Oreo Heaven Bars

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The Scoop:

Three and a half years ago on my first day of work and my second day living in Philadelphia, I met my friend Bill.  He was starting work the same day as me and we ended up being placed at desks right next to one another.  First impressions are a funny thing because I immediately pegged him as the “cool kid” and never imagined I’d someday call him my best friend.  Slowly but surely we got to know each other, helping  one another learn the job and swapping weekend stories every Monday morning.  We joined our other new friends for lunch in the cafeteria every day and even started hanging out as a group on the weekends from time to time.   I’m not sure when it happened, but somewhere along the lines Bill slid from the co-worker category into the friend category, and eventually into the best friend category.

It’s become a tradition with our group of friends to bring a treat to work for one another’s birthdays.  You only have to know Bill for about 2 seconds to know that his very favorite sweet is Oreo cookies, so I wanted to come up with something extra special  this year.  I combined the best part of 3 different Oreo recipes into the ultimate cookie extravaganza!  The birthday boy loved it and all the men who sit in my wing loved the leftovers.  I mentioned that I was looking for a name for the recipe, and one of them immediately responded with Oreo Heaven.  I was sold, and you will be too when you give these a try.  Seriously, a crunchy Oreo crust, a fudgy middle, and a fluffy layer on top.  What’s not to love??  And if you’re questioning it at all, just ask the spatulars in my office who came back for seconds and thirds!!

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The Goods:

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 packages of original Oreos (you don’t want the double stuff here)
  • 5 Tbs butter, melted
  • 1 boxed brownie mix (I used Dunkin Hines)
  • 2/3 cup oil
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 8 oz blocks cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 12 oz cool whip

SPECIAL EQUIPMENT:

  • Food Processor

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The Deets:

Preaheat the oven to 350 degrees.

There are 3 layers to this dessert, so we’ll start with the crust.  Use a knife to remove the cream from 30 Oreos.  Set the cream aside in a bowl for later use, and put the cookies in the bowl of the food processor.  Run the food processor for about 30 seconds, or until the cookies are finely crushed.  In a seperate bowl, mix the oreo crumbs and the melted butter until the cookies are well coated.  Pour the crumbs into a 9×13 glass or ceramic baking dish and use a piece of waxed paper to press them evenly into the bottom of the pan.  Bake for 12 minutes and then remove from the oven to cool.

While the crust is cooling, prepare the brownies according to the directions on the box.  My mix required 2 eggs, 2/3 cup of oil, and a 1/4 cup of water (as listed above), but adapt to your mix as needed.  Pulse another 12 oreos (this time with the cream) in the food processor until they are roughly chopped.  Mix the cookies into the brownie batter, and spread it evenly over the cookie crust in the baking dish.  Bake according to package instructions (about 30 minutes) or until a toothpick comes out clean.  Remove from the oven and let the brownies cool.

While the  brownies are cooling,make the fluffy top layer.  Beat the 2 blocks of room temperature cream cheese and the reserved Oreo cream (from when you made the crust) in the bowl of a stand mixer until smooth.  Add  the 1/2 cup of sugar and continue beating until free of lumps.  On low speed mix in the 12 oz of cool whip.  Stop occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl, making sure the cool whip is completely incorporated.  Finally, pulse another 18 Oreos in the food processor until they are finely chopped.  Fold them into the cream and spread them over the brownies.  Sprinkle additional crushed Oreo on top and refrigerate for a few hours (or even better, overnight) before serving.  The brownie  layer will get soft and irresistibly fudgy between the cream and the  crust.  This dessert is RICH so cut small squares for serving.  Chances are your friends will still go back for seconds ; )

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The Inspiration:

My spatular friend Bill!

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There’s Oreo, there’s Heaven… and then there’s both.

XOXO,

Tall One

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