Buckeye Brownies

These fudgy and delicious buckeye brownies with a creamy peanut butter fudge layer followed by a rich chocolate ganache layer are the ultimate decadent dessert. Chocolate fudgy cocoa brownies and creamy peanut butter and chocolate layers that stay moist for days which makes them perfect for making the night before and serving the next day. The brownie base is seriously rich and fudgy, perfectly chewy brownies. The brownies are made in one bowl or saucepan and the ganache and peanut butter layers are simple to make as well. These chocolate peanut butter brownies are a bowl and whisk and spatulas recipe - no hand mixer or stand mixer required. Just the kind of treat that I’m always craving and it never disappoints! A heavenly treat and brownie recipe for all my chocolate peanut butter lovers out there.

Buckeye Brownies

What are Buckeyes

Buckeyes or buckeye candies are peanut butter fudge candy balls dipped in chocolate. They’re called buckeyes because they look like the round nuts that grow on Ohio buckeye trees. These brownies are inspired by the candy with with a fudgy brownie layer followed by peanut butter fudge layer and a thick and creamy chocolate ganache topping.

Buckeye Brownies

Buckeye Brownies Recipe Ingredients

For The Brownies

  • SUGAR: I use granulated white sugar - but feel free to swap out a ¼ cup of it with light brown sugar if you wish
  • BUTTER: I use unsalted butter to control amount of salt in the recipe
  • COCOA POWDER: I use a good quality unsweetened cocoa powder for this recipe
  • SALT: Balances the flavours
  • EGGS: Helps bind and adds richness and structure to the batters
  • PURE VANILLA EXTRACT: Always adds a warm flavor to all sweet baked goods
  • ALL PURPOSE FLOUR: This is to give these brownies some structure.

For the Peanut Butter Fudge Layer

  • PEANUT BUTTER: Use regular creamy peanut butter instead of natural peanut butters or sugar free. Can you use chunky peanut butter for this recipe? You can, but it will not give the same creamy texture we are looking to achieve for the chocolate and peanut butter layered brownies.
  • BUTTER: I use unsalted butter to control amount of salt in the recipe
  • POWDERED SUGAR: This is not only to sweeten but also it dissolves beautifully into the mixture and it stabilizes the mixture so it sets well into a distinct layer
  • VANILLA EXTRACT: Always adds a warm flavor to all sweet baked goods
  • SALT: Balances the flavours

For the Chocolate Fudge Ganache Layer

  • SEMI-SWEET CHOCOLATE: Use chocolate chips or chopped chocolate for the ganache, for a smoother finish I recommend using good quality semi sweet chopped chocolate or good quality chocolate chips as some brands contain ingredients or fillers that prevent them from melting very smoothly, which makes a lumpy ganache.
  • BUTTER: I use unsalted butter so I can control amount of salt in the recipe but if you want a salted version feel free to use salted butter

Buckeye Brownies

Buckeye Brownies

How To Make Buckeye Brownies

  1. MELT the butter in a medium size bowl or saucepan.
  2. WHISK in the cocoa powder
  3. WHISK in eggs and vanilla
  4. FOLD the flour into the wet ingredients
  5. POUR batter into prepared pan and bake
  6. For the PEANUT BUTTER LAYER stir together the peanut butter with butter, vanilla and salt then gradually stir in the powdered sugar
  7. For CHOCOLATE FUHE GANACHE melt the butter and chocolate together over low heat or in the microwave until smooth
  8. PRESS the peanut butter layer gently over top brownies in and even layer
  9. POUR & SMOOTH over the chocolate ganache
  10. CHILL to set quickly or leave at room temperature until fully set
  11. SLICE & ENJOY!
  • Remember, if you are wanting to use a brownie box mix skip the brownie making step and replace it with the box steps for the brownies.*

Buckeye Brownies

Buckeye Brownies Tips

  • Use great quality chocolate for this recipe is key to achieving the luscious chocolate flavour of your brownie dreams
  • You do want to be sure the melted butter and sugar have some time to cool before adding your eggs, otherwise you might end up with scrambled egg brownies which is less than appealing.
  • Pouring the ganache will be easier of it’s still a tad warm, since it thickens as it cools.
  • Let brownies sit at cool room temperature for 2-4 hours until completely set. You can refrigerate them if you’re in a hurry, for 1-3 hours but the fudge topping will lose its shiny finish
  • Personally I always chill them to set in the fridge for at least 1-2 hours before slicing to ensure you get those nice clean slices
  • When making ganache - warm and Stir gently when making the ganache topping to ensure that it doesn’t split
  • Cut the brownie bars into neat squares, lift the brownies out of the pan by grabbing the edges of the parchment paper and lifting the whole slab onto a cutting board. Use a sharp chef’s knife to cut the brownies, wiping the knife clean in between each cut.

Buckeye Brownies

Buckeye Brownies Storage & Freezing

  • STORAGE: Chocolate peanut butter ganache brownies require refrigeration, so ganache-topped brownies should be carefully sealed and stored in the fridge for up to 4-5 days.
  • FREEZING: It’s usually best to store the brownies without toppings like frosting or ganache. However, if the brownies have already been decorated like these buckeye brownies and you’re freezing leftovers, it’s fine to freeze well-sealed brownies with their frostings. Whole pan- seal tight with plastic wrap then a layer of aluminum foil. Or if freezing individual slices wrap individually with plastic wrap - you may want to flash freeze them for an hour prior on a baking sheet then wrap tight and place in a freezer bag or container for up to 3 months. Thaw in the fridge or on the countertop

Buckeye Brownies

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Servings: 9-12
Prep Time: 20 mins
Bake Time: 25 mins
Non Active Time: 1-3 hours for setting


Brownie Layer

  • 4 Tablespoons cocoa powder
  • ½ cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1¼ cups all purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon of salt

Peanut Butter Layer

  • ½ cup creamy peanut butter
  • ¼ cup butter, melted
  • 1½ cups powdered sugar
  • 1½-2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt

Chocolate Ganache Fudge Layer

  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips/ chopped chocolate
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter


For The Brownies

  1. Preheat oven to 325°F and grease a 8 x 8 inch baking pan/baking dish, lining it with parchment paper that overhangs for easy removal.
  2. In a medium size sauce pan melt butter then remove from heat and whisk in cocoa powder followed by the sugar until well combined
  3. Whisk in eggs and the vanilla vigorously until smooth
  4. Stir in the flour, and salt and mix together well.
  5. Spoon batter into the prepared pan. Use an offset spatula to smooth batter evenly.
  6. Bake 25 to 30 minutes, or until cooked through and toothpick or tester comes out mostly clean with a couple crumbs. (Top with peanut butter layer while brownies are still warm and ganache.)

For the Peanut Butter Mixture

  1. While brownies are baking, make peanut butter filling. In a mixing bowl, combined melted butter, peanut butter until smooth or mostly smooth.
  2. Stir in vanilla, and gradually stir and fold in powdered sugar 1 tablespoon at a time, stirring in a teaspoon of milk as needed to incorporate the sugar fully - it will be paste like thick but pliable
  3. Remove brownies from oven when done baking.
  4. Gently drop peanut butter filling onto top of warm brownies, using fingertips to make sure brownies are completely covered evenly.

For the Chocolate Ganache

  1. For the ganache, in a small microwave-safe bowl, or small saucepan, combine and melt chocolate chips and butter. Heat over low heat or in short 20-30 second spurts in the microwave for 1-2 minutes stirring gently in between. Stir until smooth.
  2. Pour over peanut butter layer and spread until evenly distributed with an offset spatula. It will be thick
  3. Refrigerate brownies for 2 hours (or more). Cut into bars while chilled. Serve and enjoy!!

Recipe Notes

  • If you are wanting to use a box brownie mix skip the brownie making step and replace it with the box steps for the brownies
  • Peanut butter. I find regular creamy peanut butter works better than natural peanut butters or sugar free.
  • Storage. Keep these brownies chilled for best results. Store in airtight container for up to 5 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

Buckeye Brownies