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Today's Case

Atkinson Peanut Butter Bars

Subject: Peanut Butter Bar Recipe
From: Michelle
Date: 3/19/2023, 3:28 PM
To: Phaedrus 

On 3/19/2023 1:41 PM, Michelle wrote:

Hi Phaedrus!

I have been looking for a recipe to make something similar to Atkinson's 
peanut butter bars, which is a candy†popular in the 1960s.†It had a flaky, 
crunchy shell, with peanut butter inside.††

I have searched your archives and website, and did not find anything like this listed.

Thank you for your help!†


Hi Michelle,

Gosh, you may want your donation back after you read this!

I did not have any success at all with this recipe. The ingredients are simple: Cane Sugar, Corn Syrup, Peanut Butter, Natural Brown Color and Natural Vanilla Flavor. The rub is in the process. Candies like this are pulled like taffy on big machines and stretched out into a thin rope while warm that is then cut into the small pieces that you buy. It's pulled like taffy, but the finished candy is crisp and crunchy, not like taffy. I could not find any recipe that even claimed to make something similar to the Atkinson's candy. There are some candies, like M & M's that you just cannot duplicate in a home kitchen. Even Gloria Pitzer, who tried to make a home version of just about everything either failed or did not try to make this candy

The only peanut butter flavored candy recipe that I can find that even looks a little like the candy is this:

You Tube

Dr. Sara Solomon

This recipe says "crunchy," but then says it's "softer than caramels." Peanut Butter Crunch Candy

The below recipe sounds right, but there's no way to tell until you make it.


Crunchy Peanut Butter Candy†††
3 1/4 c. granulated sugar
1 3/4 c. white Karo syrup
1 c. hot water
4 c. peanut butter

Boil sugar, syrup and water to 300 degrees, hard crack stage. Spread 4 cups 
of peanut butter in the bottom of a large cookie sheet, with sides. Do not 
skimp on peanut butter. Pour hot mixture over peanut butter and stir in as 
fast as possible. Work up in rope like strands. Cut with scissors and store 
in air-tight containers. This recipe makes a lot of candy.
Great, Phaedrus, thank you so much! 

When I think of honeycomb candy, I think of sponge candy, arenít the names 
interchangeable? The peanut butter bars from Atkinsonís had a hard top and 
bottom, and soft peanut butter filling between the two. 
Similar to taking a peanut butter soft filling (maybe peanut butter and 
powdered sugar mix?) and sandwiching the filling between two sheets of 
chewy, flaky shell. 

Regardless, I will make your recipe and am looking forward to the results.

Thanks again!


I am super impressed by your website and the research you do, and was happy 
to make my little donation! 

I checked out your thoughtfully provided links, and was interested to read 
the description of the peanut butter crunch candy, as similar to the inside 
of a butterfinger bar. Perfect description of the outside of the Atkinsonís bars. 

Thinking I will try the last two recipes! Thank you so much for your hard work, 
and for helping me. 


Butterfinger Bars

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