Firecracker Brownies

The 4th of July is just around the corner and that means it is time for red, white and blue everything and firecrackers for everyone.  To really make this holiday something to remember make these Firecracker Brownies…they really are something amazing.

It starts with a box

I am a big fan of brownies and especially homemade brownies, but recently I was chatting with a  friend and she was telling me about her favorite brownies.  I was quite surprised to find out they start with a box brownie mix.  She added a few extra ingredients to make them even better and they came AMAZING…so I had to give it a shot.

I was truly surprised that with a little vanilla bean paste, espresso powder and salt boxed brownies taste like homemade.  For these Firecracker Brownies I also added in red, white and blue M&M’s and the new OREO Fireworks Cookies.  They have popping rocks on the inside…perfect for that little extra surprise for your 4th of July Party.

It’s all about the layers

The brownie batter is pretty thick which makes for a super fudgy and chewy brownie.  I spread 1/2 of the batter into the bottom of the pan and then placed my OREO’s whole on top and then spread the remaining batter over the cookies.  

By doing this the cookies will not become soggy, making for a great crunch with each bite.  The crunchy texture is a perfect addition to the fudgy brownies.  Like I mentioned before I used the Fireworks OREO’s but you can use any variety you would like.


These brownies are a perfect 4th of July treat, especially with the red, white and blue M&M’s, but these are perfect for anytime of the year.  With all the varieties of M&M’s out there you could come up with endless combinations of flavors.  

You could use peanut butter M&M’s, or the caramel ones or the new espresso crunch M&M’s…really anyone of them would be so good.  Let your imagination run wild and have some fun with your combo’s.  Just make sure to take pics and tag me @sparklesnsprouts so we can all see your creations.

Break out the box…

16 Brownies

Firecracker Brownies

Amped up boxed brownies that will be a huge hit with everyone

15 minPrep Time

30 minCook Time

1 hr, 30 Total Time

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Recipe Image


1 Brownie Mix box (use your favorite, I used Ghiradelli)
Ingredients called for on the box (I used water, oil and eggs)
1 tablespoon Vanilla Bean Paste (or vanilla extract)
1-2 teaspoons Espresso Powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups M&M's (I used red, white & blue), divided
16 OREO cookies (I used the firecracker ones)


Preheat oven to 350
Line a square baking pan with parchment paper (I used 8x8)
In a large bowl mix together brownie mix, water, oil, eggs, Vanilla Bean Paste , Espresso Powder and salt until just combined
Add in 1 cup of M&M's and stir to combine
Spread half of the batter into the prepared pan
Lay out OREO's over batter
Spread remaining batter over OREO's
Sprinkle remaining M&M's over the top
Bake for 30-35 minutes or until middle is just set
Remove and let cool in pan for 10 minutes
Remove from pan and let cool on cooling rack completely
Cut into squares


You can use any OREO's or M&M's you prefer

Show us what you got… make sure you tag us on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook 

Also don’t forget to pin this recipe so you can always find it

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