Recipe for Peanut Butter Granola Bars

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Refrigerator Peanut Butter & Milk Granola Bars - Healthy breakfast or energy filled snack!

These bars are no bake, stored in the refrigerator, filling, and tender. What’s more, they’re actually on the healthier side of things. Well, for now. I mean, give it a week or so and someone is going to decide oats are unhealthy, it’s only a matter of time :). The ingredients are as simple as they can be and the bulk of the “cooking” process involves stirring and patting into a pan. They make an excellent breakfast or a quick energy snack in between meals and since they aren’t “too sweet” they are perfect for school mornings when you want your kid to be well fed but not bouncing off the walls :).

In short, I love them and I made a huge batch at a fraction of what I used to pay for the store bought Milk Bite version. The options with this are limitless, really. If you have any peanut butter allergies, use sun butter. Add in dried fruit, nuts, coconut, whatever you like to personalize them. You can follow my recipe to the letter or use it as a springboard for something entirely different.

 Let’s get to it so I can get me another bite of one of these bars!

Refrigerator Peanut Butter & Milk Granola Bars - Healthy breakfast or energy filled snack!

Recipe Ingredients:

  • Oats
  • Evaporated Milk (can use regular)
  • Peanut Butter
  • Honey
  • Vanilla My Vanilla was not in the mood for photographs today and we mustn’t pressure our ingredients when they wake up on the wrong side of the pantry.

On my finished product, I melted some white chocolate chips and drizzled that over in addition to sprinkling a little bit of coarse sea salt on top of the chocolate before it set. It was a wonderful touch.

Refrigerator Peanut Butter & Milk Granola Bars - Healthy breakfast or energy filled snack!

Place all of your ingredients (except oats) in a large bowl and microwave for a minute or two until the peanut butter is good and melty and can be easily stirred together with all the other ingredients. You can do this in a pot on top of the stove if that makes things more right in your world.

Stir that together until smooth. Add oats. Stir until very well coated.

Press into an 8×8 pan. Cover and refrigerate until chilled.

If you want to make a pretty topping like I did, melt chocolate chips (flavor of your choice) in the microwave at 30 second intervals, stirring after each, until melted and smooth. Allow to cool for a few minutes and then spoon into a zipper seal bag. Snip a corner off and squeeze in a zig zag (or zag zig, depending on your level of rebelliousness) pattern on top of the bars. Sprinkle lightly with coarse sea or kosher salt.

Refrigerator Peanut Butter & Milk Granola Bars - Healthy breakfast or energy filled snack!

Cut into bars and store in an airtight container or bag in the refrigerator for up to two weeks or freeze for up to three months (or until you remember they are there and decide to eat them).


Refrigerator Peanut Butter & Milk Granola Bars

Refrigerator Peanut Butter & Milk Granola Bars: ingredients as simple as can be and most of the "cooking" process involves stirring & patting into a pan.
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
10 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: milk
Servings: 8 large bars or 16 snack size
Calories: 179kcal


  • 6 cups quick oats
  • 12 ounce can milk or 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla


  • Place all ingredients except for oats in a large microwave safe bowl. Heat for about a minute or two, just until peanut butter is a little melty. Stir with a large spoon until mixture is creamy and well blended.
  • Stir in oats until fully incorporated.
  • Press mixture into an 8x8 pan. Cover and refrigerate until chilled before serving.


To make the topping as pictured: Melt 1 cup white chocolate chips in the microwave. Allow to cool for a few minutes and then spoon into a quart size zipper seal bag. Snip off just one corner and squeeze in a zig zag design over top of bars. Sprinkle lightly with a teaspoon of coarse sea or kosher salt.
These bars keep very well in the refrigerator for up to two weeks or in the freezer for several months.


Calories: 179kcal
Tried this recipe?Mention @southernplate or tag #southernplate!

You may enjoy these peanut butter no bake recipes:

Chocolate Peanut Butter Balls No Baking Necessary

No Bake Peanut Butter Bars

Peanut Butter No Bake Cookie Bites


 “Live your happiest life by knowing that often Plan B is even better than Plan A. Ditto on Plan C.” 

~Unknown 🙂

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      1. They are great with Biscoff as that was all I had. They tasted like cookies! I normally buy the Peter Pan Honey Roasted Peanut Butter but was out so Biscoff to the rescue!

      2. Christy, (and Marsha G.): Now that’s an idea! I hadn’t thought of it at all. Thanks! I’m going to annotate my recipe so I don’t forget. I just polished off my jar of Trader Joe’s Cookie Butter, so that means I’ll have to do both the sun butter and cookie butter after I replenish my Cookie Butter. Maybe 1/2 batch of each and see which Quality Control likes the best?

        Might need to do 2 full batches as I have been dealing with Customer Service at both Amazon and Apple’s iTunes Store these past couple days-always a joy and an absolute last resort, and you are an oasis of sensibility and calmness in a sea of irrelevant and annoying “answers” from Customer Service!

        I have been ignoring my Kindle edition of Facebook for Old People. Family wants me to join it and, like you, I am not all that thrilled with social media. What’s wrong with good old-fashioned e-mail? 8) I suppose I’ll have to read the thing soon, before it becomes totally out-dated, especially since it wasn’t cheap.

    1. They’d never make it to the fridge if I made them with Nutella….and no one else would get any either.

      However- that sounds like a plan for my next Pity Party.

  1. Christy: I totally agree with you on oatmeal being healthy this week. However, it and my intestines are not BFF’s so I would have to use either barley flakes, or a mix of half barley flakes and ground up graham crackers, since 6 cups of barley flakes is all of one bag, maybe more, and pricey. I will figure some combination out.

    I also have to use the sun butter since I can’t have peanut butter. I already make a recipe for no bake cookies that has sun butter, graham crackers, raisins and honey. I have tried them with coconut, with butterscotch chips, dried cranberries, dried blueberries, and I like them plain the best. They are “don’t bother me I’m eating” good and only have two problems: it only makes 8 rather dinky cookies, and once you take the blade out of the processor bowl, so it’s safe, you just want to grab the bowl and run with it and not share. Who needs a spoon? 8D

    Your recipe sounds equally good, and I like the white chocolate glaze. I can’t have chocolate so I often use white chocolate, and might even try it with the sea salt to cut the sweetness of it. It might also work with butterscotch chips. Thanks very much for this recipe. I’m looking forward to the story you are writing about Brady. I noticed you called him Bradybug. I used to call my Papillon, Lexie, Lexiebug, so that made me think of her.

    1. Your combinations sound wonderful! My friend, Hodgepodge mom uses a lot of sun butter as all of her kids are allergic to peanut butter and it is just so wonderful to have a product that can so easily be substituted! I really like that little bit of salt, too, and I love white chocolate. It’s actually my favorite 🙂 Yup, he’s my Bradybug! Although, the taller he gets the less I tend to call him that, lol. Thank you for being here!!! And hey, if on one is around, t’ain’t no one to report that you ate those cookies out of the bowl so it never happened!

  2. Out of Peanut butter at the moment and as it is 10.30pm here (Ireland) shall have to wait until tomorrow P.G., and head for the shops. Looks like another fantastic recipe from you. Shall enjoy making, and mostly eating, them. Thank you for recipe deirdre

    1. Deirdre, you have just got the sweetest personality and kindest heart. I bet folks fight over who gets to be your neighbor!
      And to top it off, now you have me imagining how beautiful Ireland is 🙂 Thank you!

  3. ~drooling, typing and waving~ Hi Christy! These bars look sooooo good I may have to put on a bib to keep from getting my keyboard sopping wet! 😀 I’m in luck with having all the ingredients and can make them within a couple of hours. Do you think crunchy peanut butter would work well or would it mess up the texture? DH & I love crunchy peanut butter, but if it’s going to detract from something I don’t won’t to use it.
    Hugs & blessings,

    1. Oh, I LOVE Crunchy peanut butter, too!!!! My family just wants creamy but every now and then I buy crunchy as a treat for myself. It would work wonderfully in this and add a little extra oomph to it as well. If it were me, I’d add about 1/4 more to make up for the peanuts taking away some of the melty part that you want to hold all of this together. Oooh now I want to make them that way, too!!

    2. Could I use this recipe to make the chocolate milk bites by using bits of frozen symphony bars in place of the peanut butter?

      I was also thinking of using the oat flour mentioned in the ingredients list by Kraft.

  4. …”we mustn’t pressure our ingredients when they wake up on the wrong side of the pantry!”….I just cracked up reading that statement. Nothing like vanilla extract with an attitude! You are just too funny; no wonder I love reading your posts! I am very blessed to be vacationing in the beautiful seashore town of Cape May New Jersey this week, and I am so glad I have access to your posts while I am on the beach. I have been checking my email everyday,( since I am one of the few people left in the world who has not gotten with the times and opened a Facebook account!). Between the hot sun, refreshing ocean water, beautiful scenery and your commentary on your uncooperative groceries, it just can’t get any better, lol! It reminds me of when my girls used to watch Veggie Tales and the narrator would break in with a comment about “when produce goes bad” or something to that effect. Anyway, you brightened my day with that quip, and I am looking forward to trying the peanut butter granola bars very soon. And, Christy, I think I recall reading a post in which you mentioned something about wanting to try to visit all the different states in this great country of ours. Well, if you ever come to New Jersey, you must visit Cape May on the southern-most tip of the state. It is the country’s oldest seaside resort, and the Victorian homes are breathtaking, not to mention the ocean! You just gotta promise to mention it in one of your posts so my family and I can drive down to meet ya!

    1. Hey Sharon!! Thank you for sitting through my writing! lol I enjoy the days where I can just sit and write in a more whimsical way and I’m trying to make it a point to do that more these days. I’m glad you noticed :). We really do want to visit all of the states and didn’t get to do that this summer so maybe Cape May can happen sooner rather than later (one of these years at least). You sure make it sound like the place I’d like to be! I will sure mention it if we get to! And listen, a little bit of wisdom from me on Facebook, you ain’t missing nothing :). I think the less technology and social media we have in our lives the happier we are. I realize this is highly ironic coming from me since a great part of my career depends on social media, but we all gotta retire sometime and my time is coming! When it gets here, I’m getting me a cabin up on a mountain with no internet and I won’t look back. Cell phones are gonna go, too 🙂 Folks will have to lick a stamp to get in touch with me. When will this happen? As soon as God allows it!

      1. LOL- I burst out laughing at That panrty statement too…When you say stuff like that, it makes me think of my Grannies Miller & Coyle….theywas always saying funny stuff like you do when they was in the kitchen- like it was a magical fantasy land and you were the queens making your magic there together……and it brings back the fondest memories of both of them. xoxo

  5. These look so good, I like the idea of a topping, this way I can get my chocolate fix in by way of a drizzle on the bars.

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