Brownies are such a special, classic treat that (almost) everyone loves.
But what if you could take them just that much more over the top? With, say, a chocolate candy-like coating around bites of rich, dark chocolate brownies? And sprinkles?!
These brownie bites almost remind me of a brigadeiro, a Brazilian chocolate candy made with condensed milk and covered in chocolate sprinkles. Run, don’t walk, to your kitchen to make these little coated brownie bites.
They’re a small-portioned treat that can’t be beat!
How to Make Chocolate Covered Brownie Bites
To start, you’ll want to make some brownies. The recipe here is pretty basic and can be mixed together in one bowl (the less dishes you need to clean later, the better).
Combine melted unsalted butter with Dutch-processed cocoa powder in a large mixing bowl—if the large mixing bowl is glass and microwave-safe, you can just melt the butter in the bowl in the microwave.
Add and whisk in the granulated sugar, eggs, and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract until smooth, then fold in the all-purpose flour, kosher salt, and baking powder with a silicone spatula.
Once the batter is combined, pour it into a greased 8×8-inch pan and bake for about 20 minutes or so. Cut away the crunchier edges after removing the brownies from the oven, then slice them into small ½-inch to 1-inch cubes. You can set them aside on a wax or parchment paper-lined cookie sheet to cool.
The other half of the candied brownie bites is making the candy-like coating; you’ll need to combine semi-sweet chocolate chips with condensed milk in a heavy saucepan. Gently melt them over a low heat and add butter and vanilla extract when the chocolate chips are completely melted.
You’ve got both your components ready, so start dipping! With the chocolate coating off the heat, start dipping the little brownie squares with a fork or spoon and cover them with that thick mixture. Let the excess drip off, then leave the coated brownie bites on the prepared cookie sheet to cool and harden. Add sprinkles if desired.
They’re a little more work than regular brownies, but imagine all the oohs and aahs you’ll get when you whip these babies out for guests! Or yourself. No judgment.
Dutch-processed Cocoa Powder vs. Natural Cocoa Powder
Let’s clear up some possible confusion: this is the kind of cocoa powder you bake or cook with, which means it has no additional sweeteners or ingredients like hot cocoa powder.
Cocoa powder generally comes in two styles: Dutch-processed cocoa powder and natural cocoa powder.
Natural cocoa powder comes from the process of removing cocoa butter from chocolate. What you get is a slightly acidic powder with a generally lighter color. Most recipes call for this cocoa powder and it’s one of the most common kinds found on grocery store shelves.
This recipe calls for unsweetened Dutch-processed cocoa powder. The Dutch processing uses alkalizing agents to remove some of natural cocoa powder’s acidity for a darker, smoother, richer product. It makes your chocolate recipes taste even more chocolate-y.
You can use natural cocoa powder if that’s all you have on hand, but once you try Dutch-processed cocoa powder you’ll have a hard time going back.
- ½ cup melted unsalted butter plus 1 tablespoon, divided
- ⅓ cup unsweetened Dutch-processed cocoa powder
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract, divided
- ½ cup all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoons kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon baking powder
- 8 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
- Sprinkles of choice (optional)
- To make the brownies, preheat the oven to 350° Fahrenheit and grease an 8×8-inch pan.
- Combine ½ cup melted unsalted butter with the Dutch-processed cocoa powder in a large mixing bowl, whisking vigorously until combined.
- Whisk in the granulated sugar, eggs, and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract until mixture is smooth.
- Add the all-purpose flour, kosher salt, and baking powder to the butter mixture. Fold the dry ingredients in with a silicone spatula until just combined.
- Pour the batter into the greased pan, smooth the top, and then bake for about 23 minutes. You want to make sure the brownies are slightly under-baked, so check on them frequently after 15-20 minutes.
- Remove the brownies and cut away the edge pieces while still warm. Cut leftover brownies into small ½-inch or 1-inch square pieces. Set aside on a cookie sheet lined with wax paper or parchment paper to cool.
- To make the chocolate coating, melt semi-sweet chocolate chips and condensed milk in a heavy saucepan over low heat. Mix in 1 teaspoon vanilla extract and 1 tablespoon melted butter until well combined, then remove from heat.
- Use a fork or spoon to dip each brownie ball into the chocolate mixture; let the excess drip off, then place the coated brownie ball on the lined cookie sheet. If the chocolate mixture cools and thickens, warm gently on the stove and resume dipping.
- Top the coated brownie bites with sprinkles if desired, then let them stand until chocolate coating sets. It can take several hours; refrigerating overnight is recommended. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. Makes about 36 pieces.
Ingredient Tips and Substitutions
If you’re in a rush or don’t want to go through the effort to make these brownies from scratch, you can use a box mix and save yourself some time. Just make sure not to overbake your brownies!
For those interested in maybe sprucing up the from-scratch brownie recipe, don’t be afraid to add your own flavorings. Extracts like almond extract, spices like cinnamon, or even nuts like walnuts or pecans add a unique spin to the candied brownie bites. Orange zest would also add a surprising punch.
Maybe you’re not a fan of semi-sweet chocolate chips for the coating? That’s okay! Milk chocolate, dark chocolate, or even white chocolate chips or finely chopped bars would also work.
No matter how you like your brownies, these little candied brownie bites will have you coming back again and again.