Do you think there will come a time when we won’t welcome another perfect chocolate recipe into our arsenal of go-to’s? Will decadent slices of chocolatey goodness like this fudgy brownie tart ever not feel synonymous with holiday desserts? NOPE. Chocolate is here to stay, folks, and today I’m happy to be sharing a recipe that is worth making room for in your kitchen this coming Christmas season. This graham cracker crusted bit of brownie magic is a delicious make-ahead option for those gatherings you’ll be hosting and attending this year, and I can’t wait to tell you about it. Let’s dive in.
I love brownies. Whether they’re from a box, stuffed in an ice cream cake, or piled high with peppermint bark, brownies are my jam. Second only to a chocolate chip cookie (in my book, that is) brownies are an excellent go-to dessert-wise when we just need a sure thing. But what about those times when we’re feeling fancy or when we’re wanting something a little bit out of the box? This fudgy brownie tart is a terrific option for those moments when you need a dessert that shines but is bound to make people feel great. Here, a simple graham cracker crust adds salt and texture to the rich fudgy interior. The filling, made up of butter, melted chocolate, and sugar, benefits from the addition of Red Diamond Classic Coffee which adds an extra layer of flavor and intensity to this already bomb dessert. The small bit of brewed coffee allows the chocolate to taste more chocolatey, and the dessert as a whole develops in complexity. Truly, coffee and chocolate make a beautiful duo.
To make this fudgy brownie tart, we start with the crust. Crushed graham crackers, melted butter, brown sugar, and salt make up the bulk of the sweet and salty crumble. If you’re in the mood, you can throw in a tablespoon of that Red Diamond coffee for an extra bit of mocha flavor. The mixture gets pressed into the bottom of a fluted tart pan with a removable bottom and baked briefly while we mix up the filling. Chocolate and butter are melted together first and then eggs and sugar are whipped together in a large bowl. Whisk in the chocolate mixture and then fold in the dry ingredients. Finally, a pour of brewed coffee is added to the batter that comes together in a brownie-like consistency. I’d highly recommend a little extra coffee here because you know it’s going to taste delicious with the tart.
The final product is a simple fudgy brownie tart that feels special enough for your favorite events but easy enough for a weekday treat. You can feel free to top it with a scoop of ice cream or a dollop of whipped cream, but I prefer it with a single fork and a great cup of coffee. Many thanks to Red Diamond for sponsoring today’s post. I’m very happy to be able to partner with an Alabama local, family-owned company! Red Diamond offers the finest ground and whole bean coffee in a variety of blends, all slow-roasted from 100% Arabica coffee beans. Their classic blend is perfect for including in baked goods like this fudgy brownie tart, and it’s delicious enough to enjoy as a beverage alongside it. Check out their products at a store near you, and thank you for supporting brands that make Wood and Spoon possible. Happy baking to you all and have a great week!
If you like this fudgy brownie tart you should try:
This fudgy brownie tart has a rich chocolate center and a sweet and salt graham cracker crust. Tastes like brownie batter!
Total Time:40 minutes
Yield:9 servings 1x
For the crust:
1/3 cup (70 gm) brown sugar, packed
2 cups (200 gm) graham cracker crumbs
1/2 teaspoon salt
7 tablespoons (100 gm) unsalted butter, melted
For the filling:
6 tablespoons (90 gm) unsalted butter
½ cup (125 gm) chopped dark chocolate (70%)
¾ cup (150 gm) sugar
2 large eggs
¼ cup (35 gm) all-purpose flour
¼ cup (30 gm) cocoa powder
½ teaspoon salt
¼ cup strong-brewed Red Diamond coffee
To prepare the crust:
Preheat the oven to 350. Whisk together the brown sugar, graham cracker crumbs, and salt in a medium sized bowl. Add the melted butter and stir until well combined. Press the crumbs into the bottom and sides of a 9-10” tart pan with a removable bottom. Bake in the preheated oven for 9 minutes or until set. In the meantime, prepare your filling.
To prepare the filling:
In a double boiler or heavy bottomed pot set over low heat, gently melt the butter and dark chocolate, stirring regularly, until melted completely. In a large bowl, beat together the sugar and eggs until pale and slightly thickened, about 2-3 minutes. Gently fold in the melted butter and chocolate mixture and then fold in the flour, cocoa powder, and salt. Stir in the coffee just until combined and then pour the batter into the prepared crust. Bake in the oven until the top is set and only barely jiggles in the center, about 20 minutes. Allow to cool completely before cutting.
It’s finally here, y’all- #monthofchocolate! I’m so excited that it might as well be Christmas morning. We’re starting this February fest of chocolate with a super-rich and decadent flourless chocolate cake, and I can promise you it will be enough to entice you to stick around all month long.
I started this #monthofchocolate thing a couple of years ago. February, to me, is synonymous with Valentine’s Day (which is synonymous with chocolate which is synonymous with delicious), and I just knew we needed to honor the month of love by featuring only chocolate-filled recipes. If you don’t like chocolate, these 28 days might be tough for you, but I’m almost certain there will be something to come along in the next few weeks that might make a believer of you. I dare you to stick around to find out.
So we’re kicking the festivities off with this flourless chocolate cake. This is the kind of thing you make for your chocolate-loving boyfriend. I would bet it’s the kind of dessert that elicits marriage proposals or at least some kind of “my mom can’t make it like this” statement. It’s a super sexy dessert (and yes, dessert can absolutely be sexy), and it’s precisely the type of thing I’d recommend you cozy up to your boo thang with. This flourless chocolate cake is the type of dish that feels super fancy yet effortless all at the same time, something you can casually pull out of the oven and be all like, “Oh, this old thing?” Yeah, this is definitely the kind of dessert you need in your back pocket this month.
To make this flourless chocolate cake, we start by melting chocolate. I recommend 70% chocolate for a dark, rich chocolate cake, but you can certainly use semisweet baking chocolate if you prefer a little extra sugar. Melt the chocolate with butter over low heat and then set it aside while you prep the other cake elements. Egg yolks are whisked together in a large bowl with sugar, espresso powder, vanilla, and salt. We whisk basically until our arm feels like it’s going to fall off, and then you’re probably done. Fold the melted chocolate into the egg yolks and then tend to your egg whites. Simply whip them in a clean mixing bowl until they’re thick and fluffy, and then fold those into the yolk mixture with a smidge of cocoa powder. Would you believe that is it? You’re done! Gently spoon the mixture into a prepared springform pan and bake until the cake has puffed and the center no longer jiggles.
Once the flourless chocolate cake is out of the oven, you can decorate it however you please. I’ve seen some versions of this cake topped with a chocolate whipped cream and others dusted with a sprinkle of confectioner’s sugar or cocoa powder. I decided to top it with homemade truffles and little chocolate candies and nuts I had laying around, but no one will blame you if you simply serve this bad boy warm with a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream. It requires no decor because it has enough sass and appeal all on it’s own.
A few things to note about this recipe: first, the top will fall! This is apart of the deal. Don’t stress over cracks or sunken centers because this is all on purpose, okay? Basically, we incorporate air into the cake by whisking the egg yolks and whipping the egg whites. Eventually that air gets let out like a balloon with a hole in it and we’re left with a fudge-bottomed cake with a crackly meringue-like top. DREAMY. Second, don’t overwork this cake! Folding is super important here because we want to keep as much of that air in the cake as possible! Third, don’t be afraid to splurge on good chocolate here. The chocolate plays an important role in this flourless chocolate cake, so you want to use a bar that you enjoy the taste of.
I’m literally chomping at the bit to explore these #monthofchocolate recipes with you this February. I’ve got 5 (maybe 6) killer treats that will satisfy all of your chocolate-lover dreams, and I can’t wait to drool over them with you. Stay tuned and sign up on the main page of my site to get weekly recipes delivered straight to your inbox. I hope you enjoy this flourless chocolate cake, and if you try it let me know what you think! Happy Baking!
If you like this flourless chocolate cake you should check out:
This flourless chocolate cake is a fudgy cake with a meringue top. It puffs, deflates, and is incredibly rich in flavor!
Total Time:50 minutes
8 ounces dark (I use 70%) chocolate
½ cup (113 gm) unsalted butter
5 large eggs, separated
1 cup (200 gm) sugar
1 teaspoon espresso powder
¼ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
¼ cup cocoa powder
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease the bottom and sides of a 9” springform pan.
In a double boiler, gently melt the chocolate and butter together, stirring regularly until smooth.
In a large bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, sugar, espresso powder, salt, and vanilla for two minutes. Set aside.
In a large clean bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, whip the egg whites on medium speed until stiff peaks form. Pour the chocolate and butter mixture into the egg yolks and fold to combine. Fold half of the stiff egg whites and the cocoa powder into the egg yolk mixture until just barely combined and then fold in the remaining egg whites. Gently pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake in the oven about 30-35 minutes or until the center is no longer jiggly. Remove from the oven and allow to cool some before garnishing and serving.
Just in time for Memorial Day, it’s here. The easiest no-churn coffee cookie dough ice cream that is sure to rock the face off of all of your weekend festivites. Don’t believe me? Then take a spare 25 minutes and give it a try for yourself.
This no-churn coffee cookie dough ice cream is a result of my poor decision making, born out of my inability to choose a favorite ice cream flavor. Shopping for ice cream at the grocery store requires a ridiculous amount of mental focus for me. How anyone is able to choose just one flavor is beyond me. Mint chocolate chip or coffee crunch? Strawberry cheesecake or birthday cake? Gelato or fro-yo? I ask you, WHO IS STRONG ENOUGH TO MAKE THESE DECISIONS? I think we need to bring back the guy who created the Neapolitan flavor. Combining three in one, that guy knew what was up. Or the groundbreaking marketing guy at Panera who came up with the “You Pick Two” concept. Let’s get them in the ice cream plants and start creating half gallons filled with coconut sorbet and vanilla bean. Rocky road and butter pecan. Peanut butter brownie and caramel swirl. WHO IS WITH ME?
With this no-churn coffee cookie dough ice cream, you don’t have to choose. You get the best of two worlds- the subtle punch of espresso and swirls of hot fudge, mixed with nuggets of sweet and salty no-bake chocolate chip cookie dough in every single bite. It’s the stuff dreams are made of. The best part is that this frozen treat requires no ice cream maker or special equipment, and i requires only about 25 minutes of active prep time. Lucky you.
We get started making this ice cream by doing work on the cookie dough. It’s a magical recipe, really, with just a little butter, sugar, and flour. Throw in some mini chocolate chips and you’re looking at a party! The dough works best if you let it chill briefly. That way, the dough crumbles easily into little bite-sized nibs that are perfect for folding into your ice cream mixture.
The coffee ice cream base comes together with literally only three ingredients- heavy cream, espresso powder, and sweetened condensed milk. The espresso powder (instant coffee will work in a pinch) gets dissolved in the heavy cream before it gets whipped to oblivion. We’re looking for thick, fluffy peaks here. To sweeten it up, we fold in an entire can of sweetened condensed milk which gives us a super creamy ice cream once frozen. All of those chocolate chip cookie dough nibs get folded into the ice cream base and- Voilà!- no-churn coffee cookie dough ice cream. If you’re feeling extra jazzy, you can do like I did and drizzle in some chocolate fudge sauce. I prefer this recipe, but you can use whichever you like.
It’s no accident that I’m sharing this recipe today. If you can’t munge on hot dogs and salty chips and creamy scoops if ice cream on a summer holiday like Memorial Day, WHEN CAN YOU? These summer days are meant for melty cones of frozen dessert, laying in the grass, and breathing in the sights and sounds of summer. So do yourself a favor and do it- take it all in.
If you’ve always wanted to make ice cream but are unsure or don’t know how, try this one. You won’t be disappointed with the outcome of this no-churn coffee cookie dough ice cream situation. And to the families who are quietly observing tomorrow’s holiday, remembering their loved ones who were lost while fighting for their country, thank you. Today, we grieve with you. We honor your family and extend our deepest gratitude for their sacrifice. I pray that you hold your chin high tomorrow knowing that a nation of people have hope and promise because of their work.
If you like this No-Churn Coffee Cookie Dough Ice Cream, you may like:
This no-churn coffee cookie dough ice cream is a java scented ice cream base speckled with chunks of salty chocolate chip cookie dough and drizzles of hot fudge sauce.
For the cookie dough
½ cup (113 gm) unsalted butter, room temperature
2/3 cup (130 gm) brown sugar
1/3 cup (65 gm) sugar
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
¾ cup (100 gm) flour
1 cup (150 gm) mini chocolate chips
For the coffee ice cream
2 cups (480 mL) heavy whipping cream
1–1/2 tablespoons instant espresso
1 (14 oz) can of sweetened condensed milk
¼ cup warmed hot fudge sauce (optional)
To prepare the cookie dough
Beat the butter on medium speed in a medium sized bowl until smooth. Add the brown sugar and sugar and continue beating on medium to cream together, about 1 minute. Add the salt, vanilla, and flour and beat on low just until all of the ingredients are combined. Add the chocolate chips and beat to combine. Place the cookie dough in the fridge to cool if desired. Once chilled, the dough should easily crumble into 1/8” dough balls. Set aside in the fridge while you make the ice cream.
To prepare the coffee ice cream
In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, sprinkle the espresso powder over the top of the heavy cream. Stir together to combine so that the espresso powder begins dissolving. You can add a teaspoon more or less of espresso to this recipe depending on your taste preferences. After about five minutes, the espresso powder should be nearly dissolved. Stir together once more. Use a whip attachment to beat on low speed until frothy and then increase the speed to medium high until whipped to stiff peaks. Pour the sweetened condensed milk into a separate large bowl and then fold in about half of the whipped cream. Once well distributed, fold in the remaining half of whipped cream.
To assemble the ice cream
Sprinkle the cookie dough bites into the ice cream base and fold together. (If you prefer a creamier, less chunky ice cream, you may want to start with adding about 2/3 of the chunks and saving the rest for later. I love a super chunky ice cream, but you may prefer not using all of the dough. You decide!) Spread ¼ of the mixture into the bottom of a metal loaf pan or another freezer safe container. Drizzle in some of the hot fudge sauce. Repeat this process three more times until most of the ice cream mixture and fudge sauce has been used. I usually have about ½ cup of leftover ice cream that I freeze in a separate container. Cover with foil and freeze until solid, at least 6 hours or overnight. Enjoy frozen!
In our house, summer shows up with a bang, and for a few months, our days are changed. We plan our weekdays around sidewalk chalk and our weekends around trips to the lake. Afternoons are spent in wet bathing suits and bare feet, and the smells of charcoal fires and fresh cut grass abound. Even our freezer changes, filling up with blueberries that we’ve picked, fish that we’ve caught, and frozen treats like the Samoa ice cream that I’m sharing with you all today.
Summertime comes every year at no surprise, yet I’m always taken back by how much I’ve missed it. By how good it feels to thaw my bones. Sure, in a few weeks, I’ll beg for an autumn breeze. I’ll wish away the heat and the sweat. I’ll long for chunky sweaters and curse my jean shorts for forcing me to shave my legs one more time. But for now, I’ll enjoy the glow. I’ll take in all the barbecues and salty-skinned babies and Jimmy Buffet sounds that these days have to offer, because I know we need this season. Our family needs the lazy, chill pace that summer calls for.
I’m sure your days may look different. Maybe you’re traveling abroad or camping. Maybe you’re stuck inside the four walls of an office. Maybe you’re home-bound with a new baby or spending your hours studying for summer school courses and exams. Wherever you find yourself this summer, I hope that you’ll spend a few moments taking it in. Do something worth writing home about, even if that something is nothing at all. And if you find yourself unsure of what to make of your time, consider making ice cream. Specifically, this no-churn Samoa ice cream.
The idea of this ice cream came from a lone box of Girl Scout Cookies that Brett had stashed in the freezer. For weeks, he would pass over slices of cake and cups of homemade butterscotch pudding for one or two frozen cookies. Infuriating. I was not going to let my desserts, the product of my blood, sweat, and tears be passed over for some pre-packaged, commercially-prepared snacks.
Ok, ok, that’s being dramatic, I know. Girl Scout cookies are the best. I’m sorry for even bringing it up. But still. I was determined to win him over with Girl Scout Cookie inspired ice cream. And so Samoa ice cream was born.
This ice cream is one of those super Kate-ish type recipes where you can make this as from-scratch or as semi-homemade as you want. I love doing it the long, homemade way, but I totally get that not every one of you feels that way. So, to make things simple, I’m going to break this recipe down for you so that you can do you. You can make this however ya please, cool?
To prepare this Samoa ice cream, we start by making a no-churn coconut base. Like all no-churn ice cream, this starts with a little whipped cream, but here, we amp up the coconutty flavor by trading out the sweetened condensed milk for a can of cream of coconut. Sidenote: this is not the same thing as coconut cream. This is not the same thing as coconut milk. This is cream of coconut, okay? Don’t make the mistake of buying the wrong thing. I use this brand, but you can use whichever kind works best for you.
Next, we add in a few mix-ins. True to the Girl Scout cookie, I added toasted coconut flakes and crumbled store-bought shortbread cookies. Once all of that is folded in with the coconut ice cream base, we layer in a few more toppings- salted caramel and chocolate fudge sauce. Here, you can sub in some high quality store-bought varieties if you please, but in case you’re wondering, I make this caramel and this fudge sauce. This ice cream won’t use the entire yield of those two recipes, so now you have a little bit of caramel and fudge to store in your fridge for a rainy day. Lucky you! Might I suggest using your caramel to make this chocolate caramel crumble cake or this salty caramel peanut butter pie?
Once completed, this Samoa ice cream is a no-churn coconut ice cream filled with shards of toasted coconut, swirls of salty caramel and rich chocolate fudge sauce, and crunchy bits of shortbread cookies. After a brief stint in the freezer to firm up, the ice cream is sweet, salty, and altogether a flavorful, frozen experience that is deeply reminiscent of the Girl Scout cookies we all know and love. This is a brilliant way to celebrate those campfire treats and to savor that baked flavor even through the warmest of months. And since you’re dying to know, I’ll tell you that Brett tried the ice cream, loved it, and then promptly continued eating the original cookies from the freezer. Men. Am I right?
When planning out your summer months, I hope you’ll carve out space to make and enjoy this Samoa ice cream. Nothing says summer like an ice cream cone, and once you try one filled with this frozen dream, I think you’ll agree. Happy summer to you all and much love from our family to yours. Cheers!
If you like this Samoa ice cream, considering trying:
This Samoa ice cream is a no-churn coconut ice cream filled with toasted coconut, swirls of caramel and fudge sauce, and bits of shortbread cookies.
2 cups (240 mL) heavy whipping cream
1–15 ounce can cream of coconut (not coconut milk)
1 cup (85 gm) unsweetened shredded coconut, toasted (see notes)
1 cup (120 gm) crumbled shortbread cookies (see notes)
1/3 (80 mL) cup prepared salted caramel, slightly warmed for drizzling (see notes)
¼ cup (60 mL) prepared chocolate fudge sauce, slightly warm for drizzling (see notes)
To prepare the ice cream
In the bowl of a stand mixer or in a large mixing bowl, beat the whipping cream on low speed until it becomes frothy. Increase the speed to high and beat until stiff peaks form. Once whipped, fold in the cream of coconut until well combined. (Sidenote: If the cream of coconut has large solid clumps in it when you open the can, you can immerse most of the can in a bowl of hot water and then stir it vigorously until the clumps melt.) Fold in the crumbled shortbread cookies and coconut.
Spread about ¼ of the ice cream mixture into a large, quart sized freezer safe container (I use a metal loaf pan). Drizzle in ¼ of the caramel and fudge sauce and then swirl it in slightly by dragging a butter knife or spoon through the ice cream mixture a time or two. Repeat this process 3 times until all of the ice cream, caramel, and fudge sauce has been used. Cover with plastic wrap or foil and allow to set up in the freezer until frozen, about 6 hours or overnight. Ice cream will keep in the freezer if covered for about 2 weeks.
To toast shredded coconut, spread coconut out on a baking sheet and cook in a 350 degree oven, tossing occasionally, until golden brown. This will take anywhere from 5-10 minutes depending on the oven. Do not let burn. Once toasted, remove from pan to cool.
I used Girl Scout shortbread cookies, but you can use any brand (or even homemade!) vanilla shortbread. In a pinch, vanilla wafers would work as well.
I keep a jar of caramel sauce in my fridge to add to recipes like this. I prefer Bobby Flay’s recipe for salted caramel (see blog post for link), but any variety of caramel sauce that you enjoy eating would be fine here.
Sometimes, we need a surprise up our sleeves. An extra card in our deck, a furry rabbit hiding in our hat- anything to make our audience think we’re all but magical. Friends, I may be short on trick mirrors and trap doors, but this super simple, make-ahead mint brownie ice cream cake is for sure going to be the disappearing act at your next dinner party. It’s that awesome. So let’s get to it!
You probably already know how much I love no-churn ice cream. There’s always a quart or two in my freezer, because the only thing better than homemade treats is one that is only three ingredients and takes less than 10 minutes to prepare. It makes me feel domestic and awesome, and we all need that sometimes, right? But when I’m looking for a showstopping dessert to share at a gathering of some sort, I want something with a bit more pizzazz, you know? Something that makes everyone lick their plate and exclaim, “SWEET MERCY, WHERE IS THE ANGEL THAT MADE THIS!?” Mint brownie ice cream cake is the best of both worlds. The cake is delicious to taste and easy on the eyes, but with only three steps, this recipe is also nearly fool proof, with multiple options for simplifying and making ahead. Let me just go ahead and give you the run down.
Step one: make the brownies.
If you’re reading this baking blog, it’s safe to assume you’ve made brownies before. I’ve included the recipe for an easy brownie that I use for frozen desserts, but you could totally use a box brownie mix or even (gasp!) store bought ones. I won’t tell. And your taste testers will have no clue. Promise.
Step two: make the ice cream.
If there is something easier than making no-churn ice cream, I don’t want to know. Pour the sweetened condensed milk and heavy cream into your mixing bowl and you’re literally already halfway there. For this mint brownie ice cream cake, we split our ingredients in half to make two flavors (because options, duh): a chocolate ice cream and a mint chip ice cream. If you don’t like mint chip ice cream, you can lose that flavor extract and use hazelnut instead. Or how about coconut? Almond? Root beer? Whatever, just use whatever flavor you want, ok? If you’re looking for an ice cream substitute though, I can’t help you, and honestly, we are probably no longer friends. Just kidding. We can still be friends. But don’t push it.
Step three: assemble your cake.
This is probably the hardest part of preparing this mint brownie ice cream cake. If you’re like me and are a bit of a perfectionist when it comes to the looks of your treats, this step will require some attention from you. At this point, you have the option of preparing a chocolate ganache to layer on the inside and garnish the outside of the cake with. You can also crush up some chocolate sandwich cookies if you want an extra layer of crunch in your masterpiece. Either way, you layer the ice cream with the prepared brownies, and before you can say “Bippity Boppity Boo,” your bag full of ingredients has transformed into this fab mint brownie ice cream cake that will impress the glass slippers off of everyone you know. So in short, if you want to make this cake 100% from scratch, you will prepare your brownies, whip up some ice cream, and layer the two with some homemade ganache and whipped cream. But if you want to take easy street, you simply acquire brownies, make some ice cream, and dump it all into a pan with some store bought fudge sauce and chocolate cookies. Literally, the hardest part of making this mint brownie ice cream cake is waiting patiently for it to freeze up. Literally.
Our #monthofchocolate extravaganza has been pretty fun these past few weeks. Be sure to look back at the past few blog posts for other chocolaty goodness and recipe inspiration. Somehow two mint chocolate recipes made it into the lineup, which either means I really like mint, or I’m secretly pregnant again (just kidding, Mom, I am not pregnant. Don’t get too excited.) March may have a bit less chocolate in it, but like any self-respecting addict, I won’t be able to stay away for too long. Give this mint brownie ice cream cake a try, and let me know how it goes! I strongly recommend going ahead and making it this week, wrapping it in foil, and saving it in your freezer for a rainy day. You never know when you might need that fancy trick up your sleeve. Cheers to you and have a terrific Tuesday!
4 large eggs 1 cup sugar, sifted 1 cup brown sugar, sifted 8 ounces melted butter (2 sticks) 1 1/4 cups cocoa, sifted 2 teaspoons vanilla extract 1/2 cup flour, sifted 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
For the ice cream:
1 (14 ounce) can of sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups heavy whipping cream
1 teaspoon peppermint extract
Green food coloring, if desired
2 ounces finely chopped semisweet chocolate or mini chocolate chips
For the cake topping:
1 cup crushed chocolate sandwich cookies
Either 1-8 ounce container of non-dairy whipped topping (Cool Whip) or
1 cups heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the ganache (see notes for shortcut):
4 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped or chocolate chips
4 ounces heavy cream
To prepare the brownies:
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees and spray your pan with baking spray. These brownies can be prepared in an 8” square/round pan, or, to prepare a loaf shaped ice cream cake as I did in my photos, bake in two bread loaf pans.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the eggs until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add sugar and beat to combine, about 1 minute. Add the remaining ingredients and stir on low until combined.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan(s) and bake until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. For an 8” pan, this will take about 40-45 minutes, and for two loaf pans, it will take about 20-25 minutes. Allow the brownies to cool completely before assembling the cake. You can speed up this process by cooling them in the fridge, or by preparing the day before.
To prepare the chocolate ice cream:
Pour half (7 ounces) of the sweetened condensed milk to a large mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer. Add the cocoa powder and vanilla and beat until well combined and no lumps remain. Add one cup of the heavy whipping cream and beat the mixture until stiff peaks form. Set aside in the fridge while you prepare the remaining elements.
To prepare the mint chocolate chip ice cream:
Combine the remaining cup of heavy whipping cream, the remaining sweetened condensed milk, and the peppermint extract, and whip until stiff peaks form. Add two drops (more, if needed) of green food coloring towards the end of the whipping process, if desired. Fold in the chocolate or chocolate chips and set aside until ready to assemble the cake.
To prepare the cake topping:
In the bowl of a stand mixer or in a large mixing bowl, whip the cream on low speed until it is frothy. Increase speed to high, beating until soft peaks form. Add the sugar and the extract and beat until stiff peaks form. Set aside until ready to assemble cake.
To prepare the chocolate ganache:
Place the chocolate in a heat proof bowl. Heat the cream in the microwave or on the stovetop until almost bubbling and steaming. Pour directly on top of the chocolate and cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Allow to sit for about five minutes. Stir with a whisk or rubber spatula until the chocolate comes together and is a smooth ganache. You can heat briefly in the microwave in 5 second increments if it remains a bit lumpy. If the ganache sets out too long, it will thicken back up, so just reheat in 10-15 second increments as needed.
To assemble the cake:
Line a loaf pan or an 8” springform pan with plastic wrap, leaving several inches worth of wrap extending over the sides. This will make the removal process easier.
If preparing in a loaf pan, spread the mint ice cream evenly over the bottom of the pan. Sprinkle chocolate cookie crumbles over top and drizzle in some ganache or fudge sauce. Top with a layer of brownie (see notes). Spread the chocolate ice cream over top and smooth out. Cover with a layer of plastic wrap and freeze for at least 6 hours or overnight, if possible. When ready to frost, remove the cake from the pan to a serving dish. Peel off all of the plastic wrap and cover with whipped cream or topping. Drizzle the ganache over top and allow to freeze for 2-4 hours or until frozen solid, if desired. Alternatively, you can serve immediately, but keep in mind the hot ganache may melt the cake some. Serve frozen and keep covered with plastic wrap and foil to maintain freshness for up to a week.
If you want to prepare the cake in a round springform pan, I recommend layering as follows: brownies, mint ice cream, chocolate cookie crumbles, ganache, chocolate ice cream. Then freeze your cake and frost with whipped cream as desired. Really you can assemble the cake in any manner you like, but the cake is easiest to cut when the brownies are toward the bottom.
Feel free to use boxed brownies or store-bought prepared brownies. I prefer Ghiradelli Dark Chocolate Brownie mix when using boxed brownies.
I recommend preparing your brownies in the pan you plan to assemble the cake in so that the brownie is the same size as the cake. However, you can also crumble your prepared brownies into the cake. It won’t make a difference on the final outcome of the cake.
Instead of the chocolate ganache, you can substitute in a store bought hot fudge sauce. Melt slightly in the microwave in 15 second intervals until the sauce is melted but not too hot. Allow to cool slightly before pouring on your cake.
You don’t have to use crumbled chocolate cookies in the cake, but the crunch is not. Alternatively, you could use some mini chocolate chips, Thin Mint Cookies, or even chocolate graham crackers!
Pickles and ice cream- the stereotypical pregnancy craving foods. I will validate 50% of this theory because ice cream has definitely been on my radar lately. In fact, if I had to sum up my pregnancy cravings in one food, it just might be today’s recipe: no-churn mocha fudge brownie ice cream. Yeah, I know, it’s a mouthful. But so is this ice cream, so you’re gonna want to stick around for this one.
At the time of writing this, I am 26 weeks pregnant and just days away from entering my third trimester. According to the pregnancy app on my phone, the baby that I’m currently growing is approximately the size of a green onion. Let’s pause here for a minute, because I really need someone to explain this to me. I have a masters degree in science and I still don’t understand how a baby that small can make me feel about the size of a small tug boat. How can a green onion cause even small features like my nose and chin to feel bloated? And what about all this heartburn? Does requiring an Alka-Seltzer after eating nothing more than a slice of toast sound like the mischievous workings of a green onion? I don’t think so. Whoever is coming up with these food/baby comparisons (and I’m thinking it’s gotta be a man) should consider modifying this method of measurement and stick with something that is a little more gentle on a mama’s heart. I don’t want to look at the scale and see that I’ve gained X number of pounds, only to be told that my baby is the size of an avocado pit. That is just rude.
But let’s not talk about that. Let’s talk about ice cream.
I’m a huge fan of making ice cream the old fashioned way but sometimes you just ain’t got time for that. This no-churn ice cream recipe comes together pretty quickly, requires zero stovetop cooking, and BONUS:
I decided to take easy street on this recipe by using Ghiradelli box brownies, but you could certainly make yours from scratch if you’d like and we will all pat you on the back for being an overachiever.
We start the ice cream making process by baking up a small pan of good ‘ole boxed brownies with the chic addition of a little bit of espresso, just because. Incidentally, if your toddler eats half of the brownies before you even get started- don’t worry. There will be plenty.
Once the brownies are cooled and diced, we whip up the rest of the ingredients. Here’s where you will win for being an overachiever: use homemade whipped cream. It’s better that way.
Add some reserved brownie mix, a bit of Kahlua (because we’re all grown ups here), some hot fudge, and POOF- ice cream.
The hardest part of this process is not actually making the ice cream… it’s waiting for your ice cream to set up in the freezer. You can do like I did and set aside the unfrozen leftovers in the fridge to feed your man friend for dessert. My husband, always the sophisticated palate, said the unfrozen mocha ice cream was “the best thing I’d ever made.” Really? The best thing I’ve ever made is unfrozen ice cream with boxed brownies chopped up in it? [Shakes head]
The terrific thing about this method of ice cream making is that it’s super adaptable to a number of flavors, and start to finish, this process can take less than an hour. Magic. So give no-churn mocha brownie fudge ice cream a try. I hear green onions really dig ice cream so if you need me, I’ll be camped out by the freezer. You know, for the baby.
No-churn mocha brownie fudge ice cream: rich, smooth, no-churn mocha ice cream laced with fudge and brownie pieces.
For the brownie pieces
1 (20 ounce) box of dark chocolate brownie mix, divided
2 teaspoons instant espresso
1/3 cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons water
For the ice cream
1 can sweetened condensed milk
2 tablespoons of coffee liqueur
2 cups heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup hot fudge sauce, melted and cooled slightly
To prepare the brownies
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Lightly spray an 8″ metal baking pan with cooking spray.
Measure out 1-1/4 cups of brownie mix, sifting out any chocolate chips, and set aside. This will be used later in ice cream.
In a bowl, stir together oil, water, and egg until combined. Add the instant espresso and remaining brownie mix, stirring to combine. Pour into the prepared pan and bake in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, or until the edges are barely set and the center still looks barely underbaked. Brownies will continue to cook once taken out of oven. Set aside to cool.
To prepare the ice cream
Cut brownies into 1/2″ squares. Set in freezer while preparing other ingredients to keep cool.
In a medium sized bowl, stir together sweetened condensed milk, coffee liqueur and 1-1/4 cups of the reserved brownie mix.
In a separate bowl, whip the cold, heavy whipping cream until stiff peaks form.
Gently fold 1/3 of the whipped cream into the sweetened condensed milk mixture. Once combined, fold in the remaining whipped cream. Fold in 1-1/2 cups of the brownie pieces until well combined.
Spoon the brownie ice cream mixture into a standard loaf pan until about 1/3 of the way filled. Drizzle in a bit of hot fudge and drop in a few brownies pieces as well. Repeat this process until the loaf pan is filled.
Allow to set up in a freezer for at least 6 hours.
For a stronger brownie flavor, you can use all of the reserved 1-1/2 cups of brownie mix in the ice cream.
The addition of the coffee liquor helps to keep the ice cream smooth and from freezing too hard. If you don’t care for the taste, try adding another type of liquor in its place. If you’d prefer not to use alcohol, be sure to set the ice cream out a couple minutes prior to eating to maintain good scoopability.
If you do a really good job about folding your ice cream together gently, you will likely have a cup of the mixture that will not fit in the loaf pan. Feel free to set this aside or freeze in another container.