Nirvana Brownies

These brownies are nirvana. No seriously, these brownies will bring you to a new level of bliss from the first bite to the very last morsel and will leave you in a state of euphoria for the whole day (longer if you eat more then one).

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One word of caution, these brownies are not healthy. If healthy brownies are more up your alley I would recommend my Secretly Healthy Brownies which are full of healthy stuff like kale, spinach and chard (along with all the chocolatey flavour you want in a brownie).

With layers of gooey, fudgey chocolate and salted caramel these are bound to be your new favourite brownies. They are super moist in the middle and chock full of chocolate bits. I considered adding in walnuts or pecans but decided that they would clash with the caramel flavours, but if you prefer brownies with nuts just cut down on the chocolate bits and add in nuts.

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I made my own caramel for this recipe, however you could buy caramel chews (if you want dairy free just check ingredients before purchasing) and melt them in the microwave before pouring over the brownie batter. The caramel I made is dairy free and I have included the recipe below, it was poured into the same pan I used to make the brownies and left overnight in the refrigerator to firm up slightly, I also added in some chocolate chips before setting it.

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You want the caramel soft and pliable not too liquified otherwise it will fall into the batter and you will not get that nice layer in the middle. Some will fall no matter what and some will leak out of the sides but you don’t want too much. You should also leave an inch between the edge of the pan lined with batter and pour the caramel (or place) in the middle. This way the top brownie batter will seal around the caramel.

Salted Caramel Brownies
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 15
 
Ingredients
  • Caramel Ingredients:
  • 1 Cup coconut milk
  • ¼ Cup honey or maple syrup
  • ¾ Cup brown sugar
  • ⅓ Cup vegan butter
  • ½ Tsp vanilla
  • Chocolate chips (optional)
  • 2 Tsp sea salt
  • Brownie Ingredients:
  • 1¼ Cup gluten free flour
  • ¾ Cup cocoa powder
  • ½ Tsp Baking Soda
  • ½ Tsp salt
  • 1 Cup sugar ( I used coconut sugar)
  • 3 Eggs or egg equivalent
  • ¼ Tsp vanilla
  • ¾ Cup vegan butter, room temperature and cut into chunks
  • ½ Cup hot espresso (optional) or just boiling water
  • 1 Cup chocolate chips, chunks or broken chocolate bar or a mix of chocolate bits ( I use Enjoy Life chocolate chips and chocolate chunks)
Instructions
  1. Combine coconut milk, honey, sugar and butter in medium sized pot. Turn heat to medium and stir until butter is melted and sugar has dissolved.
  2. Once caramel starts to boil add a candy thermometer and let cook until temperature hits 250 degrees. This can take some time.
  3. Once it reaches temperature remove immediately from heat and add in vanilla and salt. Stir to combine. If it appears that the oil has separated from the rest of caramel just whisk it all together.
  4. Pour into a lined baking tray and let cool ten minutes.
  5. Add in chocolate chips and set in refrigerator for at least one hour.
  6. You may notice some oil that has fired up around the caramel, this is fine as it will seep into the brownies and won't be noticed.
  7. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line brownie pan with parchment paper and grease it, I used a 13x9 inch pan.
  8. In bowl of stand mixer add sugar and espresso, with paddle attachment on medium speed mix to dissolve sugar.
  9. Add in butter, vanilla and eggs. Mix together on medium speed.
  10. In separate bowl sift in flour, baking soda, cocoa powder and salt, mix to combine.
  11. While mixing wet ingredients on low, add in dry ingredients a bit at a time.
  12. Once combined remove bowl from stand mixer and gently fold in chocolate bits.
  13. Pour just under half the brownie batter into prepared pan and gently spread to cover bottom. Add caramel on top, remember to leave an inch around.
  14. Add rest of brownie batter on top of caramel gently spreading it out making sure to seal the caramel in.
  15. Add more chocolate bits to top. Bake for 35 minutes or until top is starting to crack and flake.
  16. Remove from oven and let cool in pan for 1 hour. Lift cooled brownies out of pan by the corners of the parchment paper and cut into desired shapes.
  17. Brownies can be stored in airtight container in refrigerator for 1 week.
  18. To ensure that the caramel is not too hard when you eat the brownies leave out in room temperature for half an hour before serving.

Enjoy!

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