These ooey gooey bars are easily one of our top five favorite desserts! We're about to spill the secrets to making this oh-so-simple, melt-in-your-mouth addictive dessert recip, so keep on reading. You'll thank us later.

a stack of peanut butter & chocolate ooey gooey bars, from Shelf Cooking

Come on, you guys! How delish do these amazing ooey gooey bars look? We're ready to eat the whole pan. This recipe is so good you might not want to share. And hey, we won't blame you! This is a judgment-free zone.

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These magical ooey gooey bars are everything we love about dessert. They're crispy on the outside, perfectly chewy on the inside, and they have two of our fave ingredients: chocolate and peanut butter. We can't wait for you to take the first bite (extra points if you share with us)!


These bars are so seriously delicious! Now that you've seen how they're made, let's talk about additions, substitutions, how to store them, reuse the leftovers, and the most important part — the recipe!


a tray of sliced cookie bars, from Shelf Cooking

If you've ever had ooey gooey bars, then you KNOW how yummy they are. But did you also know there are about a million and one things you can add to make them even better?! Yup! Try adding one of these ingredients:

  • Caramel – Drizzle a little on top, or mix it in with the condensed milk. We've even got a recipe for the world's easiest homemade caramel.
  • Butterscotch Chips – We can't think of a reason not to add them to the mix.
  • Pecans – Mix them in or pop them on top. Your choice!
  • Sprinkles – Why the heck not, right? Is there ever a wrong time for sprinkles?
  • Cinnamon – Sprinkle a little into that batter.
  • Whipped Cream – If you ask us if we want to add whipped cream on top, the answer will always be YES! Even better, give this homemade whipped cream recipe a try.
  • Miniature Candy Bars – As far as we're concerned, the more, the merrier! If you have any leftover Halloween candy to use up, here's your chance. We happen to love Snickers!

We're big fans of experimenting in the kitchen, so use what you've got! Shelf cooking rules apply to baking, too. So, before you run out to the store to grab a missing ingredient, take stock of what you already have. Speaking of which, let's talk substitutions!


glass measuring cup of browned butter, from Shelf Cooking

The beautiful thing about this recipe is that you probably have most (if not all) of the ingredients on hand. But we also know life happens, so before you panic when you realize your kids put an empty bag of chocolate chips back in the pantry (why?!), take a deep breath and try one of these swaps:

  • Butter Substitute – If you're out of butter or you're watching your cholesterol, use margarine instead.
  • Brown Sugar Substitute – No brown sugar in the pantry? We've got a WHOLE post devoted to brown sugar substitutes.
  • Chocolate Chip Substitute – Don't have chocolate chips on hand? Use M&Ms or peanut butter chips.
  • Peanut Butter Cups – No peanut butter cups? Use Snickers!
  • Egg Substitute – We're always running out of eggs, too! Don't worry. Try one of these ten egg substitutes.
  • Baking Powder Substitute – Replace 1 teaspoon of baking powder with 1/4 teaspoon baking soda plus a 1/2 teaspoon of cream of tartar.
  • Baking Soda Substitute – Out of baking soda and baking powder? Use self-rising flour instead.
  • Vanilla Extract Substitute – All out of vanilla? Learn how to make your own vanilla extract.
  • Condensed Milk Substitute – Yep, we have a post for this, too! What can we say? We've got your back. Try one of these condensed milk substitutes.

See? There's pretty much a substitute for everything! Don't be afraid to try something new.


slicing homemade ooey gooey cookie bars, from Shelf Cooking

We bet these won't last very long, but just in case, we've got tips and tricks you can use to store your ooey gooey bars and repurpose them! So, keep on reading.

We are seriously impressed that you had the self-control to save some of these for later. High-five! Now, what to do with those leftovers? We're here to help!

To keep those bars fresh, store them in an airtight container at room temp for up to four days or in your refrigerator for one week. Add a slice of bread to the container to keep them from drying out too quickly.

Want to freeze them? That might be your best bet for keeping them around longer. Slice your ooey gooey bars and wrap individually in plastic, then toss them all in a large freezer bag, and use within a month. When you're ready to eat them, thaw overnight at room temperature.


Aside from eating the whole pan in one sitting, what can you do with these tasty treats? You KNOW we have a few ideas up our sleeves, so here you go:

  • Ice Cream Sundae Toppings – Ice cream party, anyone? These ooey gooey bars are perfect with a scoop of our favorite homemade vanilla ice cream!
  • Milkshake Mix-Ins – Add a few small pieces of these cookie bars to your blender with some milk and ice cream, and enjoy a fancy ice cream parlor style treat for pennies!
  • Pie Crust – Pulse your leftover bars in a food processor and use them in pie crust. YUM! Can we come over when you make that pie?
  • The Ultimate Ice Cream Sandwich – Cut an ooey gooey bar in half, place a layer of ice cream in between each half, and pop your ice cream sandwich in the freezer for a few hours. You won't be disappointed!
  • Surprise Your Neighbors – These yummy bars make the perfect gift for a neighbor! Slice them and wrap them individually, then add a cute bow and note to the top. You'll be the talk of the town!

If you're having a hard time choosing, we vote for making multiple batches of ooey gooey bars just so you can try all these leftover creations. No shame in your dessert-making game!


The time has come! We're about to dish out all the deets you need to make this highly-addictive treat. Here we go, you guys!

a stack of peanut butter & chocolate bars, from Shelf Cooking

Ooey Gooey Bars Recipe

With just the right amount of sweetness, this one is a crowd-pleaser. You will want to make these anytime you have leftover Halloween or Easter candy.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 12


  • 1 cup browned butter
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 tsp vanilla
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ cup chocolate chips
  • 7.6 oz bag of peanut butter cups


  • 14 oz sweetened condensed milk
  • ¼ cup peanut butter


  • Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  • Over low heat, melt 2 sticks of butter in a light-colored pan. Gently swirl the pan every minute until the butter turns a light golden brown. This takes 5 – 10 minutes total. Allow to cool for 5 minutes.
  • On medium speed, beat together the melted butter and sugars. Add in the peanut butter and mix well. Next, add the eggs and vanilla. Finally, add the flour, creating a small well for the baking soda, baking powder, and salt (this saves you a bowl! Holla!) Slowly mix in until well incorporated, then fold in the chocolate chips and peanut butter cups. In a small bowl, combine filling ingredients.
  • Place a sheet of parchment paper in a 13×9 inch baking dish. Spread half the cookie dough over the bottom in an even layer. Pour the filling over the top, then dot the top with the rest of the cookie dough.
  • Bake for 30 – 35 minutes until golden brown in color. Allow to cool for an hour before cutting.


What really sets these apart? The browned butter! Sure, you could just use melted butter, but why not step it up a notch? Browned butter adds a nutty, toffee flavor and rich color.
Keyword cookies


Now you know how to make this tasty, versatile, and super-addictive treat! It's perfect for a party, a cozy weekend at home, or any day that ends in “y.”

Tell us, what are you going to add to these ooey gooey bars? Drop a comment below, or join the conversation in our Shelf Cooking Facebook group.

Image with text that reads "highly addictive peanut butter ooey gooey bars" from Shelf Cooking

Need more dessert ideas?

Stay sweet!