Mariel here. In case the confluence of both Cinco de Mayo and the Kentucky Derby didn’t totally bust any buttons this past weekend, we thought we’d share this incredibly decadent, sinfully simple recipe for PB&J Brownies. Yes friends, it’s Peanut Butter Jelly time. We originally debuted this recipe as a guest post on one of my all-time favorite blogs, Glitter & Ganache.
I hemmed and hawed over what to whip up in honor of our pinch-hitting post, but a ravenous craving for grilled PB&J got me thinking in preschool mode. Never grilled peanut butter and jelly? Try it, immediately.
I happen to be in my third trimester of pregnancy – my cravings come on strong and won’t abate until they’ve been properly sated – so I decided to combine my penchant for PB with my pervasive love of chocolate. In fact, I just finished reading “Do Chocolate Lovers Really Have Sweeter Babies?” and as it turns out, they really do. Science says so and that was all the convincing I needed.
But even if you aren’t at the mercy of appetite-driven maternal machinations – and a strong desire to birth the sweetest, most amenable baby ever – I suspect you’ll go gaga for this dessert. I used a slightly altered version of my favorite brownie recipe as the base (thanks Martha!) and swirled in store-bought peanut butter and jam, creating a yummy mosaic that infuses every chocolatey bite with a delicious nutty-sweetness. Are you drooling yet? If so, I have plenty of bibs over here, so just let me know.
Better still – these are no more difficult to concoct than regular brownies, but they look (and taste) way more gourmet.
Peanut Butter & Jelly Brownies
Makes 12 Brownies
3 Tablespoons unsalted butter (plus a little extra for greasing the pan) – stock
3 Tablespoons unsweetened applesauce – $2.39
6 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips
¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder – stock
¾ cup all-purpose flour – stock
¼ teaspoon baking powder – stock
¼ teaspoon salt – stock
1 cup sugar – stock
2 large eggs – stock
2 teaspoons vanilla extract – stock
½ cup peanut butter – stock
½ cup jam or fruit preserves – $2.89
Grand total assuming “well-stocked” kitchen: $5.28
Cost per brownie: $0.44
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Generously butter the bottom and sides of a 7×11″ baking pan. Set aside.
2. Bring a small sauce pan or double boiler to a steamy simmer, then place a heat-proof pan over top (don’t let the top pan touch the water). Combine the butter, apple sauce, chocolate chips and cocoa in the top pan and stir until melted and creamy. Set aside.
3. Whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl, set aside.
4. In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the eggs, sugar and vanilla and beat on medium-high using the whisk attachment for four minutes, until pale and creamy. Add the chocolate mixture and beat until just combined. Reduce speed to low (or “stir”) and add the flour mixture, stirring until just combined.
5. Spread the brownie batter evenly into the buttered pan.
6. Scoop the peanut butter into a microwave-safe bowl and nuke for 20-25 seconds, until it softens and becomes creamier.
7. Use a spoon to ladle dollops of peanut butter on top of the brownie batter, spacing evenly. Then ladle dollops of jam right next to the peanut butter. Use the tip of a knife to marbleize and spread the peanut butter & jam – you can create a pretty pattern or just smear it across the top, it’s up to you. Just make sure to distribute relatively evenly so you get a taste of PB&J in every bite.
8. Bake for 27-32 minutes, or until a tester inserted into the middle of the brownies comes out clean (meaning the brownie batter doesn’t stick to the tester, the PB&J will, of course). Cool in the pan on a wire rack, cut and serve with a tall glass of milk or vanilla ice cream (or all by themselves!).