My husband is a huge fan of Monster Mix or really any trail mix in general. I like some types more than others but I really do enjoy Monster Mix. Coincidentally I do not like M&M's, at least until I tried the dark chocolate ones...His favorite M&M's are the dark chocolate peanut ones. That was my first introduction to the dark ones and I kinda liked them. Then I found the regular ones and although you won't see me popping a handful in my mouth I really enjoy them in baked goods or trail mix (of course).
I wanted to make something with them and thought about how yummy the Monster Mix is and would be in an oatmeal cookie, then a cookie bar, then an oatmeal cookie bar! The oatmeal makes it healthy you see, oatmeal is heart healthy so it makes anything healthy :) Yeah I like that logic. I made these in a loaf pan size so it's easy for 4 people to share or 2 people over two days? I'm just thinking about you and how it's never a good idea for have 4 dozen cookies laying around even if they are stuffed with healthy oats. Also, I would munch constantly and not have any left in two days, moderation people, it's important for tons of reasons.
I'm a huge fan of customization, you know that if you're read my blog for any length of time. These are screaming for you to personalize them. Don't like peanut butter chips? That's okay, add butterscotch chips or chocolate chips. Don't like peanuts? That's okay, use cashews or sliced almonds. Don't like raisins? That's okay, use cranberries or cherries (although I can't say how that would go with the peanut butter chips if you choose to use those). It may be delicious and become a new favorite. Let's continue...Don't like M&M's? That's okay, wait, have you tried the dark ones? You could always use a Reese's pieces if you have no fear of peanut butter madness.
If you prefer you could also drop these onto a sheet pan and make cookies. I would think baking 10-13 minutes until lightly browned should work and you should get about a dozen. Happy Baking!
Oatmeal Monster Cookie Bars
Makes 6-10 (depending how you cut them)
- 3 tablespoons butter, softened
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 whole egg
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- ¾ cup quick cooking oats
- 2 tablespoons raisins
- 2 tablespoons peanut butter chips
- 2 tablespoons chopped peanuts
- 2 tablespoons dark chocolate M&M’s
1. Preheat oven to 350F. Mix together the butter and both sugars on medium speed until blended well and fluffy, 1-2 minutes.
2. Add egg and vanilla, mix well. Add in flour, baking soda, oats, raisins, peanut butter chips, and peanuts. Stir to combine.
3. Spread or press dough into a greased 8 ½” x 4 ½” loaf pan (or line pan with foil and spray lightly with non-stick cooking spray. Sprinkle evenly with M&M’s and press them lightly into dough.
4. Bake 16-19 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from oven and cool completely. Cut into 6-10 pieces.