CHOCOLATE MARSHMALLOW BARS

Here is a yummy bar from taste of home. The marshmallow middle is scrumptious. The frosting is made with chocolate, peanut butter & rice crispies. This is almost as good as a candy bar!

 Ingredients:

 3/4 cup butter, softened
 1-1/2 cups Sugar
3 eggs
 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1-1/3 cups all-purpose flour
 3 tablespoons baking cocoa
 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
 1/2 teaspoon salt
 1/2 cup chopped nuts, optional
 4 cups miniature marshmallows

 TOPPING:
 1-1/3 cups semisweet chocolate chips
 1 cup peanut butter
 3 tablespoons butter
 2 cups crisp rice cereal

Directions:

 In a small bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla. Combine the flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt; gradually add to creamed mixture. Stir in nuts if desired. Spread in a greased 15-in. x 10-in. x 1-in. baking pan. Bake at 350° for 15-18 minutes. Sprinkle with marshmallows; bake 2-3 minutes longer. Remove to a wire rack. Using a knife dipped in water, spread the melted marshmallows evenly over top. Cool completely. For topping, combine the chocolate chips, peanut butter and butter in a small saucepan. Cook and stir over low heat until blended. Remove from the heat; stir in cereal. Spread over bars immediately. Chill. Yield: about 3 dozen.
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