Brownies and ice cream are like peanut butter and jelly; they just belong together.
I was recently talking with my boyfriend about ice cream cake, I LOVE it and he hates it. I know, right? He’s so weird. Anyway, his main problem with it, is that it’s usually all ice cream and no actual cake. In my world, ice cream > cake but in an attempt to get my boyfriend to appreciate an ice cream cake, I decided to make one that actually had cake…er, well, brownies.
One of my favorite ways to eat ice cream is with pretzels and peanut butter. It’s just so good. If I was going to make an ice cream cake I knew I had to take it over the top, so I incorporated my favorite ice cream toppings into this cake. Feel free to take your favorite toppings and throw ‘em into this dessert. Sprinkles, Oreos, almonds, coconut, peanut butter cups…seriously, you could probably put all those things in here and it would turn out awesome. While I decided to use classic vanilla ice cream, any flavor would work great; I kinda wish I went with chocolate peanut butter…or would that have been too much?
I know making your ice cream cake is a little more work than going out to the store and purchasing one — but it is so worth it. You will not regret it (unless you eat about half in one day, like me) and it doesn’t take an hour to soften before you cut into it. Seriously, I had this on my counter for about five minutes before I cut into it!
Brownie Peanut Butter Pretzel Ice Cream Cake
(makes one cake – about 10ish slices)
- Double batch of this brownie recipe, minus the peanut butter swirl*
- 1/2 gallon ice cream, any flavor, softened and divided
- 2/3ish cup pretzels, whole or crushed
- 1/2 cup peanut butter, melted
- additional peanut butter for topping if desired
Prepare brownie batter and pour into a greased or parchment lined spring-form pan. Bake until a toothpick comes out clean (about 40 minutes if you use the recipe link above). Allow to cool.
Take the ice cream out of the freezer to soften (you want it soft but not melted). Once brownies have cooled, removed from the pan. With a serrated knife, carefully slice the brownies in half lengthwise. Line the springform pan with plastic wrap or more parchment paper and place the bottom half of the brownies into the pan.
Top the brownie layer with half the container of ice cream. Place pretzels in an even layer on top of the ice cream, then take the melted peanut butter and drop in dollops/drizzles over the pretzels. Scoop the remaining ice cream on top, spreading it out evenly and flat.
Place the top half of the brownie on top and place in the freezer for at least four hours or overnight. Remove from freezer about 10 minutes before you want to serve. If desired, melt an additional 1/3 cup peanut butter in the microwave and drizzle over each slice.
Keep leftovers covered in freezer.
*You can use any brownie recipe that makes a batch in a 9 x 13 pan. You just want to make sure you get a thick enough brownie in the spring-form pan to cut in half lengthwise.
I think I need to make at least 4 more ice cream cakes before summer is over. Maybe if I keep making them summer will last longer?