A 20% Treat for Trying Times
Or, How to make your kids smile when they’re sick of social distancing and virtual-learning… and you.
Oh boy(s). Yesterday was A DAY in our house. No one wanted to get up. The school programs crashed. The fridge broke. It rained so much that even Ozzie the dog didn’t want to go outside. The novelty of doing school at home wore off and the bickering began. By the end of the day, it was clear that everyone needed a pick-me-up.
We’re called Eighty because we focus on the combination of 80% nutrition and 20% exercise for improved health, body composition and well-being. You cannot out-train a poor diet, no matter how hard you try. In the kid food department, those same numbers also apply. If your kids eat 80% real, whole, balanced, nutritious meals, and 20% fun, “sometimes” foods (within any unique nutritional needs, like no gluten or no added sugar), then it’s likely that they’re getting what they need to stay physically and mentally healthy. This treat I’m about to share with you is a TOTAL 20%-er fun food, and not something that we make a habit of. Sometimes, desperate times call for desperate measures, and this treat is sure to brighten moods in the most decadent way possible.
One of the good things about this mega-dessert is that you can alter it to fit your family’s nutritional needs. Based on the type of mix you buy or make, this treat can suit many needs.
Are you ready?
Here’s what you need:
9×19 baking pan, greased (you can use another size, but might need to adjust cooking time)
1 box brownie mix (we used this mix from Annie’s.)
1 box chocolate chip cookie mix (again, we used this mix from Annie’s.)
1 cup cookies, chopped (e.g., Oreos; we used Newman O’s, the “healthier” imitation)
1/2 cup chocolate candy of choice, chopped (e.g, KitKat, M&M, Reeses or the healthy imitations. Full disclosure: we used the real deal this time, plus some extra M&M cookie dough purchased from a school fundraiser to support our neighbor.)
1/4 cup chocolate or white chocolate chips
Whatever ingredients your mixes call for (e.g., eggs, butter, water, vanilla)
Note: If you want to make brownie or cookie batter from scratch, all the more power to you.
Preheat your oven to 350 F.
Prepare your brownie mix and cookie mix, as directed on the boxes, in separate bowls. (Bonus: this keeps two kids busy at once!)
Stir 1/4 cup chocolate chips into the brownie mix.
Using a sharp knife and cutting board, chop the cookies and candy into small pieces (unless they’re already small).
Pour the brownie mix into the prepared baking pan first.
Cover the brownie layer with your chopped treats, in whichever pattern you choose.
Cover the treats layer with cookie batter. Be sure to cover the whole surface or the treats may burn.
Put your masterpiece in the oven and bake for 35-40 minutes. Test with a toothpick or dull knife to see if the center is done. If the tester comes out with batter on it, put the pan back in the oven for 4-5 more minutes.
Once baked – and this will be the hardest part – allow your treat to cool for 35-40 minutes before slicing and serving into 16 pieces.