This recipe for peanut butter & jelly pretzels bars is a delicious layered treat and it’s sure to be a crowd pleaser.
Sometimes you have a craving for PB&J but you also would like to try it in a different way. Well, that’s where this pure goodness comes in. Yes, you can and you should whip out your baking tray and make these yummy treats. Plus they are anything but basic, thanks to three layers of sweet, salty and crunchy. An irresistible combination.
With back-to-school upon us, I figured this PBJ Pretzel Bars will come in handy. It’s three layers of sweetness to celebrate the end of summer and the beginning of a new school year. If your little ones love peanut butter, this new twist of PBJ Pretzel Bars will satisfy their taste bud. If you have someone with a peanut butter allergy, my guess is you can substitute with an appropriate option but please don’t quote me on that.
Speaking of allergies, I had to go through a series of test this summer to find out why I have this weird consistent need to clear my throat. It’s mildly annoying but mostly to people around me, because at this point I have somewhat found a way to deal with it although that isn’t quite a healthy way to live I make do. At the end of the day, after several visits, there is no answer in sight. The doctor did manage to put me on medication but I hate having to take medication every day to mask a problem, I would rather get to the roots of it. In the meantime, I am reading up on holistic ways and trying to see if I can figure something out on my own. My body, my health and my wellbeing right? If no one will fight for me, I have to fight for myself. Anyway, enough about my health and back to this OMG goodness.
This crowd-pleasing treat will make a nice addition to your next fall gathering or Halloween party. To save time and avoid that dreaded, I want a treat but I have no ingredients debacle, order a few things now so you have them on hand when needed. It does take some time to plan and prep this dessert but don’t let that deter you, the end result will be well worth it.
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Peanut Butter & Jelly Pretzels Bars
- INGREDIENTS FOR THE BOTTOM LAYER
- 4 cups small pretzel twists
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter - softened
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- INGREDIENTS FOR THE MIDDLE LAYER
- 8 oz jar creamy peanut butter
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
- INGREDIENTS FOR TOP LAYER
- 18 oz jar strawberry jelly
- INGREDIENTS FOR TOPPING
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- ¾ cup brown sugar - firmly packed
- 2 cups tiny pretzel twists
- ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter - cold
- DIRECTIONS FOR BOTTOM LAYER
- Preheat oven to 350°. Line an 11 x 7 pan with parchment paper and set aside.
- Add 4 cups of pretzels to a food processor and finely chop.
- Add the pretzels to a medium mixing bowl. Mix in 2 sticks of softened butter and ¼ cup granulated sugar. Mix well to incorporate. Transfer the pretzel mixture to your parchment lined pan and press down firmly.
- Place the pan in preheated oven and bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and cool for 30 minutes on a wire rack. Turn off oven.
- DIRECTIONS FOR MIDDLE LAYER
- Add the peanut butter and 2 sticks of the softened butter to a large mixing bowl. With an electric mixer, mix on medium speed for about 20 seconds to combine.
- Add ½ of the powdered sugar and mix for 20 seconds. Add the remaining powdered sugar and vanilla and mix until light and fluffy.
- Transfer the peanut butter mixture into the pan, on top of the cooled pretzel crust. Use a spatula to smooth out evenly.
- Chill for 1 hour in the refrigerator.
- DIRECTIONS FOR TOPPING
- Preheat oven to 325°. Remove pan from refrigerator and set aside. Spoon the jelly into a medium microwave-safe bowl. (I used a 4 cup Pyrex measuring cup). Microwave on high for 45 seconds and stir.
- Spread the warm strawberry jelly on top of the peanut butter layer, covering completely. Set aside.
- Place 2 cups of pretzels in a food processor and process until fine crumbs. Pour into a medium mixing bowl.
- Add the flour, brown sugar and whisk to combine.
- Slice a stick of butter into cubes and add it to the pretzel mixture. Using a pastry cutter or 2 forks, cut the mixture until it resembles crumbs. Sprinkle on top of the jelly, covering completely.
- Place in the preheated oven and bake for 18-20 minutes or until the crumb mixture turns golden brown.
- Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool for 1 hour. Once cooled, place in the refrigerator for an additional hour to allow the peanut butter layer to solidify ( if you were to cut into this while it is warm it will be too gooey).
- To serve, slice while chilled and store uncovered in the refrigerator.