Secret Recipes- Peanut Butter Fingers


When I was a little girl, my family would go to Family Night Supper once a month at church.

The ladies would bring a wonderful dish that they had perfected- usually the same dish, time

after time- because everyone loved and expected it!

When I started taking dishes to Sunday dinners as an adult, it was with a different group of

people and often they would bring new food- something they wanted to try out- and sometimes

it was wonderful, sometimes not.  But it was always an adventure.

Back in my childhood, however, the very repetitive nature of the food was comforting.

Someone would bring sausage and sauerkraut, there would be chicken, hot buttered noodles with

sauteed breadcrumbs, cucumbers in vinegar, and oh- the desserts!

Glazed yeast doughnuts, brownies, postum cakes, strudels, rice krispies treats, and always, always

– peanut butter fingers- sweetened peanut butter lying thick over a dark chocolate layer and then a

oatmeal cookie base.  I always looked for them and they were always there, thanks to Katherine Nemcheck.

I don’t know how my mother got her recipe- I think it was an even exchange- the peanut butter fingers for

my mother’s cocoa brownie bars with white frosting ( although the recipe was originally Sophie’s! Smile  )

I’ve been making these for years, although I changed them up a bit , and I’ve never shared the recipe before.

I kind of thought it wasn’t really mine to share.  But lately, with all the uproar over bloggers and recipes that

the cookbook writers are trying to keep OFF the internet, I’ve been thinking of sharing some of these old

recipes that were handed down so discretely from mother to daughter, friend to friend.

And besides, some friends on facebook said the magic words, asking for anyone who had shared those

wonderful treats from years ago whether they had the recipe.  So in memory of wonderful evenings of food

and fellowship and with a curtsy to Katherine Nemcheck, I give you the recipe for Peanut Butter Fingers.


1/2 cup margarine or butter (my recipe says oleo- my mother always called it Oleo-margarine)

1/2 cup white granulated sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar, packed

1 egg

1/3 cup peanut butter

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp vanilla

1 cup plain flour

1 cup rolled oats

12 oz semi sweet chocolate chips

1/3 cup peanut butter

1 cup powdered sugar

2 Tbs milk


Cream together butter and sugars, add egg and peanut butter and vanilla.  Beat all together until smooth


Add dry ingredients and mix well.  Smooth into 9×13 pan and bake at 350 degrees F for 12 minutes.


Remove from oven and sprinkle choc chips over the top.


Allow to melt and then spread over the top.  Cool slightly.

018In the meantime,

mix the peanut butter, powdered sugar and milk until very creamy.

Add enough milk so that it will drizzle from the fork.


And then slather the top with the sweetened peanut butter icing and

slice the bars.


You will get a pattern as you slice.



Let them cool so that the icing sets and then enjoy!

21 thoughts on “Secret Recipes- Peanut Butter Fingers

  1. Yes, yes, YES!!! I’m glad I said the magic words! 🙂 Thank you sooo much for posting this recipe and sharing Katherine’s secret! How I wish I could pass along this traditional dessert at OUR family night suppers, but alas, we have too many people with severe peanut allergies in our church and we’re not allowed to bring peanut products. Oh well. I guess that means I’ll just have to keep them here in our house! DANGEROUS! Thanks, Aunt Heidi, for sharing the recipe, and thank you, Katherine, for sharing it with Grandma!

    • We are halfway through with this batch- but we had some help from Chad and Allyson and Aiden and Cynthia, of course. Thanks for reminding me of it.
      I’m wondering if Marjorie and Lois will come over here to get the recipe?

  2. YUM! I’m not sure what happened, but I had forgotten about these. I DID need the recipe. Also, could you post Gramma’s cocoa brownie bars with white frosting (that was originally Sophie’s)? Or if you have already, the link? I need that recipe, too. 😀

    • I don’t think I have shared that one either. It is more of a brownie bar rather than the rich brownies out there now.
      I will put it up in the next couple of weeks, Elizabeth, along with Grandma’s Dutch Apple pie bars.

      • That sounds wonderful! I’m not sure what the blog/cookbook author debates are about (maybe you could blog about it and inform me?), but it does kind of seem like many people are making the same things as lots of other people. And I guess foods and recipes trend. But I am kind of surprised by how many recipes I see where there is a picture of all the ingredients and it’s all bags of mixes and stuff set out in packages…

  3. Over the years I’ve made many of the peanut butter fingers and the cocoa brownies. They were favorites of our family and friends. We did change both of the recipes from what was given to us. They were yummy!

    • Childhood treasures and pleasures- these come high on my list. I actually make them in a mini cupcake pan, put a dark chocolate disk in the center and pipe the peanut butter icing around the edge. They look great and are really easy to eat- plus they are delicious.

  4. Those look really rich and delicious and I would love to try one (or two!) It sounds as if you have mamy treasured recipes to share and judging by the commenta above everyone loves these ! , I will look forward to drooling over them all in turn. May I ask what is postum cake? it sounds like Latin 🙂

    • Back in the 1950’s (I ‘m sure well before that- in the 30’s at least) the church ladies used a drink mix- Postum- which I think might have been a mix of roasted malt and finely ground nuts- to flavor cakes. I always thought it had a burnt sugar flavor- but I was quite young and didn’t have an experienced palate at that time. The frosting on that cake, however, was a cooked flour and milk that had a little sugar and butter added when it cooled. It was not too rich, but rather soft and creamy and blended well with the brownies. For some reason- the cake recipe never got saved, but the icing remains in the recipe box.

      • Ok you got me curious there, so I have been having a little google and I have found out a bit more about Postum. I reockon it’s something like (at this point i get shot down in flames) Horlicks or Ovaltine, only darker, does that sound about right and clearly much loved to judge by the internet peitions to bring it back 🙂 Fist I thought it might be like Camp Coffee made from chicory but it says made from roasted grain and molasses so a dark malty powder. I thought it had something to do with the Post, as in “did you Post that letter Henry?? um Post-um ??? “You didn’t, ? I’ll give you Post-um cake then” 😉

        • I love you, Joanna!
          I had a quick thought at your question that you would be able to tell me more about it than I could tell you by the time you researched it! I
          ve never had Horlick’s , but it was definitely deeper and darker tasting than I remember Ovaltine being. I have never been big on these drinks- I like tea and hot chocolate, coffee and that is about it.
          But yes, there was a malt flavor and it hasn’t been on the market for a while.
          Nothing to do with the post- or postal service that I know of- here we would say, ” Did you put that letter in the mail?”

    • Hi Chopinand,
      While I can’t speak for ALL AMericans- we do love peanut butter in many recipes- soups, dips, sauces, desserts,my extended family love peanut butter and bacon sandwiches. But- that being said- I’d not turn down a peanut butter and Jam sandwich. 🙂

  5. I remember the postum cake – my mom made them. Postum was a substitufe for coffee for certain groups who were not to drink coffee. I tried to make it recently for a friend, but postum isn’t made anymore. I did find recipes online and they suggested substitutes – but it wasn’t the same.

    • Lois, I remember your mom’s chicken soup. All the Kozy’s made the best chicken soup- I went to a Slovak cafe in Brooklyn, NY- and it was THAT soup!
      I don’t remember ever drinking Postum, just the cake.
      Thanks for visiting- it was great to hear from you. 🙂

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