Peanut Butter Cheesecake Brownies

As if you haven’t had enough chocolate on this blog recently, I’m throwing a dense, fudgey, and delicious brownie in your face this morning. There’s no such thing as a Valentine’s Day chocolate-overload detox here! I saw this recipe on Annie’s Eats a few weeks ago, and immediately added them to my “to bake” list. The combination of brownies, peanut butter, and a hint of cheesecake is impossible to resist. So when I was off to visit my friend Sara in Boston for a weekend, I knew she’d love these as a 3 month-belated birthday treat and might help distract her from my tardiness. Not surprisingly, I was quickly forgiven :)

With all my blog reading, I’ve noticed a big divide between fudgey vs. chewy brownies. Fudgey brownies clearly have the majority in the foodie blogosphere, and I’ve definitely contributed to this with some great recipes in the past 2 years (these are the fudgey-est) , but I’m beginning to miss the texture of boxed brownies. I’ve been scouring the web for a great chewy brownie recipe to try to emulate the boxed version (heresy, I know), but haven’t quite found the one yet. I’m open and anxious for suggestions! But for now, I’ll continue contributing to team-fudgey, and highly recommend this recipe if that’s your allegiance. And as always, if you possess taste buds, you’ll also love the combination of peanut butter and chocolate that these big boys have to offer.

Peanut Butter Cheesecake Brownies
Adapted from Annie’s Eats

For the brownies:

14 tbsp unsalted butter
6 oz bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups sugar
6 oz. cream cheese, softened
6 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup all purpose flour

For the peanut butter cheesecake swirl:
(I’ve increased the proportions from what I photographed above because I thought they could use more!)

12 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup + 1 tbsp sugar
1-1/2 large eggs (to get half an egg, whisk 1 in a small bowl and spoon out half)
1-1/2 tsp vanilla extract

– Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9×13″ baking pan with foil and grease lightly.
– For the brownie base, combine the butter and chocolate in a double boiler, stirring until mixture is completely melted.
– Remove bowl from heat and whisk in the cocoa powder, sugar, eggs, and cream cheese until well blended and smooth.
– Mix in the vanilla and salt.
– Add the flour in small batches and incorporate slowly.
– Pour the brownie batter into the dish and smooth the top with a spatula.
– For the peanut butter cheesecake topping, in the bowl of an electric mixer, beat together the cream cheese, peanut butter, and sugar on medium-high speed for about 2 minutes.
– Add the egg and vanilla and beat until incorporated.
– Drop spoonfuls of the peanut butter mixture over the brownie batter and use a wooden skewer to gently swirl them together.
– Bake 30-35 minutes, until the center is just set. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool to room temperature. Cover, refrigerate, and wait to cut until completely chilled.

So what do you prefer, fudgey or chewy??

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15 Responses to “Peanut Butter Cheesecake Brownies”

  1. #
    Crystal Clear As Mud — February 16, 2011 @ 8:19 pm

    These look sooooo good, I’ll have to give ’em a whirl!

  2. #
    Meryl — February 17, 2011 @ 1:19 am

    Have you tried Fine Cooking’s Chewy Brownies? They’re delicious. I bake them for much less time than indicated, about 32 minutes in a shiny metal pan.

  3. #
    Taylor — February 17, 2011 @ 1:36 am

    How could you go wrong with PB, chocolate, and cream cheese?! Can’t wait to try these!

  4. #
    Haley @ The Girly Girl Cooks — February 17, 2011 @ 3:22 pm

    The name of these brownies describes 3 things that I love very much: peanut butter, cream cheese and brownies! What could be more perfect?!?!?

  5. #
    Casey — February 17, 2011 @ 10:20 pm

    Fudgey all the way! These look amazing. Mouth. Watering.

  6. #
    Erica — February 18, 2011 @ 1:33 pm

    Meryl, I just checked out that recipe — I’m going to have to give it a try, the reviews look great.

    Hope you guys all get a chance to try this recipe!

  7. #
    Hannah — February 19, 2011 @ 4:08 am

    definitely go with chewy. :D

  8. #
    Thank Heaven for Little Swirls — February 21, 2011 @ 5:09 am

    They look so good!!


  9. #
    Jenyssa — November 5, 2011 @ 2:05 am

    they taste absolutely delicious!

  10. #
    Gucci Bags On Sale — June 6, 2012 @ 9:12 am

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  11. #
    Anonymous — June 29, 2012 @ 4:44 pm

    I don’t have bitter sweet. But I have semi sweet. What would you do differently. I really want to make these!

    • Erica — June 29th, 2012 @ 5:14 pm

      Semi sweet will be fine, your brownies just won’t come out as darkly colored. I would also decrease the sugar to 1-3/4 cups too! Good luck :)

    • Anonymous — June 29th, 2012 @ 7:40 pm

      Thanks, I’ll let you know!

  12. #
    Tricia — December 20, 2014 @ 4:44 am

    Hi Erica! If I only want to do the brownie without the cheesecake filling and the PB swirls do I omit the cream cheese only? :) thanks!

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