Crunchy Top Brownies

My friend Dan has been asking me for months to make some rice crispy treats. Dan is a constant taste tester for my baked goods and I so I promised him that yes, one day, I will make him some rice crispy treats. Well, his birthday rolled around and I figured it’s the best time to make good on my promise. But I didn’t want to make just plain old rice crispy treats. I wanted to make it special. It was his birthday after all.

And you all know what I do to make things special, right? I break out the Nutella.

I didn’t just make Nutella rice crispy treats. I made rich, fudgy brownies as a base. Then topped it with rice crispies. Mixed with Nutella. And milk chocolate. And marshmallows. It resulted in what I now call the ultimate Crunchy Top Brownies.

Crunchy Top Brownies

I was inspired by the Peanut Butter Cup Crunch Brownies Bars from Brown Eyed Baker, which were actually the Better-Than-Crack-Brownies from How Sweet It Is. The closest I’ve come to crack were some pomme frites, but I trust those lovely ladies. Anyway, Dan is allergic to peanut butter so I omitted all the peanuts in the recipe, swapped in Nutella for peanut butter, increased the rice crispy portion, added marshmallows, and melted more marshmallows on top.

I thought that for this to be considered a rice crispy treat, it had to have marshmallows

Crunchy Top Brownies

1 batch of your favorite brownie recipe (I like Barefoot Contessa’s Outrageous Brownies or when I’m lazy, I turn to Ghirardelli box mix)
1 1/2 cups milk chocolate chips
1 13 oz jar Nutella
1 cup mini marshmallows (this is what I used but I suggest increasing this to 2 cups), plus more for melting on top
1/2 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 cups Rice Krispies cereal

Prepare brownie mix according to direction, but instead of just using one pan, use two 8×8 baking pans lined with parchment paper. Bake brownies for 5 minutes less than the recipe states.

When the  brownies are almost done, melt the chocolate chips, Nutella, and butter in a large pot over medium-low heat. Stir in the cereal and mix everything together until the rice crispies are evenly coated.

Remove the brownie pans from the oven and spread one half of the Nutella mixture on top of each pan. Sprinkle with some mini marshmallows and put brownie pans back in the oven for 5 minutes. The marshmallows on top would have puffed up a little when you remove the brownies. Quickly spread the marshmallows over the brownie tops using a rubber spatula so you’ll end up with a light marshmallow swirl.

Refrigerate for at least 2 hours before cutting into squares. You’ll end up with 32 squares (16 from each pan).

each crunchy square would be very sweet, so I suggest you have a glass of milk ready

One thing to note: the rice crispy layer was crunchier than I anticipated, so after cutting the brownies into squares, it started to separate from the brownie base. This is why I suggest increasing the marshmallows in the mixture to make it chewier and stickier.

they’re a little messy to eat, but each crumb is worth it

I may have given Dan early onset diabetes but I think these brownies were well-received!

What’s your favorite brownie recipe? Please share links in the comments!


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