Jeff has been working from home as I was sick this past week and I felt bad that his co-workers were kind of expecting a Wednesday Treat Day that never came. Since I was feeling better, I figured I could at least make a little something for him to take in yesterday and decided to make these Mini Peanut Butter Cup Bars. This is just your basic layered bar cookie - the base is slightly sweeter than most and is a mixture of flour, sugar, salt and of course a mess of softened butter. While most of it is pressed into a baking pan and given a quick pre-bake, we reserved a small portion of the mixture to be sprinkled on top later. As it cooks, a simple mixture of sweetened condensed milk and peanut butter chips are warmed together until they completely combine and then it is spread over the hot crust. The reserved crumb mixture is then tossed with some mini chocolate peanut butter cups and scattered on top.
However, I took a bit too long to scatter this on and the crumbles started to melt into the warmed peanut butter layer and it looked a bit reminiscent of a leopard print... oops! While the baked bars are on the sweeter side, they are dense, cut cleanly and the peanut butter flavor shines through the rich base. The mini peanut butter cups are an added bonus and are just the right size for a bar like this, but you could get away with using chopped chocolate chunks or chips if you want - the chocolate and peanut butter combo is always delicious!
Mini Peanut Butter Cup Bars