What do you do when you buy a $20 bottle of Kahlua for a recipe, use a couple tablespoons of it, and then have $19.95 worth of Kahlua left? You could make a few cocktails if that’s your thing, or spike your morning coffee…but I’m not really a drinker. I’m more of an eater. So when I discovered that I had an almost-completely-unused bottle of Kahlua in the back of my pantry, I sprung into action! By that, I mean I texted my sister: “Do you have mom’s Kahlua brownie recipe?”
My mom used to make these for us, but unfortunately for me, she’s a thousand miles away and I have to figure these things out for myself now. Fortunately for me, these brownies are extremely easy to make and take no time at all. The brownie mixture is made in a saucepan on the stove and comes together in mere minutes, and the topping is a super simple buttercream. The chocolate drizzle on top is 100% optional, but adds a little elegance if you’re trying to impress someone.
The brownie base is moist and fudgy, and that extra punch from the Kahlua permeates both the brownie and the frosting, so the flavor is definitely not lost. The espresso-Kahlua frosting itself is light, creamy, and melt-in-your-mouth delicious. This recipe makes for an addictive, grown-up take on brownies. You’ll love ‘em.
Melt together your butter and chocolate.
Remove the pan from the heat, then mix in your sugar, eggs, vanilla, and kahlua. Add to that your flour, baking powder, and salt.
Pour batter into your prepared 9×13″ pan (if you halve the recipe like I did, use an 8×8″ pan), and bake for 25-30 minutes. Let cool completely.
While the brownies are cooling, make your frosting. Mix espresso powder with kahlua until dissolved. Cream together butter, powdered sugar, and vanilla. Add espresso mixture and beat until well-combined. If you need to, add 2-3 teaspoons of milk to reach a spreadable consistency.
Spread the frosting over the cooled brownies. If you’re doing the chocolate drizzle, melt 1 ounce semisweet chocolate with 1 Tablespoon butter, then allow it to cool a bit before drizzling it over the brownies. That’s it!
Most brownies are the best straight out of the oven, but I find these get even better the next day (stored at room temperature in an airtight container). And that’s great if you need to make something to bring to a party or serve for guests, but want to make it a day ahead. They’re also great for that purpose because they look and taste impressive, but require very little effort on your part. Enjoy!
Slightly adapted from here, originally from The Portland Palate
Makes a 9×13″ pan, 24-30 brownies
For the brownies:
- 4 oz unsweetened chocolate
- 2/3 cups butter
- 2 cups sugar
- 4 eggs
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- ½ cup Kahlua
- 1 ¼ cups flour
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- 1 tsp. salt
Preheat oven to 350º F.
Grease a 9×13 inch pan. Melt chocolate and butter. Remove pan from heat and mix in sugar, eggs, vanilla, and Kahlua. Stir in flour, baking powder and salt.
Bake in 350 degree oven 25-30 minutes. Cool.
For the frosting:
- 2 Tbsp. Kahlua
- 1 tsp. instant espresso powder
- ½ cup butter
- ½ tsp. vanilla
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 2 to 3 tsp. milk (optional)
In a small bowl, mix Kahlua with instant coffee until coffee is dissolved. In medium bowl, cream butter, powdered sugar and vanilla. Add Kahlua mixture and beat until well blended. If needed, add milk to desired consistency. Spread frosting over cooled brownies.
For the chocolate drizzle (optional):
- 1 oz. Semi-sweet chocolate
- 1 Tbsp. Butter
Melt chocolate and butter together. Cool slightly, then drizzle over frosting. Cool until chocolate is set. Cut into bars (24-30).