Thursday, January 12, 2012

Semi-Homemade Recipe: Peanut Butter Chocolate Chips Bars

I'm sure you've all heard the phrase "semi-homemade," right, Sisters and Brothers.  Magazines, websites, even books are put out giving recipes about using mixes and pre-made food items into something else by twisting the directions, adding extra ingredients, or using it in different ways.  We review a lot of products here on The Chocolate Cult because part of our goal is to help you spend your money wisely.  So starting today, and from time to time, I'm going to give you "recipes" for how I mix up mixes or add in ingredients to make something new.  As a busy woman, doing semi-homemade is a wonderful thing I can do for myself and my family that saves us money as well as time.  If I'm careful, I can even make it more healthy though not this time.

I combined two cookies mixes I found on sale at our local Kroger over the Christmas break to make a bar that my family loved.  The Kroger brand chocolate chip cookie mix was on sale and after comparing it to the other brands, it was just as good nutritionally or better nutritional than them at a much lower cost.  The Betty Crocker peanut butter cookie mix was also on sale and I had a coupon.  I had several of the peanut butter mixes at home, something I keep on hand that my husband can make easily and we all enjoy.  So after I had these I started thinking: Could I make peanut butter chocolate chip cookies?  I mentioned it to my hubby and he said "yuck" but he changed his mind when he had what I created.

First I decided that my arm still wasn't up to snuff when it came to manipulating cookie sheets yet so I'd go with bars.  Consulting both packages I found bar directions on the chocolate chip cookie mix box.  First I mixed together all of the wetter ingredients and made sure they were mixed very well meaning that the butter was thoroughly blended.   Then I added the peanut butter cookie mix and made sure that was mixed very well. Finally I added in the chocolate chip cookie mix and got that all blended together.  Don't worry, I used my electric stand alone mixer so I didn't hurt my arm.  Then I spooned the batter into a     13 X 9 X 2 inch glass pan that I also have a plastic lid for -- I wish I had more of those because plastic wrap and foil never seem to stay on very well.

Then I baked it at 10 minutes beyond the maximum time listed on the box.  I had to test it with a toothpick at the max time and then added a few more minutes at a time until it was slightly golden and not doughy at all.  I let it cool for an hour then cut it into 18 pieces.  There  you can see to the right the results -- you can see the peanut butter and the chips of chocolate both.  My husband could smell it and so I let him try a bar.  He loved it!  So much for my bad idea, huh?

Now of course it might not have turned out well.  Just a few days before my attempt at a tomato cheese sauce was horrible but generally when I'm manipulating mixes or products I do a decent job of it.  How about you?  Do you ever combine cookie mixes to make your own variety or own dessert?


S.V. said...

I agree semi-homemade can be a time saver and you will still get a tasty treat. Your bars look yummy.

TheChocolatePriestess said...

Thank you, S.V. I refuse to feel bad about making things from kits or semi-homemade products. I'm a busy woman, I don't have the time to always make things from scratch.

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