Reindeer Peanut Butter Brownie Cups

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These reindeer peanut butter brownie cups are super simple to make using brownie mix, peanut butter cups, pretzels, and candies! In no time at all, you can have the perfect treat to greet Santa!
A tray of brownie cookie cups with a peanut butter cup made to look like a reindeer with pretzels for antlers and candies for the nose and eyes.

A tray of brownie cookie cups with a peanut butter cup made to look like a reindeer with pretzels for antlers and candies for the nose and eyes.

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Why we love this recipe

Here at Completely Christmas, we love a treat that is both tasty and adorable that can double as a decoration. These reindeer peanut butter brownie cups are the cutest thing you’ll bake this Christmas season. Made with box brownie mix, peanut butter cups, pretzels, and chocolate candies, these little reindeer are the perfect salty, sweet treat to serve to your guests this holiday season! Santa will love them, too!

Here’s what you’ll need:

Ingredients

Ingredients for making Reindeer Peanut Butter Brownie Cups.

Ingredient Notes

  • You can typically find candy eyes at any craft store. However, if you can’t find any, you can just skip the eyes and make an equally cute, abstract reindeer!
  • Any brownie mix will work for this. I personally have celiac disease, so chose to use my favorite gluten-free brownie box mix.
  • If you’d prefer not to make brownies, you can use break and bake double chocolate cookie dough or if you don’t mind a slightly different color palette, use regular chocolate chip cookie dough!

Step-by-step instructions

With just a few simple steps, you can make these adorable Christmas brownie cups:

  1. Prepare the brownie mix according to the package’s instructions. My brownie mix called for an egg, vegetable oil, and water, which is why they are shown in the ingredients below and in the picture. Either grease the 24 mini muffin wells of your tin with cooking spray or oil, or use paper liners like I did. You can sometimes find festive liners at the grocery store or craft store if you really want to jazz up your reindeer. I just used plain white to let my reindeer shine on their own. Spoon equal amounts of the brownie mix into each muffin well. I typically fill mine about 3/4 of the way.
  2. Bake at 350F for 18-20 minutes. When it comes to baking, it’s best to under bake these brownie cups than overbake them. If overbaked, it will be difficult to insert the peanut butter cups later.
  3. Once removed from the oven, immediately, gently press the Reese’s peanut butter cups into the brownie bites. Wait a few minutes while the chocolate peanut butter cups begin to melt from the heat of the brownie bites. 
  4. Place a red M&M on the melted chocolate of the peanut butter cup for the nose. 
Steps 1-4 for making Reindeer Peanut Butter Brownie Cups.

5. In the meantime, slice the pretzels in half to create antlers. The pretzels break very easily so you can either embrace the rustic look or make sure you have extra pretzels to get perfect antlers.

6. Then, take two of the cut pretzels and place them above the M&M on the melted chocolate for your antlers. 

7. Place two candy eyes over the bottom of the antlers. 

8. Let cool for at least an hour at room temperature until the chocolate has hardened. Alternatively, you can place the cookies in the refrigerator to harden quicker.

Steps 5-8 for making Reindeer Peanut Butter Brownie Cups.

Expert tips

  • Preparation is key for this recipe! It is very important to have all of your peanut butter cups unwrapped and your chocolate candies and pretzel antlers ready to go so that you can insert the peanut butter cups as soon as the brownie cups are out of the oven and still soft. If you let the brownies harden at all, it will be tough to push the peanut butter cups in. You’ll also want to be somewhat quick to place your pretzel antlers and candy eyes and nose while the peanut butter cups are still melty on top. This will ensure that all of them stay in place as your chocolate hardens.
  • Use a sharp knife to cut your pretzels in half to ensure that your antlers are uniform. If you’re making this recipe with the kids, you may just want to break them in half with your hands and just know that your reindeer might come out a little less uniform. They’ll be adorable no matter how their antlers look!

FAQs

Can these brownie cups be made gluten-free?

Yes! As you’ll see in the ingredients photo, I used a gluten-free brownie mix for my Christmas reindeer brownie cups. You can do the same, and also make sure to use gluten-free pretzels, and you’ll be all set.

Where can I find candy eyes?

Your local craft store will likely have candy eyes or if you’re really planning ahead, you can try finding them online. If you can’t find them, however, don’t worry about it! Just skip the eyes and have abstract reindeer. They’ll be just as cute!

Can I make these with something other than brownie mix?

Absolutely! Another option for this recipe is to use break and bake cookie dough to make life super easy. I’d recommend using double chocolate chip break and bake dough, otherwise, you can go for a classic chocolate chip cookie dough. If going this route, follow the baking instructions on the packaging. Baking time will be somewhere around 8-10 minutes. As with the brownie mix, be sure not to overbake your dough!

A tray of brownie cookie cups with a peanut butter cup made to look like a reindeer with pretzels for antlers and candies for the nose and eyes.
A tray of brownie cookie cups with a peanut butter cup made to look like a reindeer with pretzels for antlers and candies for the nose and eyes.

Reindeer Peanut Butter Brownie Cups

These reindeer peanut butter brownie cups are super simple to make using brownie mix, peanut butter cups, pretzels, and candies! In no time at all, you can have the perfect treat to greet Santa!
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: christmas
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 24
Calories: 147kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 box fudge brownie mix of choice, 18.5 oz.
  • egg, as called for on the brownie mix box
  • water, as called for on the brownie mix box
  • vegetable oil, as called for on the brownie mix box
  • 24 Reese’s mini peanut butter cups, unwrapped
  • 24 mini pretzels
  • 24 red M&Ms
  • 48 mini candy eyes

Instructions

  • Prepare the brownie mix according to the package’s instructions.
  • Either grease or line your mini muffin tin with 24 muffin paper liners.
  • Spoon the brownie mix into the muffin tin.
  • Bake at 350F for 18-20 minutes.
  • Immediately, gently press the Reese’s peanut butter cups into the brownie bites. Wait a few minutes while the chocolate peanut butter cups begin to melt from the heat of the brownie bites.
  • In the meantime, slice the pretzels in half to create antlers. Set aside.
  • Place a red M&M on the melted chocolate of the peanut butter cup for the nose.
  • Then, take two of the cut pretzels and place them above the M&M on the melted chocolate.
  • Place two candy eyes over the bottom of the antlers.
  • Let cool for a few hours at room temperature until the chocolate has hardened. Alternatively, you can place the cookies in the refrigerator to harden quicker.

Notes

  • Prepare all of your ingredients ahead of time to ensure that everything goes smoothly when assembling your reindeer.
  • Make sure not to overbake your brownies as it will make it difficult to insert the peanut butter cups.
  • Nutrition values listed are based on the ingredients that the brownie mix I used called for. I used Krusteaz Gluten-Free Double Chocolate Brownie Mix. Your nutritional values may differ based on the specific mix you use.
  • Can this recipe be made gluten-free? Yes, use gluten-free pretzels and gluten-free brownie mix. 
  • Can you make this with something other than brownies? I also like to make this recipe using break and bake double chocolate cookie dough. If you do this, you’ll want to bake the cookies for only 8-10 minutes since they cook quicker than brownies. 
  • You can find candy eyes at most craft stores in the cake decorating aisle.
  • Don’t have candy eyes? No problem. Create an abstract reindeer without the eyes – they’ll be just as cute!

Nutrition

Calories: 147kcal | Carbohydrates: 20g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 7mg | Sodium: 83mg | Potassium: 7mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 13g | Vitamin A: 17IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 6mg | Iron: 1mg

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