I’ve had a sweet tooth my whole life. My mom still talks about my love for Oreos at two years old. What can I say? I love chocolate and basically anything with sugar in it. I don’t eat as much sweet stuff now that I’m older…but my love for dessert has not diminished. I love a gooey brownie as a treat every now and then. I can remember being quite little and having an obsession with chocolate chip cookies and cheesecake. I learned how to make a cheesecake when I was a little girl…no older than 8 years old. I remember my dad and I would bake some mini cheesecakes on the weekend and I would take them to lunch each day at school. I always ended a meal with something sweet as a kid. Dessert was always in the menu for me.

Something I don’t love about baking is that sometimes it just takes way too long to create what you’re craving. I love to take shortcuts and find out what works for me. A boxed brownie mix might be taboo in the chef world, but in my kitchen? It’s a must. I use boxed mix all the time. Sure, I love a good homemade brownie. But this doctored up boxed brownie version can stand up to some of the best in my opinion. I love to take a boxed mix and put a twist on it to make it a little more gourmet and more my own. Whether it’s a turtle brownie, a dice de leche brownie, or a peanut butter brownie…I love to put my spin on it.

When it comes to the brand of brownie mix…it 100% matters. I’ve had some bad boxed mixes in my life and I’ve found out my favorites through trial and error. You can’t go wrong with Ghirardelli. Specifically, the dark chocolate ghirardelli brownie mix. Omg….I could eat this brownie without doctoring it up. It is so rich in chocolate flavor and super gooey in texture. I am Drooling just thinking about it. For a box mix…it’s incredible. Going into this recipe, I recommend buying this brand. If you happen to have your own favorite mix…feel free to use that instead. Whatever you like is really all that matters!

This recipe hardly takes any time at all to prep and all the ingredients are probably already in your pantry. You start with the mix and add in the oil and egg. But instead of regular water…. I use my amazing espresso machine (linked below) to add a couple shots of espresso instead. You may also use regular coffee as a substitution. The coffee brings a super robust and rich compound to the brownies that you can’t get with water. It’s not overpowering in coffee flavor, but instead it bring a subtle yet not obvious coffee taste. I also add a handful of crumbled Oreos to the mix for another funky component. The next step? Whip up a sweet peanut butter concoction and drop it in the dish in small amounts. Twirl it a little with the stem of a spoon and then into the oven it goes.

Once done, I like to add a little chocolate ganache and a sprinkle of powdered sugar…or as my son calls it, “snow” lol. It really is so easy and the perfect thing to impress guests with…without making a dessert totally from scratch.

Serve with a cold glass of milk or a hot cup of coffee.

MY ESPRESSO MACHINE I CAN'T GET ENOUGH OF: The Nespresso by Breville creatista plus express machine.Both links are the same machine, just simply from different sites.


Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 40-45 minutes

Totally time: 55 minutes

Serves: 12 brownies


  • 1 box Ghirardelli dark chocolate brownie mix
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup espresso/ or coffee
  • 5 Oreos, crumbled
  • 3 tbsp salted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup peanut butter, like Jif
  • 3/4 cup powder sugar
  • 1/2 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream


  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
  2. In a large bowl whisk together brownie mix, espresso, vegetable oil, egg and Oreos.
  3. Prepare a 9×13 glass Pyrex dish with parchment paper. This will allow brownies to be cut and prepared more easily.
  4. Pour brownie batter into the baking dish.
  5. In another large bowl begin to cream together butter, peanut butter and powdered sugar. Spoon the peanut butter into the brownie mix in large spoonfuls across the entire dish. Use the stem of a spoon to swirl the peanut butter with the brownie mix.
  6. Place in the oven and cook for 40 minutes or until the batter is set and a toothpick comes out clean.
  7. While the brownies cook, heat the heavy cream to a soft boil in a small pot. Turn off heat and stir in chocolate chips till melted.
  8. Top brownies with chocolate ganache and extra powdered sugar.

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