Amazing Chocolate Peanut Butter Brownies

So I had this leftover bag of Reeses mini peanut butter cups sitting in my cupboard… taunting me. Well we can’t have that, so it’s time to mix up some major chocolate peanut butter action to kick off the very first brownie post at Making Life Delicious.

These are brownies the way I like them, fudgy & moist. They strike a balance between rich chocolate flavor and peanutbutteriness as well as the sweet and the salty. When my friend Susan ate one, she said “These are amazing!” …thus the name.

To create these decadent brownies, I started with one of my “go to” brownie recipes, cut back on the sugar and added roasted salted peanuts.  For the next layer, I modified my peanut butter frosting and then paired it with a really creamy chocolate frosting because I find that peanut butter tastes better when paired with a chocolate that isn’t too dark. Lastly…the Reeses. If you want to be really Martha, you can make your own Peanut Butter Cups, but that wasn’t happening today.

Amazing Chocolate Peanut Butter Brownies

Print-Friendly Recipe

Brownie Layer

  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 8 ounces semisweet chocolate, chips or chopped
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup roasted salted peanuts, coarsely chopped

Peanut Butter Layer

  • 1 cup peanut butter (not natural or old-fashioned)
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Chocolate Frosting

  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder, sifted
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons whole milk


  • 1 cup Peanut Butter Cups, cut into quarters

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line an 9 X 9 inch baking pan with foil in such a way that the foil extends up two sides a couple of inches above the pan on either side.  Later, you can use this extra foil sticking up as handles to lift the cool brownies out of the pan. Butter the foil. Melt butter and chocolate in a double-boiler (aka a heatproof bowl suspended over barely simmering water without touching said water).

Stir until chocolate is melted. Then beat in the sugar followed by the eggs, vanilla extract and kosher salt. Gradually add the flour and stir until combined. Then add the salted peanuts.  Spread the batter in the prepared pan. Bake until tester inserted into center comes out with moist crumbs attached, about
22-25 minutes. Take care not over bake because that is the cardinal sin of brownie making.

Cool the brownies to room temperature. If you’re worried that maybe you baked them a little too long…like I was, you can put the pan containing the brownies in an ice bath to cool them down quickly. Just take care not to let water drip on the brownies…like I did (oops, that’s the dark spot on the photo). Alternatively, you can put the pan out in the Winter cold or even in the fridge or freezer to cool it down quickly. NOTE: Not too worry, my brownies were not, in fact, overcooked. Whew!

Once the brownies are completely cool, its time to make the peanut butter layer and the chocolate frosting. I love this part because you have to taste the peanut butter and chocolate to make sure the flavor is right. You have to. I’m pretty sure its the law! Using an electric mixer, beat together the peanut butter and 1/4 cup softened unsalted butter in medium bowl. Then, beat in the powdered sugar, milk and vanilla. The mixture should be very spreadable. If, for some reason, it isn’t, incorporate a little more milk. Spread this peanutbuttery goodness over the cool brownies. Then put the pan in the refrigerator while you make the chocolate frosting.

To make the chocolate frosting, beat together all of the ingredients in a medium size bowl. I use my mixer for this, but it could be done by hand. When the frosting looks like frosting, spread it over the peanut butter layer. Sprinkle the top of all this decadence with quartered Peanut Butter Cups. Cut into squares and serve. Wow!  These are really good.  They can be stored at temperature for 24-36 hours. In fact, they were just as good, if not better, the next day.

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30 Responses to Amazing Chocolate Peanut Butter Brownies

  1. Pingback: Sweet Tooth |

  2. These are my dream brownies. I am in heaven for sure!

  3. Pingback: Bake with Your Leftover Halloween Candy! | Yummly

  4. Jessica says:

    I’m making these for fathers day! Thanks for the detailed recipe and pictures! Looks great!

  5. Ruby says:


  6. Ruth says:

    The perfect recipe I was looking for to take to an event. I love, love LOVE chocolate and peanut butter and intend to make a double batch tomorrow. Thanks!

  7. megan says:

    Would this work with a boxed brownie mix, plain peanut butter and canned chocolate frosting?

    • HeatherS says:

      Yes and no. I have a healthy respect for box brownie mixes, but canned chocolate frosting is no longer my thing. It is a matter of taste. The important thing is to stay creative and true to what tastes good to you. — Heather

  8. Pingback: The Best Brownies – Bites From Other Blogs

  9. Ellie Wells says:

    can you use dark chocolate chips instead of semi-sweet? seems like it would be even better to me, but would it effect the recipe???

  10. Pingback: Chocolate And Peanut Butter Recipes – Bites From Other Blogs

  11. Oh my god. These are totally speaking to me. Must. Make. Soon.


  12. barbara says:

    Made these tonight with my daughter. Only change we made was to leave out the peanuts in the brownies, we didn’t miss them. They were wonderful, very rich. The instructions were easy to follow, and like how you add photos for each step. Would make these again. Thanks!

  13. Melissa says:

    DELISH!! Very rich though!! I would recommend not using foil in the pan though as it makes cutting and taking brownie out of the pan that much more difficult.

    • HeatherS says:

      Hi Melissa,

      Yes, very rich…the way I like them. 😉 Regarding the foil, I was so glad for your comment because it caused me to read back over the post and realize that I was unclear. The foil should line the bottom of the pan and then extend up over the sides of the pan on two sides. When the brownies are cool, you can use this extra foil as handles to lift the brownies out of the pan. When I bake dessert bars, I always line my pans with aluminum foil or parchment so I can lift them out later for easy cutting. I’ve tried to clarify this in the post now. Thanks again for the feedback! — H

  14. Oh my goodness! This is simply sinfully delicious!!

  15. Haley says:

    I made these tonight…we didn’t have the “Junk peanut butter” so I swapped it out for Nutella as they have similar textures. Overall, they turned out pretty good…a bit runny but refrigeration should fix that.


  16. Heather says:

    Wow–decadent, indeed!! Those look like heaven in bar-form.

  17. FlyinFood says:

    This recipe right here makes life delicious! Looks heavenly! OMG

  18. jenna laughs says:

    This is so decadent! I love nothing more than chocolate and peanut butter. For my birthday this year, instead of a cake, I made peanut butter cheesecake brownies. I’m sure you understand🙂

    • HeatherS says:

      Oh I most definitely do. 🙂 – H

    • Melissa says:

      Do you have a recipe for the PB Chocolate Cheesecake?!

      • HeatherS says:

        I have never made a peanut butter cheesecake, mostly because I’m not a big fan of cheesecake in general. I do have a recipe for peanut butter pie that I quite like that contains cream cheese. But i wouldn’t call that the same thing because it doesn’t contain eggs and you never bake the cream cheese. If you find a great peanut butter chocolate cheesecake, please share. 🙂 – H

  19. Christina says:

    Oh my goodness! This looks divine! I can’t even imagine how delicious this is…I must make now!!!🙂

  20. Jen says:

    Wow!! These look incredibly delicious!

  21. I’m in heaven. I am making those brownies. Done.

  22. Elizabeth says:

    Oh gawd, I can feel the weight piling on my thighs just reading about these. Holy yum!

  23. Nice recipe! Instructions are quite clear leaving little
    room for error. I need that…and I need to make these brownies!
    I’m liking your style girl

  24. Dana Rasmussen says:

    Chocolate and Peanut Butter again? You ROCK! I am off to the store (again)!🙂

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