No-bake chocolate peanut butter bars are thick, rich, and decadent. Originally published in 2013 and made from only 5 simple ingredients, these are a delicious treat anytime of the year. No oven required!
It’s no secret that many bakers love baking with peanut butter. Like these peanut butter cookies, a recipe that has lived on my site for years and serves as the base for so many of our other peanut butter favorites like peanut butter blossoms. But what about NO BAKING with peanut butter? No bake chocolate peanut butter bars combine an alluring flavor combination that we all love: chocolate and peanut butter. In this easy dessert, velvety smooth chocolate sits on top of a thick layer of peanut buttery goodness. The peanut butter layer tastes remarkably similar to the center of a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup.
The best part of all? They’re made from just 5 simple ingredients!
These no-bake peanut butter bars are a family favorite recipe. Every Christmas, my mom made a large tray of mini pecan pies, coconut macaroons, snowball cookies, and these glorious peanut butter bars. The competition was high, but you can imagine which dessert disappeared first.
I look forward to these bars every holiday season, so I quit limiting them to December. We make these no bake chocolate peanut butter bars all year long and they always cause a frenzy. In fact, I’ve never regretted making a double batch!
Why You’ll Love These Peanut Butter Bars
- Taste like peanut butter cups
- Only 5 ingredients
- Quick to make and even quicker to disappear
- Cut them as large or small as you want
- Freeze beautifully
- No oven needed
- Chocolate + peanut butter (!!)
No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Bar Ingredients
There are only 5 ingredients required for no bake chocolate peanut butter bars and I bet you have each one in your kitchen right now.
- Butter: Butter binds the powdered sugar and graham cracker crumbs. You can use salted or unsalted butter. If using unsalted, add 1/4 teaspoon salt when you add the peanut butter.
- Graham Cracker Crumbs: Graham cracker crumbs add structure and texture. You need about 8 full-sheet graham crackers for 1 cup of graham cracker crumbs.
- Peanut Butter: Peanut butter is the main ingredient and it’s actually used in both layers. For best texture, I suggest a processed creamy peanut butter such as Skippy. (I do not recommend oily or natural style peanut butter for this recipe, though I do make homemade peanut butter all the time! If you are looking for a recipe to use natural style peanut butter, these peanut butter cookies are for you.)
- Powdered Sugar: Powdered sugar keeps everything together and adds sweetness.
- Chocolate Chips: Because we can’t have chocolate peanut butter bars without chocolate!
How to Make No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars
The first step is to melt the butter. Mix the butter with the graham cracker crumbs, powdered sugar, and peanut butter. Press into a 9-inch square pan. Melt remaining peanut butter with chocolate chips. Pour on top of the peanut butter layer. Chill in the refrigerator until set, then cut into squares.
That’s it. You’re done. This is probably the easiest dessert you’ll ever make. Even easier than peanut butter balls and peanut butter eggs!
These 5 ingredient no-bake chocolate peanut butter bars are so easy. They’re fudgy, creamy, absolutely irresistible, and taste like peanut butter cups! Step away from the computer and run (don’t walk) to the kitchen to get started. Like, right now.
More Peanut Butter + Chocolate Recipes
- Peanut Butter Blossoms
- Peanut Butter Cup Tart
- Peanut Butter Balls
- No-Bake Cookies
- Monster Cookies
- Peanut Butter Cupcakes
- Peanut Butter Chocolate Swirl Cookies
More 5 Ingredient or Less RecipesPrint
No-Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 0 minutes
- Total Time: 2 hours, 10 minutes
- Yield: 20-24 squares
- Category: Dessert
- Method: No-Bake
- Cuisine: American
These no-bake chocolate peanut butter bars are incredibly decadent and made from only 5 ingredients.
- 1/2 cup (115g) salted butter, melted*
- 1 cup (120g) graham cracker crumbs (about 8 full sheet graham crackers)*
- 2 cups (240g) confectioners’ sugar
- 1 cup + 2 Tablespoons (280g) creamy peanut butter, divided
- 1 cup (180g) semi-sweet chocolate chips
- Line an 8×8 or 9×9 inch square baking pan with aluminum foil or parchment paper. Set aside.
- Mix the melted butter, graham cracker crumbs, and confectioners’ sugar together in a medium bowl. Stir in 1 cup (250g) of peanut butter, then press evenly into prepared baking pan.
- Melt remaining 2 Tablespoons of peanut butter with the chocolate chips in the microwave or on the stove. Stir until smooth. Spread over peanut butter layer.
- Chill in the refrigerator until completely firm, at least 2 hours. Allow to sit at room temperature for 10 minutes before cutting. Serve chilled. Setting them out for a few hours at room temperature for serving is OK.
- Cover leftover bars tightly and refrigerate for up to 1 week.
- Freezing Instructions: Cover bars tightly, as a whole or cut into individual squares, and freeze for up to 3 months. I simply line the squares in a freezer-friendly container between sheets of parchment paper. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before serving.
- Butter: Unsalted butter can be used instead. Add 1/4 teaspoon salt with the peanut butter in step 2.
- Peanut Butter: For best texture, I strongly suggest a processed creamy peanut butter such as Jif or Skippy. I do not recommend oily or natural style peanut butter for this recipe. You can use chunky-style peanut butter, though the bars can get a little crumbly.
- Graham Crackers: Don’t have graham crackers where you live? Use 120g ground digestive biscuits instead (about 8 biscuits).
- This recipe was updated in 2019 with more confectioners’ sugar and peanut butter to produce thicker bars.
Keywords: no bake chocolate peanut butter bars
Reader Comments & Reviews
Could white chocolate chips or chopped pieces of white chocolate work in place of the chocolate chips? Can’t tolerate semi-sweet or milk versions anymore.
Hi Joyce, we haven’t tried these with white chocolate, but let us know if you do!
I love this recipe but what is that magic tool you used to make the Grahm cracker crumbs? Sure made it look easy!
Hi Sally, We’re so glad you love this recipe! We use a food processor to grind the graham crackers.
For those needing a GF graham cracker without paying the high price for them, search for a recipe online. I make my own “graham” crackers that are hard to tell from the real ones. Simple Mills also makes a honey cinnamon cracker made from watermelon seeds that tastes like graham crackers.
Love your recipes and can’t wait to try this one. Would it be ok to use crunchy peanut butter? Would also like to add unsweetened coconut to the base. How much can I add without making it too crmbly? Thanks!
Hi Lisa, you can definitely make these with crunchy peanut butter. They’re usually a little more crumbly though. I’m unsure about adding unsweetened coconut. You may want to slightly reduce the graham cracker crumbs.
Wonder if I can make vegan for my vegan son and fiancé. Guess I would try a vegan stick butter and vegan choc chips.
Can you just use any type of sugar to make these ?
Hi Catherine, You should use confectioners’ sugar in this recipe.
I loved this recipe as is, but I’m wondering if using coconut oil instead of butter would be a good substitution in order to make these vegan?
Hi Maggie! We haven’t tested these bars using coconut oil, but it should work just fine.
LOVE, LOVE, LOVE these!! We make them often, though, so to protect our waistlines a bit I’ve reverted to what might be your original amount of sugar and I reduce the butter a bit too… I use 1/3 of a cup of melted butter and 1 cup of icing sugar, and we can’t tell the difference. SO delicious!!
This recipe is a great favourite with everyone
Try using a pastry blender to mix well
Add a few butterscotch chips to the chocolate for a different flour
I found that I used about 1 tbsp more of the crumbs because it was so moist
Crushed pretzels added to the crumbs was also a great addtion
I also mixed in crushed Rice Krispies
Great bars. I have been substituting different chocolates and have added some Score pieces to give it some crunch. Always turn out.
What are Score pieces? Never heard of those and would like to try the.
Where would one find these?
Thanks ahead of time for your reply.
I believe she meant Skor, not Score. I’ve never had a Skor bar but they are described as milk chocolate with crisp butter toffee candy bar. Seems similar to a Heath bar (one of my favorites!).
This recipe is fantastic. Could you substitute unsweetened baking chocolate and additional sugar for the chocolate chips?
Hi Kris, we haven’t tested it that way, but you could give it a try!
After YEARS of saving Sally’s recipes, I finally made one and it was a complete HIT! (Except the parchment paper…mine just tries to be very rebellious here.) Easy to make with ingredients I already had and little helpers who didn’t make too much of a mess, they tasted fantastic! We made one batch and immediately went into another. It’s been the perfect summertime treat. I plan on sending this out with my periodic hello cards.
Highly recommend cutting or somewhat cutting before a complete chill. “Some people” were so eager to get at them, they made more of a mess than needed, and risk cutting up my pan. So, I might par-chill, then cut, and then continue to chill.
I use this recipe all the time and everybody loves it
I made these yesterday and I absolutely LOVE them. I added more peanut butter and they are sooo delicious!! The next time I make them, I’m going to cut the sugar down to 1.25 cups.
Made these for the first time and will definitely make them again. Easy, quick and delicious! Your recipes never disappoint.
Can you spread up the chilling time by putting them in the freezer? Tasted the mix and it’s BOMB can’t wait to try the bars!
Hi Jenna, we don’t recommend it. The chocolate would be very difficult to cut if frozen. We hope you love them!
What can I substitute for the Graham crackers? I want them gluten free and I was thinking almond flour. Would that bind them enough? Or do you have any other suggestions?
Also I am substituting the peanut butter with almond butter. Ty!
Hi Meg, we don’t recommend using almond flour here — you’ll want something with more of a crunch like a cracker or cookie. You may be able to find gluten free graham crackers at your grocery store, or some readers have had success using digestive biscuits. In the meantime, here are all of our gluten free recipes if you’re interested.
Try Goodie Girl GF Cookies….YUM!
Update: Brought them to my friend who tried one….instant addict! Such an enabler I am! 😛
What size pan do these make?
Hi Jellie, this recipe calls for an 8×8 or 9×9 square pan. See step one for more info.
Got a batch chilling in the fridge right now and hopefully my lady friend who’s addicted to peanut butter bars will like them 🙂
Fantastic recipe, love these bars! I wanted to elevate them a little bit for adults so I added about a half teaspoon of cinnamon to the peanut butter graham cracker mixture and sprinkled some flaky sea salt on top. Perfection!
Made this for a family get together…everyone enjoyed. It was amazing and best part it did not heat up the kitchen!!
Sally and team, thank you so much! We are a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup loving family, and now we have a more affordable and just as delicious (if not more!) version to enjoy. My neighbors love you and these PB bars now too! You never cease to amaze me! Again, thank you!!
Is there a way to make this recipe gluten free?
Hi Uzma, you can try gluten-free graham crackers for a gluten-free version of these bars.
I make these with gluten free Graham cracker crumbs for grandson who has alergies. There is no difference in the result.taste just as yummy.
I just made these bars GF by using “Goodie Girl GF Birthday Cake Cookies”!! I ground them in the food processor (the entire box of WHOLE cookies), and then I only added 1 cup of confectioners sugar because the cream filling in the cookie adds great texture and sweetness to the mixture.
For the chocolate topping, I melted 1/2 cup MILK chocolate chips and 1/2 cup SEMI SWEET chocolate chips with the 2 Tbsp PB. It was a nice blend and balance of sweet and bitter.
I didn’t have graham crackers so I used Rice Chex. They were like puppy chow in a bar form and honestly addictive. I also didn’t want to do so much sugar so I split it with powdered milk (1 cup of each). You don’t miss the sugar. These are awesome!
These are so tasty. If you are a PB and chocolate fan you need to make these. I’ve made this 3x now and have used natural peanut butter (I like it better because I think it has more flavor and the processed stuff). The natural peanut butter does make the mixture more runny, so I add 2+ extra sheets of Graham cracker crumbs until the mixture thickens up like Sally shows in the picture. And I only use 1.5 cups powdered sugar. It ends up being plenty sweet. And for the chocolate on top, I use Hershey’s special dark chocolate bars- I think it’s much better than semi sweet.
So, I have a memory of Peanut Butter bars that a cousin used to make and I’ve never been able to find a recipe that could be the one. This I’m pretty sure is it! Served cold they are the best thing ever. Couldn’t be easier to make. I would make one tiny suggestion and that is to sift the powdered sugar before adding it. Other than that, this is the best and easiest treat you can make especially if you have someone in your party with a dairy allergy or sensitivity. I think I’m just going to make another batch and keep them in the freezer for emergency dessert.
My husband and I love this recipe. Being diabetic, I make them using sugar free peanut butter, stevia (in place of powdered sugar), and sugar free chocolate chips. Delicious!
Have you seen the powdered erythritol? I happened upon a bag at an Amish store thinking it was regular erythritol which I bake with frequently. Really glad to find that it is powdered and works like regular powdered sugar.
i always LOVE sally’s recipes, but i so wish she had more “healthier” treats! trying to stick with a better diet but i really miss making all of these delicious recipes… i was so excited to test this peanut butter goodness out 🙁
Such a fast & easy recipe…Yummy!
This recipe is sooooo yummy and easy to make. I’ve made it a few times for my peanut butter cup loving family and they all LOVE these.
Can I use Digestive Biscuits I’m living in Ireland and we can’t get Graham cracker crumbs. I’d love to make these with my grandson.
Hi Valerie, absolutely! Many readers have reported success using digestive biscuits instead.
Hi Sally! I’m allergic to peanuts. Is it possible to use Biscoff cookie butter in place of the peanut butter? If so, would that make the recipe too sweet? How should I adjust the recipe accordingly? Also, do you think Ritz crackers or Rice Krispies would be better in place of Graham crackers?
Thanks so much!
Hi Taylor! You can use Biscoff spread in place of the peanut butter with no other changes to the recipe. Enjoy!
Made these for my husband and he loved them!