These crumbly, buttery PB&J Bars have a nostalgic peanut butter and jelly swirl in the middle, and are really fun for bake sales!

peanut butter and jelly shortbread bars on cutting board

When I get a craving for something, one of two things happens:

1. I eat that certain something, like a smart little lady should, and go on with my day.

Or 2. I decide to ignore my craving and stupidly end up eating everything else in the house–chocolate, chips, candy, and still feel unsatisfied (does anyone else do this?)

close up of bite of shortbread bars with oat crumble

Fortunately, I’ve learned over time that I need to deal with the craving straight away.

So the other day when I really wanted peanut butter and jelly, I sat down with my notepad and thought, what do I want to make?

I didn’t want just a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. This craving demanded more than that.

I thought, what if you put peanut butter and jelly with shortbread?

shortbread crumbly dough in mixing bowl

And this recipe was born.

This is some serious peanut butter and jelly satisfaction.

You make one shortbread dough, then divide it in half. Take half of the shortbread, and press it into your pan:

Pressing Shortbread Bar Dough Into Square Dish with Fingers

Then take the other half, and add some oats to it (ya know, because you can).

Mixing Shortbread Cookie Bar Dough with Oats

Throw the shortbread pan in the oven for 25 minutes to give it a little head start, then spread on your jam. Add little dollops of peanut butter:

swirling peanut butter dollops with jelly on shortbread bar base

Then go to town with your spatula and swirl them together:

peanut butter and jelly swirled shortbread bars in 8x8 glass pan

On goes the oat shortbread crumble:

oat crumble topping on pb&J cookie bars

And then into the oven until bubbly and slightly crisp. Cut into bars:

one square of peanut butter shortbread jam bars on cutting board

And you’ve got childhood nostalgia shortbread bar buttery deliciousness. Mmm.

And if you like milk, this is totally a “sit down and eat with a big glass of ice cold milk” kind of situation.

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PB&J Filled Shortbread Bar Squares

PB&J Bars

These crumbly, buttery shortbread bars have a nostalgic peanut butter and jelly swirl in the middle, and are really fun for bake sales!

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  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp almond extract
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 6 oz almond flour, by weight (1 cup, packed)
  • 1/2 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1 cup of your favorite jam
  • 6 tbsp creamy peanut butter


  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  • In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar for a minute or two, until the granulated sugar is no longer visible. Add the almond extract and salt and mix briefly. Add the flour and almond flour, and mix until the dough is crumbly. Split this dough in half. Take one half of the dough and mix in the old fashioned oats, and place it in the refrigerator. Take the other half of the dough and press it out into an 8×8 baking dish with your fingertips. Partially cook the dough by baking it for 25 minutes, then remove the shortbread from the oven.
  • Spread the jam evenly over the top of the partially baked shortbread, then add the peanut butter by spooning on dollops. Swirl the two lightly with a spatula, then take out the reserved shortbread oat crumble, and sprinkle it all over the top. Bake for an additional 25 minutes, until the bars are lightly browned on top. Let the bars cool completely, then cut into squares. Enjoy!


Calories: 347kcal, Carbohydrates: 37g, Protein: 6g, Fat: 20g, Saturated Fat: 8g, Cholesterol: 31mg, Sodium: 46mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 17g

Nutrition is estimated using a food database and is only intended to be used as a guideline for informational purposes.