Peanut Butter Rainbow Marshmallow Squares

peanut butter marshmallow squares 1

I have a confession to make: these.

Those peanut butter-butterscotch chip-rainbow mini marshmallow lovelies that remind me of parties at my great Aunt’s house, when she put out plates of dainties that included these and Nanaimo bars – the ones I’d swipe the quickest. I still do. I used Easter as an excuse to make them – everyone needs some pastel colours in their weekend, right? – because I still haven’t managed to reconcile the fact that I’m a grownup and I can make a batch of peanut butter marshmallow squares anytime I want and eat the whole thing myself in front of the TV.

It gets worse: I love them frozen. Like so many desserts of their ilk, I have in the past attempted to hide them from myself in the freezer, falsely thinking that their frozen state would deter me from eating them until they’re gone. (This doesn’t work with brownies, either.) Frozen, the marshmallows take on a chewy texture, the butter and peanut butter keeping their delicious carbonite enclosure from freezing solid, so that they’re extra firm, yet easy on the teeth. Part of me wants to make a batch with dark chocolate, but it seems like blasphemy.

peanut butter marshmallow squares 2

Some people put coconut in theirs, and you see the odd version with walnuts. I like straight-up marshmallows, but the addition of coconut is acceptable – especially when you have large curls of it in your baking cupboard. Make sure you wait for the peanut butter goo to cool down a little before you stir in the marshmallows – and whatever you do, don’t stand around taking pictures of them slightly submerged, or you’ll wind up with swirls of melted marshmallow, which isn’t entirely bad. (If you like, pop the marshmallows in the freezer for a bit to prevent them from melting.)

Peanut Butter Rainbow Marshmallow Squares


Yields1 Serving

1/2 cup butter
1 cup peanut butter
1 pkg (300 g) butterscotch chips
3-4 cups rainbow mini marshmallows (or white, if you must)
1/4-1/2 cup shredded coconut (optional)


In a medium saucepan, melt the butter, peanut butter and butterscotch chips over medium-high heat. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool slightly so that you don't melt the marshmallows. Stir in the marshmallows and coconut and spread into an 8x8-inch pan, lined with parchment if you life. Refrigerate until firm and cut into squares.


 1/2 cup butter
 1 cup peanut butter
 1 pkg (300 g) butterscotch chips
 3-4 cups rainbow mini marshmallows (or white, if you must)
 1/4-1/2 cup shredded coconut (optional)



In a medium saucepan, melt the butter, peanut butter and butterscotch chips over medium-high heat. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool slightly so that you don't melt the marshmallows. Stir in the marshmallows and coconut and spread into an 8x8-inch pan, lined with parchment if you life. Refrigerate until firm and cut into squares.

Peanut Butter Rainbow Marshmallow Squares

About Julie

45 comments on “Peanut Butter Rainbow Marshmallow Squares

  1. Lee Anne
    April 1, 2015 at 3:38 pm

    These are my favourite childhood food memory. My granny would make them and my diabetic gramps would scarf them down in one bite. And no, keeping them in the freezer is no deterrent. Infact, in my house, it just makes it easier for my daughter to sneak them, as the freezer is in the basement.

  2. Jules @ WolfItDown
    April 1, 2015 at 3:38 pm

    Holy smoke these look delicious! These would not last long at any party I can tell you 😀 Thank you so much for sharing the recipe Julie! x

  3. Christine
    April 1, 2015 at 6:13 pm

    Nanaimo Bars are also meant to be eaten out of the freezer….

    • Lorraine
      April 9, 2020 at 8:35 pm

      I substituted Chipits sea salt caramel chips. About 2/3 bag so not quite so sweet

  4. Tina
    April 1, 2015 at 7:20 pm

    …as are homemade cake doughnuts and whipped shortbread!

  5. Sarah
    April 1, 2015 at 7:39 pm

    Also my all time faves. Also forget that I could make them whenever. Also only ever eat them frozen. It’s the only way.

  6. Jackie H
    April 1, 2015 at 7:59 pm

    I first had these at a baby shower my Mom took me to when I was a kid and it was love at first bite! I love them out of the fridge all cool and fudge like. I can’t get around adding coconut or walnuts but I have used 1/2 crunchy peanut butter.

    • Julie
      April 4, 2015 at 9:28 am

      Love the idea of using crunchy peanut butter Jackie!

  7. Laura M
    April 1, 2015 at 9:44 pm

    This is literally the only way that I like to eat marshmallows! (I also have a thing for frozen desserts that aren’t necessarily intended to be frozen).

  8. Carolyn
    April 1, 2015 at 10:18 pm

    My mom always makes these with butterscotch chips. I always make them with chocolate chips and white marshmallows. THere was the year that my mom used very stale (crunchy) marshmallows in them … not a good idea. For our house, it wouldn’t be Christmas without these. Fantastic memories!

  9. Karen
    April 1, 2015 at 10:44 pm

    My Grandma always brought these to pot lucks in very small town Sask. I made them for my peanut allergic husband for the first time with WOW butter and they worked out fine(although I admit I haven’t had them in their original form in forever)

  10. gertrude
    April 1, 2015 at 11:36 pm

    Hi Julie,
    I have not seen any butterscotch chips this side.
    Do you think toffees would be a substitute?

    • Julie
      April 4, 2015 at 9:27 am

      Toffee has a different consistency Gertrude… maybe chocolate chips or peanut butter chips?

  11. June
    April 2, 2015 at 8:30 am

    Oh boy – talk about a trip to “memoryville”. I’ll be making a batch of these for the freezer pdq. Thanks Julie.

  12. Diane
    April 2, 2015 at 5:47 pm

    FYI These are just as good (and I like them better) made with pea butter for all those school events!

    • Julie
      April 4, 2015 at 9:26 am

      Yes Diane – good point! I’ve made them with golden pea butter before and they’re fab!and look just the same! although teachers tend to mistrust them when they look too much like real peanut butter!

  13. sara
    April 3, 2015 at 11:34 am

    These are so cute! Totally love. 🙂

  14. 911shazza
    April 4, 2015 at 12:45 pm

    I absolutely love these… but they are so addictive!! A pan of them doesn’t last long in our house!! Might have to try with coconut… never tried that before…

  15. Evelyn
    May 7, 2015 at 10:44 am

    Just made these with Almond Butter. My kids had never had these before. I almost (only almost) preferred them over the peanut butter ones. They didn’t last long.

  16. Nicole
    May 17, 2015 at 7:49 pm

    I also prefer eating them frozen. So much better. I also took to adding some Rice Krispies to add a light crunch to them. So delicious!

  17. Kim
    November 22, 2015 at 11:01 am

    My mixture is not silky-smooth…it’s granular (with unmelted chips I guess). I was using a double-boiler then switched to microwave but no luck. What am I doing wrong? Thanks!

  18. Heather
    December 27, 2015 at 9:23 am

    Nicole use crunchy peanut butter… Skippy is the best
    Lots of crunch much better than smooth peanut butter

  19. dana
    January 15, 2016 at 9:59 pm

    I have never been able to get these to work either! Butterscotch chips won’t melt!!!

    • Grace
      November 16, 2016 at 5:14 pm

      I use a teflon saucepan on med to low heat to melt the chips instead of using a double-boiler and that works well. Some of my friends remembered this recipe with Rice Krispies added, I haven’t tried that yet.

  20. Sarah
    January 19, 2016 at 9:24 am

    Dana …. I always use a full cup of butter.Try that it might help.

  21. KathyG
    March 26, 2017 at 11:11 pm

    Am I the only one who finds these headache-inducingly too sweet?

    • Tricia Cole
      November 24, 2017 at 8:36 am

      Maybe try making with natural peanut butter…that would cut down on overall sweetness?

      • Julie
        November 24, 2017 at 8:39 am

        It would for sure! But they’d definitely have a different texture.

  22. Cindy Keddie
    April 22, 2017 at 1:31 pm

    This is a favorite of mine as a kid. I have recently started making them for a great group of wrestlers when they come to town and will be doing that this weekend. Missed doing it one show and they all come into the house check the fridge and say hey grandma you got any of them peanut butter squares…….. mom said sorry guys she was to busy this time………. so they be here Tuesday night and they will have their treats. Road trip 16 days 16 cities/towns 4 provinces 🙂

    • Julie
      April 24, 2017 at 1:59 pm

      That is the best peanut butter marshmallow square story ever!

  23. raemckenzie
    May 6, 2017 at 6:46 pm

    I made them with half white chocolate chips and added some rice krispies they didn’t turn out to bad all my friends loved them .

  24. Laura
    December 1, 2017 at 7:48 pm

    Just made pans of these to add to baking packages I give out as gifts. As always with your recipes, Julie, they turned out perfect! You rock, woman! I no longer search the web for whatever recipe I think will turn out best – yours are always reliable and delicious.

    • Julie
      December 5, 2017 at 12:19 pm

      Yaaaay!! So glad to hear it! You made my day! 🙂

  25. Anonymous
    December 31, 2017 at 4:15 pm

    Aww I love these they are so good

  26. Jackie D'ENTREMONT
    January 21, 2018 at 6:46 pm

    I love these I usually just buy one square while grocery shopping. They are on the salad bar and ring up as salad on my receipt.

    • Julie
      January 23, 2018 at 9:55 am

      Ha! Awesome.

  27. Anonymous
    February 25, 2018 at 7:14 pm

    Look delicious

  28. Sandra
    December 10, 2018 at 8:30 am

    A Christmas/Easter tradition in my house. The mini marshmallows now includes more white than coloured ones. ? I use a double boiler & then pop the top pan into a cold water bath to cool it when mixing in the ‘mallows.

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  30. Patti
    December 21, 2018 at 7:59 pm

    Hi Julie,
    I just whipped up a batch for my Christmas cookie trays that I give to friends and family. These were always on the candy trays my grandma set out for Christmas. The one time of year mom wasn’t really paying attention to how many goodies we ate! Great memories.

    • Julie
      December 22, 2018 at 9:38 am

      I was just saying that same thing to someone last night!

  31. Artur Urih
    April 26, 2020 at 7:38 am

    You are right, they cannot resist, I am ashamed to admit that I ate the whole portion for this Easter, I had to cook additionally! Unforgettable taste of childhood!

    • Julie
      May 3, 2020 at 9:19 pm

      I’m the same way!!

  32. Grace
    December 19, 2020 at 5:22 pm

    Robyn Rilet, I have made these many times using natural peanut butter – no sugar, no salt added and they work perfectly. Enjoy!

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