Caramel Maple Peanut Butter Bars

Caramel Maple Peanut Butter Bars.

Caramel Maple Peanut Butter Bars

I’m way ahead of the Christmas season. My house has been decorated since the day after Halloween. I usually save my decorating for the day after Thanksgiving, but this year I needed the holiday cheer to come extra early. Luckily for me, I’m not the only one who started in on Christmas extra early. All of the grocery and retail stores are just as excited for the season as I am, which gives me all the more reason to peruse their seasonal aisles whenever I’m bored or need some Christmas cheer. I stocked up heavily on the Andes Peppermint Baking Chips that I used in my Peppermint Hot Chocolate Cookies recipe last year. I made such an abundance of those cookies and passed them out to friends, family, and neighbors… but the baking chips were gone from all of the stores by about December 10th. Apparently I wasn’t the only one who loves them.

Caramel Maple Peanut Butter Bars

I went to Target for some Christmas writing inspiration. While there I suddenly thought to check for the baking chips. I found them and bought about 12 bags. A little excessive, sure, but necessary. When I found them though… You wouldn’t beliiiieeeevvvveeee what else I found.

Kraft Caramel Baking Bits. Whhhhhaaaaaaaattttt?! Little round balls of caramel gooey goodness. In true Rachel fashion, I grabbed a couple of bags with no clue what I was going to use them for, but positive that they would inspire something amazing. Oh my goodness, did they ever.

The peanut butter cookie bars are soft and extra flavorful due to the addition of pure maple syrup and cinnamon. It’s like my favorite pancake toppings combination all in one cookie. The caramel bits melt into the most tantalizing goo and remain that way  which the cookies are warm or reheated, but they cool to hold their soft ball shape for an incredible burst of caramel flavor with each bite. I added dark chocolate chips on top which are totally optional. I happen to adore the peanut butter and chocolate combination and everybody knows that chocolate is packed full of magical cheer. And even though I’m in a supercharged holiday mood, these babies are great for any time of the year.

Caramel Maple Peanut Butter BarsCaramel Maple Peanut Butter Bars

  • 1/2 Cup Unsalted Butter
  • 1 Cup White Sugar
  • 1 Cup Peanut Butter (organic and unsalted recommended)
  • 1/2 Cup Pure Grade B Maple Syrup
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla Extract
  • 1 tsp. Ground Cinnamon
  • 2 1/2 Cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 1/2 tsp. Baking Soda
  • 1/2 tsp. Sea Salt
  • 1 Cup Kraft Caramel Bits
  • 1 Cup Dark Chocolate Chips

Preheat oven to 350°.

In a large bowl, mix together butter and sugar until incorporated. Add peanut butter and maple syrup, then eggs one at a time, and vanilla. Mix until well blended.

In another bowl, combine flour, cinnamon, baking soda, and sea salt. Slowly add dry mixture to the wet mixture, blending well to incorporate.

Stir in caramel bits.

In a 9×13 glass baking dish, spread the dough evenly. Top the dough by sprinkling with dark chocolate chips (optional).

Place in the oven for 20-25 minutes until edges begin to brown,

Remove from oven and allow to cool before cutting into squares or rectangles.

Caramel Maple Peanut Butter Bars

Caramel Maple Peanut Butter Bars
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Moist peanut butter cookie bars studded with gooey caramel bits, sweet maple and cinnamon, and topped with dark chocolate chips.
Author:
Recipe type: dessert
Serves: 30
Ingredients
  • ½ Cup Unsalted Butter
  • 1 Cup White Sugar
  • 1 Cup Peanut Butter (organic and unsalted recommended)
  • ½ Cup Pure Grade B Maple Syrup
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla Extract
  • 1 tsp. Ground Cinnamon
  • 2½ Cups All-Purpose Flour
  • ½ tsp. Baking Soda
  • ½ tsp. Sea Salt
  • 1 Cup Kraft Caramel Bits
  • 1 Cup Dark Chocolate Chips
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together butter and sugar until incorporated. Add peanut butter and maple syrup, then eggs one at a time, and vanilla. Mix until well blended.
  3. In another bowl, combine flour, cinnamon, baking soda, and sea salt. Slowly add dry mixture to the wet mixture, blending well to incorporate.
  4. Stir in caramel bits.
  5. In a 9×13 glass baking dish, spread the dough evenly. Top the dough by sprinkling with dark chocolate chips (optional).
  6. Place in the oven for 20-25 minutes until edges begin to brown,
  7. Remove from oven and allow to cool before cutting into squares or rectangles.

 

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3 Responses to “Caramel Maple Peanut Butter Bars”

  1. November 21, 2013 at 3:06 am #

    You are getting me in the holiday mood with your delightful bars. I think that the holiday came up and greeted me before I even had a chance to prepare. I think things will be delayed this year for me. Take care, BAM
    Bam’s Kitchen recently posted…Scallop Boats with Garlic VermicelliMy Profile

    • November 21, 2013 at 4:10 pm #

      But at least these particular bars are completely non-seasonal! :)

  2. November 26, 2013 at 12:38 pm #

    they look yummy!

Your comments make my heart (and my piglet) smile!

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