Monday, May 23, 2011

Crispy Peanut Butter Nutella Bars


This weekend my good friend Vanessa hosted a surprise 60th birthday party for her mom's best friend.

Vanessa's mom Lucy is adorable and hilarious and makes the most gorgeous sea glass jewelry and has five dogs and owns a sub shop and says things like "Oh, balls."

 Lucy & Vanessa, 2009

So it would only be natural that she has an equally fabulous best friend.

Enter Paulette.  She cracks me up by saying the funniest things, and her mannerisms top it all off.  Frankly she's a little scatterbrained and spastic, but it's really quite endearing.

So... I knew that I had to make something amazing for her special day.   For a while I've had Peanut Butter Crispy Bars from Baked on my list of "Must Try" recipes, but I got to thinking ... what if I made the base layer with peanut butter, and added some Nutella in the mix?

And ate half the Nutella jar in the process?

Actually that last part wasn't in the plan, it just sort of spontaneously happened.

Anywho I brought the bars to the party, and aside from surviving the 'end of the world,' I think that dessert might have been the best thing to happen to about 10 middle-aged, chocolate-fiending females on Saturday night. 

Not long after the desserts were put out, Paulette flew into the kitchen, eyes wide & pointing frantically at her over-stuffed mouth.

I was about to start giving her the Heimlich when she swallowed and said "Maggie! Those thingys you made are delicious, what are they?"

I explained that they were peanut butter crispy bars with dark chocolate & Nutella, and she was so overjoyed that she hugged me!

Then I walked outside onto the back deck, and was greeted by more excited chatter from the other ladies who had sampled my wares.

I heard a lot of very generous compliments, but my favorite was that they were "orgasmic."

!!

One woman asked for the recipe, but I didn't have it memorized so I promised to get it to Vanessa for her.  Another woman asked for the basic ingredients, which I was able to explain.

Then not long after, the first woman came up to me all upset that the second woman was given the recipe and she wasn't!

I kindly explained that it wasn't actually a recipe, just the list of ingredients - but she still seemed suspicious.

Ironically, I had just asked her not more than an hour earlier for a recipe for her spinach salad with strawberries.  And she threatened to take it back!

I'm sure she was kidding.

I hope.

But here's a little piece of advice - if you are planning to bring these bars to a party, make sure you also bring the recipe.

Otherwise you might get jumped by a gang of 55 year-old women.

And it would be awfully awkward to explain that black eye to your friends & coworkers the next day.

Crispy Peanut Butter Nutella Bars

Peanut Butter Crisp:
  • 4 C. crispy rice cereal
  • 2/3 C. brown sugar
  • 2/3 C. light corn syrup
  • 2/3 C. peanut butter

Nutella Layer:
  • 1 1/2 C. chocolate chips
  • 1 C. Nutella spread

Chocolate Icing:
  • 6 oz. dark (bittersweet) chocolate, chopped
  • 1 t. light corn syrup
  • 8 T. butter, cut into tablespoons

Grease a 13 x 9 inch pan with cooking spray and set aside.  Place corn syrup, brown sugar, and peanut butter in a large saucepan.  Cook, stirring frequently, until mixture begins to boil (be careful here, it can burn quickly).  Remove from heat and stir in rice cereal.  Stir to coat thoroughly, then press into prepared pan evenly using a greased spatula.

Place pan in refrigerator to cool.  Meanwhile, make second layer: place chocolate chips and Nutella into a microwave-safe bowl, and microwave in 20-second intervals, stirring after each, until melted and smooth.  Pour over cooled cereal mixture and spread evenly with offset spatula.

Allow second layer to cool completely.  Then make chocolate icing: place dark chocolate, 1 t. light corn syrup, and butter into microwave-safe bowl.  Melt in 20-second intervals, stirring after each, until melted and smooth. Pour over cooled bars and spread evenly with offset spatula.

Allow to cool, then cut into bars.  Keep leftovers in refrigerator in air-tight container, for 4-5 days.  Makes about 18 (they are very rich, so I actually cut them a lot smaller for the party- but you can cut them whatever size you like).

Recipe adapted from
Baked: New Frontiers in Baking, via Smitten Kitchen

35 comments:

  1. Wow! Wow! Wow!!! This would not last long in my family. We've made something similar, but yours is even more decadent!
    What a wonderful story about the birthday party, sounds like you all had a wonderful time and it will be one to remember. Don't you love it when you hear people comment about something you made?? Always makes me feel good! Someday when your ears are burning it will be us commenting on these!!

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  2. LOL :D I am glad you made it out in one piece! This recipe sounds incredible! How could it not, with all those fabulous ingredients. I am afraid to make it, really. But I probably will.

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  3. AMAZING!!! What a fantastic mouthwatering photo and recipe ohh woww..yummy!!!I need something sweet now:)))

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  4. Yeah, those certainly look orgasmic! I love the layers!

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  5. This sounds AMAZING!! That photo makes me crave one like crazy! Sounds like a wonderful birthday party!

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  6. I think I may ease my way into the world of Nutella with this recipe! And you cut your bars so perfectly...you'll have to give me some pointers when it comes to that. Yummy post!

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  7. Fun story! Your bars sound like a real yummy treat!

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  8. These are GORGEOUS! They kind of remind me of nanaimo bars!

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  9. This looks amazing!! I loved all the stuff from Baked!

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  10. I'm surprised you didn't eat the WHOLE jar of Nutella in the process (God knows I would have...) Those looks absolutely dreamy, though- so perfectly layered...I can just taste them now!

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  11. Peanuts and hazelnuts both. I don't think I've had both at the same time before.

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  12. Love the twist on the Baked version! I bet they are even better too :)

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  13. WOAH!!!!!! Goodness me... Those look perfect and delicious! Must. Make. NOW! ;-)

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  14. Those are the most beautiful things I've ever seen!!! Wow!

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  15. Ok WOW!! These look and sound so good! Peanut butter, chocolate, nutella all together. I am not sure I could stop eating them!

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  16. You had me at Nutella....they look delicious :)

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  17. I'm in love with this recipe and i want to eat an entire batch right now! Great combination of flavors!

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  18. Oh my, these could be dangerous! YUMMO! And look at how perfectly cut they are!! I'm amazed! :)

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  19. How on earth did you get some perfectly cut bars? Watch out for the over 50 crowd, we can get a bit carried away from time to time!!! LOL!!

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  20. Yum! I can taste the nutella in my mouth already. Can you send a package my way?

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  21. Simply beautiful and they look sinfully delicious!! I featured you over at WhipperBerry today!

    kisses

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  22. I just discovered your blog and I´m surprised that you don´t have much more followers. Just read some of your posts and I´m excited to read more! I´m from Germany and we don´t measure in cups over here but luckily a friend brought me some over the big sea. Looking forward to discover more recipes at your blog. :)

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  23. I love your writing style! I've been wanting to try Nutella and this might be the best way to try it for the first time!

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  24. I love how you got PERFECT slices out of these. They look o pretty and I'm more than sure they taste even better. :)

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  25. I love love love Nutella. These look fabulous and are definitely going on my "must try" list!

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  26. Ooooh these look fab! Love pb and chocolate! Is there any substitue for corn syrup as its not readily available over here?

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  27. Hello Kristine, you can try mixing 1 part water with 2 parts sugar in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil, stir until sugar dissolves, and boil 1 minute. Remove from heat and refrigerate any leftovers that you don't use. Hope this helps!

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  28. These look heavenly. I love all three flavors SO much. I just found your blog through Sweet as Sugar Cookies. I can't wait to read more!
    Dorothy at Crazy for Crust

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  29. @maggamallow You're very sweet, thank you! I'm glad you got the conversion for cups :)

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  30. Stumbled on your blog from Sweet as Sugar's blog hop! I loveeeeeee Nutella AND my fellow Jersey bloggers:) Great blog!

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  31. Scotcheroos (or PB/butterscotch rice krispies with chocolate on top) are my most favorite treat. To the point I only allow myself to have them on my birthday because I can't control myself around them. But this year? TOTALLY making these instead. I can't wait!!!

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  32. Just found this via foodbuzz...such a funny story and looks like an amazing recipe! Thanks for sharing both. :)

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  33. I love nutella!! It looks and sounds wonderful! Thanks for sharing, what a fun story! :)

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I love reading your comments!

If you have a question or problem you can also feel free to email me at vittlesandbits@gmail.com. Thanks for visiting :)

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