Delectably fudgy, my Mexican hot chocolate brownies are brimming with the delicious flavors found in a cup of rich, Mexican hot chocolate. Filled with lots of cocoa and bittersweet chocolate chips, warming spices such as cinnamon and cayenne, plus and a touch of orange zest, this Mexican hot chocolate brownies recipe is an indulgent treat with a delicious twist, fit for chocolate lovers!
Brownies with a Mexican Hot Chocolate Twist
Rich, decadent chocolate treats are not something that I ever have to be talked into indulging in, being the bonafide chocoholic that I am.
And while Valentine's Day is a terrific time to indulge in all things chocolate, I like to enjoy just a little bit of good quality chocolate (73% dark is my favorite!) every day. Filled with antioxidants and flavanols, I like to consider it a bit of a treat with health benefits!
And when I'm craving something a little more decadent and indulgent, something baked, I love to prepare homemade brownies with that dense, fudgy texture as a little pick me up...
One of my husband's and my favorite brownies that I prepare are these Mexican hot chocolate brownies, a bit of a novel twist on classic brownies, with more of a “kick”. These are filled with all of those deliciously earthy and spicy flavors we just love in a yummy cup of Mexican hot chocolate!
My Mexican hot chocolate brownies recipe is brimming with both cocoa and semi-sweet chocolate for extra chocolatey flavor, plus a sprinkle of cinnamon for warmth and cayenne to awaken the tastebuds, as well as a kiss of orange zest for that ever-so-slight citrus note.
These Mexican hot chocolate brownies are always a hit whether we enjoy them ourselves or share them at a gathering, providing a deliciously unique and mouthwatering alternative to regular ol' brownies.
Dense, fudgy, irresistible…I bet you can't eat just one!
My Mexican Hot Chocolate Brownies Recipe
In order to create that rich, fudgy texture that we love in brownies, I like to go a little “all out” with the chocolate...
For my recipe for these Mexican hot chocolate brownies, I use good quality cocoa as well as a hefty scoop of bittersweet chocolate chips (I use Ghirardelli 60% chips) so there's more chocolate flavor with a little less sugar.
This offers a slightly more sophisticated flavor that's a bit deeper than you would find in traditional brownies.
I also use both brown and granulated sugar, some cinnamon and cayenne for mildly spicy heat, and orange zest for that sweet citrusy zing. I even add a teeny amount of instant espresso coffee for more depth, but this is optional, and you can leave it out if you prefer.
Here's a sneak peek at how I make my Mexican hot chocolate brownies recipe: (or just jump to the full recipe...)
- To get started, I whisk together my dry ingredients and set those aside. Then, I melt together my butter with my chocolate chips, and scrape that into a large bowl.
- I add to this my sugars and instant espresso, followed by my orange zest, eggs and vanilla, and whisk to blend. I add in my dry ingredients, and whisk those to fully incorporate.
- I spoon my brownie batter into my prepared baking dish, and bake for roughly 55 minutes, or until the Mexican hot chocolate brownies are baked but fudgy. I allow the brownies to completely cool before cutting into squares (either regular or bite-size brownies), and serve.
Mexican Hot Chocolate Brownies
by Ingrid Beer
Rich and fudgy, these Mexican hot chocolate brownies are brimming with warming cinnamon and cayenne, plus sweet orange zest!
Yield: 18 brownies
Nutrition Info: 331 calories per brownie
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 55 minutes
Total time: 1 hour 15 minutes
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup cocoa powder (Dutch-process if possible)
- 1 ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper (more or less depending on taste)
- 1 cup unsalted butter
- 12 ounces bittersweet chocolate chips (I use Ghirardelli brand 60 percent)
- 1 ¼ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup, packed, brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon instant espresso coffee granules (optional)
- 4 eggs, room temperature
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- ¼ (slightly heaping) teaspoon orange zest
- Begin by gathering and prepping all of your ingredients according to the ingredient list above to have ready and organized for use.
- Preheat your oven to 350°, and line a 11 x 7 x 1 ½ inch glass baking dish (or comparable) with parchment paper or foil so that there is a slight overhang, and lightly mist with cooking spray. Place the prepared baking dish on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
- Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, cinnamon, salt, and cayenne pepper, and set aside these dry ingredients.
- Place the butter and the chocolate chips into a small to medium-size glass bowl, and place the bowl over a pot of very gently simmering water (double-boiler method). Allow the butter and chocolate to melt together, stirring occasionally to blend.
- Once the butter and chocolate is melted, carefully pour it into another large bowl, scraping ever last bit of it out, and allow it to cool slightly for about 5 minutes.
- Next, add both of the sugars, plus the instant espresso coffee granules, into the melted butter/chocolate mixture, and using a whisk, gently whisk those in until well blended.
- Add one egg at a time into the mixture, gently whisking until it is blended in. Add in the vanilla and the orange zest, and whisk those in.
- Next, add the dry ingredients into the mixture, and gently whisk those in until they are incorporated, taking care not to over-mix.
- Pour the batter into your prepared pan, and bake for about 55 minutes (or if using a larger 9 x 13 pan, start checking at around 25 to 30 minutes), or just until a toothpick inserted comes out fairly clean (you still may get a little batter, but it shouldn't be too raw looking or wet.)
- Allow the Mexican hot chocolate brownies to cool in their baking dish for about 10 minutes, and then using the overhanging foil or parchment, lift the brownies out and allow them to completely cool and set (which can take 3 to 5 hours) before cutting.
Tips & Tidbits for my Mexican Hot Chocolate Brownies recipe:
- Dutch process cocoa for more intense, chocolatey flavor: While you can use whichever brand or type of cocoa you prefer for these brownies (even substitute raw, organic cacao which has health benefits and great flavor), I opt for Droste Dutch process cocoa these days for my baking needs. I find it a bit more intense and rich, and it offers and nice, deep chocolatey color as well.
- Bittersweet chocolate chips for depth: If all you have on hand is traditional semi-sweet chocolate chips then feel free to use those in a pinch. They contain a little more sugar, so the brownies will be sweeter. I love the bittersweet chocolate chips (Ghirardelli 60%) for this particular brownie recipe, as they add a deeper chocolate flavor and aren't quite as sweet.
- Spices and orange zest for that Mexican hot chocolate flavor: What I love about a cup of Mexican hot chocolate is the spices and the hint of orange which makes it so deliciously aromatic and unique! To recreate that flavor in these brownies, I'm adding those in. You can use a more or less of the cayenne according to how “kick-y” you like these, but I'm keeping things mild for purpose of the recipe so all can enjoy.
- Bake these brownies until done, but still fudgy: Because these brownies are so dense, they do take a little longer to bake (about 55 minutes), depending on the baking dish you use. I use an 11 x 7 x 1 ½ inch glass dish, so that can take a little longer. Start checking them around 50 minutes, using a skewer. It will never come out completely clean because they're fudgy, but the skewer shouldn't be too wet with raw looking batter on it. (If you use a 9 x 13 inch pan, then adjust baking time, checking the brownies roughly 25 to 30 minutes into baking, knowing that the brownies will not be quite as thick.)
- Allow to completely cool before cutting the brownies: To make slicing/cutting this into brownies easier, wait until things are completely cool before doing so. This may take 3 to 5 hours (I know, I know, that's hard!), but they really do need to set as much as possible before slicing. You can even bake these the day before you plan on serving as I like to do, and then cut them the next day before serving.
- Don't cut the brownies too large: Because these brownies are so very decadent, I like to keep the size of each to a few bites, so I typically get about 18 brownies from a batch. (I even like to cut them into “two-bite” size brownies often times, which yields a lot more!)
Craving more sweet and cozy chocolatey recipes? Check out this Chocolate Bark, these Chocolate Truffles, this Brownie Cake, these Snickers Brownies, these Chocolate Chip Cookies with Roasted Hazelnuts, or this Chocolate Pudding!
Cook's Note: This recipe was originally published in 2015, and has been updated with even more love!