Recipe courtesy of Eddie Jackson

Gooey Chocolate–Salted Caramel Pretzel Brownies

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 2 hr 15 min
  • Active: 25 min
  • Yield: 20 brownies
In my opinion, the best desserts have a combination of salty and sweet.

Ingredients

For the Brownies:

For the Caramel:

Directions

  1. Make the brownies: Preheat the oven to 325˚ F. Spray a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
  2. Whisk together the brownie mix and cayenne in a large bowl. Stir in the vegetable oil, beaten eggs and water until just combined; do not overmix. Stir in the crushed pretzels. Spread the batter in the baking dish and top with the whole pretzels in a 4-by-5 grid. Bake until the brownies are puffed and a tester inserted 2 inches from the edge comes out with a few crumbs, 55 minutes to 1 hour. Let cool on a rack.
  3. Make the caramel: Put the sugar in a small saucepan, drizzle with the water and set over medium heat. Cook, without stirring, until the sugar melts, 2 to 3 minutes. Continue to cook, swirling the pan occasionally so the edges don’t burn, until the sugar syrup is a dark amber, about 8 more minutes.
  4. Whisk the butter into the caramel, then whisk in the heavy cream. Return to a simmer just to combine, then remove from the heat. Whisk in the vanilla. Pour the caramel into a glass measuring cup and let cool until thick enough to drizzle, 3 to 4 minutes.
  5. Drizzle the caramel over the brownies and sprinkle lightly with coarse salt. Let cool completely in the baking dish before cutting into squares, each with a whole pretzel on top. Serve with whipped cream.