These things are killer. But I must apologize because they have a very unique ingredient that can be hard to find:
Seriously! Did you know that this even existed?? Can I tell you how much I LOVE this product now that I’ve discovered it????? Caramel cake–it’s every bit as delicious as you imagine it would be. And the mix makes for some seriously excellent “brownies.” (I put that in quotations because they actually have no chocolate in them and I thought that chocolate was essential to a brownie!)
Do I even need to tell you how good these are? Caramel on caramel with walnuts in the middle. Ooooh, so delicious and they were a favorite at our family’s Christmas party. If you haven’t seen the cake mix on your store shelves, see if you can get the store to get it special for you like I did. It’s worth the extra effort!
Caramel Walnut Brownies
14-oz. bag caramels
5-oz can of evaporated milk, divided use
1 box Duncan Hines Caramel Cake Mix
1 teaspoon cinnamon
12 tablespoons butter, melted
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups walnuts
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9X9-inch pan and set aside.
Place the caramels in a microwave-safe bowl and add 1/3 cup of the evaporated milk. Microwave for 1 minute on high and stir to combine. Continue microwaving on high at 30-second intervals, stirring each time, until the caramel and milk are melted, smooth, and combined. Set aside.
In a large bowl, combine the cake mix, cinnamon, butter, vanilla, and remaining 1/3 cup evaporated milk. Stir until combined and no lumps remain. Spoon half of the batter into the prepared pan and spread evenly. Set the remaining cake batter aside. It will firm up as it sits.
Slide the pan into the oven and bake for 10 minutes. Spread the walnuts onto a shallow pan and toast them while the cake is baking. Remove the walnuts from the oven when they are fragrant and golden brown.
Allow the cake to cool for 5 minutes. Pour melted caramel over the semi-baked batter and evenly sprinkle the toasted walnuts on top. Take large spoonfuls of the remaining batter, approximately 1/3 cup, which is now firm, and press it between the palms of your hands. Pat it as thinly as possible without breaking it apart. Lay the batter on top of the walnuts. Continue patting the batter and placing it on top of the walnuts. There might be some overlapping of the batter, and there might be several spots where the caramel barely peeks through. Precision is not necessary.
Bake for 25 minutes. Allow to cool in pan on a wire rack. It is helpful to refrigerate the brownies before cutting them into squares. Serve at room temperature.
*Veronica’s notes: I used an 8×8 pan, which made them a bit thicker, and I had to bake them five minutes longer to get them done. I also found it difficult to cut them after refrigerating them overnight because the caramel was so hard. I’d say either only refrigerate them an hour or two or leave them out for at least fifteen minutes before trying to cut them if you’ve left them in there for a long time.
Recipe source: Sassafras Cafe