In case it’s been unclear up to this point, I kind of have a thing for peanut butter. (My definition of a “thing” is something that I consume three jars of every week.)
Are you familiar with magic bars (aka seven layer bars, aka one of the most perfect cookie bars in creation)? You must be—I’m pretty sure everyone has made some version of these at least once in their life. I’m even more sure you’ve eaten a version of these at some point, and that you remember that time with great happiness.
I have a weird, vague memory of the first time I ate one; it was at a Brownies meeting when I was a kid. I still remember being shocked at how good those unattractive cookies were. They were so sweet without being cloying and I loved how ooey-gooey they were. I’m getting hungry just thinking about it. . .
There’s a bit more to this recipe than with the classic magic bar. The bottom layer is usually just a graham cracker crust but I wanted a little extra kick of salt, so I added potato chips. (It’s hard to go wrong with potato chips in sweet treats. Trust me.) And peanut butter isn’t a traditional ingredient either, but after this version I doubt I’ll ever make another batch without it.
But these magic bars are still super easy and such a crowd-pleaser. Because who wouldn’t be happy eating a cookie that’s covered with sweetened condensed milk (aka perfection in a can)?
The way the chocolate chips and sweetened condensed milk melt together never ceases to make me swoon. Like, really swoon, full-on with my eyes rolling back in my head.
The incorporation of peanut butter, peanut butter M&Ms, and delicious salty potato chips takes these to a whole new level of swoon-worthy. But peanut butter is the solution to most of life’s problems, right?
And if it’s too big a problem for peanut butter alone to solve, then peanut butter M&Ms are probably the ticket. (Yep, I have a thing for M&Ms, too, especially the peanut butter variety.)
So basically, you need these magic bars in your life. And they’re so easy to put together you should make them immediately. Don’t deprive yourself of deliciousness!
- 6 whole graham crackers (or a scant 1 cup graham cracker crumbs)
- 1 cup crushed potato chips
- 10 tablespoons butter, melted
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup chopped peanut butter M&Ms
- 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
- 3/4 cup roasted salted peanuts
- 1 cup sweetened coconut
- 1/4 cup peanut butter
- 14 ounces sweetened condensed milk
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9-x13-inch baking pan with cooking spray, line with parchment paper or foil, and spray with more baking spray.
- Pulse graham crackers and potato chips in a food processor until they are fine crumbs. Combine the crumbs, butter, sugar, and salt in a small mixing bowl. Stir together until the butter is completely mixed into the crumbs. Press mixture into the bottom of the pan in an even layer.
- Top with M&Ms, chocolate chips, and peanuts. Sprinkle coconut evenly over the top and press down lightly.
- Heat peanut butter in the microwave until it is slightly liquid. Stir in sweetened condensed milk, then pour mixture evenly over the other ingredients.
- Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until the filling is lightly golden and bubbling around the edges. Cool completely on a wire rack before cutting into bars.