Sweet, Salty and a Little Trashy

Saturday, January 19, 2008
Peanut butter cookie base topped with crushed potato chips and peanuts, homemade toffee and chocolate.

Sweet & Salty Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 large egg

3/4 cup crushed potato chips (I used Lays, but they were too greasy)
1/3 cup salted peanut halves, toasted

6 tablespoons unsalted butter
2/3 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
1 cup dark/bittersweet chocolate chips (about 7-ish ounces)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line an 8-inch square baking dish, or an 11x8-inch baking dish, with foil; coat foil with nonstick cooking spray.

In a medium sized mixing bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, and salt.
In a large mixing bowl, using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat together 1/4 cup butter, peanut butter, and granulated sugar, until creamy, about 1 minute. Beat in egg and vanilla until combined. Reduce mixer speed to low, and beat in flour mixture until combined.
Scrape batter into prepared pan, and spread evenly.

Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until edges are light golden brown, and crust is firm. Remove pan from oven; reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F.
Plunge the pan into a larger pan filled with ice water, to cool quickly.

When crust is cool, sprinkle potato chips over crust, followed by peanuts.

Melt the additional 6 tablespoons butter in a medium saucepan, over medium heat. Stir in the brown sugar, and bring mixture to a boil, stirring a few times. When sugar starts to boil, do not stir. Allow to boil for 5-6 minutes, or until it starts to brown. Quickly take the pan off the heat, and pour toffee mixture evenly over potato chips and peanuts.

Bake for 10 minutes, at 350 degrees F. Remove pan from oven, sprinkle chocolate chips over toffee, and place back in oven for 2 minutes. Remove pan from oven, and spread chocolate evenly over bars.

Cool on a wire rack, completely, before slicing. To speed up the cooling process and help with slicing, place the bars in the freezer, and chill until very cold and firm.

Yield: Depends on what pan you use, and how big you slice them. I used an 8-inch dish, and I think I cut them into 12 squares.
31 comments on "Sweet, Salty and a Little Trashy"
  1. mmmm, i'm glad i have some peanut butter cups in the flat cos i feel some sweet -salty craving coming on!

  2. What no picture? You got me all excited about this recipe, it sounds devilishy delicious! But I want the visual. Maybe it didn't show up on my screen for some reason.
    Oh well, it's a great combo to mix sweet with salty, I really want to try this!

  3. that sounds good (interesting, but good!)

  4. Sweet/savory and guilty pleasures? I am so, so in!

  5. No pictures showing up for me either. Blogger must be wonky this evening. I admit to the guilty pleasure of American Idol. I like it better after all the crazies have paraded through though.

  6. I think that is such a cool combo. I remember when Anna won with that recipe, very creative. Who doesn't love the sweet and salty combo!?

    Ok, I love American Idol. I admit it!

    I see your pics, they look delish!

  7. whoa, that's interesting! I have a one package of potato chips in the cupboard right now, a leftover from a party. But nobody eats them here! I tried mixing some into a salad, which was quite a good idea, but you idea is stunning!:)

  8. I am a huge sweet/salty nut. These will be perfect to bring to an upcoming party.

  9. I'm more of an America's Next Top Model girl, but those bars look effing amazing.

  10. I can imagine how those would be incredible. I LOVE sweet and salty together.

  11. Hee hee. I love the trash. :) I remember one of my first 'recipes' was chocolate and potato chips, eaten together. That was taken to the next step of crushing the chips up in my ham sandwiches. Chips are a staple ingredient to any good food.

  12. Yummy. The perfect snack to watch all those crazies on American Idol!! I get more into it once they get down to it!!

  13. We totally love AI and these cookies look amazing regardless of whether you were watching the show at the same time you were making them or not. YUM! I love the idea of the salt and recently purchased sal de fleur to use on brownies because I heard it was amazing. These look wonderful!

  14. These are the perfect PMS cookie!

    Oh yes, now that American Idol has started again, I have a reason to be a sloth on Tues/Weds night. I like the same singers you do as well! I feel guilty watching the freak show during auditions, but it's like watching a car wreck...you can't look away!

  15. Polly- Peanut butter cups sound really good.

    Annie- I uploaded them again, so they should be showing up. I couldn't see them either.

    Kimberlie- Yes, they are good.

    Cakespy- Yes!

    Anj- I'm glad you like American Idol, too. I pretend that I don't like it.
    Blogger was acting strange last night.

    Jenny- I know, I like the combo.
    Yay, I'm glad you like American Idol!

    Eveline- A salad? Now that sounds even more interesting.

    Rachel- Good luck! You will surprise all of your friends. Just be careful with the toffee. Don't let it burn.

    Rebecca- It is amazing.

    Heather- Thanks. I'll watch America's Top Model, if it's on. Sometimes they'll play it on VH1 and I'll catch it.

    Mallow- Sweet and salty is my new favorite flavor!

    Annemarie- Who doesn't love chips? My fam really likes them. They eat a lot of Pringles.

    Valli- You're right-Now it's a little boring going through all of the auditions.

    Kellypea- Those brownies do sound amazing, and so elegant.

    Catherine- I guess they are, now that I think about it.

    I agree...I like watching the freak show. Those people are so crazy!

  16. That sounds so frickin frackin delicious! I love stuff like this - a little surprise for the senses! I am more into Project Runway myself! ;)

  17. Que interesante, Emiline! I love this sweet and salty taste!
    You have also changed the heading, and some other things in the blog, ah? I like it!!!

  18. American Idol is High Culcha compared to what I've been watching. I know I'm the only one to watch The Real Housewives of Orange County, but it's fascinating. Each one has a diagnosable pyschological defect. It's fascinating, plus those boobs are way better than Giada's. Oh, back to those yummy things. Potato chips on a peanut butter blondie? What will they think of next?

  19. These sound really interesting! Who would have though to add potato chips? I will have to try these.

  20. Hey as weird as it sounds, chips sound pretty good in that treat! I remember when I was little, my friends and I in New Zealand would spread vegemite on on slice of bread, put crushed chips on top and put another slice of bread on top. As gross as that sounds, it was SOOOOOO good.

  21. This is the last thing I needed to be seeing at midnight. Thankfully, there are no chips in the house... otherwise I think the munchies might have gotten the better of me. ;)

  22. April- They are good. I think next time I can make them even better.

    Jenn- I LOVE Project Runway. It's one of my favorites.

    Sue- I watch that one, too. When it's on at the right time, and I catch it. You're funny.

    Val- I don't even know what Vegemite is.

    Nuria-Yes, I'm changing around a few things, for fun.

    Culinography- Don't give into temptations!

    Gretchen- You should.

  23. I had friends in high school that would do crazy things like dip their french fries in their frosties from Wendy's. I never really got into that, but maybe I need to try this out and be converted!

    Yeah, I'll admit to being an American Idol fan - and I'm proud of it!!

  24. I am going to HAVE to try these! Thanks for the recipe!

  25. Oh, my... I have just come back from lunch (no dessert) and I see this?? Have a little mercy, Emiline. I almost bit the keyboard. ;)

  26. How did I miss this, E?

    Thanks for trying the recipe. If you like this, you will probably like Frito Candy. It sounds weird, but it's really good.

    Oh, and you should enter the Betty Crocker contest this year. I think the deadline is fast approaching, but it's a fun contest and there are lots of finalists.

    Sorry about your hair. I'd get it fixed (somewhere else!) if I were you.

  27. Deb- Mmm, fries and a frostie sound good.

    AFS- Thanks!

    Patricia- Sorry!

    Anna- I would love to try the Frito candy sometime, really. I've been meaning too.
    I wasn't sure if you would read this, or not. It was kind of like a little tribute to you.
    I started thinking that maybe I would offend you with the title, or by changing the recipe. The trashy part is ME liking American Idol, not your bars or my bars.
    I don't know. I get paranoid that people are mad at me.

    I might look into the contest- it sounds like fun. ;)

  28. These are so incredibly good! The base is like peanut butter cookies which I love! It was a great way to use up all of the foil chocolate easter eggs (which I don't care for on their own but are lovely melted on peanut butter cookies and chips!)