White Chocolate Walnut Blondies with Maple Cream Sauce

by Jillian
A rich and brown buttery white chocolate and walnut blondie enveloped in a maple cream sauce. Applebee's, meet your competition...

A rich and brown buttery white chocolate and walnut blondie enveloped in a maple cream sauce. Applebee’s, meet your competition…

White Chocolate Maple Walnut Blondies | A baJillian Recipes-1 (title)

When it comes to eating out at restaurants, I almost ALWAYS resort to the dessert menu. While most people order a “normal” lunch/dinner item like steak, salad, chicken, pasta, or ribs, my eyes (and stomach) are immediately drawn to S-W-E-E-T.

Because why eat a salad when you can have a giant slice of double chocolate cake, or in this case, a thick and beautifully-dressed white chocolate walnut blondie swimming in bubbling maple cream sauce…

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As far as restaurants go, Applebee’s has always been pretty sub-par for me. Their dessert menu isn’t as extensive as I prefer, however, their true saving grace is definitely their Walnut Blondie With Maple Butter Sauce.

It’s been a few years since I’ve stepped foot into an Applebee’s, but I could never forget that beautiful blondie of theirs. Although they’ve recently changed it to be the Butter Pecan Blondie, it’s still pretty much the same. They’ve just replaced the walnuts with pecans. Thank GOD they didn’t replace that lusciously sweet and creamy maple sauce of the Goddesses.

Served on a sizzling hot cast iron skillet with a generous scoop of vanilla ice cream on top, this blondie was pretty much heaven on earth. Sadly, our local Applebee’s closed down a few months back which means no more blondie for me. My only option then, was to recreate this classic beauty myself.

Only better

White Chocolate Maple Walnut Blondies | A baJillian Recipes-6

Judging by this picture alone, I think you can tell I was pretty successful in accomplishing this sweet endeavor. I’m pretty sure I nailed every single aspect of this restaurant favorite. From the soft, buttery and satisfyingly chewy white chocolate walnut blondie, to the most addictive maple cream cheese sauce, this little looker is perfection.

It all starts with the blondie. It’s pretty much your standard blondie recipe with one MAJOR change. To baJillianize things up a bit, I amplified the flavor of the blondie by browning the butter. Knowing that this blondie would be topped with a luxurious maple sauce, brown butter seemed like the perfect flavor infuser. I also just really love brown butter.

Who doesn’t?

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This blondie wouldn’t be the “yasss queen” that it is without the melty bits of white chocolate and those toasty chunks of walnut throughout. That’s why I made extra sure to add a generous dose of both into this blondie. Because to me, it’s considered an absolute travesty when there’s not at least a few bits of sweet mix-ins in each and every bite.

And if you’re worried about this blondie being too sweet, never fear. The walnuts add a great contrast to balance out the sweetness from the white chocolate. 

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Now onto the sauce….

You might think that the blondie is the star of this sweet show, but the sauce is just as crucial. (I say “crucial” as if it’s a life-or-death situation. Which it is…). The sauce really ties this whole dessert together. I don’t know about you, but I like my blondies or brownies covered–no, SWIMMING in sauce. You need that extra moisture from the sauce to wash down what would be a rather dry blondie/brownie without it. While some might argue that milk would be a healthier option than say, a cupful of sugary butter-laden sauce, we ain’t here for health, people. 

Besides, vanilla ice cream is made of milk, so I’d say that’s a pretty good compromise…

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Making this sauce up is actually quite similar to making a cream cheese frosting. You start by whipping the butter and cream cheese together. Then you beat in some powdered sugar and vanilla. The maple syrup is then mixed in, followed by a tablespoon or two of milk to make it more saucy rather than frosty. And that’s it! Who knew this life-changing sauce was so simple to throw together?! If I knew this back then, I would’ve been making gallons of this sauce and drowning EVERYTHING in it.

Seriously though, why does maple syrup make everything taste so much better?? The combo of the maple syrup and the subtle tang from the cream cheese in this sauce is an addiction waiting to happen. Pour it on top of a white chocolate walnut blondie crowned with a massive scoop of vanilla ice cream and you have a heart attack waiting to happen. 

And if you’re really ready to meet your maker, drizzle on a little caramel…

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Sweet dreams…

FOREVER.

White Chocolate Maple Walnut Blondies | A baJillian Recipes-1 (collage)

A rich and brown buttery white chocolate and walnut blondie enveloped in a maple cream sauce. Applebee's, meet your competition...

White Chocolate Walnut Blondies w/Maple Cream Sauce

A rich and brown buttery white chocolate and walnut blondie enveloped in a maple cream sauce. Applebee's, meet your competition...
Prep Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 40 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 9 Blondies

Ingredients
  

Blondies:

  • ½ cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup white chocolate chips
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts plus more for topping

Maple Cream Sauce:

  • 3 Tablespoons butter softened
  • 3 ounces cream cheese
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • 4 Tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 ½ Tablespoon milk or cream

Instructions
 

Make the Blondies:

  • Preheat the oven to 350ºF, and line an 8×8-inch baking dish with parchment paper. Spray with nonstick cooking spray; set aside.
  • In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium-low heat. As the butter melts, it’ll start to foam, then turn a clear golden color. Continue to stir the butter, scraping up any browned specks from the bottom of the pan as it starts to brown. It should have a nutty aroma. Once browned and nutty, turn off the heat and allow to cool for 5 minutes.
  • Whisk in the brown sugar, egg, and vanilla until smooth. Switch to a wooden spoon, add the flour, baking powder, and salt and stir until just combined. Halfway through mixing in the dry ingredients, add the white chocolate chips and walnuts, and continue mixing until just combined.
  • Turn batter out into prepared pan, spreading batter evenly with a rubber spatula. Bake for about 20-25 minutes, or until edges are firm and golden and the center jiggles slightly; do not overbake. Blondies firm up as they cool.

Make the Maple Cream Sauce:

  • In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and cream cheese together until creamy. Add the powdered sugar and beat until combined. Pour in the maple syrup, vanilla, and milk/cream, and continue beating until smooth.

To Serve:

  • Slice blondies into squares. Place one or two onto a plate and top with a scoop of ice cream, if desired. Pour maple cream sauce on top, then finish with a sprinkle of chopped walnuts.
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