Triple Decker Maple Peanut Butter Pretzel Fudge

I’ve never been overly fond of fudge.  It’s one of those desserts that I pass by because it’s too much.

Too dense.

Too sweet.

Too one-note in texture.

This fudge recipe changes everything.

There’s so much going on here, I don’t even know where to begin.  All at once it’s salty, sweet, crunchy and smooth! The bottom layer is a chocolate-pretzel crust.  Layer two is silky maple-peanut butter fudge that is so easy to make! It’s all topped off with a layer of chocolate ganache embedded with pretzel sticks and more crushed pretzels. Crazy. Delicious.

Did I mention this recipe makes FOUR POUNDS of fudge? Yeah. I’d seriously consider bookmarking this one for the Thanksgiving crowd or for gift giving at Christmas! I’ll definitely be making a batch for the people on my bake-and-give list.

This fudge is definitely rich, but it’s very well balanced with the saltiness of the pretzels.  And I’m crazy about the maple peanut butter fudge.  It reminds me a little of  the breakfast waffles I  make – sandwiched with plenty of peanut butter and maple syrup!

Triple Decker Maple Peanut Butter Pretzel Fudge

This recipe makes about 4 pounds of fudge, so make it for holiday gatherings or for people on your bake-and-give Christmas list. They’ll thank you for it!  These can be enjoyed at room temperature for up to a week when stored in an air-tight container.  With refrigeration they will keep slightly longer.

Adapted from the Cooking Channel 

Yield: 4 lbs of fudge                                                                                          [click for printable recipe]

Crust:

1 cup finely ground pretzels

1/2 cup (3 oz.) semisweet chocolate chips

4 tbsp unsalted butter

2 tbsp sugar

1 egg, beaten

  1. Line a 9×9-inch baking dish with parchment paper, allowing the paper to overhang on all sides.
  2. Heat a saucepan filled 1/3 full with water and bring to a simmer.  Put chocolate and butter in a medium heat-proof bowl and place on top of the pan of simmering water. Stir occasionally until the chocolate and butter melts. Add the sugar and egg.  Cook mixture until it is very hot and has thickened slightly. 
  3. Remove from simmering pot and stir in pretzel crumbs.  You will use the pan of simmering water again for the ganache, so be sure to keep it handy. Press the mixture into the prepared pan with buttered hands.  Set aside while you prepare the fudge.

Maple-peanut butter fudge:

2  14 oz. cans of sweetened condensed milk

2 10 oz. bags of peanut butter chips (such as Reese’s)

1 1/2 tsp. pure maple extract

  1. Combine the condensed milk and peanut butter chips in a large microwaveable bowl. Heat at 100% power until melted and smooth, 3-5 minutes.  Stir in maple extract.  Pour mixture over crust and refrigerate for 15 minutes. While you wait for the fudge to chill, make the topping.

Chocolate ganache/ pretzel topping:

1 cup (6 oz) semisweet chocolate chips

3 tbsp heavy cream

25 thick cut pretzels

  1. Combine chocolate and cream in a heatproof bowl and set over the simmering water. Stir until melted, smooth and shiny about 3 minutes. Using and offset spatula spread over the fudge and top with 14-15 whole pretzels.  
  2. Crush the remaining pretzels and sprinkle over the ganache.  Refrigerate until firm, about 2 hours or overnight.  Cut into squares.  Enjoy!

Supplies:

Cuisinart AMB-9SCK 9-Inch Chef’s Classic Nonstick Bakeware Square Cake Pan, Silver

Reese’s Peanut Butter Baking Chips-10 oz

Snyder’s of Hanover – Old Fashioned Dipping Stix Pretzels – 10-oz. Bag (Pack of 3)

Ghirardelli Chocolate Baking Chips, Semi-Sweet Chocolate, 12-Ounce Bags (Pack of 6)

Longevity Sweetened Condensed Milk, 14-Ounce (Pack of 4)

Ateco 7.75 by 1.25-Inch Medium Sized Blade Offset Ultra Spatula

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Jess Wong
Jess Wong
8 years ago

Is there an alternative to using peanut butter chips? I really want to make it as it sounds delicious but we don't have peanut butter chips where I'm from ):

Averie @ Averie Cooks
Averie @ Averie Cooks
8 years ago

Heather this is just stunning! All the layers, the flavors, chocolate, PB, salty 'n sweet, the photos – totally gorgeous! Pinning!

Unknown
Unknown
8 years ago

menudos caramelos, deliciosos!

Veronika
Veronika
8 years ago

great, wonderful, sweet and delicious dessert, not diet 🙂

Anonymous
Anonymous
8 years ago

Jess – I've had the same problem, and ended up melting WHITE CHOCOLATE with PEANUT BUTTER, hardening it in the fridge, and chopping it up to use in cupcakes.
If you're up to experimenting a bit with ratio's for the chocolate/peanut butter, I'm sure you could use that … Reinata

Irmina Díaz-Frois Martín
Irmina Díaz-Frois Martín
8 years ago

Un bocado sensacional, con ese toque entre salado y dulce. Me gusta.
Un beso.

Jill @ Sincerely Jill
Jill @ Sincerely Jill
8 years ago

Consider it bookmarked 🙂

Kezza
Kezza
8 years ago

Thankyou Reinata, wonderful suggestion.
Do you know what ratio you're using at the mo?
Kezz

Jennifer @ Not Your Momma's Cookie
Jennifer @ Not Your Momma's Cookie
8 years ago

Wow – so beautiful and it sounds like it tastes divine!

thelittleloaf
thelittleloaf
8 years ago

This looks amazing!

Anonymous
Anonymous
8 years ago

Kezza – I must admit, I go on feel there – but I'd start with about 3 tablespoons of peanut butter to a 100g slab of white choc.

I think last I used about 60 ml of peanut butter to 100g choc, but it was a bit melty.

But if you see it's too soft, you can always gently melt it again and add some chocolate, or more peanut butter if you'd like the PB taste to be stronger

Hope it helps!

Reinata

Cookbook Queen
Cookbook Queen
8 years ago

Are you even kidding me right now???

Perfection. Totally giving this out for Christmas!!

Annie @ Annie's City Kitchen
Annie @ Annie's City Kitchen
8 years ago

Maybe I'm totally crazy but your pictures seem to show a 9×13 inch pan (I think?) but the recipe calls for 9×9 inch pan. Would this recipe work in a 9×13 too? Or are my eyes deceiving me?

regan
regan
8 years ago

This sounds AWESOME!!! I just need to run out and get the cream and I'll be ready! Thanks!

Unknown
Unknown
8 years ago

This looks amazing! Any way to substitute the peanut butter chips with regular peanut butter though? I can't get the chips here!

Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar
Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar
8 years ago

Oh boy! What a recipe!

Meagan @ Scarletta Bakes
Meagan @ Scarletta Bakes
8 years ago

Woah. This fudge looks SO simple, but SOOOO amazing!! I just love the neatness of it. GORGEOUS!!

Suzanne
Suzanne
8 years ago

I'm curious about the pan size also: 4 lbs. in a 9×9
size pan? Just checking before I make it…thx!

Unknown
Unknown
8 years ago

Wow, this fudge looks so decadent. Sad thing is I would probably eat all 4 lbs. of it if it made it 😀

Anonymous
Anonymous
8 years ago

Great thank you for the suggestion! now to get cooking 🙂 -Jess

Heather Baird
Heather Baird
8 years ago

Hi Suzanne, Yes! My pan pictured is 7×10, and I was pretty sure it was going to overflow, but it didn't. If you'd feel better making it in a bigger pan you could certainly do that. The fudge squares would be slightly shorter.

Heather Baird
Heather Baird
8 years ago

And thank you Reinata for suggesting an alternative to the chips!

Colette (Coco)
Colette (Coco)
8 years ago

Alright, that's just brilliant.

Renuka
Renuka
8 years ago

Can I be on your list pretty please! Would really welcome some of these with open arms. Thanks for sharing love…

Bake Me Cakes
Bake Me Cakes
8 years ago

Wowser! These look delicious and love the colours!

Rachel @ Baked by Rachel
Rachel @ Baked by Rachel
8 years ago

I love your styling for this! Cleaver use of the pan.

Katie
Katie
8 years ago

Is there any way to substitute pure maple extract? I don't think it's widely available over here.

Loretta E.
Loretta E.
8 years ago

You perfectly described my main problem with fudge! Sometimes I think I should try it, but then there is still the texture, excessive sweetness, etc. that turns me off. Sounds like you may have come up with the perfect solution.

And 4 whole pounds of it?! Wow, is all I can say!

We Are Not Martha
We Are Not Martha
8 years ago

Whoa. I have no words…. this is just beautiful and awesome-looking.

Sues

thejoyofcaking
thejoyofcaking
8 years ago

My favorites all rolled into one great fudge – oh yea!

Suzanne Perazzini
Suzanne Perazzini
8 years ago

This looks delightful but you have many ingredients we don't have here in New Zealand. I would have to substitute many of the items with something else. It might work, it might not. But they sure look good.

Sue
Sue
8 years ago

WOW! Maple and peanut butter? I repeat…WOW!

Unknown
Unknown
8 years ago

my mouth is watering right now!

Amanda Rose
http://sewmuchtosay.blogspot.com

Effie
Effie
8 years ago

This will definitely be making a special appearance on my Thanksgiving table!

http://thevintagelibrary.blogspot.com/

Coleen Patrick
Coleen Patrick
8 years ago

Pretty and rustic at the same time–love this recipe!

Heather
Heather
8 years ago

Want. That is all.

Nicki
Nicki
8 years ago

This flavor combination sounded SO amazing that I decided to make mapely PB fudge right away!
However, I had neither peanut butter chips, nor maple extract, nor sweetened condensed milk, nor the time or patience to make three layers. 😉
So I made a few adjustments… yeah, actually a lot of them. What happened was a very tasty batch of rich peanutbutter fudge with a hint of maple (recipe on my blog if you'd like to check it out).
Thank you oh so very much for the flavor idea!!

Dea-chan
Dea-chan
8 years ago

… Can we just use maple syrup? I tend to avoid maple extract like the plague.

Katie
Katie
8 years ago

oh.my.goodness. This looks dangerously and mind-blowingly delicious!!

Anonymous
Anonymous
8 years ago

Thank you for this recipe! It is just perfect.

Anonymous
Anonymous
8 years ago

And tastes oh so good! it's almost gone and I just made it (;

Lora
Lora
8 years ago

I love this idea of triple decker fudge and the flavor combo is fab.

Rachel @ The Pescetarian and the Pig
Rachel @ The Pescetarian and the Pig
8 years ago

Holy goodness this looks amazing! I imagine it tastes kinda crazy with all of those flavors, and man oh man do you have an eye for making food appealing! The presentation of this fudge is beautiful!

Anonymous
Anonymous
8 years ago

I have always been amused to be here….simply an awesome post..

Erika Beth, the Messy Chef
Erika Beth, the Messy Chef
8 years ago

Oh wow. Yes please. This looks so yummy!

Carolyn
Carolyn
8 years ago

I made this last night, exactly as written. Is the fudge layer missing an ingredient? Even refrigerating it overnight, the fudge was gooey and not fudge like. Delicious taste, but disappointing result.

Heather Baird
Heather Baird
8 years ago

Did you use evaporated milk instead of sweetened condensed milk? That's the only thing I can think of. I also used Reece's brand peanut butter chips.

Sorry you had trouble!

Christmas pretzel recipes
Christmas pretzel recipes
8 years ago

Oh! these are so tempting and mouth watering. I feel like having one right now

Bob
Bob
8 years ago

They look so stunning.

Unknown
Unknown
8 years ago

I also made this and after sitting in the freezer for 6 hrs it was still watery according to my wife ( i was at work when she told me), but after checking on it when i got home it seems to have hardened. Can't wait to try it. *also followed instruction and ingredient list, actually used less milk. Used 2 12 oz. cans.