One of the great things about food blogging is that there are so many people out there who share my interests in great food and great desserts. Some of those people even read my blog and leave comments. When the comments include a link back to another blog, I pretty much always follow it, just to see what's what. Yesterday Giz left a message on my post about mini lemon poppy seed muffins which I followed to her blog Equal Opportunity Kitchen.
I started drooling as soon as I saw her post on Banana Brownies with Peanut Butter Chips and I quickly printed the recipe for future use. I really wanted to make them today, but it just didn't quite work out. I had an incredibly long day at work and only a few hours to take care of life stuff before heading to bed, which meant the brownies that required melting chocolate and an hour in the oven were just out of the question.
Luckily, I had a backup. I was clicking around on Baking Bites the other day and printed a few recipes that I wanted to put on one of my short(er) lists. One of them happened to be a peanut butter brownie recipe that calls for cocoa powder (i.e. quicker and easier to deal with than melting chocolate), and since peanut butter and chocolate was already calling my name, that recipe won the day.
Now, one of my all-time favorite peanut butter brownie combinations is Dorie Greenspan's version which is on Epicurious. If you like that combination and haven't tried her version yet -- do. You will thank yourself for it. These brownies are not as good as the Dorie version, but that shouldn't stop you from making them as well. They have a nice rich and dense brownie consistency with a nice peanut butter flavor balanced by some chocolate. I considered throwing in some peanut butter chips, but Baking Bites warned that the chocolate flavor was a little less chocolate-ty than one might expect in a brownie, so using chocolate chips was a way to ensure enough chocolate flavor.
One thing these brownies definitely have going for them is how quick and easy they are to make. I had the batter ready to go before my oven was preheated -- that's how quick they are to mix up. Most importantly, they satisfied my chocolate peanut butter cravings when I just didn't have time to make the Equal Opportunity version or the Dorie version.
1/4 cup butter, room temperature
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1 cup brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/3 cup all pupose flour
1/3 cup cocoa powder (I used Hershey's Special Dark which is why mine are so dark)
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350F and line a 9×9-in square pan with aluminum foil. Lightly grease the foil with cooking spray.
In a large bowl, cream together butter and peanut butter until smooth, then beat in sugar until light and fluffy. Add in eggs one at a time, followed by the vanilla.
In a small bowl, sift together cocoa, flour, salt and baking powder. Mix in to peanut butter mixture at a low speed, stopping when just combined. Stir in chocolate chips and scrape batter into pan, spreading into an even layer.
Bake for 26-29 minutes, until set. Edges should feel slightly firm and the center should not look wet or jiggly.
Cool on a wire rack and lift brownies out with the foil when ready to slice.
Makes 16 brownies.