Children are filled with genius ideas if you listen closely. A few weeks ago, my son was staring longingly into our snow-filled, icicle-rimmed backyard, dreaming of warmer days. And then he exclaimed, Mommy, we should make some monkey bars! In retrospect, he was probably referring to building his own personal playground in our backyard. But, in the moment, as I moved about our kitchen preparing dinner, my mind interpreted his request into a recipe idea. Monkey Bars. Genius!
We paused for a moment to consider the foods which monkeys enjoy. Clearly, bananas were on the top of the list. Chocolate and peanuts decided to tag along for the ride. Our plan came together easily after that. We’d start with a peanut butter cookie crust, topped with our favorite, simple fudgey brownie, mixed with chunks of fresh banana and garnished with crunchy peanuts.
Your monkeys will go bananas for these tasty little treats! Mine sure did!
Chocolate Banana Monkey Bars
- 15 peanut butter sandwich cookies, crushed
- 4 Tablespoons butter, melted
- 1 stick butter
- 1 cup chocolate chips
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 Tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup flour
- 2 eggs
- 3/4 cup bananas, chopped
- 1/4 cup shelled peanuts, coarsely chopped
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray an 8×8 baking dish with cooking spray.
Combine the cookie crumbs with the melted butter, until well blended. Press the mixture into the bottom of the baking dish. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven.
In a saucepan over medium-low heat, melt the chocolate chips and butter until smooth, stirring constantly. Turn off the heat. Stir in the sugar, cocoa powder, and salt until dissolved. Stir in the flour. Add the eggs and stir until well blended. Stir in the chopped bananas. Spread the mixture over the peanut butter cookie crust. Sprinkle the chopped peanuts on top. Bake for about 35-45 minutes, until the brownies appear set and a toothpick inserted near the center comes out mostly clean. Cool before cutting into small squares.