Chewy Brownie Bites

Well, it looks like I found something to post this week after all! I whipped these up last night (side note: does anyone else love baking at midnight or am I weird?) and they are so easy and fun that I just had to share. This is a great last minute dessert and kids will surely love them.

Chewy Brownie Cookies

I’ve been looking for a recipe for soft, chewy brownies for a while and these totally hit the spot. They’re a cross between a brownie and a cookie, so you can make them either way! The original recipe makes them like drop cookies, but I thought it would be fun to use my mini-muffin pan and make them into cute little brownie bites.

This is a very basic recipe, so I thought I’d have fun with it. I was cleaning out my cabinets the other day and discovered that I have tons of baking chips in all flavors: chocolate, mint, butterscotch, peanut butter, cinnamon, etc. I needed to use them up, especially since I don’t plan on a lot of cookie baking in January and this was the perfect recipe to do that. I divided the dough into 5 small bowls and used a different chip in each. Here’s what I came up with:

Baking Chips

  • Peanut Butter – made with peanut butter and Reeses peanut butter chips
  • Peppermint – made with peppermint extract and Andes mint chips
  • Good ol’ chocolate chip – made with mini chocolate chips
  • Butterscotch – made with butterscotch chips
  • Mexican chocolate – made with cinnamon and cinnamon chips from King Arthur

I loved them all, but I particularly recommend the peanut butter and Mexican chocolate versions! There’s tons of other things you can add to these. I would have done white chocolate, but I didn’t have any white chocolate chips. I also thought about mocha, made with some espresso powder and cappuccino chips. You can mix in candy like m&ms, nuts, coconut, etc., etc. The base is so simple that you can just have fun with it!

Chewy Brownie Bites

Chewy Brownie Bites or Brownie Cookies

adapted from All Recipes

Dessert, Cookies | Servings: 36-40 small bites/cookies
Prep time: 15 min | Cook time: 9 min | Total time: 50 min

Ingredients

  • 2/3 cup shortening or butter*
  • 1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp. water (omit if using butter)
  • 1 tbsp. vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/3 cup + 1 – 2 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa (add the extra tablespoons if you like things extra chocolate-y, otherwise 1/3 cup is fine)
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. baking soda

Possible Add-ins:

  • 1 1/2 – 2 cups semisweet/bittersweet chocolate chips, white chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, etc.
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
  • 1 cup chocolate candy, like m&ms

Mint version:

  • 1/4 tsp. (or to taste) peppermint extract
  • 1 1/2 – 2 cups mint chocolate chips

Peanut Butter version:

  • 1/4 – 1/2 cup peanut butter (swirl this in at the end, it’s better if it’s not totally integrated into the dough!)
  • 1 1/2 – 2 cups peanut butter chips

Mexican Chocolate version:

  • 2 tbsp. (or to taste) cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 – 2 cups cinnamon chips

*Note: You’re going to get much flatter cookies if you use butter, but I get that a lot of people won’t use shortening. Here’s a good explanation of butter vs. shortening in cookies. I used shortening this time because it’s Christmas and I don’t really care about health right now. If I made these more regularly, I would probably use butter instead, too. If using butter, omit the water.

If you are making multiple versions like I did, there is really no need to be precise with the add-ins. Make all the dough and divide it up in smaller bowls, then just stir in a handful of chips and/or small amounts of flavorings until you are happy with the look/taste.

Process

  1. In a large mixing bowl, cream together shortening, sugar, water, vanilla and any other liquid flavorings (mint extract, etc.).
  2. Beat in eggs.
  3. In a medium bowl, stir together flour, cocoa, salt, baking soda and any other dry flavorings (cinnamon, etc.). Gradually add to creamed mixture and beat just until blended.
  4. Stir in chocolate chips or other add-ins.
  5. Drop by heaping teaspoonfuls into a mini-muffin tin (lightly sprayed if not non-stick) or 2 in. apart on ungreased baking sheets. Bake at 375 degrees (F) for 7-9 minutes. Do not overbake or they will be hard instead of chewy. They will be very soft, but shouldn’t look wet. They will firm up as they cool. I found 7 minutes was perfect for the cookies, but the bites needed 9 minutes.
  6. The bites will need to stay in the pan for about 10 minutes before they are firm enough to transfer to a rack to finish cooling. Cookies should stay on the pan for about 2 minutes before you transfer to a rack. Let sit for 15-30 minutes to completely cool and firm up.