Oh my goodness, where to begin with how frustrated I was with this recipe…. WELL! I suppose it first started when I had the idea to try and create a s’more brownie with marshmallow that didn’t brown and begin crisp, but rather retains its’ original texture- soft and gooey. Most s’more brownie recipes I came across put the marshmallows on the top and let them brown up in the oven. I didn’t want to do that because, unless serving all the brownies in one day, I didn’t feel it would keep well. So I tried TWO different strategies. Let me elaborate:
First I thought Fluff would be a good solution. And wouldn’t it be pretty swirled and baked into brownie batter? Sure it would- if only it was that simple. The texture of the Fluff was much too thick and did NOT want to incorporate into the brownie batter in the slightest. So once baked, it kind of just sat on top, creating a funny crust. Plus it melted a bit so it didn’t retain many of its’ delicious Fluff qualities. Not to mention that the graham cracker crust I made was crumbly, lacking enough butter to form properly, and the brownies were soooo underdone that they were just pure goo. So the results- s’more brownie slop. No success.
From there I knew what I wanted to tweak- perfect the graham cracker crust, properly bake the brownies and return to the tried and true marshmallows. I used the same graham cracker crust from my Chocolate Chip Cheesecake Bars Recipe and it worked perfect. Don’t ask me why I didn’t do that in the beginning. My brain was lagging that day. THEN I decided maybe I could preserve the marshmallows if I hid them under the brownie batter so as not to expose them to the direct heat. When I pulled them out of the oven, they looked beautiful and the brownies were perfectly done. But as soon as I cut into them I knew I had hit another road block- the marshmallows had just melted into the batter. I covered the entire bottom with marshmallows. You couldn’t see even one. They just completely dissolved from the heat and left behind little chewy bits in the brownies texture. Again, thoroughly disappointed.
Ultimately, I am not left with many choices to obtain my desired texture for a s’more brownie. The only solutions I can think of are spreading a nice layer of Fluff along the middle, between the crust and the brownie batter. Hoping it won’t melt and dissolve somehow. OR you can just put the marshmallows along the top of the brownies for the last few minutes just to soften them up. Maybe you could even run them under the broiler quick if you wanted that toasted marshmallow appeal. This seems to be the tried and true method and although I don’t think it’s great, I think it’s better than what I came up with haha
The brownie I photographed is my second attempt at s’more brownies. You can see that there are no marshmallows present whatsoever. Ugh. I swear it was FULL of marshmallows! Oh well. I wasn’t about to make a third batch of brownies, I didn’t have it in me. Plus I was out of ingredients. Honestly though, I think the best way to make a s’more brownie would be to top the brownie with a slab of homemade marshmallow that was formed in another 8×8-inch pan, so it would sit perfectly on top. THAT would be yummy. But then again, that is the type of thing only extra ambitious people would do. You know, usually those people without kids… I’m find using Fluff or Jet-Puff Marshmallows any day : ) But now I have the desire to make homemade marshmallows… we’ll see where I go with that. Until then, give s’more brownies a shot in your kitchen and let me know how it goes for you!
AND on a total side note- I think freshly crushed graham cracker sheets make the best crumb crusts. I am NOT a fan of the boxes of graham cracker crumbs anymore. Convenient? Yes. But not worth the sacrifice in flavor in my opinion.
- 1½ cups graham cracker crumbs (8 sheets)
- 5 Tb butter, melted
- 1 Tb granulated sugar
- 1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces
- 4.5 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped (I used Ghirardelli 60% bittersweet chips)
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ⅓ cup all-purpose flour
- ½ cup milk chocolate chips or chunks
- 1 heaping cup mini-marshmallows
- For the Crust: Preheat oven to 325°F. Mix graham cracker crumbs, butter, and sugar together in bowl until well combined and completely moistened. Pour into an 8×8-inch square pan that has been prepped with parchment or butter. Bake in oven for 10 minutes. Set aside to cool on wire rack.
- For the Brownies: Set a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Put the butter in the bowl, top with the chopped chocolate and stir occasionally until the ingredients are just melted – you don’t want them to get so hot that the butter separates. Remove the bowl from the pan of water.
- With a whisk, stir in the sugar. The mixture might get grainy, but it will even out. Whisk in the eggs one by one, then add the vanilla and whisk enthusiastically to smooth the batter. With spatula fold in salt and flour, stirring only until incorporated. Fold in milk chocolate chips.
- Pour the batter into the pan and smooth the top with a rubber spatula.
- Bake the brownies 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and sprinkle marshmallows evenly over the top. Return to the oven and continue to bake an additional 5-10 minutes or until Marshmallows have browned to your liking. Transfer the pan to a rack and cool.