Festive and Gooey Peppermint Bark Brownies

I'm not sure what it is about the holidays but every year when they roll around, I find myself craving peppermint. Peppermint truffles? Yes please. Peppermint hot chocolate? Hells yeah. Peppermint bark? Gimme gimme.

I tend to be somewhere warm for Christmas every year so it's in the weeks leading up to vacation that I tend to bake up a storm. Not that I don't love baking in warm weather. It's just that if I only have 4 days of sunshine and beach, I'd rather use them outside with my family rather than milling about the kitchen by myself.  

I was tasked with supplying dessert for a holiday gathering last weekend and all I could think was: time to start baking with peppermint again. My candy cane chocolate truffles are always a hit around this time of year but I've been on a brownie kick lately so i decided to go beyond the tried and true truffles.

Enter the peppermint bark brownie.

Okay, so if I’m being totally honest with myself (and you), I didn’t just stumble upon the idea of making brownies. Rather, I’ve been sneaking to Rare Sweets, my local bakery/coffee shop/afternoon snack hideaway near work, to get a square of their ultra gooey and rich brownies multiple times per week in the last month. As soon as they start a rewards program I’ll be golden but until then, I’m looking for ways to not spend my entire paycheck on baked goods I could be making at home.

And so, in an effort to save money (kind of), quench my peppermint craving (a real thing) and supply baked goods to my friends (a must), I created the peppermint bark brownie!

A crispy chocolate top, gooey brownie inside and refreshing bites of peppermint bark in the middle make this my new go-to holiday treat. Seriously. I’ve made two batches of it in the past 6 days.

Do you have a favorite treat to make around the holidays? Tell me so I can make it too!

Ingredients

  • ½ cup butter, melted
  • 1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • ½ cup (62g) flour
  • ⅓ cup (42g) cocoa powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • 16 Ghirardelli dark chocolate peppermint bark squares
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar (optional for topping)

 

Recipe (adapted from an Allrecipes.com recipe)

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour an 8 x 8 square baking dish.
  • In a large bowl, mix together the butter and the sugar until combined and starting to get lighter. Mix in the eggs one at a time followed by the vanilla. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, salt and baking powder. Slowly mix the dry ingredients into the wet.
  • Once fully combined, spoon half the batter into the baking dish and use a rubber spatula to spread it out to fully cover the bottom of the dish. Lay out the peppermint bark squares, four across in each direction. Top with the remaining batter and use the spatula to spread it out once again.
  • Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the brownies comes out clean. Let cool completely before topping with powdered sugar and serving.