Sunday, April 14, 2024
It's Sweet to Share!

The #1 Coveted School Recipe: The Best Lunch Lady Peanut Butter Bars in the World

It's Sweet to Share!

I survived off a single pint of chocolate milk and lunch lady peanut butter bars for the entirety of my four year high school career.

I kid you not.

peanut butter squares school recipe

Well, these and a healthy dose of obsessing over cute boys and how to avoid doing homework.

But when lunch time came, and with it a break from sitting in class trying not to gossip with my girlfriends, these peanut butter squares were the reason I could make it through the rest of the day.

Smooth thick peanut butter cookie crust layered with creamy chocolate frosting.

Old School Recipe:
Lunch Lady Peanut Butter Bars

This Peanut Butter Squares School Recipe is so easy to recreate at home. With 30 spare minutes and a few ingredients you’ve already got on hand, you are ready to indulge in a trip down memory lane.

peanut butter cookie bars

I’m not sure how I survived the next ten years, because that is how long it took me to discover the lunch lady peanut butter bars recipe and perfect it.

I mean, I actually considered going back into those dreaded halls a few times over the years — that is how serious my craving is for these cookies.

This is it.

These lunch lady peanut butter bars are chewy while not being overly sweet, and the perfect treat for any time of year.

The #1 Coveted School Recipe: The Best Peanut Butter Squares in the World

Lunch Lady Peanut Butter Bars

Catherine Olson
Peanut Butter Squares School Recipe from your Childhood Primary Days
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 24 squares


  • Hand Mixer


Cookie Dough

  • ¾ cup butter
  • ¾ cup peanut butter
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 ½ cups flour
  • 1 ½ cups rolled oats
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¾ tsp baking soda


  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • ¼ cup butter
  • ¾ cup peanut butter
  • 1 ½ cups melted chocolate chips
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • ⅓-½ cup milk


Cookie Dough

  • In a large mixing bowl cream butter and sugars together until light and fluffy
  • Add eggs and vanilla and continue mixing until well combined
  • Add dry ingredients and stir together until a dough forms
  • Drop onto a well greased 15×10 sheet pan and spread evenly throughout
  • Bake at 325° Fahrenheit for 15-20 minutes until lightly browned
  • Remove from oven and let cool


  • Add all ingredients into a large mixing bowl and use a handheld mixer to combine
  • Spread evenly over cooled cookies
Keyword Lunch Lady Peanut Butter Bars

I’m Allergic to Peanuts. Can I Substitute a Different Type of Nut Butter?

Now I’m imagining this recipe with almond butter! Almond butter is my favorite!

Just promise me you won’t use Nutella. There is a time and a place, and this is neither the time nor the place.

You could use any type of nut butter in this recipe – just pretty please share your results and tag us on Instagram using #bakewithfahrenheit350!

Can I Omit the Rolled Oats?

No. If you omit the oats these will not be authentic Lunch Lady Peanut Butter Bars!

Can I Use Shortening Instead?

Can you? Yes.

Should you? Shortening is not made from vegetables because vegetables don’t produce oil. Shortening is made from grains and is mostly a trans fat. I grew up on Crisco, as did most late century babies, but now I choose butter.

We always use butter. Butter tastes good, and comes from milk.

Make These Lunch Lady Peanut Butter Bars

If you make these old fashioned peanut butter squares, tag @Fahrenheit350sweets on Instagram so I can see it! And I’d love it if you left a review and a comment below! 

Like this recipe? Check out some of our other favorite peanut butter recipes.


It's Sweet to Share!


  1. These look great, but I don't recall ours being baked. I will try these, however, because like you I have searched high and low for a recipe to replicate the old school lunch "peanut butter treats", as we called them. Thanks for sharing this!

  2. all of a sudden I'm taken back to the days of plastic trays, shorts tables, and stuffing vegetables in my empty milk carton! Can't wait to give these a whirl! (how are you anyway???)

  3. Lots of errors in this recipe. What kind of oats? Quick cooking? Old fashioned? Do you grease the pan first? How much baking soda? 3/4 of what (I am assuming teaspoon)?

  4. I am always on the lookout for a great brownie recipe and these are it! My chocolate obsessed 6 year old claimed these to be the most delicious brownies ever made ! Made them for a party and they were the first to go and everyone was looking for more- yum! Thanks for a great recipe! So is it just cuz the frosting recipe that you have there came out incredibly thick and difficult to spread is that just how it s supposed to be?? c

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