These Chocolate Chip Caramel Brownies have it all…chocolate chip cookie dough, gooey brownie, and filled with a melt-in-your-mouth bite of Russell Stover Caramel in Milk Chocolate. It’s easy and perfect for the holidays! 🎄
The best thing about this recipe is it can be made with only minutes of prep work if you use store bought options, OR if you have the time you can make everything from scratch. Making from scratch, the flavor is *chef’s kiss* and just elevated. But I like to have options, so I’ve included both ways in this recipe!
Another customization option: using any kind of chocolate for your “filling” layer. I personally love these Milk Chocolate Caramels but I’ve made these with chocolate peanut butter cups, truffles, dark chocolate caramels…the possibilities are endless!
Chocolate Chip Caramel Brownies
Cookie Dough Layer:
- 1 16-oz refrigerated chocolate chip cookie dough or make homemade
- 1/4 cup rolled oats
- 1 cup + 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
- 3/4 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/8 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 cup butter softened
- 1/4 cup + 2 tbsp brown sugar packed
- 1/4 cup + 2 tbsp granulated sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1/4 tsp lemon juice
- 1 large egg
- 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 3/4 cup chopped nuts
- 1 18-oz box brownie mix plus ingredients called for on the box, or make homemade
- 1/2 cup salted butter melted
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
Chocolate Caramel Layer:
- 1 8.3-oz bag of Russell Stover Milk Chocolate Caramels
- For Cookies (if making homemade): Grind oats in a food processor or blender until fine. Combine the ground oats with the flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon in a medium bowl. Cream together the butter, sugars, vanilla, and lemon juice in another medium bowl with an electric mixer. Add the eggs and mix until smooth. Stir the dry mixture into the wet mixture and blend well. Add the chocolate chips and nuts to the dough and mix by hand until ingredients are well blended.
- For Brownies: Make the brownie batter in a medium bowl according to the package directions (Note: you will only need HALF of the 18-oz box and ingredients called for on the box – the remaining batter can make extra brownies or cupcakes). To make homemade batter, beat the butter and sugar in a medium bowl until fluffy. Then beat in the vanilla and eggs one-by-one. Stir in the flour and cocoa until combined.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (177°C). Line an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper and set aside.
- Press the cookie dough into the bottom of the pan using your fingertips. You want an even layer.
- Arrange the caramels in a single layer of 4×4 on top of the cookie dough. It's fine if there's some wiggle room between the caramels.
- Pour the brownie batter evenly across the caramels (it should be just enough to thinly cover the caramels.) Use a spatula to spread it out to fill the nooks and crannies as needed.
- Bake for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick or cake tester inserted in the middle comes out clean.
- Remove from the oven and allow the brownies to cool completely in the pan for at least one hour. This is crucial to prevent the layers from deflating or collapsing.
- Use the parchment to lift the brownies out of the pan. Use a sharp knife to cut into squares. Serve with extra Milk Chocolate Caramels, chopped, or ice cream if desired!
Enjoy and Happy Holidays!