Janet's Notebook
Brownies, Anything but Basic

Salted Caramel Brownies

Whether you make them from scratch or use a boxed mix for a shortcut, brownies are great! They are an easy dessert everyone loves.

I can remember being a kid in the kitchen with my mom and making brownies. I would wait for them to cool down just enough (as a kid this seemed to take hours!), add a big scoop of vanilla ice cream and dig in. I was in heaven.

To this day, I still love a basic brownie. But, as I've gotten older, I've realized you can easily jazz up a basic brownie and turn them into one impressive dessert.

"I've had a craving for some salted caramel and chocolate," says Diane Hopson Smith. "[I'm] not a big chocolate fan but when I want chocolate, well, I want chocolate!" One bite of Diane's Salted Caramel Brownies and any craving will be satisfied. I'm a big fan of chocolate and caramel together and this recipe is sweet and salty at its best! It is a bit labor intensive, but the decadent result is so worth it. Serve these to guests and they'll definitely be doing a happy dance!

Minus the raspberry, Kelli Thomas' Raspberry Cream Cheese Brownies are really good. But WITH the raspberry, these are do-a-jig delicious! "I love chocolate, my husband loves cheesecake," says Kelli. "But we both agree these brownies are to die for!" These couldn't be easier to whip up... you probably have the ingredients in your pantry! And, you can switch up the jam flavors too if you'd like. I bet blackberry or strawberry jam would work wonderfully too.

In fact, Catherine Cappiello Pappas creates an easy strawberry jam for her Strawberry & Chocolate Brownies. Catherine thinks these make "a delicious dessert for Valentine's Day" and they would. But, they're so good why not enjoy them year around! If you love chocolate and strawberries, then you will LOVE these brownies. They taste like a chocolate covered strawberry. The addition of dried cranberries adds a little tang to balance out the sweetness. Just delicious.

"These brownies are so moist and the touch of cinnamon adds a unique flavor," says Audrey Musick about her Brownies with a Kick. I love brownies that add coffee to the recipe. Strongly brewed coffee really brings out the chocolate flavor. But adding cinnamon? I hadn't thought of that! The cinnamon adds a nice twist. You can taste it, but it's not overpowering. Your guests will be asking themselves "what is that" as they gobble these up!

Penny Jordan's Mom's Best Ever Brownies are so chocolaty, so moist and so good! "My mom used to make the best brownies in Texas," shares Penny. These definitely are delicious! Everyone in the Test Kitchen kept on going back and sneaking "just one more" from the plate. Buttermilk is a nice addition to this recipe. And, that icing? It tops these treats off perfectly!

"The chocolate and peanut butter covered rice cereal on top (along with the peanut butter cups) make this brownie recipe rich and amazing," says Traci Coleman of her Peanut Butter Crunch Brownies. From the chocolate flavor to the peanuts to the delectable crunchiness... these are divine. If you're a fan of peanut butter and chocolate, then you'll be a fan of this recipe!

Add nuts, frosting or even raisins and you have a wonderful treat that is anything but basic. While I was talking to everyone in the Test Kitchen, a big debate started - nuts or no nuts? I prefer my brownies without nuts, but what side are you on?

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Chris Schultz - Sep 18, 2014
Omg I so want to try these!!!!!!
Rose Rauhauser - Sep 17, 2014
All I can say is these brownies are awesome and I love the salted/caramel recipe, mmmm!!!
Violet Buss - Sep 17, 2014
I love nuts anywhere anytime. But a lot of my friends and family dont. I plan on using this brownie receipe for Christmas gifts. The GreatGrands will love them. Thanks for a great idea.