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No Bake Cookie Bars

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No-bake cookies are probably made most often during these sweltering summer months, and in our house that is no exception (despite the fact that I regularly turn on the oven to bake!!  I can’t help it.  I have a problem).  Since I pretty much think of them as “beneath me” (hello, I need a dessert recipe that is at least two pages long with instructions that include things like whipping something for ten minutes straight!), my hubby is the one who makes them and his recipe is pretty much the standard except that it has a lot more cocoa powder, which makes it that much better (IMHO).  I usually let him do his thing with the cookies, including this amusing little mishap, where he decided to make long “bar” cookies that ended up looking a bit like…well, see for yourself.

Yeah.  Let’s just delete that from our memory, shall we?

So anyway, when he made the next batch I convinced him to pour the batter into a greased pan and (proper) No-Bake Cookie Bars were born!  The recipe was already insanely easy, and dumping the mixture into a pan makes it even easier since you don’t have to put spoonfuls onto wax paper.  All you have to do is pour and slice.  The extra benefit to this method is that the mixture stays glossy since it doesn’t stay in the pan too long.  I hate it when the cookies lose their gloss and look all dry and sad.  No danger of that here!

So next time you need a cookie and it’s too hot to turn on the oven, whip some of these babies up!  You can’t go wrong with peanut butter and chocolate, even if it does look like…nevermind.

No-Bake Cookie Bars
Printable recipe
Printable recipe with picture

2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup milk
1 stick (1/2 cup) butter
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup crunchy peanut butter
3 cups quick-cooking oats
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Spray an 8″ square pan with cooking spray and set aside. Measure the peanut butter & oats and set aside so they’re ready when you need them. Have your vanilla bottle handy along with a teaspoon. In a medium saucepan, combine sugar, milk, butter, and cocoa. Bring to a boil and once it reaches a full rolling boil, cook for 1 1/2 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and stir in the peanut butter until melted, then stir in the vanilla and lastly the oats. Immediately pour mixture into prepared pan and put on a cooling rack to set until completely cool. Once cool, cut into bars.  To make this recipe into the regular round cookies, just drop the mixture by spoonfuls onto wax paper and let cool. You can store them in an airtight container several days at room temp or over a week in the fridge.

Recipe source: Dennis Miller (no, not that Dennis Miller), the bestest husband on the planet (IMHO) :)

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About Veronica

I have a kitchen addiction and love to collect & share recipes. My passion is baking but I love to cook as well. The only thing I don't like to do in the kitchen is wash dishes, but my husband generally does them for me in exchange for his dinner.

37 responses »

  1. Cute picture of you and your husband and LOL on your husbands attempt. Hillarious!
    I think I have a recipe like this that my kids brought home from school and have made before. It’s always a hit but I keep forgetting about it. Maybe since it is so hot it would be a good thing to make.

    • My husband keeps my sense of humor active–LOL! He really didn’t mean to be funny that time but he’s quite hilarious usually. Yes, it’s perfect for summer!

  2. Marina Castle Food Editor

    Great for picnics…=)

  3. I haven’t made these in years. Thanks for the reminder. I loved Dennis’ attempt at long cookies…lol! ;) You guys make a great couple {{{hugs}}}

    • If it weren’t for Dennis, we would never have them but he’s obsessed with them. It’s really the only dessert he ever makes, unless scooping icecream into a bowl count–LOL! Thanks, Suzie.

  4. first, that picture of the 2 of you, is adorable!!! so so cute
    and second, those cookies.. i am making some real soon!! oh yea!

  5. Dennis Miller

    Chocolate drop cookies have always been a favorite of mine. either in drop, bar or elongated poop form it all tastes good.

    But the way they keep there shine when poured into a pan makes it now my preferred way of doing them.

  6. Lol!! You two crack me up ;)

  7. I just had a big “duh” moment…I’ve never made these in a pan before…always the drop cookie kind. Thanks for the great idea and the tasty recipe!

    It doesn’t matter what your hubby’s cookies looked like…what mattered is that they tasted good!

  8. Those look chocolatey indeed, and great photo!

  9. Clearly he needs your help on the aesthetic side of things. They look beautiful as bars. But I am with you, I generally like the more complicated desserts!

  10. My 13 year old son made these JUST now! We are licking the pan residue…they are delicious! I added 1T. ground flax seeds and 1T. wheat germ to this to sneak in some added nutrition! Great recipe, thanks!

  11. I don’t usually check out the cooking blogs, it’s my daughters thing, but seeing your “Peanut Butter Brownies” as we call them I wanted to share a note. My mother used to make a variation of this which she made as a drop cookie (which looked very similar to your husbands long bars). They were somewhat temperamental according to the weather. But then we got a recipe similar to your from our school lunch ladies, Hawthorne Elementary, Louisville KY. They used to make us fresh bread rolls at least twice a week….telling you how old I am. There recipe was a school favorite, a ‘no fail’ one which was the same as yours except..
    add 1/4 tsp. salt
    1 cup of peanut butter instead of your 1/2 cup.

    Try it and see if you don’t like it even better.

  12. Wow..what a scrumptious post!! I wondered if I may substitute something for the peanut butter or leave it out altogether…I just went through a huge peanut butter phase and now I can’t stand the sight or smell of peanut butter..poor me…anyway, would appreciate your advice! Thanks!!

    • You need the fat in there or you will have a dry mess, so you can substitute another nut butter (almond, pecan, cashew) or you might even try just substituting an equal amount of butter for the pb, for a total of 1 cup butter. I personally do no think it would be as good with butter in place of pb, but I’ve never tried it. You should def try it with the pb once you are able to tolerate it again!

  13. These look super duper yummy in my tummy. I think your post made me get a little silly. Bookmarked. :)

  14. Pingback: 1 Year Blogoversary: Thank You’s and a Top Ten–Yours and Mine « Recipe Rhapsody

  15. Luv the picture of u’Both and the easy with making a no -nake cookie …….

  16. I’m 14 and adore baking/cooking. recently our oven has been broken so sadly, no cookies.
    Thanks for sharing this recipe it made us all happy and the bars were great!

    • Oh, I’m so glad I could help! I would be so sad without my oven. I’m so happy to hear from a young woman who loves to bake–a girl after my own heart! I started baking when I was 9 and haven’t stopped since. :)

  17. :) well our oven is fixed now, so cookies abound! :)

  18. Exactly our thoughts!

  19. book-marked! attracted towards the texture, wanna taste it now but vanilla essence n peanut butter is out of stock wright now so definitely gonna try this fantastic oats-chocolate cubes tomorrow. thnx for sharing dear!

  20. Pingback: Holy Holiday Recipe Book, Batman! 15 Dreamy, Decadent No-Bake Desserts | The Bookshelf


  22. I LOVE these in bar form. I always avoid no bake cookies because I always think they look sloppy. But these bars are perfect. Great idea!

  23. LOL! I love it Veronica. It’s funny how guys don’t have a sense of aesthetics when it comes to food…they just eat it! Even it does look like….well you know! I love the glossy look on yours (or Dennis’ I should say). Will have to try the bar version with amped up cocoa. They look fantastic!

    • He didn’t even realize what they resembled until I laughed my butt off when I saw them. LOL! Yours have the Dutch cocoa which I want to try, and have double the peanut butter which sounds good too!

  24. Could I double the recipe and make these in a 9×13 pan?

  25. Pingback: No-Bake Therapy » Make It Like a Man!Make It Like a Man!

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