It’s Easter season and time to make a brownie recipe that features those kooky, adorable Peeps marshmallow treats. Looky! It’s a brownie pond… Let’s jump in!
Thanks to Jaime Santillan for the adorable studio shot above. Jaime takes amazing photos.
Five-year-old Ella, my friend's daughter, is mesmerized by the peeps and the fish. Such a wonderful Easter moment here!
- 1 box brownie mix (I used Pillsbury Dark Chocolate in the “13 x 9 family size”)
- Oil, eggs, and water as directed on box
- Jelly fruit slices, about 20
- 1 box pudding mix, white chocolate or vanilla flavor (I used Jell-O White Chocolate)
- 2 cups of cold milk, any % is fine
- Blue food coloring, 10-20 droplets
- 1 16-ounce tub Cool Whip topping
- Marshmallow Peeps Chicks
- Fun garnishes (may I suggest some daffodil leaves and a tiny grape hyacinth?)
Mix brownies as directed on box, using the “extra egg” version of the recipe. I also suggest using a 13×9 family-size box, as you’ll need as much brownie as possible to fill your trifle bowl.
Pour batter into a greased pan, bake as directed on box, and let brownies cool. You can do the next few steps while brownies are baking or while they are cooling.
Mix instant pudding with cold milk and about 3 drops of blue food coloring.
Pudding mix + milk + blue food coloring = An equation for pudding greatness
Whisk as directed on box.
Mmmm. Pond water never looked so delicious.
At first, your pudding may be blue-green rather than straight blue, because most light-colored puddings are a bit yellow-ish. Don’t worry; a few more drops of blue coloring will help. Whisk in a few more drops at a time until you’re happy with the color. After a few minutes of whisking, the pudding will be thick. Put it in the refrigerator while you do the next few steps.
Cut your jelly candies into fish shapes. Start by cutting the jelly in half.
Cut in half, revealing the SUPER-STICKY inside of the candy.
Then make a few cuts to create the appearance of a fish body and tail fin. My advice is: “Cut away everything that doesn’t look like a fish.” If that’s not enough direction for you, remember that all you need to do is cut away 4 tiny triangles. Follow the 4 easy steps below.
Cut #1: Create the top of the body and top of the tail.
Cut #2: Create the bottom of the body and bottom of the tail.
Cut #3: Create a notch in the tail.
Cut #4: If you're feeling particularly chipper, cut a smile into the fishie's face.
One by one, stick your fish onto the inside of the trifle bowl, about 1 inch above the bottom. The gooey jelly will serve as a very strong adhesive against the glass.
"Hi, I'm a green fish!" "Hi, I'm an orange fish!" "Do you smell brownies?" "Yep!"
Cats like this recipe. A lot.
Here's what your ring of fish should look like.
Crumble one-third to one-half of your cooled brownies into the trifle bowl. Set aside the remaining one-half to two-thirds of brownie to use in a higher layer.
Try to resist the urge to scarf those brownies. You'll need all those crumbles to fill up your trifle bowl.
It’s OK to use bigger brownie chunks in the center of the bowl, but when you get near the fish, use fine, small crumbles to fit in the crevices between the fish. It will make your fish stand out better.
By using smaller crumbles near your fish, you will help those cute little fishy features (fins, smiles) stand out better.
Get in the frig’. (Not literally. Don’t be silly.) Get out the blue pudding and pour it in an even layer over the brownie crumbs.
Yum. I love pudding and brownie together.
It's starting to get REALLY CUTE in that dish!
Add another layer of fish.
More fish = more awesome!
Add the rest of your crumbled brownies.
Again, be sure you use the finer brownie crumbles near the side so you can clearly see the outline of your fishy masterpieces.
Add 3-4 drops of blue food coloring into the Cool Whip. Mix. You can add more coloring until you achieve the color you want for your pond surface.
You could use plain white Cool Whip for your pond surface, but I liked the idea of adding some more color.
Pour 90% of the blue Cool Whip onto your brownie surface.
Reserve about 10% of the Cool Whip so you can add some extra color.
In the remaining 10% of Cool Whip, add 1 or 2 more drops of blue color. Don’t mix it in. Instead, spoon the unmixed blob of Cool Whip and color onto the top of your pond.
Here is how you make pretty blue ripples on your pond.
Without mixing too much, use a spoon to make round, sweeping swirls on your pond surface. The food coloring will create a nice medium-blue ripple in your light-blue pond water. Cute!
The ripples are there, but what's missing? Something to swim on them!
Add your marshmallow Peeps as floating decor on the surface of your Easter pond.
Aww. These little darlings are just icing on the cake.
My Peeps looked like they needed company, so I also added a few fresh leaves and flowers from my spring garden. Even the fish looked happy.
I hope you all have a happy springtime. This recipe is a great way to kick off the season with some "quality time with the kids."