Peanut butter fudge pretzel brownies

How Sweet It Is

Makes: 12 bars

  • 1/2 cup butter, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 2/3 cups chocolate chips (optional)
  • 1 1/2 cups creamy peanut butter
  • 1/3 powdered sugar
  • 1 3/4 cups crushed pretzel pieces
  • 6 tablespoons butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour an 8×8 baking dish and set aside.

Combine melted butter and pretzel crumbs in a bowl until moistened. With the back of a spoon, press pretzels into the 8×8 pan making a crust. If pretzels seem loose, drizzle some additional melted butter over top of hit with a quick shot of non-stick spray.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, then add vanilla. With the mixer on medium speed, add in cocoa, flour and salt, mixing until combined – about 2 to 3 minutes. Fold in chocolate chips. Using a spatula sprayed with non-stick spray, evenly spread brownies on top of pretzel crust. Set pan on a baking sheet and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until brownies are baked through.

When brownies have about 3 minutes left baking, melt peanut butter (I melted mine in the microwave in 30 second increments then stirring) in a bowl. Once melted, stir in 1/3 cup powdered sugar and mix until no lumps remain. Pour over warm brownies and spread evenly. Refrigerate brownies for 1-2 hours, then cut into bars and serve.

*Chef’s note: If you are a sucker for the sweet/salty combo like I am, you will absolutely die for these brownies. I just know it. I could have eaten the whole pan by myself in just a couple of days (hours?). I did encounter the too-crumbly crust problem, so next time I would try baking the brownies alone, then topping with the peanut butter mixture and pressing the pretzel “crust” into the peanut butter before it sets in the fridge. Would taste the same and be easier to eat! You can sub in your favorite brownie recipe and enjoy this just as much! I added several Tbsp. of that Smucker’s dark chocolate fudge sauce I love so much to this batter.

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