Food & Drink

Testing the New Pillsbury Brownie Bark

I feel like Chat, Chew, Review has turned into a Pillsbury blog as of late. From the Place and Bake Brownies to the Sweet Biscuits, I have reviewed several Pillsbury products; and I am adding another to the list. On a recent trip down the baking aisle in Target, I came across the new Pillsbury Brownie Bark. I can always count on Target to carry new products.

Pillsbury’s Brownie Bark comes in two flavors: Chocolate Chip and Toffee. Essentially, this product contains brownie mix and either chocolate or toffee chips. I decided to go out of my comfort zone and check out the Toffee flavor. Brownie mix plus toffee chips sound like a match made in heaven, right?

New Pillsbury Brownie Bark Mix

You do not need a ton of ingredients to make this brownie bark. Inside the box, you will find the brownie mix and a bag of chocolate or toffee chips. The only additional ingredients needed are a half stick of butter and water. All I had to do was melt the butter and mix all the ingredients together in a bowl. Yes I tried the batter, and to my delight it tasted more like chocolate frosting than brownies.

The box says to lightly grease a pan, but I deviated and used a nonstick Silpat mat, which was not an issue in the end. What the box did not specify was how thin to spread the batter. My batter definitely did not take up the whole sheet pan, but I also did not want to make the bark too thin either. I think more clarification in the instructions could have alleviated this confusion. Regardless, I spread the batter on the pan, sprinkled the toffee chips on top, and popped it in the oven.

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Let me tell you, this brownie bark smells AMAZING while it’s baking in the oven. The 13-minute timer could not go fast enough. After the initial 13-18 minutes, you are supposed to score the brownie bark. This step made my brownie bark look like a mess. I think my bark was too thick and did not bake long enough to score without sticking to the knife I used. However, I did what I could and placed the bark back in the oven as directed.

Once the brownie bark finished baking I left it on the counter to cool. I will admit my bark did not come out as I expected. The toffee chips melted and sunk into the brownie mix creating this porous bark sure to scare anyone affected by trypophobia. In addition, my effort at scoring the bark led to messy edges on the individual pieces. Honestly, I would probably skip the scoring step altogether and break the bark into pieces after the fact.

Warning: I am not a burnt edges kind of gal. I prefer a cake or brownie rather than a brittle or bark. The Pillsbury Brownie Bark was not an exception to this rule. Aside from the odd looking pieces of bark, the taste did not blow me away. The more crispy pieces of bark did not have much of a chocolaty taste. I found myself taking all of the softer pieces toward the center rather than the crispy edges. Not to mention, the toffee did a number on my teeth and kept getting stuck.

The Pillsbury Brownie Bark just missed the mark in my opinion. I think my personal preferences for a soft, delectable brownie overshadowed this brownie bark. If you enjoy the burnt brownie edges, this may be your kind of dessert. However, if you prefer more of a fluffy, cake-like dessert, skip the brownie bark and pick up a box of Pillsbury brownie mix instead.

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