Peanut Butter and Jelly Bars


2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
2 eggs, room temperature
2 cups creamy peanut butter (18 ounces)
3 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp kosher salt
1 1/2 cups jelly or jam
1/2 cup salted peanuts, coarsely chopped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray a 9x13 inch baking pan with non-stick cooking spray.  Line with parchment paper, leaving a 1/2 inch overhang on each end.  Spray parchment paper with non-stick cooking spray.  This will help you lift it out of the pan before cutting into bars.

In a large stand mixer bowl, cream the butter and sugar on medium speed until light yellow, about 2 minutes.  Add the vanilla, eggs, and peanut butter and mix until well combined.

In a small bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt.  Add the flour mixture to the peanut butter mixture and mix just until combined.  

Spread 2/3 of the dough into the prepared pan and use your hands to spread it out evenly. Spread the jelly or jam evenly over the dough.  Drop small clumps of the remaining dough evenly over the jam.  The dough will spread when it bakes.  Sprinkle with the chopped peanuts.

Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until golden brown.  Let cool in the pan on a wire rack.  Lift out of the pan using the parchment paper and cut into bars.  Enjoy!