Lunch Lady Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars

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Everyone knows this treat as the lunch lady chocolate peanut butter bars. They have been a part of just about everyone’s childhood school lunch experience.

Pin Lunch Lady Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars for later.

A slice of lunch lady peanut butter bars on a white plate.

Even if your school never served these mouthwatering treats, you need to make them. Why? So when your friends talk about them, you know exactly what they are talking about.

What ingredients do I need for Lunch Lady Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars?

  • Butter
  • Light Brown Sugar
  • Sugar
  • Eggs
  • Creamy Peanut Butter
  • Pure Vanilla Extract
  • Flour
  • Salt
  • Baking Powder

Plus, for the chocolate glaze you’ll need:

  • Confectioners’ Sugar
  • Cocoa
  • Butter
  • Pure Vanilla Extract
  • Milk

Use a good quality peanut butter, not natural, it would separate and good quality chocolate. Better ingredients make better recipes.

A little bit about this recipe. It’s from my husband’s Pennsylvania high school. We’d only been married about a year when we went to his 10-year reunion. They gave every alumni attendee a goodie bag and this recipe was in it.

My husband couldn’t wait for me to make them! He has very fond memories of these old-school cafeteria peanut butter bars.

Needless to say, they have been made and enjoyed many times over the years. 

This recipe makes a large pan of bars, so it’s ideal for large gatherings or a potluck party. The original recipe didn’t specify the size of the sheet pan so I started with my smaller one and worried it was too small.

That didn’t work so I went to my next size, 17.25 by 11.5 inches, and it was perfect. The mixture was baked in 25 minutes.

A slice of lunch lady peanut bars on a white plate.

While these would probably be fine without the glaze, the glaze takes them over the top. They are not too sweet and have a nice balance of chocolate and peanut butter.

Lunch lady peanut butter bars are a blast from the past. If you enjoyed these in your childhood, you'll love this recipe. #peanutbutter #chocolate Click to Tweet

More Peanut Butter Favorites:


Lunch Lady Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars Pinterest image.

Lunch Lady Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars

Lunch lady peanut butter bars are a blast from the past. If you enjoyed these in your childhood, you'll love this recipe.
4.86 from 7 votes
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time25 minutes
Total Time40 minutes
Course: Desserts and Sweets
Cuisine: American
Servings: 36 bars


  • 2 sticks unsalted butter softened
  • ¾ cup light brown sugar
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 ½ cups creamy peanut butter
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 ¾ cups flour
  • teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder

Chocolate glaze:

  • 2 cups sifted powdered sugar
  • ½ cup cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons butter softened
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 4 tablespoons milk


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter and sugars until fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add peanut butter and vanilla and mix until incorporated.
  • In a separate bowl, combine flour, salt, and baking powder. Add all at once to peanut butter mixture and mix well. Using a rubber spatula, pat mixture onto a 17.25 x 11.5-inch rimmed baking sheet.
  • Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until the top is set and a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
  • Make the glaze while bars bake: In a stand mixer combine powdered sugar, cocoa powder, and butter. Mix until moistened. Add vanilla, then mix. Add milk, 1 tablespoon at a time, until spreading consistency.
  • Glaze while warm with chocolate glaze.

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  1. 5 stars
    These sound exactly like the bars I had at my school in Tracy, California! I have missed them and have searched for the exact recipe. It looks like you came through for me. Thank you so much!!!

  2. I was interested in making these but am wondering if the amount of sugar, 2 cups sugar + 3/4 cup soft brown, total of 550 g, which sounds like such a lot, is correct?

    1. Hi Sandra,
      Yes, that is correct – 2 cups white or granulated sugar and 3/4 cup brown sugar. This recipe is from my husband’s HS cafeteria in Pennsylvania. It makes a lot!

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