No one will ever know you didn't make these Peanut Butter Cup Brownie Bites from scratch- they're SO good that everyone will be fighting for seconds!
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One thing I love is that A really knows who her family is and it shows. My husband's side of our family lives on the West Coast and unfortunately we don't get to see them as much as we would like. We do our best to try and see each other when possible and try to communicate via Facetime and Skype.
I am continuously blown away by the fact that even though A has had minimal face-to-face time in person with her cousins, she really identifies with them and talks about them often (and prays for them which is the cutest!).
It's most interesting to me because A can be a little reserved with people she's not around each day before she warms up. But I've noticed with extended family, she just seems to know that they're different and gets it. Generally, she warms right up really quickly with them.
One super cute thing is that we have a children's book about two animals that are best friends. I forget what kind of animals but in the book they do everything together and it's basically about how much they love each other. Like most books that feature a pair, A always identifies the pair as her and Tessa and if there's a third, that one is usually Macie (and yes, my heart literally explodes!).
There's one page in this particular book where this duo is at a beach with friends and as we were reading it, A pointed out her and T as always. And then she pointed to the other animals and said "This is Jackson and this is Rykker and this is other Jackson." On a side note, I'm not sure why she identified the third animal as other Jackson, but you get the idea.
In addition to this she also talks frequently about my brother in-law's girlfriend's boys, who have quickly become part of our family and also, her cousins on my side of the family. It's so special to us to see how much she adores all of her extended family and though distance is hard, her love for everyone makes it a little easier.
Sometimes, it's important to have a dish in your arsenal that is extremely easy to make but still manages to be the crowd-pleaser to end all crowd-pleasers. So here it is.
There is no special or exciting story behind this. I saw something similar to this a few years ago at an extended family member's holiday open house. Due to the nature of the party, there were several people that I didn't know and everyone brought a dish to pass.
One brilliant woman brought these small brownie bites. Some had peanut butter cups and some had peppermint pattie's sticking out of them. While I'm not a huge brownie fan I was intrigued, because anything made with a peppermint pattie is a win in my book. Sure enough, they were delicious- but the thing that really got me, was standing back and watching all the guests go absolutely crazy over these.
Of course the wheels began turning in my head. I'm a person who loves a good doctored-up-baking-mix-recipe. And really, who doesn't like to be the person that brings the crowd-pleasing dish to the party? I whipped these particular ones up with peanut butter cups because peanut butter and chocolate are like crack to half-drunk, football watching men (or, you know, human beings in general) and football season is nearly here! Not to mention my girls adore them!
It was so easy to mix the batter and throw them in my mini muffin pan. Just make sure you use mini muffin liners, because when I made them without liners they stuck to the bottom of the pan (since they're so small) and while still delicious, they were a bit of a nightmare!
I have also made these peppermint patties, and they're pretty awesome too! You really can take these in any direction with whatever candy you like!
Here are some other boxed dessert mix hacks:
- Super Easy Chocolate Pudding Cake
- Lemon Pistachio Cake
- Orange Cake with Chocolate Ganache Glaze
- Pumpkin Spiced Latte Cake
Peanut Butter Cup Brownie Bites
- 1 package of brownie mix and whatever ingredients they call for (usually eggs, water and vegetable oil)
- 1 package of miniature peanut butter cups sliced in half
- Mini muffin cup liners
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees, line the mini muffin pan with the liners and grease them with cooking spray.
- Mix the brownie mix as per the directions on the box.
- Fill the muffin cups ¾ of the way full (Expert tip: put the batter into a baggie and snip off a corner off to reduce the mess).
- Bake for about 15 minutes (keep an eye on them as ovens vary).
- Right after you remove them from the oven, before they've fully set, press a half of peanut butter cup into each brownie.
- Serve when cooled or within a few days (these also freeze really well).
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