This week’s suggested theme was cheese, and like RA, I decided that cream cheese was close enough to fit the criteria.
I bring you – Peanut Butter Cheesecake Brownies of Death!!! Otherwise known as Double Peanut Butter Cheesecake Swirled Brownies, brought to you by Baking Blonde. This is the second recipe I’ve made from Baking Blonde, the first being blondies, which were AMAZING. And these brownies – AMAZING.
Was the recipe easy to follow?
Yes, very. Even though you are essentially making two batters (the brownie batter, and the cheesecake batter, they are both simple and not time consuming.
I would suggest making sure that your Reeses Peanut Butter Cups are frozen or refrigerated, because mine became a little warm and melty from being out in the kitchen, making them a little hard to chop up.
Did the dish taste good?
OMG. These are amazing. Dave was begging for one almost right out of the oven, and could barely wait for them to cool off. I keep them in the fridge, since they have cheesecake in them, and since they were made on Wednesday (I’m a little late on this post), we’ve almost polished off the pan. And my coworkers LOVED them. (They also LOVE me for bringing them baked goodies quite often!) And the Reeses Peanut Butter Cups that are on top stay on surprisingly well, I think since they aren’t put on until there are about 5 minutes left in the baking time.
Would you make it again?
Yes, yes and yes. I think I had the same idea as RA when she made her marbled cheesecake brownies, in that I would increase the cheesecake ratio next time I made these. They are definitely more brownie than cheesecake, but still awesome nonetheless.
For the brownie batter
3/4 cup butter, very soft (not melted but softer than room temp)
1 cup sugar
1 TBS vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 oz. unsweetened baking chocolate, melted
1 oz. semi-sweet baking chocolate, melted
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
For the cheesecake batter
4 oz cream cheese, softened
1/2 cups creamy PB
1/3 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
5-6 Reese’s peanut butter cups (regular size) cut into 6-8 pieces each
IMPORTANT: Do NOT omit the Reese’s Peanut Butter cups. They take these brownies over the top and add the “Double” Peanut Butter taste the title tempts taste buds with.
Preheat oven to 350. Line an 8×8″ square pan with foil and lightly coat with PAM cooking spray.
In a microwave safe bowl melt the two baking chocolate squares in 30 second intervals stirring after each interval until smooth and melted after stirring. Do not scorch! Remove from microwave and allow to come to room temperature.
In a large mixing bowl, Beat together butter and sugar until combined. Beat in eggs one at a time until blended. Add vanilla and melted chocolate. Mix to combine. Combine dry ingredients in medium bowl and whisk together. Gradually stir dry ingredients into butter mixture. Do not over mix.
In separate mixing bowl, beat together cream cheese, peanut butter sugar and vanilla until smooth. Add egg and beat until just combined.
Spread about 2/3 of chocolate brownie batter into prepared pan. Evenly drop 1/2 of cheesecake batter in dollops over brownie batter. Run a knife through both mixtures to slightly swirl.
Dollop remaining brownie batter and cheesecake batter over swirled mixture. Run knife through the brownie and cheesecake dollops (not all the way through the already swirled layer) to create a swirled pattern.
Bake for 40-45 minutes**, or until center is set and a toothpick inserted in the center has a few crumbs stuck to it. Do not over bake or they will harden, if under baked they will be too gooey. Every oven is different so watch and check these after about 35-40 minutes of baking to ensure proper doneness.
**After about 35-40 minutes of baking (with about 5-7 minutes of baking time left, you just need to eyeball it) gently place cut up Reese’s cups over top of almost fully baked brownies. Finish baking until a toothpick inserted in the center has a few crumbs stuck to it. The Reese’s PB cups will melt but hold their shape slightly. Cool completely on wire rack before cutting and serving.