Caramel and brownies baked in a pie crust and drizzled with chocolate ganache and caramel. This recipe made it all the way to the Pillsbury Bake Off finals!
Today’s recipe is a good one, in fact it took my friend Marjean to the finals of the Pillsbury Bake Off. If you know anything about that Bake Off, that’s a big deal! It’s that contest where the prize is one million dollars!!
Pillsbury Bake Off Winner Recipe
So what inspires someone to enter the Pillsbury Bake Off? Marjean said she has always followed the competition and one Sunday morning woke up and saw a box of Pillsbury pie crust in her refrigerator that needed to be used and thought – Why not? She also had a box of Pillsbury brownie mix so she started playing around and her Caramel Brownie Bites were born!
I invited Marjean to my kitchen to show me how to make her amazing Caramel Brownie Bites. When I asked Marjean how many times she had made them her reply with a smile was “thousands!” I am sure she could do it in her sleep.
How to Make Caramel Brownie Bites
The recipe is done in several steps and several of them can be done ahead of time if you are crunched for time.
- Make the caramel filling. Combine a caramels and cream and melt in microwave until smooth. Do this in small increments of time, stirring intermittently.
- Mix up the brownie batter according to directions on the bake of the box. Be sure and use Pillsbury® Chocolate Extreme Premium Brownie Mix
- Allow pie crust to soften at room temperature. Roll out the pie dough. Use a round cookie cutter to cut the dough.
- Use a mini muffin tins , I loved her little tart tamper tool for getting the pie crust down into the muffin tin quick and easy. You can also push them down into the tin with your finger.
- The next step is to start filling the tarts. The first layer is chopped pecans.
- Then a scoop of caramel we prepared.
- And a scoop of brownie batter.
- Once they are filled they get popped into the oven to bake at 350 degrees F for 18 – 24 minutes.
- While they are baking you can make the chocolate ganache which goes on the top, a combination of chocolate and cream.
Caramel Brownie Bite Tip
Marjean had a great tip for after you pull them out of the oven and they are cooling. She uses a knife to lift them up and turn them on their side so they cool nicer, quicker and the bottoms don’t get soggy.
She will then remove them from the tin and put them on a cooking rack. If you are in a hurry you can pop them in the freezer to cool them quicker.
- The next step, after they are cool, is to give them a nice coating of chocolate ganache.
- And then the finally touch is a drizzle of caramel.
- Fill a plastic baggie with the melted caramel, snips off a corner of the bag and uses it to drizzle the caramel.
Aren’t they pretty and they are delicious too – take my word on it. They tastes yummy warm and gooey out of the oven or after they have cooled and all the flavors have had a chance to meld together. Even after making the recipe over and over, I asked her if she still enjoyed eating them and she does! Good luck at the Bake Off!
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Caramel Brownie Bites Recipe
Caramel Brownie Bites
- 1 bag 14 oz caramels, unwrapped
- 1/2 cup whipping cream
- 1 box Pillsbury® refrigerated pie crusts softened as directed on box
- 1/2 cup Fisher® Chef’s Naturals® Chopped Pecans finely chopped
- 1 box 15.9 oz Pillsbury® Chocolate Extreme Premium Brownie Mix
- 1/3 cup Crisco® Pure Canola Oil
- 3 tablespoons water
- 1 LAND O LAKES® Egg
- 2/3 cup Hershey’s® semi-sweet chocolate baking chips
- 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- In medium microwavable bowl, microwave caramels and 1/4 cup of the cream on High 2 to 3 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds, until melted and smooth. Cool 30 minutes.
- Spray 36 mini muffin cups with Crisco® Original No-Stick Cooking Spray. Unroll pie crusts; roll each into 13-inch round. Using 2 1/2-inch round cookie cutter, cut 18 rounds from each crust, re rolling dough if necessary.
- Gently press each round of dough into the bottom of a muffin cup.
- Spoon scant 1/2 teaspoon of pecans into the bottom of each cup.
- Spoon 2 teaspoon caramel mixture over pecans (there will be about 1/2 cup remaining to drizzle with later.). Reserve the remaining caramel
- In medium bowl, stir brownie mix (with syrup packet), oil, water and egg according to the bake of the box. Stir 50 strokes with spoon. Spoon 1 level tablespoon brownie batter into each cup.
- Bake 18 to 24 minutes or until toothpick inserted into edge of brownie comes out clean.
- Cool in pans on cooling racks 10 minutes. Run knife around edges of cups to loosen; carefully remove from cups. Place on cooking racks. Cool completely, about 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, to make ganache glaze, in small microwavable bowl, microwave remaining 1/4 cup cream and chocolate chips on High 1 to 2 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds, until melted and smooth. Stir in corn syrup until blended. Spoon ganache over each brownie. Refrigerate about 30 minutes or until ganache is set.
- Microwave reserved caramel mixture on High 20 to 30 seconds if necessary for drizzling consistency. Drizzle each brownie with about 1/2 teaspoon caramel mixture. Store loosely covered in refrigerator.
- Recipe fromPillsbury Bake Off Competition 2012