Peanut Butter Jelly Bars


5 from 32 votes
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These peanut butter jelly bars are an easy dessert that combines the classic flavors of a PB + J. The bars consist of a soft and chewy base with swirls of strawberry jam throughout! 

peanut butter and jelly bars.

If you’ve tried our blondies or cookie bars before, these PB+J versions should be next on your list!

They were inspired by peanut butter blondies, but I wanted something a little sweet to balance out the sweet and salty notes of the peanut butter. Adding a swirl of strawberry jelly throughout completely transformed it!

Table of Contents
  1. Recipe highlights
  2. Ingredients needed
  3. How to make peanut butter jelly bars
  4. Flavor variations
  5. Tips to make the best recipe
  6. Storage instructions
  7. More peanut butter desserts to try
  8. Frequently asked questions
  9. Peanut Butter Jelly Bars

Recipe highlights

This recipe transforms our favorite classic sandwich into a decadent treat. If you are still on the fence about trying it, here are a few reasons. 

  • PB&J flavor in each bite. Unlike a peanut butter and jelly sandwich that has layers, this bar features a mixture of jelly and peanut butter that creates an even richer flavor. 
  • No flour. If you have always wished to enjoy the peanut butter and jelly flavor without bread, then this flourless bar recipe will surely be your favorite (you may also like our flourless brownies and cake!).
  • A make-ahead treat. Unlike a peanut butter and jelly sandwich that gets soggy rather quickly, these bars are good for up to a week.

Ingredients needed

Making these bars does require more ingredients than making a PB&J sandwich. But the result is certainly worth it. 

  • Peanut butter. I recommend using all-natural unsweetened peanut butter. You can make it yourself by blending the peanuts with a little bit of salt. 

Substitution idea

While these bars *are* focused on peanut butter, you can easily swap it out for almond butter, cashew butter, or a nut free alternative, like tahini.

  • Maple syrup. Always use pure maple syrup as it has a richer flavor and doesn’t contain any added sugar. 
  • Jelly. I enjoy the combination of peanut butter and strawberry jelly best. You can use the jelly of your choice. 
  • Strawberries. While this is optional, adding fresh diced strawberries to the bar mixture adds a bright burst of strawberry flavor. 
  • Chocolate chips. If there is one thing that can make the combination of peanut butter and jelly better, it’s chocolate. Use any chocolate chips you like.
  • Eggs. Bring the eggs to room temperature before mixing them with the rest of the ingredients. 

Substitution idea

Not a fan of eggs or can’t eat them? Try an egg substitute instead.

  • Baking soda. It reacts with the natural acidity of the eggs and helps create lighter bars. 
  • Salt. Helps balance all flavors. 

How to make peanut butter jelly bars

These peanut butter and jelly bars may not be as quick to make as a PB&J sandwich but the process of making them is very easy. Additionally, it’s worth taking 30 minutes to make them as you will have some to enjoy for an entire week. 

Step 1 – Prepare the bar mixture

Add the peanut butter, maple syrup, eggs, baking soda, and salt to a large mixing bowl. Mix until fully combined. Stir in the strawberry jam and gently fold the chocolate chips and sliced strawberries. 

Step 2 – Bake 

Pour the bar mixture into an 8×8-inch pan. The pan should be greased or lined with parchment paper to prevent sticking. 

Bake the peanut butter and jelly bars in the oven preheated to 350F degrees for 25 minutes, or until the mixture is fully set and golden brown on top. 

Let the bars cool completely before slicing.

peanut butter jelly bars.

Flavor variations

This recipe is all about achieving the PB&J flavor and texture of your dreams. Here are a few ways to customize this bar recipe. 

  • Jelly and fruit variations. Use any jelly you like to make this peanut butter bar. Blueberry, red plum and grape jelly are some of your best bets. If you like to experiment, use mango jelly. The same goes for fruits. Feel free to switch them up. 
  • Peanut butter variations. Use chunky peanut butter to add some texture to the bars. If you are allergic to nuts, feel free to use other nut butters. 
  • Add quick oats. Adding a handful of quick oats to the bar mixture will result in a chewier texture. 

Tips to make the best recipe

  • Add a dash of vanilla extract. This flavor enhancer always takes baked goods to the next level, creating depth of flavor and adding a delicious aroma. 
  • Use defrosted strawberries. If you are using frozen strawberries, defrost them fully in the fridge, strain them if needed, and pat them dry using paper towels. 
  • Add chopped peanuts. Coarsely chopped peanuts will add more texture to the bars and enhance the peanut flavor. Other nuts will work too, including almonds and hazelnuts. 
  • Make it sugar-free. You can easily make this recipe refined sugar-free by using sugar-free jelly and chocolate chips

Storage instructions

To store. Place these peanut butter and jelly bars in an airtight container in the fridge for 5-7 days. 

To freeze. You can make a double batch of these bars and freeze some for later. Free the bars in an airtight container or bag for up to 2 months. Wrap the bars with parchment paper to prevent them from sticking to each other. 

peanut butter and jelly bar.

More peanut butter desserts to try

More dessert recipes

Frequently asked questions

What kind of jelly goes best with peanut butter?

Grape, strawberry, and raspberry jellies are the classic jelly flavors used with peanut butter. But you are free to use the jelly of your choice. 

Are these gluten-free? 

Yes, these bars are gluten-free. But we do recommend you read the ingredient list of store-bought peanut butter and jelly to make sure they don’t contain wheat and other gluten-containing ingredients. 

How can I make my PB&J better?

Whether you are making a PB&J sandwich, bars, or another peanut butter and jelly-flavored treat, a great way to elevate its flavor is to use homemade peanut nutter. Adding spices to the jelly or jam is another easy way to create a deeper flavor for PB&J. 

peanut butter jelly bars recipe.

Peanut Butter Jelly Bars

5 from 32 votes
These peanut butter jelly bars are a delicious and easy-to-make dessert that features a peanut butter base with swirls of strawberry jam throughout.
Servings: 12 Bars
Prep: 1 minute
Cook: 25 minutes
Total: 26 minutes



  • Preheat the oven to 180C/350F. Line an 8 x 8-inch pan with parchment paper and set aside.
  • In a large mixing bowl, cream the peanut butter, maple syrup, and eggs. Add the baking soda and salt. Fold through the strawberry jam, chocolate chips, and sliced strawberries.
  • Transfer the mixture to the lined pan and bake for 25 minutes or until golden and crisp on top.
  • Let the bars cool completely before slicing.


For ultra gooey peanut butter and jelly bars, remove from the oven around the 20-minute mark. 
For thicker, slightly chewier cookie bars, cook for at least 25 minutes. 


Serving: 1BarCalories: 261kcalCarbohydrates: 21gProtein: 8gFat: 17gSodium: 293mgPotassium: 234mgFiber: 2gVitamin A: 45IUVitamin C: 2mgCalcium: 37mgIron: 1mgNET CARBS: 19g
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Author: Arman
Tried this recipe?Give us a shout at @thebigmansworld or tag #thebigmansworld!

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. I may earn a small commission for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial, and/or link to any products or services from this website.

Arman Liew

I’m a two time cookbook author, photographer, and writer, and passionate about creating easy and healthier recipes. I believe you don’t need to be experienced in the kitchen to make good food using simple ingredients that most importantly, taste delicious.

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Recipe Rating


    1. 5 stars
      I made these the day prior to our monthly meeting and have to say they were delicious. They refrigerated well and were tasty without being reheated. The crew loved them and I loved the fact they are gluten free.
      Making these again tomorrow, but per crew request, I’m going to add some swirls of the strawberry jam on top.