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front view of stacked gluten-free peanut butter cup brownies

Gluten-Free Peanut Butter Crunch Brownies

  • Author: Emily Dixon, Sweets & Thank You
  • Total Time: 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Yield: 16 brownies 1x
  • Diet: Gluten Free


Fudgy gluten-free peanut butter cup brownies topped with a chocolate peanut butter crispy layer you’ll dream about!  



For The Gluten-Free Peanut Butter Cup Brownies Layer:

  • 1/2 cup (4 oz, 1 stick) butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup (60 grams) gluten-free measure-for-measure flour*
  • 1/3 cup (35 grams) unsweetened cocoa powder (I like Dutch-processed)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1012 Reese’s peanut butter cups, unwrapped (can also use unREAL or Justin’s brand)

For The Peanut Crunch Layer:

  • 1/2 cup salted peanuts, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup gluten-free crisp rice cereal, like Barbara’s

For The Chocolate Peanut Butter Layer:

  • 3/4 cup (3 oz.) semisweet or dark chocolate chips
  • 3/4 cup (384 grams) smooth peanut butter (we like natural peanut butter best)
  • 1 Tablespoon butter
  • Optional: flaky sea salt, like Maldon


  1. Preheat The Oven & Prep Your Pan. Start by preheating the oven to 350 degrees F. Line an 8×8 square metal baking pan with parchment paper.
  2. Whip Eggs & Sugar. In a medium mixing bowl, beat brown sugar, sugar, and eggs for 3-4 minutes, or until about triple in volume, much lighter in color, and the sugar is mostly dissolved (there will still be some grains left, but the mixture should largely look smooth and glossy.)
  3. Mix In Butter & Vanilla. Next, add the melted butter and vanilla extract to the egg mixture and beat to combine.
  4. Add Dry Ingredients. Add the gluten-free flour, cocoa powder, and salt to the egg mixture and gently fold in with a spatula until just combined.
  5. Layer The Batter & Peanut Butter Cups In The Pan. Pour HALF of the brownie batter into your prepared pan and smooth into an even layer. Add 8-9 whole peanut butter cups evenly around the surface, then fill in the gaps with halved & quartered peanut butter cups. Cover with the remaining brownie batter and smooth to cover the peanut butter cups.
  6. Bake Brownies. Pop the brownies in the oven and bake at 350 degrees for 18-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few moist crumbs or streaks of chocolate.
  7. Cool Brownies & Prep Layers. Let the brownies cool for a few minutes on a cooling rack, while you measure and prep your other ingredients, like chopping peanuts or measuring ingredients for the peanut butter crunch layer.
  8. Make The Chocolate Peanut Butter Layer. In a small saucepan (or medium microwave-safe bowl), gently melt the chocolate chips, peanut butter, and butter together until smooth and glossy. (If using the microwave, melt in 30-second intervals, stirring after each interval to prevent scorching.) 
  9. Assemble The Layers! Sprinkle the slightly cooled brownies with the salted peanuts and crisp rice cereal. Carefully pour the peanut butter layer over the peanuts & cereal layer and gently use a spatula or offset spatula to spread into an even layer.
  10. Refrigerate Until Completely Set. Chill the brownies in the refrigerator for 2-3 hours, or until the peanut butter crunch layer is completely set (it shouldn’t be wet, sticky, or glossy. It’ll look more matte.)
  11. Slice & Serve. Cut the brownies into 16 squares (or even smaller rectangles for parties or dessert tables), and serve.
  12. Store leftover brownies in an airtight container in the refrigerator 3-4 days, or in the freezer for 1 month. 


*We recommend King Arthur Flour Measure-For-Measure Flour. If you use another brand, your results may vary slightly. Be sure the flour blend you use contains xanthan gum.

  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Chill Time: 2 hours
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: gluten free peanut butter crunch brownies, gluten free Reeses brownies, gluten-free peanut butter brownies, gluten-free brownies

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