So, funny (but not really funny) story- but for years I had to be cautious about the types of pretzels I ate since generic, cheaper-brand ones would often make me break out in hives from head to toe shortly after being ingested. Be it because of whatever preservatives, sodium, or colorings were used in aforementioned brands- I’ll never know- but I learned to trust a couple of different companies over time that I could eat without needing to keep a bottle of calamine lotion and Benadryl nearby for afterwards.
I saw this recipe online recently and the photos of the finished product looked really, really good. I grabbed a couple of packages of pretzel sticks from one of my trusted snack brands and decided to try it out for myself. Whipping it up was easy enough- especially with no actual baking required- but it was the waiting to try/eat them that proved to be the most difficult part of the process!
WHAT YOU’LL NEED:
- 2½ cups pretzel crumbs (from about half a full-size bag)
- 1½ cups confectioners’ sugar
- 10 tablespoons (1¼ sticks) unsalted butter
- 1¾ cups smooth peanut butter, divided
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- One 12-ounce bag milk chocolate chips
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 1 cup lightly crumbled/grated pretzels
OKAY, HERE’S WHAT YOU DO:
1. Lightly grease a 9-inch square baking pan with nonstick spray and then line it with parchment paper, allowing 2 inches of extra parchment to hang over the sides.
2. In a large bowl, mix the pretzel crumbs with the confectioners’ sugar to combine. In a small bowl, whisk the melted butter with the 1½ cups peanut butter and the vanilla extract to combine.
3. Add the peanut butter mixture to the pretzel mixture and stir until the crumbs are evenly coated and moistened. Pour the crumb mixture into the prepared pan and press into an even layer.
4. Place the chocolate chips in a medium-size heat-safe bowl. In a small pot, bring the cream to a simmer over medium heat. When the cream is simmering, add it to the chocolate chips and let sit 15 seconds. Stir the mixture until smooth and well combined.
5. Pour the chocolate mixture over the pressed pretzel crumb layer and spread evenly. Sprinkle the crumbled/grated pretzels evenly over the chocolate.
6. In a small bowl, stir the remaining ¼ cup peanut butter to loosen it. Microwave for 20 to 30 seconds, then drizzle the softened peanut butter over the crumbled pretzels.
7. Refrigerate until firm, 30 to 45 minutes.
8. Cut into 16 even squares. Store the bars in the refrigerator in an airtight container until ready to serve.
These squares were so, SO good! They were the perfect combination of chewy and crunchy- and sweet and salty. I’ve been indulging on these over the past couple of days and I’m looking forward to making a batch for the people in my office for the next weekend we all put in some overtime together.
And best of all? No hives!