Candy Cane Brownie Bars


Brownie Base:

1/3 cup vegan chocolate chips
3/4 cup Veganized Powdered Sugar
2/3 cup Spectrum Spread non-hydrogenated margarine
1 T. soy milk, rice milk, or other non-dairy milk
1 t. vanilla
1/8 t. peppermint extract
1 1/2 cups unbleached flour
1/2 t. baking powder
1 /4 t. salt

Candy Cane Frosting:

1/3 cup vegan cream cheese
1/4 cup Spectrum Spread non-hydrogenated margarine
1/8 t. peppermint extract
3 1/2 cups Veganized Powdered Sugar
1/4 cup chopped peppermint candy canes

Begin by preparing the brownie base. Lightly oil (or spray with a light mist of oil) a 9x13-inch baking pan and set aside. In a double boiler or in the microwave, melt the chocolate chips, and set aside to cool. In a large bowl, whisk together sugar, Spectrum Spread, soy milk, vanilla, and peppermint extract until light and fluffy. Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt into the wet ingredients, and whisk until well combined. Add the melted chocolate chips and whisk until just blended. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan. Bake at 325 degrees for 15-20 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.

Allow the brownie base to cool completely. While it is cooling, prepare the frosting. In a medium bowl, whisk together the vegan cream cheese, Spectrum Spread, and peppermint extract until light and fluffy. Add the Veganized Powdered Sugar and beat until smooth and creamy. Add the chopped candy canes and whisk until just blended. Spread the frosting evenly over the cooled brownie base and place in the refrigerator to chill for 30 minutes. Cut with a very sharp warm knife into 48 bars. Best when served with 1-2 days of preparing. Store in an airtight container with waxed paper between the layers.

Yield: One 9x13-inch pan or 48 bars


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