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Easy Pretzel Brownies with a Salted Caramel Topping

Pretzel Brownies with Salted Caramel Topping

 

I can definitely say, without a doubt, that I am on Team Salty-Sweet. I am a huge fan of the sweet and salty concoctions like chocolate-dipped bacon, caramel popcorn, chicken and waffles, and this awesome combination…Pretzel Brownies.  Then there’s the bonus of yet another sweet-salty combo – the salted caramel topping that oozes over the sides.

It’s one of the simplest desserts we make around here. Just a brownie mix, some pretzels and a jar of caramel sauce, really.

After I spray a 9×13 pan with cooking spray (you can also use parchment paper if you want to lift the whole thing out of the pan for easier cutting later) I put a couple of layers of pretzels on the bottom of the pan. This shape works better than pretzel sticks because it allows the batter to seep into the layers better.

Pretzel Brownies

 

Make the brownie mix per the directions on the box – make sure to get a family size package for this large pan, otherwise you can use two regular size boxes of mix. Pour or spoon the batter over the pretzels – I’ve found that some brownie batters are thinner than others. Some turn out like cake batter and some are almost like a cookie dough. If yours doesn’t pour, just dollop the batter all over the top of the pretzels – it’ll spread in the oven. Let it bake according to the package – usually about 30 minutes.

When the brownies are baked, let them cool on a rack, then pour a jar of caramel sauce over the top. You can certainly make your own caramel, but I buy a jar of caramel ice cream topping for this. (Insider tip: the butterscotch ice cream topping is yummy on these, too!)  We’ve also tried the caramel dipping sauce like you’d use to dip apples, but prefer the ice cream topping. OK, now we make it a SALTED caramel topping…ready? Sprinkle a little course salt on top of the caramel sauce.  Done.

pretzel brownies

 

Slice this beauty into bars and serve ’em up! If you’ll be cutting the whole pan into bars at one time, I’d definitely recommend the parchment paper method. Either way, use a nice, sharp knife and a small spatula and they come out just fine.

Pretzel Brownies with Salted Caramel Topping

 

Pretzel Brownies with Salted Caramel Topping

INGREDIENTS

1 family-sized box of your favorite brownie mix (or two regular packages)

items to make the mix per package instructions (eggs, water, oil)

3-4 cups of pretzels

1 jar caramel ice cream sauce
coarse or flaked salt of your choice

DIRECTIONS

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Grease a 9-inch x 13-inch baking pan with cooking spray or line with parchment paper.

Layer the pretzels evenly across the bottom of the pan and to the edges.

Prepare brownie mix according to package instructions (tip: using the “cake like” version seems to keep the pretzels crispier) and pour or drop the batter by the spoonful over the pretzels.

Bake for about 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the brownies comes out clean. Remove to a cooling rack. 

After the brownies have cooled, spoon the caramel sauce over the top and spread it evenly across the brownies. (Sometimes the sauce is a little thick in the jar, simply follow the instructions on the jar to warm it up a bit in the microwave.)

 Sprinkle lightly with course salt.

Cut into serving size bars and serve.