Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars with Pretzel Crust
Daylight savings, you win. It’s 11:30. I am wide awake, and still catching up on blog posts. Tomorrow is going to be a struggle. I had a very productive weekend, but I didn’t even get to the baking part of my day until almost 9:30 at night. I went to my favorite store – Home Depot – 3 times this weekend. I’ve been wanting to repaint my front hallway a new shade of beige (exciting, I know) for a while now. I figured that if I could paint my bathroom, a hallway would be no problem since there were less corners and hard to reach places. Wrong. I apparently have the world’s longest hallway and this was an 8+ hour ordeal. I’ll give you more of a detailed description of the debacle at the end of this post. As for these cookies, I really was tempted to cop out and not bring cookies into work tomorrow. But I know the guilt trip I got from my coworkers last time I missed a Monday so I knew I had to whip something up. I figure throwing something in the baking dish would be easier than scooping individual cookies. I found a bag of pretzels and some peanut buter chips, and started perusing the interweb. I came across this recipe for Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars with a pretzel crust on http://tastykitchen.com/. I decided to put my own spin on it with some peanut buter and peanut buter chips. I’m on a big peanut butter chocolate kick this weekend.
As a warning, there aren’t many photos for two reasons. One, I was trying to whip these up fast. Two, I ruined my manicure while painting today and did not want to take pictures with my ghetto bare nails. Don’t worry, I already have my nails painted for work tomorrow.
- ¾ cups butter, softened
- ¾ cups granulated sugar
- ¾ cups dark brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- 3/4 cup smooth peanut butter
- 1-½ teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2-¼ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ¾ teaspoons salt
- 2 cups Semi-Sweet chocolate chips
- 1 1/2 cups Reese’s peanut butter chips
- 3-½ cups salted pretzels, crushed into tiny pieces
- ¾ cups butter, melted
Step 1: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 13×9 baking dish with non-stick spray. You can also use parchment paper to make it easier to get these out at the end.
Step 2: Beat the butter and sugars at a medium speed until creamy. Add in eggs and vanilla until incorporated. Mix in the smooth peanut butter.
Step 3: Combine flour, baking soda, and salt and add into the wet mixture. Add in the chocolate chips and peanut butter chips and mix well. Set this dough aside while you make the pretzel crust.
Step 4: For the crust, crush the pretzel pieces and combine with melted butter. I used my food processor and just pulsed some pretzel twists until they were in small pieces. Spread the pretzel mixture over the bottom of the baking dish and bake at 350 degrees for 8 minutes.
Step 5: Drop large spoonfuls of cookie dough over the pretzel crust. Carefully spread the batter over the warm pretzels. Be careful so you don’t ruin the crust. Top with some coarse sea salt and bake for 25 minutes or until the dough is cooked through.
Oh man, these are AMAZING. Peanuty, salty, chocolatey, crunchy, the best of all worlds. This should make the daylight savings hour ahead Monday at work a little easier for my coworkers to bear tomorrow.
So, on to the painting debacle. The wintery weather put a damper on my weekend plans, so I decided I was going to stay in this weekend and be uber-productive. Also, I may have let my competitive edge take me a little too far with bootcamp this weekend so moving my body or leaving the house were not on my agenda for Saturday night. I was out at Target and decided to browse my favorite store – Home Depot for some paint colors for the front hall. I was picking between beige, and light beige. That is how exciting I get with when it comes to colors. I ended up with the light beige.
I underestimated the effort for this paint job on all fronts. I thought I took my lessons learned from my bathroom paint job and this would be a no brainer. Painters tape was the key takeaway from last time. So I was meticulous (and a bit OCD) with laying the painters tape last night. But I ran out halfway through the job.
So early this morning after the gym I went back to home depot to get more painters tape. Two hours later, I had covered every single piece of trim in the longest hallway ever.
I had to go to Home Depot again this afternoon because I ran out of paint. I understand that I stand out in that Home Depot like that song “one of these things is not like the other.” I get it, I provide entertainment to the staff there. But enough with the judgement Home Depot employees. It’s not like I am in the plumbing aisles. Girls can paint. My new friend Montel was asking me a lot of questions while the paint mixed. I showed him my arm (which was covered in paint still) and asked him to match that color. Then he goes “Lady … You gots paint … ON YO FACE.” Yes Montel. I have paint on my face, my hair, my arm, my clothes. Then he goes “You gots friends?” Yes Montel, I have friends. Yes Montel, I also realize I should have friends helping me, but no Montel I am too stubborn to let anyone help me. Then he asked me how long my hall was. I said it was from his little kiosk all the way to cashier 11. He said “dayam girl, you need more paint than a gallon.” Yes Montel, that is why I am here. Getting more paint. We already discussed this. Then he asked me what I was doing for St Patricks day. I said Montel, keep mixin that paint. Then I told him I really liked the new song Thift Shop. Poppin tags Montel, poppin tags. (I think I had been around paint fumes for too many hours at this point.)
Here are some lessons learned from this paint job:
- Get friends
- Use those friends to help you paint
- Do not by any means try to do this by yourself in one day
- Painting is fun for about 4 minutes
- Paint in the hair does not come out
- Paint in the eye burns
- Paint will ruin your gel manicure
- Drop cloths are not optional. If you use them, you wont have paint on the floor. If you dont, you will have paint on the floor.
- It does not take the same amount of paint to paint a bathroom which is 1/4 the size of the hallway
- It’s hard to paint if you take all of the light fixtures off to paint and it gets dark
- Painting feels like a workout. Which is not fun if you already worked out.
- The staff at Home Depot is very judgemental
- If it takes you 8 hours to paint, you will probably listen to Thrift Shop on repeat for at least 4 of those hours.
The key takeaway:
- Next time, embrace your Shaw roots and hire someone to do it.
Needless to say, it was an adventure. I am still picking paint out of my hair and I can’t stand up straight. Tomorrow I need to scrub the paint drops off my hardwood floor.
Here is the finished product. LIGHT BEIGE FOR DAYS. And now it’s Monday. Time for bed.