IN THE KITCHEN – The Perfect Peanut Butter & Chocolate Brownie

by | Desserts, In the Kitchen, Recipes

Stuffed Artichoke Bottoms

Gooey, chewy, chocolate and peanut butter. What could be better on a cool Fall day? Simple and quick, I had hot brownies in less than an hour. Now I’m supposed to tell you that the recipe says to wait 2 hours for them to cool to the perfect brownie texture. I double-dare you to wait that long! I let mine cool for an hour before the delicious smell got to me and I just had to slice them. As a result, mine were a bit crumbly because they were still warm. (But I was sooooooo happy with the results!)

I found this brownie recipe in The Perfect Cookie book from America’s Test Kitchen, page 256. If you love cookies and brownies, this IS the book for you.

This recipe calls for 3 oz. of unsweetened baking chocolate. You can weigh it or simply break off one quarter.


8 Tbsp – Unsalted Butter (1 stick)
3 oz. – Unsweetened chocolate, chopped
2/3 Cup – All Purpose Flour
1/2 tsp – Baking Powder
1/4 tsp – Salt
1 Cup – Sugar
2 – Large Eggs
1 tsp – Vanilla Extract
1/3 Cup – Creamy or Chunky Peanut Butter


Preheat your oven to 350F

It is recommended that you use the middle rack of your oven.

Using foil makes it easier to pull your brownies out of the pan.

Prepare your baking pan

The recipe calls for creating a “sling” of foil that makes it easier to remove the brownies from the pan and it really works. You will need 2 pieces of foil, each folded in half and extending beyond the edge of your 8″ x 8″ baking pan. Place each folded piece perpendicular to the other. (See photo above.) Don’t forget to grease the foil. I used butter.

Coarsely chop the chocolate and cut the butter into chunks.


The butter and chocolate pieces in a bowl. They recommended 1 to 3 minutes at half power. (And that is probably the best way to do it.) I couldn’t figure out how to set my microwave at half power, so I did 30 seconds on full power, then stirred it. Then 30 seconds more and stirred it again.

The melted chocolate and butter.

Whisk, Whisk, Whisk & Fold

Start by whisking the flour, baking powder, and salt in a second bowl. Then in a third bowl, whisk the sugar, eggs, and vanilla. Next, whisk the melted butter/chocolate mixture into the sugar-eggs-vanilla combination. Finally, and gently using a rubber spatula, fold the flour mixture into your chocolate combination just until it’s mixed. Pour your completed batter into your foiled and greased pan.

It is easiest to make this recipe in 3 bowls.
Whisk eggs, sugar, and vanilla in a second bowl.
Whisk the melted chocolate into your egg mixture.
Gently fold the flour mixture into your chocolate combination.

Small dollops are the best

I can tell you that I didn’t measure out 1/3 of a cup of crunchy peanut butter, I simply took a spoon and spooned 6 dollops of peanut into my chocolate batter in my pan. The I took a knife and twirled it through the peanut butter and chocolate to my swirls. (And truthfully, if you want beautiful, striking swirls, you need to make very small dollops of peanut butter.) However, I adore peanut butter and I was quite happy with the amount that I used.

After pouring your finished batter into the pan, add small dollops of creamy or crunchy peanut butter.
Not bad for my first try at making swirls. It almost looks like the book!

Bake at 350F for 22 to 27 minutes

Turn the pan about halfway through baking. You can test for doneness by inserting a toothpick into the center of the brownies. It should come out crumbly but not too gooey. (Put the toothpick in the chocolate part, not the peanut butter part.)

Baked and smelling delicious!!


About 2 hours with the pan on a wire rack. Pull the brownies out using the foil. (Truly the easiest method, I have ever seen for getting brownies out of a pan.) They recommend cutting into 16 squares to serve. (I say, have at it, I’ll never tell how big you cut your brownies!)


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Article and photos by Ellen Stafford
Ellen Stafford

Ellen Stafford is the managing editor for Making and eating delicious food is one of her favorite pastimes! She also loves great conversation with family and friends.

The views, thoughts and opinions expressed by our writers belong solely to them
and do not represent, its publisher or its staff.

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