Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup Crack Brownies Recipe

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Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Crack Brownies Recipe

Okay, ‘crack brownies’ are AMAZING. My mother introduced me to peanut butter cup crack brownies when I was younger, I have no idea how she came up with the idea, but they’ve become a family favorite. After one bite, it’s easy to see how they’ve earned their name.

Peanut butter cup brownies are easy to make and the end result is to die for. The secret is Ghirardelli dark chocolate brownies topped with mini dark chocolate Reese’s and sea salt.

They are absolutely addicting and incredibly rich…I think this may have been a major reason Shawn asked me to marry him. Just kidding! I think…

If you’re ready to make your own candy, then go on and create your own peanut butter cups! You can also really easily make gluten-free PB brownies. Not a chocolate person? Then peanut butter takes center stage on chicken satay skewers.

How to Make Crack Brownies

The recipe is as simple as:

  1. Following the regular directions on the Ghirardelli box.
  2. Adding Reese’s peanut butter cups on top of the hot brownies (fresh out of the oven).
  3. Smoothing out the melted Reese’s with a spoon to create a thin chocolate layer and sprinkling with a little flaked sea salt.

I use dark chocolate Reese’s but you can use milk chocolate if you prefer. Reese’s minis work the best (not the ultra-small kind but the size down from a large cup).

Let Cool in Fridge

The brownies MUST set in the fridge for at least one hour to give the peanut butter cups a chance to cool and harden. If not, they will be too gooey and won’t cut well. This is honestly the hardest part of the entire recipe…waiting.

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Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Crack Brownies Recipe
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5 from 1 vote

Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup Crack Brownies Recipe

By: Patty
Servings: 16 brownies
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 40 minutes
Total: 50 minutes
Crack brownies—delicious and rich dark chocolate brownies topped with melted dark chocolate Reese’s peanut butter cups and sprinkled with sea salt.


  • 1 box of Ghirardelli dark chocolate brownie mix
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 egg
  • 16 Reese’s dark chocolate peanut butter cups, miniatures—not the super tiny ones
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
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  • Follow the directions on the back of the brownie mix box and bake as directed. For this recipe, use a greased 8×8 baking pan or oven-safe dish.
  • While brownies are baking, unwrap the 16 peanut butter cups and set aside.
  • As soon as brownies are done (toothpick comes back clean—though I don’t mind if they are a little gooey), remove from oven and place on stove top.
  • Immediately place peanut butter cups on top of brownies in four rows of four, with the larger surface of peanut butter cup facing down.
  • Once the chocolate starts to melt (3-4 minutes), take a spoon and smooth the melted chocolate around so that it is evenly dispersed over the brownies.
  • Allow to cool for fifteen minutes then transfer to refrigerator for at least one hour.


I often make these the night before and let them sit in the refrigerator overnight, but they are usually ready (with the peanut butter cup layer hardened) after a 1-2 hours.


Serving: 1brownieCalories: 161kcalCarbohydrates: 19.5gProtein: 0.9gFat: 9.2gSaturated Fat: 2.9gCholesterol: 4mgSodium: 180mgFiber: 0.8gSugar: 13.6g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Tried this recipe?Mention @kitchenswagger or tag #kitchenswagger!

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  1. In the photo of the cut brownie it looks like there is a chunk of chocolate down in the middle of the brownie. Does the brownie mix come with chocolate chunks? Or, did you stir in any chocolate chip/chunks?

    1. The particular brownie mix in the recipe has chocolate chunks in it! Look for “ghirardelli dark chocolate brownie mix”

  2. Hi guys I have a question about te egg . Where do you use it in the recipe/ or is it for the boxed brownie mix? Thanks

  3. I don’t know how you wait until the next morning to eat these! They look so freaking good. I am also glad to learn that I can just use a boxed brownie mix for these. I hate making brownies from scratch. It’s much more complicated than the boxed stuff and never taste as good. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Hi Sharon! There is a reason we call them “crack brownies,” they really are addicting!
      Yes, using the boxed brownies makes these such a cinch to make. Let me know what you think!