I have an idea! Let’s combine the absolute BEST flavors in the world into one gooey blob of goodness, slice it up and eat it. You’re in?! Cool.
I would just like to point out that in addition to featuring a rich, dark chocolate and a subtle kick of Mexican spices, these brownies are grain-free! That is what I call a #cocinadecellaTRIFECTA, amigos.
I stumbled upon this recipe by The Food Network’s Áaron Sanchez while trying to come up with a menu for my Día de la Candelaria feast. You can read about the holiday here, but, to put it simply, I found a baby Jesus figurine in my slice of the Rosca de Reyes bread (cake?) on Three King’s Day a few weeks ago, which designated me as the host for this subsequent feast. In Mexican tradition, the host usually makes tamales and atole for his or her guests. I’ve never had atole before but reading about it gave me the shivers (haha… seriously. have you had this before? I need details). I very seriously considered making tamales, but I had already made some a couple of months ago and really wanted to use this opportunity to experiment with other Mexican recipes. THUS: spicy brownies. I also made chicken fajita empanadas (gluten-free), a simple but fresh avocado salad, the best black beans I’ve ever tasted, and QUINOA CON LECHE. I posted pictures on my instagram (@cocinadecella), so perhaps you already know this. Would you like me to share any of the other recipes? Let me know!
Back to the recipe! The first time I made these I followed the directions to the tee, nervous to mess up what appeared to be such a well-reviewed recipe. Second time around, I made these brownies my b!$#& with two simple steps: I quadrupled the amount of chili and replaced the wheat flour with almond meal and a bit of xanthan gum. The result? Deep, dark, chocolatey brownies that are nutty, dense, rich with cinnamon spice and packing HEAT! Yes.
Grain-Free Spicy Mexican Brownies by cocinadecella.com
- 1 cup (two sticks) unsalted butter
- 2 cups sugar
- 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
- 4 eggs, beaten
- 2/3 cup of unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 cup of almond meal
- 1/2 teaspoon of xanthan gum
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and line a 13 x 9 pan with foil. You don’t have to line it with foil but I have found that this makes the brownies easier to remove from the pan once you’re done. Spray cooking spray all over the pan/foil. You can also use butter but that would require a bit more elbow grease.
Melt the butter over medium heat on your stove. Do not bring to a boil! Once all the butter has melted, remove from heat.
Add sugar, vanilla and eggs, being sure to mix well between each addition. I also like to add the eggs in very slowly as a I mix, as I’ve noticed that adding eggs to a hot mixture can cause them to scramble (ew!).
Add the cocoa, cinnamon, and chili powder and mix.
Add the almond meal, xanthan gum, baking powder and salt. Mix until just combined (overmixing can cause you to deactivate the baking powder, which would prevent your brownies from rising). Short anecdote: I used the almond meal that I created while making almond milk a few weeks back! So glad to finally have an opportunity to use it!
Pour brownie batter into pan and bake for 20-25 minutes, depending on your oven (I pulled mine out after about 24 minutes).
Let cool before eating if you can resist — you can appreciate the intricacies of the flavor so much more when they’re at room temp! I’d suggest placing on a wire rack for ten minutes and then transferring to the fridge for 30 minutes or so. From there, set them on the counter and allow them to come to room temp. If they don’t disappear immediately, leave them on the counter in some tupperware until they do.
What do you think? Would you try a spicy brownie or is that too weird for you?