Tax Day Treat: Caramel-Pecan Brownies

Whether you're getting a refund or writing a check, you deserve a taxes-are-done celebratory treat. These dense, extra-fudgy brownies get their rich flavor from Dutch-processed cocoa and bittersweet and unsweetened chocolate. They’re drizzled with a caramel topping that adds an irresistible gooey finish.


3/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons Dutch-processed cocoa
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter
4 oz. bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
1 oz. unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup coarsely chopped pecans


4 oz. high-quality soft caramels
2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1. Heat oven to 350°F. Spray 8-inch square baking pan with cooking spray. Whisk flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt in small bowl.

2. Heat butter, bittersweet chocolate and unsweetened chocolate in medium saucepan over low heat 4 minutes or until almost melted, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; stir until melted and smooth. Stir in sugar (mixture will look grainy). Whisk in eggs and 1 teaspoon vanilla until blended. Stir in flour mixture.

3. Spoon batter into pan, smoothing top. Sprinkle with nuts, pressing lightly into batter. Bake 28 to 32 minutes or until edges just begin to pull away from sides of pan and brownies are nearly firm. (Toothpick test will not work.) Cool in pan on wire rack 15 minutes.

4. Meanwhile, heat caramels and cream in small saucepan over low to medium-low heat 4 minutes or until caramels melt and are smooth. Stir in 1 teaspoon vanilla. Drizzle over brownies. Cool completely.

16 bars

PER BAR: 255 calories, 16 g total fat (7 g saturated fat), 3 g protein, 29 g carbohydrate, 45 mg cholesterol, 75 mg sodium, 2 g fiber

Don't have time for scratch brownies? Try this creative quick fix for brownies using a box mix. We call this one Espresso Buzz.

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