Thursday, June 24, 2010

Yummy Bars.

End of school = lots of parties! In middle school, the end of school was filled with mindless movies and treats.  As the end nears each year in high school, students begin to cram for the finals that they have to take and the parties are accompanied by review packets and educational films.  This year I only have to take three of the five finals :)

Come wednesday, Junior year will be IS over! Thank goodness! I love summer, however, my list of things to do this summer is crazy long!!
EMT class
College Essay(s)
College Visits
Baking and Blogging!!!!!! (most important--obviously)
Read 3 books for AP Lit and keep a journal
10 hrs worth of AP Calculus work

My EMA (elementary math analysis; aka--honors trig) teacher, who happens to be my lacrosse coach, decided that we wouldn't need 3 days to review for the final so instead to would spend 2 reviewing and one having a party.

The ultimate question: what to bake?  I had my eye set on some sugar cookie bars because they seem easy and sugar cookies are my favorite!!  However, as you can see from the pictures above, I did not make sugar cookie bars...

I glanced over to the stove and spotted the GIANT tub of oats from Costco I had my mamma buy.  Now that schools over I probably wont be having oatmeal every morning for breakfast and figured I needed to make a dent in those pounds of oats.  I spotted these a while back and it all clicked! I was going to use this recipe as a basis for a bar.

I kept the cookie crust the same as the recipe.  BUT I did not have peanut butter chips so instead I used 2 1/2 cups of semi-sweet chips, a heaping 1/2 cup peanut butter and about 7 oz. of caramels!  Topped with Milk chocolate chips and toffee bits.  I wish I added toffee bits in the cooking, oh man! I feel like this recipe can be adapted so many ways and I can't wait to try other! White chocolate? Butterscotch? Rice Krispie cereal stirred in?

I couldn't name them.  People kept asking what they were and I didn't know what to say.  I tried to describe them saying "an oatmeal cookie crust with a chocolatey-peanutbuttery and some caramel filling type thing" Because I am really descriptive ;) My friend kept saying brownie--if there is one thing these are not, it is a brownie (sorry buddy) To be fair, he just saw the top of them and saw chocolate.  My name (for now) is yummy bars because oh boy are these yummy!!! If you want to be more descriptive you can call them peanut butter and chocolate yummy bars with a cookie crust.  But thats a mouth ful.  Easier way--just tell them to eat it!

Here is what you will need:
1 cup light brown sugar, packed
2/3 cup butter
1/4 cup light corn syrup
1/4 cup peanut butter
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3 1/2 cups old-fashioned oats
2 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup peanut butter, heaping!
7 oz. caramels (25 individually wrapped) [not pictured]
1 tablespoon butter
milk chocolate chips and toffee bits for topping [not pictured]

How to measure 2/3 cup of butter...

Add butter and brown sugar in a pot

Also add in the light corn syrup

and melt all together on the stove

Time to stir in the vanilla and peanut butter goodness
peanut butter plop in action--slightly blurry but I chuckled at the sploosh

Post stirring in the nutty butter and vanilla

OATS! (3 1/2 cups worth) carby deliciousness <3 

Pour the mixture over the oats

and mix until all of the oats are covered and then dump into a 13 x 9 baking dish lined with tin foil AND greased (peanut butter = sticky!)

Spread the mixture out (evenly) and bake for 10-12 minutes at 375 degrees (until slightly golden)
you really DONT want to over cook these or they will get too crispy (blech)

I cleaned up a bit while they were cooking and then started to make the candy bar filling once it was out of the oven

I cleaned the saucepan I used to make the crust but you can easily just use the same one messy and all, think of it as "seasoned"

Melt the chocolate chips...

**camera died after I took this pic...oh no! 
no fret though I just ran upstairs and grabbed mommy's camera, I forgot how different it is! I got so used to my point and shoot that the big camera felt so heavy! I love it though!

peanut butter

and 26 of these caramels by Kraft (or just 7 oz. of caramels --they really add to the texture, not so much the flavor)

It started getting stiff after the shot above was taken so I added 1 tablespoon of butter.  Just what it needed!

When it looks like that, its done ;) All of the butter is melted and well incorporated and it looks like it has the texture of a mousse (but it doesn't)

After the cookie crust has cooled for about 15 minutes, add the filling, or well topping
Use the back of a spoon to shmear it all around

Once smoothed out, finish with milk chocolate chips and Heath toffee bits

Pat, pat, pat...

It's going to be difficult but pop in the fridge for 2 hrs or until the "chocolate bar" is set
Okay so I might have scooped some out to try. You know, for quality control... (it was delicious!)

Once set, cup up into squares and store in an air tight container (or serve them)
I left them out over night so they weren't rock solid.  Good decision :)

Another quality control check point...

I brought them all to school and they all went!! I will definitely be making these again!

I have many recipes to post! So I am asking you: What would you like to see next?
Chocolate Chip Coffee Cake with Chocolate Mousse filling
Easy Eggie Sandwich (Cookteen Lite!)
Peanut Chicken and Mushrooms with a delicious salad

Leave a comment on this post with your opinions!

With love and cupcakes,


1 cup light brown sugar, packed
2/3 cup butter
1/4 cup light corn syrup
1/4 cup peanut butter
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3 1/2 cups old-fashioned oats

2 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup peanut butter, heaping!
7 oz. caramels (25 individually wrapped) 
1 tablespoon butter

milk chocolate chips and toffee bits for topping 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line 13×9-inch pan with foil; spray foil with nonstick spray.

In a medium saucepan, stir brown sugar, butter and corn syrup over medium heat until combined. Remove from heat and stir in peanut butter and vanilla; stir until smooth.

Place oats in a very large bowl. Pour brown sugar mixture over oats; stir to combine. Press oat mixture onto the bottom of prepared pan. Bake 10 to 12 minutes, until golden. Don’t overbake (you don’t want it to brown) or it will be on the crunchy side. Let the cookie layer cool for about 15 minutes on a wire rack.

In the same saucepan, stir chocolate chips, peanut butter and caramels over low heat until melted.  Add butter and cook until smooth.

Pour chocolate over the crust and spread to make an even layer. Sprinkle milk chocolate chips and toffee bits over the chocolate and press in to the candy bar filling. Refrigerate until firm then cut into squares.


  1. Mmm that looks soo nice!
    All your options sound great but I would go for the coffee cake first :)

  2. Looks great!
    Ummm---peanut chicken and mushrooms? YES PLEASE!!!



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