Assembled from alternating layers of brownie, ganache, and a crunchy mixture of peanut butter and crispy rice cereal, these showy bar cookies will please children and grown-ups alike. The key to easy layering is making sure that each component of this dessert is completely cooled before assembling the layers.
Peanut Butter–Crispy Rice Brownies
For the brownies:
- 1/2 cup (4 oz./125 g) unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces, plus more for greasing
- 3 oz. (90 g) unsweetened chocolate, finely chopped
- 1 cup (8 oz./250 g) sugar
- Pinch of kosher salt
- 2 eggs, at room temperature
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup (4 oz./125 g) all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup (4 1/2 oz./140 g) bittersweet chocolate chips
For the ganache:
- 1/2 lb. (250 g) semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips
- 1 cup (8 fl. oz./250 ml) heavy cream
- Pinch of kosher salt
For the peanut butter–crispy rice:
- 5 Tbs. (2 1/2 oz./75 g) unsalted butter
- 5 cups (8 3/4 oz./270 g) mini marshmallows
- 1/2 cup (5 oz./155 g) creamy peanut butter
- 5 cups (5 oz./140 g) crispy rice cereal
1. To make the brownies, preheat an oven to 350°F (180°C). Lightly grease an 8-inch (20-cm) square baking dish. Line the dish with parchment paper, letting the paper overhang on two opposite sides by about 2 inches (5 cm), and lightly grease the parchment.
2. In a large microwave-safe bowl, melt the butter and chocolate in the microwave in 30-second increments, whisking occasionally. When melted, whisk in the sugar and salt. Add the eggs and vanilla and whisk until combined. Gently fold in the flour and chocolate chips.
3. Pour the batter into the prepared dish and spread evenly. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of the brownies comes out almost completely clean, about 30 minutes. Transfer the dish to a wire rack and let cool completely.
4. To make the ganache, put the chocolate chips in a heatproof bowl. In a saucepan over medium-high heat, bring the cream to a boil. Pour over the chocolate chips and add the salt. Let stand for 10 minutes, then whisk until smooth and shiny. Refrigerate until chilled but not hardened, about 20 minutes. Set aside 1/4 cup (60 ml) of the ganache. Pour the remaining ganache over the brownies and spread evenly, then refrigerate while making the peanut butter–crispy rice.
5. To make the peanut butter–crispy rice, in a large saucepan over low heat, melt the butter. Add the marshmallows and stir until melted. Remove from the heat and stir in the peanut butter until completely incorporated. Add the crisp rice cereal and stir until well coated. Let cool completely, then gently press the mixture evenly over the chilled ganache layer. Using a piping bag fitted with a 1/4-inch (6-mm) tip, drizzle the reserved ganache over the surface. Use the parchment paper to lift the dessert from the dish. Cut into 16 bars.
Discover 40 of our favorite recipes for crowd-pleasing treats, from classic drop and cut-out cookies to decadent sandwich cookies, brownies and bars, in our Favorite Cookies cookbook.