Salty pretzels, creamy peanut butter, and a fudgy chocolate center make these decadent brownies a sweet and salty heaven.
Sweet and salty desserts are very popular anywhere these days and if you try these brownies you’ll understand exactly why. These are now my favorite brownies, and yes, I do realize I say it every single time I post a new brownie recipe, but I do mean it every single time. These brownies are a celebration of flavors and textures; salty and crunchy pretzel crust, fudgy chocolate center and hints of peanut butter in almost every bite. Just wait until you try them.
For the crust I used 125g salted pretzels which yielded exactly 1 and ¼ cups of ground pretzel. To make the crumbs, place pretzels in a food processor and process until they’re very finely ground. If there are some larger pieces of crushed pretzel here and there, that’s ok. In addition to the crust, I added coarsely chopped pretzels to the batter itself, just because the more the merrier.
For the peanut butter you need to use creamy peanut butter (like Skippy), not crunchy or natural. When you spoon dollops of peanut butter on the brownies, make sure they are small, otherwise they will sink into the batter and it’ll be hard to swirl them.
Also, there’s a video! I made one to prove these brownies are not hard to make and that you can (and should) make them—the sooner the better.
Pretzel Peanut Butter Brownies
- 1¼ cups (125 g) finely ground salted pretzel crumbs (processed in a food processor)
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 100 g/3.5 oz unsalted butter , melted
- 170 g/6 oz dark chocolate , coarsely chopped
- 120 g/4 oz (½ stick) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
- ⅔ cup (130 g/4.5 oz) granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs , at room temperature
- 7 tablespoons (60 g/2.1 oz) all-purpose flour, sifted
- ¼ teaspoons salt
- ½ cup salted pretzels , coarsely chopped (plus more for topping, optional)
- ¼-⅓ cup creamy peanut butter
Preheat oven to 350F/175C. Line an 8×8-inch baking pan with parchment paper, leaving enough overhang on the sides for lifting the brownies out after baking.
To make the pretzel crust: In a medium bowl, mix crushed pretzels and sugar. Add melted butter and mix until evenly moistened. Place in prepared pan and bake for 8-10 minutes until golden. Set aside to cool before adding brownie batter.
To make the brownies: In a large heat-proof bowl, place chocolate and butter. Heat in the microwave in 20- to 30-second intervals, stirring in between each interval, until melted (or set it over a saucepan of simmering water, stirring occasionally, until melted). Add sugar and whisk until combined. Add eggs, one at a time, and whisk just until combined. Add flour and salt and fold, using a rubber spatula, just until combined. Fold in pretzels.
Pour batter into prepared pan and smooth the top. Spoon dollops of peanut butter on top of brownie batter (small ones, so they won’t sink). Then, using a knife or skewer, gently swirl the two batters together to get a marble effect. Top with some more pretzels if you like. Bake for 20 minutes, until the edges are set but the center is still very soft. Be careful not to overbake. A toothpick inserted into the center of the brownies should come out moist, not dry. While still in the pan, place brownies on a wire rack to cool completely, then refrigerate until completely set for easy cutting. Lift brownies out of the pan using parchment paper and cut into squares.
Store brownies at room temperature or in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 3 days.