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Cappuccino Cheesecake Brownies

Some of you may think that my family is pretty lucky to have a food blogger living under their roof. Baked goods from scratch on the's the dream life right? Well, you want to know what my brother's favorite dessert is? Brownies...from a box mix. Literally, out of everything I make, even my ULTIMATE brownie recipe, cannot compete with his glorious box mix brownies. And even this one time, I tried to make oatmeal cookies from spice cake mix as a shortcut for oatmeal cream pies, and they didn't turn out exactly the way I wanted, but guess what? My dad tried them, and thought they were the best cookies I've ever made. And continues to request them all the time.

Clearly, I can't beat box mixes. So I've decided to join them. ShopRite had a huge sale on box mixes this week so I stocked up on every kind. And while I was doing so, one of the boxes stood out to me: mocha fudge brownies. Brownies are brownies, but throw in some coffee flavor, and that's definitely something I can dress up.

I started brainstorming ideas in the store cause at the time, I had no idea what to make for you guys this week, which explains why this post is a day late. I'm seriously so uninspired lately. But anyways, before I could get too far ahead in my brainstorming, I flipped the box over and noticed there was a recipe for these cappuccino cheesecake brownies. The fact that I had all the ingredients was obviously a sign, so I skipped my way on home, pumped about trying these.

But then I got home and I started reconsidering my decision. Am I really going to post a box mix recipe on my blog? Isn't that sort of embarassing? Like, here guys, this is how you follow instructions from the back of a box. So, I went and asked you all on Facebook for flavors that complement mocha and I got alot of great responses but none of them were really clicking for me. AKA my creativity levels were at an all time low. So I just said, ahh screw it, sometimes box mixes will just have to do.

Well, to my pleasant surprise, box mixes don't just do. They're not just something easy and boring. They're phenomenal. Sensational. Especially this recipe. It is off the chain, hook, wall, everything. I am eternally grateful to the people over at Pillsbury who created it because they have introduced me to one of the greatest things I have ever tasted. Solid 20/10. And I'm not even a big coffee drinker. But the combination of chewy mocha brownies with the creamy spiced cheesecake layer is just out of this world.

So yes, today I am showing you how to follow a recipe on the back of a box of brownies, and I'm damn sure proud of it because this recipe is definitely worthy of the exposure.

Cappuccino Cheesecake Brownies

Yield: One 13x9 inch pan (# of squares depends on how big you cut them)
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One 19.5 oz. package Pillsbury Mocha Fudge Brownie Mix
2/3 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup water
2 eggs

For the cheesecake layer:
One 8 oz. package cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 tablespoon cornstarch
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon, divided
1 egg
One 14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
pinch of vanilla powder (or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract)

1/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips 
1 teaspoon vegetable oil


Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Spray a 13x9 inch baking pan with non-stick cooking spray and set aside.

In a large bowl, using an electric hand mixer, beat together brownie mix, oil, water, and eggs on medium speed for 2 minutes. Pour and spread evenly into prepared pan.

In another bowl, beat together cream cheese and butter until creamy and smooth. Add cornstarch and 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon and beat until well combined. Add egg, sweetened condensed milk, and vanilla, and beat until incorporated. Pour evenly over brownie batter. Sprinkle remaining 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon over cheesecake batter.

Bake 30-40 minutes, or until cheesecake is set in the center. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Melt chocolate chips with oil over a double broiler, stirring until smooth. Drizzle over cooled brownies. Refrigerate 30 minutes before serving. 

Adapted from Pillsbury

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