All-American Peanut Cookie Bars

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All-American Peanut Cookie Bars

The patriotic treats continue! Let’s get them all in there before Independence Day!

This time of year, I’m usually basking in summer with not much to do. But thanks to a recent job promotion, I’m burning the candle at both ends. I wake up, work, work some more, and that’s kind of how it is. But at least the sun is shining!

And I have these to sustain me. The base is my favorite flourless peanut butter cookie dough filled with my even more favorite candy aisle choices: patriotic peanut M & Ms and Baby Ruth bars. Heck yeah!

All-American Peanut Cookie Bars

Here’s the thing about holidays: baking bloggers LOVE them. You see, it’s hard to get constant inspiration from just life itself, so holidays provide a lot of ideas. Or at least, they provide a lot of candy with color schemes. I can’t tell you how excited I get every time the candy matches the season. It’s so darn cute.

All-American Peanut Cookie Bars

Now that I’ve been blogging for two and a half years, I sometimes sit back and take stock of what I’ve accomplished so far. You see, I’ve been teaching for much longer, so compared to the time I’ve been in that profession, my time here on JAB is a drop in the bucket. Even so, I’m happy with where I’ve gotten so far with this little blog, and I try and take time to enjoy it.

All-American Peanut Cookie Bars

Just a few days ago, I was texting back and forth with an old friend of mine. He had a rough day and wanted to know if I had “baked anything for the pain.” I immediately let him know that I’d just been paid to buy lots of ice cream and bake something to go with it, and that he should come on by with a huge spoon. In that moment, I felt very lucky. Lucky to be paid to work with ice cream, and lucky to have good friends to come over and share it.

They say that it’s super healthy to keep your brain active by trying new things and doing crossword puzzles. In theory, I love crossword puzzles, but my house is too hectic for me to sit back with that cup of tea and enjoy one on a regular basis. So instead, I’m a big fan of trying new things. This blog pushes every ounce of my creativity, and I’m so happy it’s here. Even though my day job is about to get a lot more hectic, I still want to hold on to what I’ve created here on JAB.

All-American Peanut Cookie Bars

One of my favorite discoveries this season has been transferring flourless peanut butter cookie dough into bars. It’s even better than regular cookie dough. Wanna know why?

It’s the most intense peanutty flavor ever. When you reduce a cookie dough to mostly the star ingredient (peanut butter, in this case), it’s amazing. The flavors are so good. Add in peanuts and candy and the happiness overflows.

All-American Peanut Cookie Bars

Another good thing about this cookie base? No mixer. About five seconds and no chill time is pretty much the situation! Feel free to thank me later.

It’s summer and things should be quiet, but they’re not. I’m cool with that, since we only go around once. Trying new things is important! Well, as long as we take our dessert breaks in between. We all need a moment here and there!


All-American Peanut Cookie Bars


1 egg
1 cup creamy peanut butter (don't use natural)
3/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup roasted salted peanuts
6 fun-sized Baby Ruth bars, chopped
1 cup peanut M & Ms


  1. Preheat the oven to 350. Line an 8-inch square pan with foil and coat with cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the first seven ingredients. The mixture will be thick and sticky. Fold in the peanuts, chopped Baby Ruth bars, and 3/4 cup of the peanut M & Ms.
  3. Using a spatula, press the mixture evenly into the prepared pan. Press the remaining peanut M & Ms into the top.
  4. Bake for 25-30 minutes until golden brown. Cool completely.
  5. Cut into squares. Store in an airtight container.



I fulfill many roles in life: wife, mother, teacher, everlasting learner. This site is dedicated to one role that expresses my creativity in ways that I find consistently challenging and rewarding: baker. Inventing new ways to enhance food, especially if that food involves chocolate or peanut butter (or both!), is a passion of mine. I look forward to sharing my ideas with you.

This Post Has 18 Comments

  1. Dorothy @ Crazy for Crust

    You know I’d eat the ENTIRE BATCH of these right? Also, when I see those red, white, and blue M&Ms I go nuts!
    Dorothy @ Crazy for Crust recently posted…Hula PieMy Profile

    1. Mir

      Me too. They’re the best M & Ms all year long!

  2. Gayle @ Pumpkin 'N Spice

    Oh peanut M&Ms and baby ruth bars? These sound SO good! I’m loving your patriotic treats, Mir! Especially when they involve peanut butter. You just can’t pass that deliciousness up!
    Gayle @ Pumpkin ‘N Spice recently posted…Berry Cherry Wine SlushiesMy Profile

    1. Mir

      Thanks, Gayle! I get so excited about the fun M & Ms! And Baby Ruths are one of my forever faves!

  3. Alice @ Hip Foodie Mom

    Mir, congrats on the recent job promotion!!! How did I miss that?! and YES you should be very proud of everything you’ve accomplished here on the blog in just 2.5 years!!!!! I hope you can find some time this weekend to relax a little .. enjoy the 4th and these patriotic cookies bars!!!
    Alice @ Hip Foodie Mom recently posted…Our Favorite SmoothieMy Profile

    1. Mir

      It just happened, Alice! Very quickly. And now I’m busy transitioning and trying to get it all done. I’ll have to make some sort of system so that my to-do lists have to-do lists! 🙂

  4. Shashi @ RunninSrilankan

    Yay – congrats on your job promotion! Mir, while I sure am lucky to have bumped into friends like you here in blogdom, your friend is luckier to be able to taste-test for you! 🙂
    My day job is in the creative fields, but after 20 years in it, it feels like it’s more on auto-pilot – but (like you) I find my blog too helps keep my creative juices overflowing in pushing me to try newer things.
    BTW – loving these flourless peanut butter cookie bars with ALL the festive candy! Hope you have a wonderful long weekend and get some time to enjoy a cuppa tea -with 1 or 3 of these!
    Shashi @ RunninSrilankan recently posted…No Bake, Raspberry White Chocolate Energy BitesMy Profile

    1. Mir

      Thanks, Shashi! I feel the same way about you. I wish you could come taste test for me!

  5. Dawn @ Girl Heart Food

    I agree…trying new things is important! Definitely keep things interesting, that’s for sure. Congrats on your promotion! That’s awesome!! And I love little festive candies and stuff too….makes baking and cooking that much more fun (and fun to eat). I just read this morning that M & M sounds for the last names of the founders of the candy; can’t remember what they were though. Love that this recipe requires no mixer. Easy cleanup is the way to go! And peanut butter is definitely one of my favourite ingredients in baking. Just gimme a dozen please 🙂 Happy upcoming long weekend!
    Dawn @ Girl Heart Food recently posted…Rosemary Chive Bread with ParmesanMy Profile

    1. Mir

      Thanks, Dawn. I love baking candy into bars. Such fun!

  6. David @ Spiced

    Yes! There’s a lot of things I love about blogging, but the creative outlet is one that attracted me from day one. I’m not a very crafty guy, but I love the opportunity to get creative in the kitchen. And then I love to eat…so it’s a perfect partnership. Speaking of eating, I think I need to eat one of these cookie bars. Just one. (Pan that is.) Congrats on the promotion, and happy early 4th of July! 🙂
    David @ Spiced recently posted…No-Bake Peanut Butter PieMy Profile

    1. Mir

      I can’t do crafts either. Like, not at all. It’s a challenge when I have to be a cake decorator!

  7. Cheyanne @ No Spoon Necessary

    Congrats on the job promotion, Mir!! Woot woot!! Way to go, girlfriend! And congrats on getting paid to work with ice cream! Hello, you are KILLING it! Holidays are great for forcing creativity on the blogesphere… but I feel like baking bloggers are so much better at bringing the creativity. Or maybe I just suck. lol. Anyways, these cookie bars are all sorts of amazing!! Flourless peanut butter cookie dough WITH candy?? Ummmm, yeah. I’m going to need a few dozen of these! So perfect and utterly delicious for the 4th! Cheers, girlfriend- to a wonderful, long weekend!
    Cheyanne @ No Spoon Necessary recently posted…Berries In Brandy Parfait {with whipped mint mascarpone & graham cracker streusel}My Profile

    1. Mir

      Thanks, Cheyanne. My freezer is overflowing right now! I’ll have to get some more people to eat all this stuff!

  8. Manali@CookWithManali

    Mmm these sound good, with all that peanut butter and M&Ms! Congrats on the promotion Mir 🙂
    Manali@CookWithManali recently posted…Eggless Blueberry Lemon CakeMy Profile

    1. Mir

      Thanks, Manali! I’m excited!

  9. Medha @ Whisk & Shout

    Peanut m&ms are my favorite candy ever and incorporated into delicious festive peanut butter bars? Drooling!
    Medha @ Whisk & Shout recently posted…Strawberry Crème Fraîche CheesecakeMy Profile

    1. Mir

      I love them too. The best candy! I love to freeze them. SO good cold!

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