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Bon Appetit had a piece about what you could do with a brownie mix.   They asked five chefs and got a potpourri of ideas; pretty creative ideas. I don’t think their ideas made it to the test kitchen, at least there were no recipes. So, we took them to the test kitchen and added some of our own.

Some worked better than others but it was an interesting venture. We used a simple brownie mix, our Seriously Fudgy Brownie Mix. We chose it because all you add is water and turn the mixer on. And it makes a 9×13-inch pan of brownies.

You can try other mixes but you may need to make some minor adjustments.

Peppermint Candy Brownies

This idea came from an old cookbook on my shelf. I wanted to try it. Chocolate and mint is a great combination.

We started with candy canes broken into pieces. It tasted okay but the candy was too soft, not dense enough, and the candy melted right into the batter. We went and bought some hard candy, little peppermint disks, and mixed pieces into the batter. The taste was great but the candy sunk to the bottom.

We tried again, this time sprinkling the candy pieces on top of the batter. This worked. Some of the pieces sank into the batter and some melted but the brownies tasted great. We drizzled fudge frosting over the brownies to hide pock marks caused by melted candy.

Here’s the recipe:

1 brownie mix (in a 9×13-inch pan)
3/4 cup broken red and white candy pieces

The candy cane pieces are gently folded into the batter.
For a 9×9-inch pan, use 1/2 cup candy.


Nutella Swirled Brownies with Chopped Salted Snack Nuts

These are really good—different, sophisticated brownies. They’re made with ribbons of Nutella and topped with salted snacking nuts—definitely worth making.

(We were going to make more with smoked hickory salt sprinkled over the nuts but, alas, we didn’t get that far.)

1 brownie mix (in a 9×13-inch pan)

3/4 cup Nutella

3/4 cup salted snack nuts

Place spoonfuls of Nutella on top of the batter after the batter is in the pan. Hold a spatula vertically and slice through the pockets of Nutella to create swirls.

Sprinkle the nuts over the swirled batter.

For a 9×9-inch pan, use 1/2 cup Nutella and 1/2 cup nuts.

Mini Marshmallow Brownies

We made these two ways. First, we placed a layer of brownies over a sheet of brownies and returned the pan to the oven and melted the little marshmallows under the broiler. It was an interesting marshmallow topping.

Next, we put the marshmallows into the batter. It didn’t work. The marshmallows melted and sunk through the batter.

If you are inclined, try this with your favorite brownie mix. Simply spread marshmallows over the baked brownies and return the pan to the oven.


Southern Ginger Brownies

Try this if you are a fan of gingerbread. It’s a cross between gingerbread or gingersnaps and chocolate brownies. I found the combination interesting though I was not wild about it.

We served these to about a dozen of the employees. Surprisingly, they all liked it (that’s why we included the recipe) but they too, were not wild about it.

1 brownie mix (in a 9×13-inch pan)
3 tablespoons molasses
2/3 cup candied ginger pieces
2/3 cup white chocolate chips
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

The chips and ginger pieces are folded into the batter at the end of the mixing.

For a 9×9-inch pan, use a scant 1/2 cup of ginger pieces and chips.

Cranberry Nut Brownies

This is a winner—lots of texture and the cranberries give it a nice punch.  I thought it needed to be a bit sweeter so we frosted the brownies. Then they were perfect.

1 brownie mix (in a 9×13-inch pan)
3/4 cup dry cranberries
1/2 cup walnuts
3/4 cup toasted coconut

Mix the cranberries, nuts, coconut into the batter. Frost them with your favorite fudge frosting.

For a 9×9-inch pan, use 1/2 cup cranberries and 1/2 cup coconut. Use 1/4 cup walnuts.

Pecan Malted Brownies

These are interesting, really good brownies. Everyone that tried them, loved them.

The malt powder tempered the chocolate, almost made them milk chocolate. The pecans gave them a nutty crunch and the toffee pieces gave them a very nice flavor.

We thought they needed a little touch of chocolate and so we drizzled our fudge frosting over the top.

1 brownie mix (in a 9×13-inch pan)
1/3 cup malt powder
3/4 cup pecan pieces
1/2 cup toffee baking morsels

Mix the malt powder and pecan pieces into the batter. Sprinkle the toffee morsels over the batter. Drizzle the baked brownies with a fudge frosting.

Mix both into the batter.

For a 9×9-inch pan, use 3 1/3 tablespoons malt powder and 1/2 cup nuts.

See six more scrumptious ways to fix brownies.

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