Sweet and salty. Pretzels and peanut butter. Make an easy base of sugar cookies for finger lickin’ chocolate peanut butter pretzel bars.
This chocolate peanut butter pretzel bars recipe, created by Anita Van Gundy of Des Moines, Iowa, competed for $1 million in the 46th Pillsbury Bake-Off Contest in Las Vegas in 2013.
Chocolate peanut butter pretzel bars recipe
1 3/4 cups pretzels, coarsely chopped
1 package Pillsbury Ready to Bake refrigerated sugar cookies
2 tablespoons Crisco Baking Sticks Butter Flavor All-Vegetable Shortening
1 can (14 oz) Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk
3/4 cup Jif Creamy Peanut Butter
1/2 cup Jif Chocolate Flavored Hazelnut Spread
1/4 cup caramel flavored syrup
Heat oven to 350 F. Spray 13×9-inch pan with Crisco Original No-Stick Cooking Spray. Let cookie dough stand at room temperature 10 minutes to soften.
Finely chop 1 cup of the pretzels; place in large bowl. Add cookie dough and shortening. Beat with electric mixer on low speed until well mixed. Press dough evenly in pan. Bake 14 to 18 minutes or until crust is light golden brown. Remove from oven; cool 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, in 2 quart heavy saucepan, heat sweetened condensed milk over medium heat 5 to 8 minutes, stirring constantly until hot and mixture is thin. Remove from heat. Stir in peanut butter and chocolate hazelnut spread until well blended. Spread over baked crust. Sprinkle with remaining 3/4 cup coarsely chopped pretzels. Bake 15 to 20 minutes longer or until edges are golden brown. Cool completely, about 1 1/2 hours. Drizzle with caramel syrup. Cut into 6 rows by 4 rows. Store covered.
Tip: Instead of chopping the pretzels, place pretzels in a large resealable food storage plastic bag. Seal bag; with rolling pin coarsely crush pretzels. Remove 3/4 cup. Seal bag and finely crush remaining pretzels in bag.