These Peanut Butter Jelly Bars make the perfect after school snack! It’s all of the flavors of a PB & J sandwich but in bar form! If you are looking for a tasty snack idea for your family, these bars mark off all the requirements. They are full of savory peanut butter, sweet strawberry jam, and topped with crunchy salted peanuts. And they’re super easy and quick to make – score!
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Peanut Butter Jelly Bars
The full ingredients list and instructions are found in the printable recipe card at the end of this post. I highly recommend reading the blog post all the way through so that you don’t miss any tips or substitution suggestions and to ensure that you have all the ingredients and equipment required as well as understand the steps and timings involved.
I don’t know about you and your kids, but the afternoon slump – especially after school – is real! When my son was in school it was always about the afternoon snack to tide him over until dinner time.
Of course we want to feed our children (and ourselves) with healthy and nutritious foods, but a sweet treat every once in a while is just fine.
These peanut butter jelly bars are really easy to make, have that sweet and salty thing going on, and if you love PB&J sandwiches you’ll love these!
We used crunchy peanut butter and strawberry jam as the filling, and there is extra crunch from a sprinkling of salted peanuts on the top.
You may have most of the ingredients in your pantry already, so what are you waiting for?!
Make a tray of these peanut butter bars and wrap in wax paper for an easy grab-and-go snack, or to pop into lunchboxes (if your kiddo’s school allows peanut products).
Ingredients & Equipment Used In This Recipe
For your convenience, any specialized ingredients and equipment needed for this recipe have been linked to Amazon below. The full list with measurements is found in the recipe card.
This recipe uses American cups. They’re a handy piece of kitchen equipment to have along with a kitchen food scale. Having both in your kitchen means you’ll be able to make all of the different recipes on my blog as I use both cups and weighted measures.
More Recipes Using Peanut Butter
One of the hero ingredients in this recipe is peanut butter here are some more recipes using the same:
- Peanut Butter Pumpkin Brownies Recipe – made using a brownie mix and a cookie mix, combined with seasonal pumpkin, and topped with Reese’s Pieces and toffee pieces!
- Peanut Butter Jelly Stuffed Cookies – the jelly is injected inside the cookies!
- Mickey Mouse Peanut Butter Truffles – if you’re missing Disney, make these fun Mickey-shaped treats!
Do You Want More Treat Bars Recipes?
Treat bars are a quick and easy snack to make and great for an afternoon treat.
- Reindeer Cookie Bars
- Red, White & Blue M&M’s Cookie Bars
- Halloween Rice Krispies Treats – Monster Crunch Bars!
Mix It Up!
Why not trying using different nut butter, jams (or preserves), and types of nut? Here are some combo suggestions for you to try – just follow the recipe card, but replace the peanut butter, jam, and salted peanuts with these variations:
- Hazelnut Butter + Apricot Jam + Chopped Hazelnuts
- Hazelnut Butter + Chocolate Spread (Nutella) + Chopped Hazelnuts & Chocolate Chips
- Almond Butter + Cherry Jam + Flaked Almonds
- Almond Butter + Fig Jam + Slivered Almonds
- Cashew Butter + Blackberry Jam + Chopped Cashews
- Cashew Butter + Raspberry Jam + Chopped Cashews
- Mixed Nut Butter + Orange Marmalade + Chopped Mixed Nuts
- Mixed Nut Butter +Apricot Jam + Chopped Mixed Nuts & Chocolate Chips
- Macadamia Nut Butter + Cherry Jam + Chopped Macadamias
- Macadamia Nut Butter + Pineapple Jam + Chopped Macadamias
How Do I Make Peanut Butter Jelly Bars?
Just check out the recipe card below with full ingredients, instructions, and demonstration photos. You can print the card out too (don’t worry, the pics don’t print to save your ink!).
- 1¾ cup all-purpose flour (plain flour)
- ½ tsp baking powder
- ¾ tsp salt
- ½ cup unsalted butter, softened
- 1 cup crunchy peanut butter
- ¾ cup brown sugar, packed
- 1 large egg, room temperature
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ½ cup salted peanuts
- 1 cup strawberry jam
- Preheat oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4 and line a 7 x 11" baking pan with parchment paper, leaving an overhang.
- Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt into a mixing bowl and set aside.
- Using an electric stand or hand mixer, beat the butter, peanut butter, and sugar on medium until smooth and combined.
- Add in the egg and vanilla extract to the mixing bowl and beat until all the ingredients are well combined.
- Add the flour mixture into the peanut butter mixture and stir together with a large spoon or spatula to form a thick, almost dough-like batter.
- Place three-quarters of the batter into the prepared baking pan and press to flatten evenly.
- Spread the strawberry jam evenly on top of the dough batter.
- Break off small pieces of the remaining one-quarter batter and scatter over the jam.
- Then sprinkle the salted peanuts on top of the jam and dough.
- Place in oven and bake for 25-30 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and leave to cool completely in the pan.
- Lift out using the parchment paper overhang and cut into bars.
- You can use different flavored jams if you want to!
- Or try the recipe with different nut butter such as cashew or hazelnut!
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 421Total Fat: 22gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 13gCholesterol: 36mgSodium: 314mgCarbohydrates: 50gFiber: 3gSugar: 26gProtein: 9g
This site uses Nutritionix to provide estimated nutrition. Nutritional information is always approximate and will depend on the quality of ingredients used and serving sizes. If you need exact calories and macros, please do your own calculations.
Make It A Meal!
Yes, you can enjoy these PB&J Bars as a snack, but they’d also make a tasty dessert too – here are additional recipes to make a full meal!
- Appetizer: Black Bean Salsa Cups Appetizer
- Main Dish: Hawaiian Barbecue Chicken
- Side Dish: Hawaiian Baked Beans
- Side Salad: Pineapple Coleslaw with Bacon
- Beverage: Fresh Sparkling Blueberry Lemonade – Summer Mocktail or Cocktail Mixer!
There are 500+ Recipes on The Purple Pumpkin Blog for you to enjoy – please feel free to check them out too!