Peanut Butter Bars with M&Ms

pbbarswithmmsHalloween season means baking for my nieces and nephews, and these peanut butter bars with M&Ms Ghoul Mix candies traveled to North Carolina for my nephew Roman, who is 14. I remember when he was a tiny little person, dressed up as a lion for his day care Halloween parade. Last year (at least I think it was last year), he went as a legionnaire…or a Roman, if you will. Ha! This kid seems to have my sense of humor.

This recipe is incredibly easy to make, and the end result is beyond delicious. The first time I made this, with Reese’s Pieces instead of M&Ms, Mike and I ate the entire pan ourselves. Granted, that wasn’t the smartest decision, but they were just so tasty we couldn’t resist.

Ingredients

  • 12 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled for 3 minutes
  • 2 cups packed light brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 2 eggs plus 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 10-ounce bag M&Ms Ghoul Mix, divided

Preparation

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9 x 13 pan with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, whisk melted butter and brown sugar together until smooth. Whisk in peanut butter, then eggs, egg yolk, and vanilla until well-combined.

Add flour, baking powder, and salt and stir together using a rubber spatula; batter will be very thick. Stir in about 1 cup M&Ms, then spread batter into the baking pan, flattening as best you can to create an even layer. Sprinkle remaining M&Ms on top.

Bake for 30 minutes, then insert a cake tester in the center; blondies are done if the cake tester comes out clean or with just a few moist crumbs. Be careful not to over-bake these; peanut butter treats tend to dry out if they’re baked too long.

Remove from oven and cool completely in the pan; lift out using parchment paper and cut into 24 squares. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for several days; if shipping, back well in an airtight container with layers of waxed paper to prevent breakage.