Happines Is…Recipe: Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup Chocolate Brownies


Happiness is Friday.

Happiness is Pizza and Movie night on Friday.


Happiness is having a sweet little girl who took care of me all day Wednesday when I was in bed sick.


Happiness is having an amazing speech and occupational therapist.  So amazing that they brought me to tears yesterday.  More about that tomorrow in Ethan’s Progress Report.

Happiness is watching Summer and Ethan enjoying a lazy day.


Happiness is having my mother and daddy visit us this weekend.

Happiness is having a sweet husband who came home early two days this week, in the midst of a very busy time at work, so that he could let me rest in bed and recover from my illness.


Happiness is hearing my doctor say, “You and your husband seem so happy.”  Yes, we are.  When others notice that, and it makes them smile….well, that makes me very happy.

Happiness is watching Gabriel and Ethan play in the morning before school.


Happiness is peanut butter and chocolate and brownies and especially Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup Chocolate Brownies.  I found a recipe for Peanut Butter Snicker Brownies at My Baking Addiction.  As I have mentioned before, Jamie’s blog is one of the places that I turn when I am craving something sweet.  She has never let me down.  I did not have the exact ingredients, so I improvised a little.  We had the brownies last Friday to finish off pizza night.  And, wow, what a finish.  They were delicious, which made us all very, very happy.

Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Chocolate Brownies

Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Chocolate Brownies


1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter

2 1/4 cups sugar

4 large eggs

1 1/4 cups cocoa

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

12-15 mini Reese's Peanut Butter Cups


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Line a 9" x 13" pan with foil, and lightly spray with non-stick cooking spray.
  3. In a saucepan over low heat, melt the butter. Once melted, add sugar and stir to combine.
  4. Continue heating mixture, until just hot but not bubbling. It will have a shiny appearance as you stir it.
  5. Reduce the heat and allow it to heat a second time, which should make the mixture even shinier.
  6. Crack the 4 eggs into a mixing bowl, and beat them on low speed.
  7. Add in the cocoa, salt, baking powder, and vanilla until the mixture is thoroughly incorporated and smooth.
  8. Add the hot butter/sugar mixture, mixing until smooth.
  9. Add the flour and mix until just combined.
  10. Spoon half of the batter into the prepared pan.
  11. Place an even layer of Mini Reese's Peanut Butter Cups onto the brownie batter, slightly pushing them into the batter. Note - mine had small spaces in between each peanut butter cup. If you want it to be more solid, you can definitely do that.
  12. Top with the remaining batter and smooth the batter to cover the Peanut Butter Cups.
  13. Bake the brownies for 25-30 minutes. The brownies should feel set on the edges, and the center should look very moist, but not uncooked.
  14. Remove them from the oven, and cool completely on a rack before cutting.
  15. Serve with a tall glass of milk.

Have a happy weekend!

I am linking up at the following:

TidyMom for I’m Lovin’ It

Alli ‘n Sons for Sweet Tooth Friday

Dwell on Joy for Dwell on Friday

Ladybird Ln for Weekend Show Off Party

30Days for Pity Party

Happy Valentine’s Day – Recipe: Cheesecake Brownies


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Happy Valentine’s Day!

The cookies are made for the class.


The cupcakes are boxed up to be delivered to the teachers.


The cards are ready to be handed out to friends.


And, the littles are all dressed in red and white for the special day, with shirts courtesy of a very talented Nonna.



Summer and I have two lunches and two parties to attend today before we come home and make dinner for the family tonight.  I foresee myself chanting, “I think I can, I think I can, I think I can” all day long, reminding myself that the day is a marathon, not a sprint.

Thankfully, I do have a start on our dinner.  When I was having my bake-a-thon yesterday, I decided to go ahead and make dessert for tonight.  I was not sure how it would turn out because I had never made Cheesecake Brownies exactly like this.  But, I decided to give it a try, using this brownie recipe and this cheesecake recipe.  Instead of swirling it together, I wanted it to be two distinct layers.  Imagine my happiness when it actually turned out exactly like I had envisioned.   Happy love day to me!

Cheesecake Brownies

Cheesecake Brownies


For the Brownies

2/3 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

veg cooking spray

2 ounces unsweetened chocolate

4 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate

10 tablespoons (1 stick plus 2 tablespoons) unsalted butter

1 1/4 cups sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

3 large eggs

For the Cheesecake

1 package cream cheese

1 can sweetened condensed milk

1 teaspoon vanilla


    Preparing the Brownies
  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Whisk flour, salt and baking powder in a small bowl; set aside.
  3. Spray an 8-inch baking pan with cooking spray. Fit a sheet of foil in pan and up two sides, so you can use it as a handle to pull cooked brownies from pan.
  4. Spray sheet with cooking spray.
  5. Melt chocolates and butter in a medium bowl over a pan of simmering water.
  6. Remove from heat; whisk in sugar and vanilla.
  7. Whisk in eggs, one at a time, fully incorporating each one before adding the next. Continue to whisk until mixture is completely smooth and glossy.
  8. Add dry ingredients, mix until just incorporated.
  9. Preparing the Cheesecake
  10. Mix together the cream cheese, sweetened condensed milk, and vanilla until smooth. Set aside.
  11. Putting it All Together
  12. Pour batter into prepared pan.
  13. Pour the cheesecake mixture on top of the brownie batter.
  14. Bake for 40-50 minutes.
  15. Cool brownies in pan on a wire rack for five minutes.
  16. Use handles to pull brownies from pan. Completely cool brownies on rack, at least three hours.
  17. Cut into squares or use cookie cutter to make shapes.

Enjoy your day.  We plan to celebrate the day with our littles by having dinner at home, followed by these yummy little cheesecake brownies.  It sounds like a perfect night to me.

I shared this recipe at Something Swanky, 33 Shades of Green, 2 Maids, Blessed with Grace, Mandy’s Recipe Box, Permanent Posies, Crazy for Crust, Nap Time Creations, Chef in Training and Skip the Housework.

Happiness Is…


Happiness is family.


Happiness is looking back with fondness on old memories while looking forward with anticipation to new ones.




Happiness is watching sweet littles take care of a special pet for their brother.


Happiness is baking with the littles with the Easy Bake Oven.  Thank you, Uncle Steve and Aunt Jessica!


Happiness is being at home together for the weekend while we ring in a new year.


Happiness is special desserts to celebrate special days.  I made clock cupcakes last year and decided to kick that up a notch this year, with My Baking Addictions’ amazing brownies.  They are sweet, they are yummy, they are a great way to count down the hours until 2012.


Happy New Year!