Peanut Butter Cup Brownie Bites - it's National Peanut Butter Day!

Did you know that today is National Peanut Butter Day? Now that you do, are you surprised that I’m just about bouncing out of my chair to tell you about it? I was talking to L and he commented that it might as well just be called Jess Day, with the amount of peanut butter I consume on a daily basis. I can’t really argue there, though I’d imagine I’m not alone in that boat.

One of my most recent peanut butter creations (the way I worded that made it sound like I developed the recipe – I absolutely did not) was a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup Brownie Bite, which is exactly how it sounds – a miniature peanut butter cup baked in the center of a small brownie. Yeah, it’s also as delicious as it sounds. In this dessert you get the quintessential Reese’s flavor surrounded by a fudgy brownie. I’m pretty sure I wound up eating my weight in them on New Year’s Eve – I’ve already explained how I’m pretty bad at controlling my portions with miniaturized desserts – so I might prefer to next time either make a sheet of brownies studded with the cups and cut my own slice, or put a whole reese’s in a brownie batter-filled jumbo muffin pan (now that sounds dangerous!). I just can’t get over how amazing these brownie bites are – on their own, with vanilla ice cream, really any way at all.

I used whole wheat flour and the stevia MoreFiber blend instead of the white flour and sugar, and for once no one could detect the stevia at all. I think it’s because there was still a decent amount of brown sugar, plus the refined sweetness of the actual peanut butter cups. I figure that Stevia might just need to be an ingredient you use to partially replace something rather than swapping it out completely. It might be a little overwhelming on its own. The only other change I made was to try to decorate the tops with rainbow sprinkles, only to realize that – newsflash! – basically all sprinkles (not the granulated ones, just the jimmy-like ones for ice cream sundaes and whatnot) are made with hydrogenated oils. Go figure. So I got a little bummed, scraped my pretty decorations off, and lamented at how plain the brownie bites wind up looking without any garnish. If I were you, I’d decorate them somehow – some mini m&ms, chopped peanuts, mini chocolate chips, a drizzle of brightly colored royal icing….just something to perk them up a bit. Your taste buds won’t give a hoot, but it’ll make your display look a little more festive. 

Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup Brownie Bites, adapted from Mom’s Cooking Club
Yield: 40 brownie bites

The Ingredients
¾ cup salted butter, melted
¾ cup Stevia MoreFiber Baking Blend1
¾ cup light brown sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 eggs
¾ cup whole wheat flour
½ cup cocoa powder
40 miniature Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups

The Method
Preheat the oven to 350° Fahrenheit and generously spray 4 mini cupcake pans with nonstick spray.2

Stir together the butter, both sugars, and vanilla in a medium mixing bowl. One at a time, beat in the eggs, then mix in the flour and cocoa powder until just combined. Fill each cupcake well approximately halfway with the batter and place one peanut butter cup in the center of each, press down until it is almost level with the batter. Bake the brownie bites for 15-18 minutes, and cool in the pan for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely (or, you know…not).

1Or ¾ cup granulated sugar.
2These were pretty finicky and I found that the amount that I sprayed wasn’t enough to prevent some from falling to pieces when I tried to remove them. I would say either try spraying them even more thoroughly, or just throw in the towel and use liners. Not that broken peanut butter cup brownie bites are a sin, but they certainly don’t look very presentable.


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