pretzel Recipes.

See more peanut butter recipes.

See more sweet & salty recipes.

See more cheesecake recipes.

Peanut Butter Cup Pretzel Cheesecake Bars. Unbelievably good. sallysbakingaddiction.com

 

 

   

134 Responses to “Peanut Butter Cup Pretzel Cheesecake Bars.”

  1. #
    61
    Ari @ Ari's Menuposted July 19, 2013 at 10:42 am

    You said it–chocolate, peanut butter and pretzels! Ugghh, I LOVE that combo so much too, and the second I saw a photo of these, I knew they were going to be one of my favorites. Thick sweet and salty crust, thick creamy filling–to die for!

    Reply

    • Sallyreplied on July 19th, 2013 at 11:17 am

      Ari, these are right up your alley! You would LOVE them.

      Reply

  2. #
    62
    Stevieposted July 19, 2013 at 2:48 pm

    Hi Sally-
    Fairly new to your site. LOVE it! Have drooled over many of your recipes. I made these Peanut Butter Cup Pretzel Cheesecake Bars yesterday – one word – Decadent! My kids want to nominate me for Mother of the Year now that they’ve tasted these. Thank You for all your hard work and creativity.

    Reply

    • Sallyreplied on July 19th, 2013 at 4:05 pm

      Hi Stevie! So glad you made these! And yes, they are very decadent! And you definitely deserve to be crowned Mother of the Year!

      Reply

  3. #
    63
    Stephanieposted July 19, 2013 at 9:18 pm

    Evil. That’s what my best friend will call me when I feed him these.

    Reply

    • Sallyreplied on July 20th, 2013 at 8:33 am

      Well I hope you both enjoy them! Thanks Stephanie.

      Reply

  4. #
    64
    Hayley @ The Domestic Rebelposted July 20, 2013 at 7:34 pm

    Sally, you’re killing me! The cheesecake.. the peanut butter cups.. the pretzels.. the everything about this is swooning me!

    Reply

    • Sallyreplied on July 21st, 2013 at 6:44 pm

      Hey girlie!! I knew you’d love these cheesecake bars! Hope you are doing well and having an awesome summer! xo

      Reply

  5. #
    65
    Monicaposted July 23, 2013 at 6:01 pm

    I follow you on Pinterest.

    Reply

  6. #
    66
    Gramma Kayeposted July 28, 2013 at 8:33 pm

    Dessert A.D.D.! After all these years I finally have a diagnosis! lol ;-)

    Reply

  7. #
    67
    Emilyposted August 2, 2013 at 2:46 pm

    Made these for a work potluck and they were completely gone by the end! So delicious! I may have added some extra reeces cups on top of the drizzle, but I would definitely recommend. The crust is crumbly, but everyone said that didn’t matter. Maybe add extra butter to keep it more together?

    Reply

    • Sallyreplied on August 2nd, 2013 at 6:13 pm

      Hi Emily! I’m so glad you loved these cheesecake bars. Adding more butter to the crust could make it too moist and not crunchy at all. Though I’ve never tried it before, I don’t think it would solve the problem.

      Reply

  8. #
    68
    Bonnieposted August 7, 2013 at 11:31 am

    This look positively delicious for me, but I am wondering what could be used in place of the peanut butter cups for a grandchild with a peanut allergy, any suggestions.

    Reply

    • Sallyreplied on August 7th, 2013 at 1:18 pm

      Hi Bonnie – there is also peanut butter in the cheesecake as well. You culd just leave it out and use chocolate chips instead of the pb cups.

      Reply

  9. #
    69
    Libbyposted August 19, 2013 at 2:48 pm

    Sally, as of last night I was a first time visitor. After I made this recipe this morning, I think I’m hooked for life! Thanks so much for this phenomenal recipe and keep up the amazing work!

    Reply

    • Sallyreplied on August 19th, 2013 at 2:58 pm

      Libby – welcome! I am so happy to have you as a follower. And I’m glad you love these cheesecake bars. They are SO good!

      Reply

  10. #
    70
    Mariaposted August 20, 2013 at 8:51 pm

    Sally – do you grease the pan before you put the crust in it?

    Reply

    • Sallyreplied on August 20th, 2013 at 8:51 pm

      No – just use aluminum foil without greasing.

      Reply

  11. #
    71
    Darlaposted August 26, 2013 at 9:58 am

    I am making these today—-they look fabulous! I need to make a larger batch—can I double the recipe and put in a 9×13 pan?

    Reply

    • Sallyreplied on August 26th, 2013 at 10:47 am

      Hey Darla! You sure can. For about 45-55 minutes. Keep a close eye on them at 40 minutes though.

      Reply

  12. #
    72
    Vimithaposted August 30, 2013 at 10:49 am

    Hi Sally, I have a question, am planning to make this for my huss who is a PB freak. If I half the quantity will I be able to make it in a 7.5″ square cake pan… Thanks in advance…

    Reply

    • Sallyreplied on August 30th, 2013 at 1:26 pm

      Hi Vimitha – yes, you can bake in a 7.5 inch square pan. Enjoy!

      Reply

  13. #
    73
    Carlotta Jenkinsposted November 4, 2013 at 12:02 am

    Hi again,Sally!Carlotta here.Just wanted to let you know,that this recipes is really to die for.Personally,I’m not really a big fan of pretzels,but after an afternoon of baking some of these for a cousin of mine’s surprise birthday party and tasting one of them,I fell in love.Sweet and salty crust,topped with Reese’s pieces and chocolate syrup,this is certainly a recipe to go bananas for!;)

    Reply

  14. #
    74
    Lilyposted February 6, 2014 at 11:44 am

    Sally I made these, but something was off. The cheesecake part wasn’t sweet enough. Would you suggest I add more sugar? Thank you!

    Reply

    • Sallyreplied on February 6th, 2014 at 12:25 pm

      Even with all the sugar in the PB cups? Feel free to add more sugar. Perhaps 1/2 cup will be better for you. Thanks Lily!

      Reply

  15. #
    75
    Elizabethposted April 12, 2014 at 4:31 pm

    Made these today and…wow!! So tasty and indulgent but at the same time not so heavy I regret eating it after! I love this site and it’s teaching me to live a little and not make everything have to be healthy :) I think something homemade like this still beats store bought any day! At least I know what’s in it!

    Reply

    • Sallyreplied on April 12th, 2014 at 6:10 pm

      Life is all about balance, Elizabeth! That’s what I always say. Happy you loved these!

      Reply

  16. #
    76
    Janelleposted May 7, 2014 at 11:10 am

    Do you think a little light corn syrup in the crust would help keep it together better?

    Reply

    • Sallyreplied on May 7th, 2014 at 1:55 pm

      You could try that – though my crust does hold up well, only slightly crumbly. That’s what you get with pretzels. Let me know what you try.

      Reply

  17. #
    77
    Connieposted May 10, 2014 at 9:58 am

    Sally,

    I’ve been baking recipes from your blog for a few months now…it has become my go-to website when I want to find a great recipe!! These bars look scrumptious and exactly the kind of dessert I was looking for to make for Mother’s Day. I will use gluten-free pretzels for my son; in fact, I used Gratify Sea Salt Thins the last time I made a pretzel crust and they work even better than wheat pretzels. They don’t break your ear drums when you process them and the texture of the crust turns out just right!

    I can’t wait to try taste these tomorrow!!

    Connie

    Reply

    • Sallyreplied on May 10th, 2014 at 11:01 am

      Wonderful, Connie – hope you enjoy. And Happy Mother’s Day!

      Reply

  18. #
    78
    Aurelposted May 27, 2014 at 7:40 am

    Sally! If you remember me, i make alot of desserts from your blog and it always comes out amazing so im planning to make this too, one question though, do we bake the crust when the oven is preheated or when its still preheating? Please answer, thank you :)

    Reply

    • Sallyreplied on May 27th, 2014 at 11:41 am

      After being preheated. Enjoy, Aurel!

      Reply

  19. #
    79
    Tamaraposted June 25, 2014 at 9:41 pm

    love Reese’s peanut butter cups but this recipe was not my favorite. I think it would be better with a plain cheesecake filling and the peanut-butter cups instead of the peanut-butter cheesecake filling with the cups. It’s like eating a peanut butter pie. I wanted to taste the different flavors but all I tasted was peanut butter. The Reeses’s may have stood out more in a plain cheesecake batter.

    Reply

  20. #
    80
    Jaclynposted August 23, 2014 at 1:43 pm

    Hi looking to make these…have you ever made ahead and froze them? Cheesecake usually freezes ok but not sure about this crust ppl keep commenting on…

    Reply

    • Sallyreplied on August 23rd, 2014 at 6:29 pm

      I have never tried to freeze these, so I am unsure.

      Reply

  21. #
    81
    Susieposted August 26, 2014 at 10:43 pm

    I made these today for a teacher’s “back-to-school” potluck picnic. I am excited for my colleagues to try them. I’ve been snitching as I arranged them on the plate, and my oh my….how YUMMY! I did make a pretty major change though, and I’m very happy with the outcome. I used the Oreo crust from your Snickers cheesecake bar recipe instead of the pretzel crust. I was apprehensive to read about the crumbly-ness of the pretzel crust, so tried the Oreo crust hoping it would hold together better, and it was beautiful….no crumbling! AND very tasty with the peanut butter cups. Thanks for sharing TWO AMAZING recipes!

    Reply

    • Sallyreplied on August 27th, 2014 at 7:53 am

      Your version sounds great Susie. Thanks for reporting back!

      Reply

  22. #
    82
    Leiaposted September 19, 2014 at 1:53 pm

    Oh those look amazing!! What a great combination of all my favorite flavors. :) Found this on Pinterest, and repinned.

    Reply

  23. #
    83
    Jenposted November 16, 2014 at 3:30 pm

    Hi Sally,
    If I want to make these a little less thick (so I can get more bars out of the recipe), could I use the recipe as is in a 9×13 pan and just bake for a shorter length of time? I have the recipe as is in my oven now and I can’t wait to try them!

    Reply

    • Sallyreplied on November 17th, 2014 at 10:16 am

      I fear a 9×13 size pan would really be stretching it. But give it a shot! Let me know.

      Reply

  24. #
    84
    Joannaposted December 17, 2014 at 6:11 pm

    Yummy! And very easy to make. I used chocolate cream cheese instead of the regular stuff and about 30 Reese’s minis, and I baked in an 8×8 pan with fantastic results.

    Next time, I might do do half pretzels, half graham for the crust in the hopes that it sticks together a little better. And for more of a salty-pretzely kick, I’ll add pretzel pieces to the cheesecake-part itself. Maybe some salted caramel on top, too. Oh, my sweet tooth is gettin’ excited!!!

    Reply

  25. #
    85
    Caleesposted December 18, 2014 at 12:17 pm

    So I am shocked that of all the add-ins people have thought of, no one has thought of drizzling caramel on top, sprinkled with sea salt! I will be making these in two days, the day before a Christmas family reunion. I can’t make it any sooner for risk of eating them all beforehand! I can’t wait to try these!

    Reply

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