Make-Ahead Oatmeal Peanut Butter Bars


These DIY breakfast bars are hearty, delicious, and just-sweet-enough to tempt kids and delight adults. The recipe is flexible depending on your tastes. Prefer cashew butter to peanut? Go with that. Like maple rather than honey? That works, too. The point is, great recipes like this one are about ratios, and encouraging home cooks to mix things up to suit your tastes. As for the mix-ins, nuts and dried fruit are recommended here, but if you threw in a marshmallow or toasted shredded coconut, no one would be mad. Psst...Store these in the fridge to make sure they don’t go too soft.

Make-Ahead Oatmeal Peanut Butter Bars
Photo: Jennifer Causey
Hands On Time:
20 mins
Total Time:
3 hrs 20 mins
32 bars


  • 2 cups peanut butter, almond butter, or cashew butter, preferably natural

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter

  • 1 cup honey or pure maple syrup

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 4 cups old-fashioned rolled oats

  • 1 cup cocktail peanuts or chopped toasted almonds (optional)

  • 1 cup dried cherries, raisins, or chopped dates (optional)


  1. Line a 13-by-9-inch baking dish with parchment paper. Cook peanut butter, butter, honey, and salt in a large pot over medium, whisking occasionally, until butter melts and mixture is smooth, 5 to 6 minutes.

  2. Remove from heat and fold in oats. Fold in peanuts and cherries, if using. Press mixture evenly into prepared dish. Chill until firm, about 3 hours. Remove from dish and cut into 32 bars. Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 1 week.

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