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Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Swirled Cookie Bars. Sweet, doughy, and buttery, filled with chocolate chips, and swirled with creamy peanut butter. If your day needs a sweet, chocolatey treat, you should be making these bars…because sometimes all you need to brighten your day is a really good cookie!

overhead photo of The Best Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Swirled Cookie Bars

You’ve probably guessed by now, but for whatever reason I am into baking at the moment. All summer long I’ve been baking up fresh fruit desserts (hello to this blueberry buckle, this peach cake, these raspberry bars, and this galette). But with school starting up again this week (Asher’s first day is Thursday), and feelings of fall beginning to settle in, I’m left craving some more classic recipes that remind me of being a kid.

Sooo. Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars.

I’ve said this one times too many here on HBH, but when my brothers and I were kids my mom would make homemade cookies at least twice a week. We’d come home from school to cookie dough, eat some, and then help her bake fresh cookies. She’d always make a batch and half to ensure that there was enough dough to fill a 9×13 inch Pyrex pan with extra dough for eating.

She’s a smart thinker.

Honestly, baking cookies with my brothers and my mom are some of my best memories from growing up and it’s always so comforting to be reminded of them. It seems every single year that late August rolls around I love digging back up these memories. Do you guys ever do this? It’s kind of fun to feel like a nine-year old kid again, even if it’s only for five minutes while you stand over the mixing bowl and shovel in spoonfuls of homemade cookie dough…

photo of Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Swirled Cookie dough

Anyway, I’ve been really excited to share this recipe with you today. It’s one that has been requested over and over by friends, family, and you guys, so I’m glad to finally be sharing. Because let’s be real, the combo of chocolate and peanut butter is pretty unbeatable.

Let’s talk details.

It was really important to me that I keep this recipe as simple and classic as possible. There is a time and place for over the top desserts with crazy flavors and things, but sometimes you just need a good cookie bar. One with classic flavors, a doughy center, too many chocolate chips, and a ripple of peanut butter running throughout.

That is these bars.

overhead photo of Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Swirled Cookie Bars in baking pan fresh out of the oven

I used my mom’s base recipe for the cookie dough, which I do believe is the very same recipe that’s listed on the back of the Nestlé Toll House Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips. I think the only changes mom made was reducing the sugar and adding more chocolate chips.

My addition? Salted butter, which I swear is the secret to giving baked goods that extra special touch. If you haven’t tried it, you have to bake with salted butter. You have to.

And now that I think of it, I am 99.9 % sure my mom always bakes with salted butter too, and her desserts are nothing short of perfect. So bake with salted butter. You’re going to love it.

Moving on.

close up photo of Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Swirled Cookie Bars with flower and knife in photo

Cream the butter and sugar. Add your eggs, vanilla, and dry ingredients. Stir in lots of chocolate chips. You could also use dark chocolate chips, but then if you’re making cookie bars why not make them really good…

Hint, hint. Use semi-sweet chocolate chips.

Snack on some dough (only use pasteurized eggs and toasted flour). Then spread the dough in a baking dish. Dollop with peanut butter and add the remaining dough. Bake, smell the deliciousness coming from your oven. Wait (impatiently) for twenty minutes, find some cold milk, grab a fork and eat hot cookies, right out of the pan because it’s Tuesday and summer is coming to an end soon, and sometimes in life, you just need to live a little.

Today is a good day to live a little.

Eat hot cookies with a glass of cold milk and enjoy every last moment of it.


close up photo of Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Swirled Cookie Bars

Very dramatic aren’t I? But really, did I sell you? Pretty sure as my mom reads this that she’ll be hopping up from her computer, calling for Asher, and running to the kitchen to find herself some butter, sugar, eggs, flour, chocolate chips, and peanut butter.

Hoping you all have the same reaction, because like I said, sometimes you just have to do what sounds so amazingly good and comforting. Eat cookies now…have salad for dinner (new salad recipe coming Thursday!). And maybe even a smoothie for breakfast.

Balance, it’s all about balance.

And with that, enjoy your Tuesday…and make cookies!

close up of broken cookie bar

If you make these chocolate chip peanut butter swirled cookie bars, please be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! I love hearing from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every one of you. And of course, if you do make these cookies, don’t forget to also tag me on Instagram so I can see! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!

The Best Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Swirled Cookie Bars

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings: 24 bars
Calories Per Serving: 1527 kcal

Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.

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  • 1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9x13 inch baking dish.
    2. In a large mixing bowl, beat together the butter, brown sugar and sugar until combined. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating until combined and creamy. Beat in the vanilla. Add the flour, and baking soda, beat until combined. Stir in the the chocolate chips.
    3. Spread 1/2 the dough out in the prepared dish. Dollop and then gently swirl the peanut butter into the dough. Add the remaining dough overtop, don't worry if the dough doesn't fully cover the peanut butter. Transfer to the oven and bake for 20-22 minutes, until just set in the center. Let cool and then cut into bars. Store for up to 5 days in an airtight container. 


*If you don't have salted butter, you can use unsalted butter and 1 teaspoon of kosher salt in place of the salted butter. 
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  1. 5 stars
    Awesome! I added unsweetened shredded coconut to the PB layer and to the top of the 2nd cookie dough layer. I baked it until golden brown. It was still gooey. Super delicious!

  2. 5 stars
    I made these for a thank you gift and also took some to work. Everyone loved them and wanted to know what they were called and what was in them. I will be making them again for my son who is leaving to go back to school. Highly recommend making these.

  3. 5 stars
    Incredible!!! Such an easy recipe to whip up and is beyond delicious. They are still moist and yummy the next day and I even made a gluten free batch with almond flour that was also great. Highly recommend if you’re a peanut butter lover!

    1. Hi Emma! I would recommend cutting the recipe in half to best fix in the 9×9 inch pan. Please let me know if you have any other questions. I hope you love this recipe! Thank you! xTieghan

    1. Hi Melanie! The recipe should work great for you as is! Please let me know if you have any other questions! xTieghan

    2. Hi Melanie! You do not need to adjust the recipe. I live at 9,000 feet and these turn our wonderful. Please let me know if you have any other questions. I hope you love this recipe! Thank you! xTieghan ???

  4. 5 stars
    These bar cookies are fabulous! Especially warm from the oven. I followed the recipe exactly. Mine took 22 minutes to bake. Highly recommended.

  5. 5 stars
    Made this recipe twice already and each time it was a great hit.
    First time I followed the recipe exactly and it was little mushy in the middle (that didn’t bother us) Second time I baked the first layer for 7 min first then finished layering peanut butter and rest of the dough and baked another 20mint. It turd out evenly baked and yummy 🙂
    Thank you for sharing this recipe with us.

  6. 5 stars
    Cannot get enough of these! Have made them every week since discovering the recipe 5 weeks ago. They are the ONLY thing my husband wants me to bake. Have also substituted Nutella for the peanut butter – Yum!

  7. 5 stars
    I made these last week for our last summer weekend at our lake house- they were a HIT! People were hiding the bars so that they could eat the last one. So light and fluffy, then a salty bite of peanut butter. YUM! Thanks for sharing this super easy and delicious recipe 🙂

  8. 4 stars
    My bars took longer than 25 min..I bet to say it was more like35-40 min! I can only guess it was bwcause I baked them in a heavy ceramic dish. They were def worth the wait. .thank you & more recipes like this please!

  9. A peanut allergy is the despair OF MY LIFE. Do you think these would work with cashew butter? Or what about something like Nutella? Thanks so much!

    1. Hi Juliette! Cashew or almond butter…OR nutella would all be SO GOOD in these cookies. YUMM! Please let me know if you have any other questions. I hope you love this recipe! Thank you! xTieghan

  10. I used to make chocolate chip cookies when I was younger and I used salted butter only. They were raved about and requested for years. My mom corrected me after a few years when she found out I was using salted butter and told me to only use unsalted butter and I listened because well, she’s my mom, lol. They just weren’t the same and I figured I’d just lost my magic touch with them. I feel so validated with your post about using salted butter in baked goods and will be making these cookie bars this weekend. With salted butter.

    1. Yes I love using salted butter! I think they just turn out so well! I hope you love these bars Laurel! Let me know how they turn out for you! xTieghan

  11. 3 stars
    I love the concept and flavor combination but had a little trouble with these being underdone with the recommended time. I baked them for 22 min and even added on a few extra minutes, pulling them out when the edges were browned and crisp but still a little wiggly though most of the center. They weren’t exactly runny but were undercooked when we went to eat them a few hours later. I put them back in the oven for another 22 minutes and they are better, but wondering if the PB made a difference? I used natural PB with flax (Teddy’s), which tends to be on the oily side. Could that be the explanation? They were still edible and delicious, just not the consistency I was expecting. I will try again with something like Jiff next time around!

    1. Hey Corynne,

      Yes, I think the peanut butter was the issue. It sounds like the oil in the peanut butter created excess moisture in the cookies causing them to not bake properly. I would recommend a non-oily peanut butter…like Jiff! 🙂 Please let me know if you have any other questions. I hope you love this recipe! Thank you! xTieghan

  12. Could I swap tahini for the peanut butter? I know tahini is thinner, so perhaps I’d need to thicken with cornstarch? Thanks!

    1. Hey Meg! I think tahini will be so delicious! It might be a bit more runny, but I think it will still be just fine. I would not add cornstarch. Please let me know if you have any other questions. I hope you love this recipe! Thank you! xTieghan

    1. Hi there! I am not very familiar with GF backing, but you can try to use a GF flour blend such as Bob’s Red Mill (which is my favorite blend). That said, I do not know what the outcome will be as I have not tested this. Please let me know if you have any other questions. I hope you love this recipe! Thank you! xTieghan