This easy no-bake recipe features chewy peanut butter cereal bars topped with a chocolate and butterscotch frosting.
Maybe you know these tasty bars as Scotcheroos? In my family we call them “Special K Bars” (because we make them with Special K cereal), but whatever you call them, you are bound to love them.
These bars are always part of our holiday dessert spread, and they are one of the first things to disappear.
Bars: These chewy bars are made with only 4 ingredients: Special K cereal, sugar, corn syrup, and peanut butter. They are chewy, sweet, and loaded with peanut butter flavor.
Topping: The easiest “frosting” ever! Melt chocolate chips and butterscotch chips and pour over the bars. This glossy, delicious frosting is what takes these bars over the top.
Why you’ll love this recipe
- No bake – No need to turn on your oven. These bars come together on the stovetop.
- Quick and easy – Literally under 15 minutes from start to finish.
- Basic ingredients – Only 6 ingredients needed.
- Flavor – Peanut butter, chocolate, and butterscotch. Yum!
- Work quickly. Once your sugar “syrup” begins boiling it is go-time. Be ready to add the peanut butter, then immediately add the cereal, then immediately press into the pan. As the mixture cools it will firm up and get more difficult to work with.
- Use a commercial brand emulsified peanut butter. This is not the time to use a “natural” (oil on top) peanut butter, as you want the peanut butter to mix easily into the sugar syrup.
- Use a 9×13 pan for thinner bars, or an 8×11 pan for thicker bars (pictured).
Serving: You need to give these bars a couple hours to “cool” so that the frosting can firm up. The texture is best when they are served at room temperature.
Storage: Store tightly covered at room temperature for up to 4 days.
Leftover butterscotch chips? Make my Salted Butterscotch Cookies.
More Peanut Butter Recipes:
Special K Bars
- 6 cups Special K cereal
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup light corn syrup
- One 16-oz jar room temperature peanut butter*
- butter, for greasing the pan and bowl
- 1½ cups semisweet chocolate chips
- 1½ cups butterscotch chips
- flaky sea salt, for topping (optional)
- Grease a large bowl with butter and place the Special K in the bowl.
- Grease a 9x13 or 8x11 baking dish. The 9x13 will make thinner bars, the 8x11 bars will be thicker (as pictured).
- Place sugar and corn syrup in a saucepan over medium heat. Heat the mixture stirring occasionally, until the edges start to bubble. Remove the saucepan from the heat and immediately stir in the peanut butter.
- Working quickly (before the mixture cools), pour the peanut butter mixture over the Special K and stir until combined. Scoop into the prepared baking dish and press into an even layer. Proceed with the frosting.
- Place chocolate chips and butterscotch chips in the bowl of a double boiler. Cook, stirring frequently, until melted and smooth. Note: make sure the boiling water is not touching the bottom of your bowl, only the steam.
- Immediately pour the frosting over the bars and smooth into an even layer. Sprinkle with flaky sea salt. Allow several hours for the frosting to firm up, then cut and serve.