These salted caramel brownies are the definition of indulgence. Super rich dark chocolate brownies are baked with globs of homemade salted caramel. As it bakes, the caramel melts into the brownie to create holes and crevices throughout. That’s when homemade caramel sauce comes in to fill the gaps and provide pools of caramel all throughout the brownie. So yes, they’re just that good!
What makes these the best salted caramel brownies?
It was very important to me to create a salted caramel brownie recipe made with homemade salted caramel. Store bought caramel just can’t compete against the rich flavor of homemade caramel. Plus with homemade, it’s much easier to control the salt content. Because of this, these brownies are rich but not overly sweet!
The homemade salted caramel is also very easy to make. I have a whole entire post dedicated to the process of making caramel, just in case you have to troubleshoot!
Now for the brownies themselves, they are extra fudgy with melty chunks of dark chocolate all throughout. Each bite just melts in your mouth, with the combination of deep dark chocolate and sweet salted caramel.
Speaking of, these brownies are baked with globs of homemade caramel on top. As the brownies bake, the sugars dissolve into the batter and sink to the bottom. This creates holes and crevices all throughout the brownie. Although the caramel is no longer visible, the flavor is definitely still there!
This is when the other half of the homemade salted caramel comes in. It’s drizzled on top to fill the holes, leaving pools of homemade salted caramel in each slice. It’s truly heavenly.
Tips for making salted caramel
I have an entire post dedicated to this topic, so if you want more info definitely head over to my homemade salted caramel recipe! But here is a quick rundown of my top tips:
- Ingredient Temperatures – Caramel is basically melted sugar mixed with butter and cream. The butter and cream are added to the very hot melted sugar, so if these ingredients are cold it’s going to shock the sugar and cause it to stiffen up. To prevent this, make sure both the butter and cream are at room temperature before starting!
- Melting Sugar – This process can get a little tricky, but the best option is to just let it be. Place the sugar in a saucepan over medium heat. After about 8 minutes, pools of caramelized melted sugar will start to appear. Gently whisk to ensure all of the sugar melts at the same rate.
- Don’t Panic! – After adding the butter, it may look like the caramel will never come together. Do not fear, just keep going and mix in the cream. At this point, it should start looking like caramel! If for some reason it turns clumpy, keep whisking over low heat for a couple minutes to help smooth it out.
After the caramel is made, it goes to two places:
- Freezer – Line a plate or small baking pan with parchment paper and pour half of the caramel on top. It will be very liquid, so just pour it into the center and allow it to spread out on its own. It should be at about 1/8 of an inch thick. Freeze until soft but firm. This goes on the brownie batter before baking.
- Refrigerator – Pour the other half of the caramel in a glass jar and chill. After the brownies are baked and cooled, it will be the perfect thick but pourable consistency.
How to make fudgy salted caramel brownies
This is my go-to brownie recipe that I love to customize to my liking. It always yields a fudgy consistency that isn’t too runny!
So how is this possible? Here are the key ingredients:
- Eggs – Eggs provide structure because they emulsify the batter (brings together the water and fat molecules). Because of this, these brownie are made with 2 eggs and 1 egg yolk. They’re vigorously mixed with the sugar to further strengthen the emulsification. Not only does this help break down the sugar, but it also leaves the eggs much more open to blending with the butter and dry ingredients.
- Butter – Rather than oil, butter is used for added flavor and additional structure. As the brownies cool, the butter within the batter will solidify to create a fudgy slice that holds its shape.
- Dutch Processed Cocoa – This is more-so for flavor, but dutch processed cocoa is much less acidic than traditional unsweetened cocoa. Because of this, these brownies have an incredibly smooth flavor that is further boosted with the addition of coffee.
- Cooling – Allowing the brownies to cool completely is a crucial step. If they’re sliced into too soon, they’ll fall apart. After the caramel is added on top, chill the brownies for at least an hour. This is the sweet spot, as the brownies are still soft but the caramel is just solid enough to not completely ooze out.
Why is the caramel frozen?
Half of the caramel is frozen so that the brownie batter can be baked with CHUNKS of caramel rather than a pool of caramel. These chunks are what create the holes in the brownies. If the caramel is added when liquid, it will basically just dissolve into the brownie with very little surface disruption.
Are the coffee granules optional?
Technically yes, but for the best flavor I highly recommend using it. Coffee helps bring out the chocolate flavor, transforming these brownies into a gourmet dessert.
What is the best chocolate to use?
The higher the cocoa percentage, the more melty the chocolate. I prefer 70% cocoa for this recipe because it melts into the brownie but is still a bit sweet. I use a Lindt 70% cocoa dark chocolate bar, found in the candy aisle.
How to store salted caramel brownies
Keep the brownies in the refrigerator. The more the brownies cool, the chewier the caramel gets. If you prefer a more melty caramel, just heat a brownie in the microwave for a couple seconds to revive the super fudgy consistency.
The brownies will keep in an air tight container in the refrigerator for about a week.
For more caramel dessert recipes, check out my:
- Salted Caramel Cheesecake
- Salted Caramel Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Snickers Chocolate Caramel Tart
- Caramel Coconut Cream Pie
Make sure to tag me @butternutbakery on Instagram and leave a review below if you make these salted caramel brownies. To pin this recipe and save it for later, you can use the button on the recipe card, the buttons above or below this post, or on any of the photos above. Happy baking!Print
Salted Caramel Brownies
- Total Time: 1 hour + 1 hour chilling
- Yield: 16 brownies
These gooey salted caramel brownies are made with a rich dark chocolate brownie, baked with homemade salted caramel, and drizzled with even more caramel after they’ve baked. The baked caramel creates holes in the brownie for the drizzled caramel to seep into, providing pools of caramel throughout!
Homemade Salted Caramel (CLICK HERE)
Dark Chocolate Brownie
- 2/3 cup (86g) all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup (50g) dutch process cocoa powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 large eggs + 1 egg yolk
- 1/2 cup (100g) light brown sugar, packed
- 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup (110g) unsalted butter, melted
- 1 tsp instant coffee granules
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 3.5 oz 70% cocoa dark chocolate, chopped
- Flaky sea salt for sprinkling
Homemade Salted Caramel
- Once the caramel is made, pour half of it onto a small baking pan lined with parchment paper and the other half in a jar.
- Place the sheet of caramel in the freezer and the jar of caramel in the refrigerator. Allow both to freeze/chill while we make the brownie batter.
Dark Chocolate Brownie
- Preheat the oven to 350F and grease and line an 8×8 square baking dish with parchment paper. Use two sheets of parchment paper to cover both the bottom and all four sides of the pan.
- Whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, and salt in a small mixing bowl and set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, vigorously whisk together the eggs and sugars until the mixture turns pale, creamy, and light (about 2-3 minutes of whisking).
- Pour in the melted butter, coffee granules, and vanilla and whisk to combine.
- Dump in the dry ingredients and use a rubber spatula to gently fold the batter. Right before the batter is fully mixed, add in the chopped chocolate and fold to fully combine.
- Pour the batter into the prepared baking dish and spread it even.
- Remove the caramel from the freezer. It should be firm but still somewhat soft. Use a spoon to scrape the caramel and dollop onto the brownie batter. Once all the caramel is added, use a butter knife to gently swirl the batter.
- Bake for 33-35 minutes. The caramel will have completely disappeared, leaving behind holes and crevices throughout the surface of the brownie. Allow the brownie to cool for about 20 minutes then drizzle the jar of caramel on top, aiming to fill each crevice with the caramel.
- Chill the brownies for about 1 hour, or until the bottom of the pan is no longer warm to the touch. Sprinkle with a generous amount of flaky sea salt. Then slice and enjoy!
- Prep Time: 25 minutes
- Cook Time: 35 minutes
- Category: Dessert
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: salted caramel brownies, homemade salted caramel brownies, homemade salted caramel, caramel brownies
Kelly Ann says
The ingredients for the caramel are missing. Thank you!
It’s linked you just have to click the text where it says Homemade Salted Caramel Recipe 🙂
Looks so delicious but I don’t see a link for the caramel
You just have to click the text 🙂
Sarah B. says
Wow. These are the best brownies I have ever made. The recipe was easy to follow too. I brought them to a super bowl party and they were a hit. They’re going on my “make again” list.
Yay so glad to hear!!
If I want to make in advance would you wait to put caramel sauce when serving? Or to fill the gooey holes you need to do right away🧐
Fill the holes and then just chill the brownies 🙂
How much caramel is needed for the brownies? I see no quantities in the caramel recipe.
All of the caramel is needed. Half goes in the freezer and half goes on top.
I didn’t have time and patience for the caramel sauce, but they were so good without it! My whole family loved them. I recommend trying this recipe. c:
I saw your recipe on Tik tok so I had to try. These are very good and easy to make. I will definitely be making these again.
Hello! This tasted awesome!! 🙂 Are there any tips to make it less hard? Not sure if we over baked it. do you recommend reducing the baking time?
First batch was gone in no time. Making a second batch now. These are amazing!
How can I tell when my brownies are done , do I pull them out a bit undercooked ?
If you judge the pan and the center wobbles like a bowl of milk, then it’s not done. But if it stays stiff or jiggles slightly then they’re done!
These are the best brownies I have ever made or eaten, I have made these brownies more than 5 times and they never disappoint. Such a lovely and quite easy recipe!
These are the best brownies I have ever made or eaten, I have made these brownies more than 5 times and they never disappoint. Such a lovely and quite easy recipe!!
I would like to make ahead for Christmas. Can I freeze them?
Yes that should be ok!
Sarah Dettloff says
Rather than regular instant coffee, do you think it possible to substitute instant espresso instead? If so, would I use the same amount or reduce?
Yes you can sub the same amount