I used to hate turtles.
I’m talking the turtles that are made with pecans, caramel, and covered in chocolate.
Funny thing is that turtles were my dad’s favorite candy treat growing up, something that totally grossed me out. For whatever reason I didn’t like pecans OR caramel (I know, I know), and therefore thought that it was so gross when he’d eat them. Now that I think of it that might have been why he “liked” them so much – he knew his children wouldn’t swoop in for the kill if he kept those around the house.
Gushers on the other hand are a completely different story. To this day if you bring me tropical Gushers then you and I are best friends. Besties. BFF. FOREVER.
So back to these brownies. When I saw the bag of caramel bits in the store the other day I just about keeled over with excitement. No, I had no plan in what to use them in. I just knew I had to have them. So buy them I did, and I skipped off imagining all of the things I could make with them.
The inspiration for these brownies came when I opened our fridge only to see the plethora of hand-picked pecans from my parents. I’m trying my best to spread out the pecan recipes, but I’d be lying if I said we weren’t snacking our way through those 25-lb bags. That’s right. 50 lbs of pecans. My parents love me.
- 3 sticks butter, melted
- 3 cups sugar
- 4 eggs
- 1/4 cup water
- 2 tablespoons vanilla
- 3 cups flour
- 1 1/2 cups cocoa powder, sifted
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 cups caramel bits
- 2 cups pecans, slightly toasted and chopped
- 2 cups chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 and grease a 9×13 baking pan. In a bowl combine the butter, sugar, eggs, water and vanilla. Mix until well incorporated. Add the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt. Mix until combined. Spread about 2/3 of the mixture into the baking pan (I used my hands dipped in water to push it all to the sides). Sprinkle 1 cup each of the caramel bits, pecans, and chocolate chips in the center, being sure to stay away from the edges. With wet hands, smash the rest of the brownie batter on top, being sure to push down the edges. This is so that the caramel doesn’t seep through and make a huge mess for you to clean up later. Bake at 350 for 40-45 minutes. After the brownies have cooled, melted the caramel bits in a sauce pan with a touch of water. Melt the chocolate chips as well. Drizzle both over the top of the brownies, then sprinkle with the remaining pecans.