Halloween is just around the corner in only 6 weeks. Where did 2013 go?
I made these brownies to clear out candy odds-and-ends. Because October tis-the-season to accumulate more.
The brownies have more variety of miniature and fun-size candy bars baked in than most gas stations sell.
Butterfinger, 3 Musketeers, Milky Way, Snickers, Mini Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, Nestle Crunch, Twix, and M&Ms.
I adapted one of my favorite brownie bases because it makes an 8×8 pan and with brownies this decadent, a bigger pan enters into dangerous territory.
There’s no melted chocolate in them, and they’re made simply with cocoa powder. I used to think cocoa powder brownies couldn’t possibly hold a candle to melted chocolate brownies or be as fudgy, but this base proves me wrong. I’ve used it previously here, here, and here.
They’re as easy as a boxed mix and ready in a half hour. Melt butter in the micro, stir in the sugars, eggs, coffee, and vanilla, before whisking in the espresso granules, cocoa powder and flour.
The splash of coffee and pinch of instant espresso granules doesn’t make the brownies taste like coffee and instead enhances and brings out the chocolate flavor, but they’re optional.
Pour about two-thirds of the batter into the pan, and top with candy bars of your choice.
I encourage you not to buy any new candy for these. Shop in your own pantry. Try chocolate-covered pretzels or nuts, two-day old chopped up cookies, leftover caramel corn, diced Nilla wafers or graham crackers, whatever you have that’s snacky and munchy, toss it in.
Top with the remaining batter.
And if you’re so inclined, sprinkle on a little more candy and some chocolate chips.
The brownies remind me of many previous recipes, but I had never done loaded brownies.
I’ve made Peanut Butter Cup Cookie Dough Crumble Bars (cookie dough base), Milky Way Chocolate Cookie Crumble Bars (chocolate cookie dough base), Triple Peanut Butter Monster Cookie Bars (blondie base with PB three ways), and Loaded M&M Oreo Cookie Bars (blondie base loaded up).
And now I have a trashed up brownie, full of random candy.
If you don’t bake and write cookbooks for a living and don’t have a pantry that overflows with sugar quite as badly as mine does, just wait a month.
Halloween is coming up, then there’s Christmas candy and holiday baking season (chop up some of Grandma’s creme de menthe fudge or your mom’s sugar cookies and bake them in), Valentine’s Day candy, and Easter candy.
So many candy collecting opportunities.
You could, of course, just eat your fun-size candy bars, but it’s so much more fun baking them into fudgy, soft, dense, brownies.
Rich, decadent, and just want the pantry cleanout doctor ordered.
Pin This Recipe
- 10 tablespoons unsalted butter (1 1/4 sticks), melted
- 2 large eggs
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
- 2 tablespoons brewed coffee (leftover from the morning brew is fine), optional but recommend to enhance chocolate flavor and does not make brownies taste like coffee
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 3/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder (natural or Dutch-process, I used Hershey’s natural
- 1 teaspoon instant espresso coffee granules, optional but recommend to enhance chocolate flavor and does not make brownies taste like coffee
- 1/4 teaspoon salt, optional and to taste
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- about 12 to 15 fun-size candy bars, diced in half if it’s larger like a Twix (I used Butterfinger, 3 Musketeers, Milky Way, Snickers, Mini Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, Nestle Crunch, Twix)
- 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, for topping
- 1/3 cup M&M’s for topping, optional
- Preheat oven to 350F. Line an 8-by-8-inch baking pan with aluminum foil leaving overhang on the sides, spray with cooking spray; set aside.
- In a large, microwave-safe bowl, add the butter and heat on high power to melt, about 1 minute. Allow butter to cool momentarily so you don’t scramble the eggs.
- Add the eggs, sugars, optional coffee, vanilla, and whisk to combine.
- Add the cocoa powder, optional espresso granules, optional salt, and whisk to combine. If your cocoa powder is lumpy, it could take a couple minutes of vigorous whisking.
- Add the flour and stir until just combined, don’t overmix.
- Turn two-thirds of the batter out into prepared pan, reserving the remaining one-third; just eyeball it. The reserved amount should be about 1 1/2 cups; set reserved portion aside.
- Place candy bar pieces onto batter, distributed evenly, in an even, flat layer. I made 5 rows with about 5 pieces candy per row.
- Top with reserved batter to cover candy. Gently smooth and distribute batter with a spatula or knife
- Evenly sprinkle chocolate chips over the top.
- Evenly sprinkle the optional M&M’s over the top.
- Bake for about 30 minutes, or until done; don’t overbake. A toothpick inserted in the center should come out mostly clean, but will likely have a few moist crumbs, but no batter. Allow brownies to cool in pan for about 1 hour before lifting out with foil overhang and slicing.
- Brownies will keep airtight at room temperature or refrigerator for up to 1 week, or in the freezer for up to 6 months. I prefer to store them in the fridge and serve them slightly chilled.
Adapted from The Ultimate Fudgy Caramel Brownies
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 668Total Fat: 35gSaturated Fat: 16gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 73mgSodium: 274mgCarbohydrates: 81gFiber: 3gSugar: 63gProtein: 9g
Peanut Butter Cup Cookie Dough Crumble Bars – Soft and squishy centers with chewy edges. Dense, buttery, and full of gooey creaminess from the sweetened condensed milk. Mini peanut butter cups in every bite
Triple Peanut Butter Monster Cookie Bars – Peanut butter is use 3 different ways. Great for pantry odds-and-ends cleanout
In my cookbook, Peanut Butter Comfort I share 4 more of favorite brownie recipes, all involving peanut butter
Thanks for the entries in the 7″ Kindle Fire HD (16GB) and $20 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway!
What’s your favorite brownie recipe? Favorite way to use random candy (other than just eating it)?