Peanut Butter and Butterscotch Haystacks

These Peanut Butter and Butterscotch Haystacks are a family tradition and I can’t imagine the holidays without them. So simple. SO good!

Peanut Butter and Butterscotch Haystacks

Every year when I think I’ll start some new holiday food traditions; I’m called back to what might be considered same old, same old, but it’s more than that. Every dish seems to have a story or a memory. That’s true of these Peanut Butter and Butterscotch Haystacks.

These might be simple but I’ve always loved them and they are a regular on our holiday plate of sweet treats and in the gift packages made for friends. I have honestly never thought to share them on this blog; assuming you and everyone you know has had them and/or made them and certainly has a recipe from way back.

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So I was surprised when I mentioned to a friend that I was making them and she didn’t know what they were. Even more surprised when a neighbor came to borrow some sugar and I sent him home with some and again, he had never heard of them. WHOA!!! Really? Well I aim to right that wrong!

There is nothing fancy or time consuming or difficult here…and that’s probably a big part of their appeal. But there is smooth peanut butter combined with some sweet butterscotch baking chips that are poured over salty peanuts and chow mein noodles that give the treat structure, texture and just the perfect blend of salty, sweet, creamy and crunchy.

Most recipes I’ve seen over the years call for dropping the combination by teaspoonfuls onto wax paper to let them cool and harden. None of that for me, I make mine big; none of that teaspoon business for me. I recognized long ago that I’m going to eat more than one so I just put three together, use a tablespoon and call it good.

Peanut Butter and Butterscotch Haystacks

For years I would make two kinds, one with chocolate chips and this version with butterscotch chips. I like the chocolate ones fine but I’ve had a butterscotch thing since I was a little girl; I LOVED those little round flat orbs wrapped in cellophane; it’s always been my favorite. If you want to try them with chocolate chips, just switch out the butterscotch chips for an equal amount of chocolate chips.

When my kids were still living at home our holiday gifts to friends and family always consisted of a big basket of homemade goodies. Fruitcake (why yes, this one is REALLY good!), homemade rum and cinnamon caramel sauce, Pecan butter balls, wine jelly, and always these cookies.

Some recipes don’t call for the peanut butter but it’s been our tradition for years and well, why not right? The result is a richer flavor while still having the butterscotch element be obvious. Doesn’t peanut butter makes everything better…or at least it does in these delicious crunchy bites. The ingredient list is simple too; all you will need are: (complete recipe at end of post)

  • 2 cups Butterscotch Morsels (or Chocolate chips if you prefer; I like Ghirardelli with no artificial flavorings)
  • 3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 10 oz chow mein noodles
  • 1 cup salted peanuts

Easy, tasty and fun…I need more treats like this during the holidays don’t you? Unless you eat them all in one sitting so fair warning; it could happen! ๐Ÿ™‚

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Peanut Butter and Butterscotch Haystacks on a Glass Plate
Peanut Butter and Butterscotch Haystacks on a Baking Tray
Peanut Butter and Butterscotch Haystacks

Peanut Butter and Butterscotch Haystacks

Creative Culinary
An old fashioned favorite that has become a holiday tradition that we should really be making all year round!
4.73 from 50 or more votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Course Cookies, Brownies and Bars
Servings 24 pieces
Calories 513 kcal


  • 2 cups Butterscotch Morsels I prefer Ghirardelli; no artificial flavorings
  • ยพ cup creamy peanut butter
  • 10 oz chow mein noodles
  • 1 cup salted peanuts


  • Line cookie sheets with parchment or wax paper.
  • Put the morsels into a double boiler and heat over medium hot but not boiling water. When the morsels begin to melt; stir them occasionally until completely melted and smooth. Turn the heat to low and stir in the peanut butter until well blended.
  • Combine the chow mein noodles and peanuts in a large bowl and pour the butterscotch/peanut butter mixture over them and stir until all the ingredients are well coated.
  • Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls onto the lined cookie sheet. Refrigerate until set. Can be stored at room temp during the winter; during the summer might require refrigeration.


The mixture can also be melted in the Microwave.
Microwave morsels in large, uncovered, microwave-safe bowl on MEDIUM-HIGH (70%) power for 1 minute; stir. The morsels may retain some of their original shape. If necessary, microwave at additional 10- to 15-second intervals, stirring just until morsels are melted. Proceed as per recipe directions.
Want more goodies? I’ve also added mini marshmallows on occasion but had none on hand. If you would like them, add a cup to a cup and a half to the mix along with the chow mein noodles and peanuts.


Nutrition Facts
Peanut Butter and Butterscotch Haystacks
Serving Size
1 grams
Amount per Serving
% Daily Value*
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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  1. Thank you for posting this! I never knew what they were called, but my grandmother always made them and they were one of my favorite homemade “candies” of hers. I didn’t know if I would find the recipe. I am so happy to have found yours! I can’t wait to make them!

    1. You could freeze them but they will last a long time without that. I make them at Christmas and they literally spend weeks at room temp.

  2. I made these sine with chocolate chips & some with butterscoth chips. They were great either way. Was going to post a picture but donโ€™t see where I can do that.

    1. There isn’t a way to do that with comments but if you are on Instagram you can post your photo and tag it with #CreativeCulinary and I’ll see it! Glad you enjoyed them…and I’ve done chocolate too…both are great!

  3. This is an old family recipe of my Mom’s. We omit the peanuts, use crunchy or creamy peanut butter, and add miniature marshmallows. It an easy and quick one to make that usually is a big hit!

    1. I think there are a million variations Nicki and I’ve added marshmallows in the past too. Someone else suggested raisins but I’ve never done that…and probably won’t! ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. I’ve done that too but none on hand when I made these and those were an addition I made a couple of years ago for my daughter and I just forget them sometimes since this is my OLD recipe from childhood. Most recipes that call for marshmallows don’t have peanuts but I think I would love both! I should add them as an option shouldn’t I? I will!

    2. I’ve seen that too…trust me I was tempted but for the purposes of this post, I just wanted them like mom used to make! I’ve seen marshmallows, raisins and chocolate chips…it could get nuts! ๐Ÿ™‚

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