Happy National Brownie Day! This is one of the best food holidays of the year. Nothing beats a warm fudgey brownie with a cold glass of milk. Am I right? Since we're getting close to Christmas, we went a little more festive with this recipe. I mean, it is a day of celebration. These dense, rich brownies are the perfect finish to any meal and even great for snacking. The peppermint candies throughout the brownies add a little extra touch for Christmas and you know what? They're actually pretty low calorie for a brownie!
I am not a registered nutrition. I don't know how to expertly lighten up recipes. But I do know how to add the ingredients into MyFitnessPal and get the nutrition contents! My friend and I are doing an accountability program together so we only have so many calories we can take in each day. We both wanted a brownie one day and decided to plug it into MyFitnessPal to see how much damage it would actually do. The answer...not much at all! And if you cut each brownie in half, one serving comes out to under 200 calories. Scroll to the bottom of this post for full details on calories, sugar, etc.
Brownies are a non-baker's dream. They're simple to make and hard to mess up. The biggest challenge is to not eat the batter. This particular recipe uses bittersweet chocolate that needs to be melted down. This is a bit more challenging than just mixing traditional ingredients into the bowl but it's completely worth it. This will give the brownies an extra depth of richness and fudginess that is irresistible. Just be careful while melting the chocolate and butter because it's easy to burn yourself. Fill one saucepan just under halfway with water so it doesn't overflow. Bring it to a boil and turn the heat down to low. Add another saucepan or heat-proof bowl on top of the water and this is where you'll melt your butter and chocolate. Keep it moving so that neither ingredient burns. It will melt pretty quick.
Serve the brownies as is or garnish them with mini candy canes and broken peppermint pieces. I did a mixture of both so people who might not want to eat the candies can easily take off the whole candy cane rather than a bunch of small pieces. These will make a great addition to your sweets table at Christmas.
PEPPERMINT CHOCOLATE BROWNIES
1/4 cup Cocoa Powder
2/3 cup Flour
1 stick Butter, melted
4 ounces Bittersweet Chocolate
3/4 cup Sugar
1/2 cup Brown Sugar
1 tsp. Vanilla
1/4 tsp. Peppermint Extract
1/4 cup Crushed Peppermint Candies
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-inch square baking dish with butter or cooking spray.
2. Mix together cocoa powder, flour and salt. Set aside. Bring water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Using another sauce pan or a heat-proof bowl, melt the butter and chocolate over the saucepan with boiling water and stir constantly to prevent burning. Once melted, remove from the heat.
3. To the butter and chocolate mix, add the granulated sugar, brown sugar, vanilla and peppermint extract. Whisk until well-combined. Add eggs one at a time until all of the ingredients are mixed together completely. Using a rubber spatula, add the dry ingredients into the chocolate mixture. Once the batter is smooth, fold in the crushed peppermint candies.
4. Transfer the batter to the baking dish, using the spatula to spread it evenly. Bake 40-45 minutes until a toothpick comes out slightly fudgey. Remove from the pan and cool on a cooling rack. Add peppermint candies on top for garnish and serve.
Yields 9 Large Brownies
Nutritional Information per serving (calculated through MyFitnessPal):
Total Fat: 15g
Total Carbohydrate: 46g