Candy, Desserts, Recipes

No-Bake Peanut Butter Marshmallow Bars

Addictive, sweet, chewy, easy no-bake bars. Can you go wrong with marshmallows, peanut butter, butterscotch, and graham crackers? I don’t think so! You need to try these… and SOON.

No-Bake Peanut Butter Marshmallow Bars... can't go wrong with these easy, delicious treats!

I am always more ambitious with holiday baking, decorating, and cards than is ultimately reasonable. Case in point: this year I made our Christmas cards. Half got sent out earlier this week, the other half will [hopefully] go out this weekend. Sorry family, your cards were last. Ha. To compensate for the card making extravaganza of 2015, this year we decided not to get a tree… mainly because Isa the kitten would probably climb it and knock it down. Seriously, that cat has mad climbing skills. She scampers up the support poles in our living room like they’re nothing [and they already have a rustic look to them, so I’m not concerned with kitty claw marks. If she was destructive towards our furniture, that would be another story. I have no tolerance for that!]. The world is this kitten’s toy, and a tree would be no exception. Hopefully next year she will have matured a wee bit! 🙂 One area that I haven’t skimped in so far is Christmas baking! I made a mess of the kitchen many times over last weekend, and this weekend will be no exception. The best treat I made–by FAR–were these fairly unassuming looking No-Bake Peanut Butter Marshmallow Bars.

No-Bake Peanut Butter Marshmallow Bars... can't go wrong with these easy, delicious treats!

Brown food never looks that appealing to me, so don’t let the photos turn you away from these babies. If you make one new last-minute sweet treat this Christmas season, let THIS be it. They’re every bit as ooey gooey, sweet, and fantastic as they sound. The ingredient list is short and sweet: butter, peanut butter, butterscotch chips, marshmallows, and graham crackers, and the preparation is incredibly easy. Melt, stir, spread, refrigerate, cut, eat, and enjoy.

No-Bake Peanut Butter Marshmallow Bars... can't go wrong with these easy, delicious treats!

This treat is well worth the sugar rush, I promise… and with one batch making an entire 12×18 inch jelly roll pan full of these yummy bars… you’ll have enough to feed the neighborhood and yourself for days. 🙂 I’m seriously pondering making another batch this weekend just to have “extras” around! Word of warning though, especially for those of you experiencing higher than average temperatures: these can get pretty soft at room temperature so plan ahead to store in the fridge… they are delicious cold!

one year ago: Orange Spritz Cookies
three years ago: White Chocolate Peppermint M&M Cookies
four years ago: Chocolate Covered Cherry Cookies
five years ago: Eggless Cookie Dough for Snacking

No-Bake Peanut Butter Marshmallow Bars

  • Servings: 12x18 inch jelly roll pan
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adapted from my friend Susan and How Sweet Eats

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 3 cups peanut butter [I used 2 cups regular, 1 cup no-stir, non-refrigerated natural peanut butter — Peter Pan brand that’s pretty good for baking]
  • 1 – 11 ounce bag butterscotch chips
  • 2 – 10.5 ounce bags mini marshmallows
  • 4 cups graham crackers, roughly broken
  • sprinkles, optional

Directions:

In a large pot set over medium-low heat, melt together butter, peanut butter, and butterscotch chips. Stir constantly until everything melts–about 8-10 minutes. If a few chips are stubborn, that’s okay.

Remove from heat and let cool for about 10 minutes. While mixture is cooling, line a 12×18 inch jelly roll pan with parchment paper. Alternatively, you could use a 9×13 inch pan for thicker bars, or even some mini muffin cups greased well or lined with paper liners [but I haven’t tried these options].

Stir in 1 bag of marshmallows and half of the graham crackers until all are incorporated, then stir in remaining marshmallows and graham crackers. Turn out onto jelly roll pan, then use a spatula to press flat and smooth out. Top with sprinkles if desired, then refrigerate for 1 hour to set. Cut into small pieces and store in the refrigerator before serving. Enjoy!

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Bars, Desserts, Recipes

Red Velvet Marshmallow Bites

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Valentine’s Day came a little early to our kitties! Ben and I had a little coffee/shopping/errands date last Friday night and went to the pet store for some kitty toys. Now, don’t get me wrong, our cats are spoiled little girls. They don’t get along so we have to keep them separated unless we are around, so we do have to have multiples of most cat items just to keep ’em happy. But we’re suckers for making sure they have exactly what they want [right down to the milk out of our cereal bowls], so when Misty’s favorite toy broke recently, we had to get her a replacement.

Misty

Of course, we had to get Sheba a toy too… how could we not? Yes, we are crazy cat people in case you were wondering. 🙂

Sheba

Not sure if you can see the detail, but it’s pink with white hearts! How appropriate for Valentine’s Day, huh? And speaking of appropriate for Valentine’s Day… check out these Red Velvet Marshmallow Bars!

Red Velvet Marshmallow Bites | The Pajama Chef

I didn’t get these made far enough in advance for you to make them before today, but if you’re looking for a super fast and tasty holiday treat, these are just the ticket! With a thick, brownie-like red velvet base, these bites don’t really need anything else to be delicious, but topping them with gooey marshmallows and a few chocolatey M&Ms makes them even better!

Red Velvet Marshmallow Bites | The Pajama Chef

The original recipe made these miniature sized treats in bar form, but since I made these to take them today to my class and for Ben to take to work, I decided I didn’t want to mess with cutting a whole pan of Red Velvet Marshmallow Bars into nice pieces. Mini muffin cups are my BFF sometimes! If you would prefer to make them in a pan, you can totally do that–just click over to the original recipe for altered times and quantities. But I personally love anything miniature, I think these are just perfect… and I think you will too!

Red Velvet Marshmallow Bites | The Pajama Chef

Hope you have a lovely Valentine’s Day! What are your plans? My sweet husband is cooking me dinner and making me a pie! I can’t wait! 🙂

Red Velvet Marshmallow Bites [slightly adapted from Confessions of a Cookbook Queen]
click to print

Ingredients:

  • 1 [18.25 ounces] box red velvet cake mix
  • 1/4 cup canola oil [or melted butter]
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups mini marshmallows
  • 1 cups Valentines M&Ms

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Prepare two mini muffin pans by spraying with nonstick cooking spray or lining with paper liners.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine cake mix, oil, water, and egg. Mix on low until fully combined, scraping the sides as needed.

Scoop thick batter into mini muffin cups in generous tablespoon increments [a cookie scoop would be helpful if you have one]. If batter is not smooth, use a spatula coated with a little cooking spray to spread it in place.

Bake for 14-15 minutes or until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean.

Press in 3 mini marshmallows and top with 3 M&Ms, then return to oven for 2 minutes to allow marshmallows to melt.

Time: 35 minutes total time, 15 minutes active time.

Yield: 38 bites.

Cookies, Desserts, Recipes

Caramel S’more Cups

So, it’s only February, but it’s practically tropical outside. At least by Indiana winter standards. I mean, I noticed after my run today that my running tan lines are already starting to set in. In February. I guess that’s what happens after days upon days of temperatures in the 50s. It’s so exciting!

Not that running tan lines are cool or anything… but running outside in shorts sure is. Especially since right now we should be piling on the Under Armour to even venture outside, let alone go run outside comfortably.

And so… [yes! semi-awkward transition!] to celebrate a taste of summer early, meet Caramel S’more Cups.

Normally I hate S’more themed desserts, because they aren’t as good as the real thing. But this one is different.

Caramel S’more Cups aren’t trying to be the real thing. There’s no blah graham cracker crust or 70s layered dessert feel. This kind of different is more like over the top awesome.

First, you take a chocolate chip cookie. Then you put it in a mini muffin cup [since mini anything=cute=so much better].  Next, add a Rolo caramel, then, some marshmallows, and finally, more chocolate. Can you say gooey?? Especially warm out of the oven, or nuked for 5 seconds. Yes, please.

And if that doesn’t make you happy no matter the weather, then I don’t know what will.

Is anyone else in the mood for summer food now that the weather is clearly indicating an early spring? What are you most looking forward to about warm weather?

Happy weekend!

Caramel S'more Cups

  • Servings: 48 cookie cups
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cookie recipe from from Betty Crocker’s New Cookbook, 1996; rest from Betty Crocker

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons  brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/8 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup chocolate chips, divided
  • 48 Rolo caramels, unwrapped
  • approximately 1 1/2 cups mini marshmallows

Directions:

Line two mini muffin tins with paper liners. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

In a large bowl, cream together sugars, butter, and egg. Mix in flour and baking soda, then fold in 3/4 cup chocolate chips. Shape dough into 1 inch balls and place in muffin cups.

Bake for 8-9 minutes, or until just cooked around the edges. Remove from oven and place Rolo in center of cookie, pressing down hard. Top with 2-3 marshmallows. Bake for an additional 3-4 minutes or until marshmallows are puffed and golden. Top with a chocolate chip or two.

 

Note: Original recipe called for 1 pouch [1 lb 1.5 oz] packaged chocolate chip cookie mix, 1 egg, and 1/2 cup butter in place of homemade chocolate chip cookie dough, so you can use that instead if you want.