Peanut Butter Cup Pretzel Cheesecake Bars

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Or try my Nutella swirl 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

Follow me on Instagram and tag #sallysbakingaddiction so I can see all the SBA recipes you make. 

More cheesecake recipes to try!

  • Peanut Butter Cup Pretzel Cheesecake Bars
  • 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
  • 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:

    1. 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.
    2. 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.
    3. 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.
    4. 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.
    5. 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.
    1. 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.
    2. 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.
    3. 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.
    4. 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.
    5. 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.

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© 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. Some of the links above are affiliate links, which pay me a small commission for my referral at no extra cost to you! Thank you for supporting Sally’s Baking Addiction.

 

 

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

 

 

151 Comments

  1. Oh my Sally….you’ve done it again! These look positively SINFUL! I’ve never combined pb with pretzels before, but you had me at pb and cheesecake! Can’t wait to try these!!

  2. Holy moly! Sally, frankly I’m not sure if I want to love you or hate you for this post. It couldn’t have come on a worse day (the last day of my 3 day juice cleanse) but it couldn’t have been a better recipe. Everything looks flawless from the pretzel crust to the cheesecake filling to the chocolate drizzle. Can’t wait to try it!

    1. Thanks Aimee! You would love these. The pretzel crust was my favorite part – actually, it is all my favorite part! Hope you get to try them. Thanks!

  3. Oh my, Oh my…these look perfect!!! Pretzels…cream cheese…Reese’s…it doesn’t get any better than that! Thanks so much for posting!

  4. Oh dear God! I’m 22 weeks pregnant, still with morning sickness, and this is the first dessert that’s gotten me excited to bake again! Wow!

  5. These look so rich and divine! I too can’t get enough of peanut butter, chocolate, and pretzels–the ultimate sweet and salty trifecta! And to put those awesome ingredients into a cheesecake, I don’t think it could get any better. As always, your pictures look awesome Sally!! They make me want to reach straight into the computer and grab a square or five. 🙂

    1. Thanks Elaine! This dessert is so dangerously good. I think you’d love it! And yes – PB, chocolate, and pretzels are an amazing trifecta. 😉

  6. You know those old cartoons where a character’s eyes will pop all the way out of their heads when they see something incredible? That’s why my eyes are doing right now. I can’t believe how much goodness you crammed into a baking pan, Sally. These are seriously dangerous and they need to get into mah belly right now!

  7. Oh my God Sally my I just put braces a week ago and I’m like crying that I can’t taste these! Me and my sister literally baked almost every recipe you had. Every recipe.

    Love your work
    Fess

    1. So sad you can’t make these, Fees! Maybe in a few weeks after you can have crunchy foods. So glad you love my website so much to bake so many recipes. 🙂

  8. I’ll bet Kevin forgave you for waking him up pretty quickly when he learned what you were making! 😉 I wonder how peanut-butter-filled pretzels would work for the crust…maybe to replace the butter? No that these are at all lacking in peanut-butter flavor, of course! 😀 Cheesecake is so amazingly versatile, and I love everything you do with it!

    1. He forgave me quite quickly, actually! 🙂 That would be a great idea to use peanut butter pretzels. I feel like you’d still need some butter though. If you ever try it, let me know! Thanks Caley!

  9. Girl these are going to blow up on Pinterest 🙂 I can smell and see a hit a mile away. Great job!

    The mini PB cups, the pretzel crust, the layers of flavor – the salty with sweet, the creaminess of the cheesecake against that crust and with the peanut butter filling and depth of flavors – oh I want one of these!

    One of my fave bars I’ve made this year used those mini PB cups and sweetened cond milk so I know I would love love love these. Pinned!

    1. I can’t believe how many views they’ve gotten in the past 6 hours already! I am in love with these bars, Averie. And they have your name written all over them!

  10. These are nothing short of heavenly Sally! I bet Kevin didn’t mind at all when he saw what you were making! What I wouldn’t do for one right now. Totally scrumptious.

  11. These will have to go on my list of things to make ASAP! I know they’ll blow my diet but, hey, who cares when you have something this good! 😉

  12. Variety is always a good thing, Sally! (So is a Wendy’s Frosty – yum.) These cheesecake bars look incredible – so many fun flavors together – and a pretzel crust?? Brilliant.

  13. Hello from your Maryland neighbor! These bars are hitting absolutely every taste bud! But for me….it’s that sweet and salty thing I love. I think we are both suffering from ADD…Addiction to Decadent Desserts! Gorgeous photos! : )

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