Brownie Baked Alaska

Brownie baked Alaska combines fudgy homemade brownies with your favorite ice cream flavor, such as mint chocolate chip, and is topped with toasted marshmallow meringue for a truly memorable and impressive treat.

This brownie baked Alaska recipe shows how easy it is to make this incredibly impressive and delicious dessert! Made with a brownie base, mint chocolate ice cream, and a toasted marshmallow topping! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

The start of summer can only mean 1 thing: ice cream!!! Along with many reader requests for the recipe, as well as my own desire to tackle this “difficult” retro dessert, I devoted some time in the kitchen to baked Alaska-ing. 3,845 quarts of ice cream and 2 emergency trips to the grocery store later, let me present you with baked Alaska and baked Alaska cupcakes!

Let’s get one thing straight, though…

Better with Brownie

I don’t like ice cream cake. I don’t like ice cream with my cake and I don’t like cake with my ice cream. I understand that’s weird because 99% of the world loves cake and ice cream together. But you know what I do like? BROWNIES AND ICE CREAM.

So, bakers, this isn’t your typical baked Alaska with sponge cake at the base. This is brownie baked Alaska and after testing both versions, I say with 100% certainty that brownie baked Alaska is both tastier AND easier. I’m equipping you with a full tutorial, recipe, step-by-step photos, and a video to guide you along.

Let’s do this.

This brownie baked Alaska recipe shows how easy it is to make this incredibly impressive and delicious dessert! Made with a brownie base, mint chocolate ice cream, and a toasted marshmallow topping! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

This brownie baked Alaska recipe shows how easy it is to make this incredibly impressive and delicious dessert! Made with a brownie base, mint chocolate ice cream, and a toasted marshmallow topping! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

What is Baked Alaska?

Traditional baked Alaska combines 3 layers:

  1. Sponge Cake
  2. Ice Cream
  3. Soft Marshmallow-y Swiss Meringue Topping

The meringue topping, applied in decorative peaks and swirls, completely encloses the ice cream underneath. The entire thing is baked or torched until the meringue is toasted. Baked Alaska can even be served flambéed, but I definitely don’t trust myself doing that! The ice cream doesn’t initially melt under the protective meringue shell, but will begin to deliciously drop down into the brownie once served. Baked Alaska is an impressive dessert and, like I said above, so darn good with a brownie base!

This brownie baked Alaska recipe shows how easy it is to make this incredibly impressive and delicious dessert! Made with a brownie base, mint chocolate ice cream, and a toasted marshmallow topping! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Ice Cream for Baked Alaska

To make the big baked Alaska, soften some ice cream and spread it into a 9-inch 2.5 quart bowl (I recommend the one in this set) and freeze it. I chose mint chocolate chip ice cream for the big baked Alaska and coffee ice cream for the baked Alaska cupcakes. Use whichever flavor, homemade or store-bought, that you love most. Everything tastes good with brownies!!

The bowl molds the ice cream into the dome shape for the baked Alaska dessert. Lining the bowl with plastic wrap, as you watch in my video below, allows for easy removal when it’s time to assemble the brownie baked Alaska.

How to make brownie baked Alaska on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Brownie Baked Alaska

Bake brownies in a 9-inch round cake pan, the perfect size for your 9-inch dome-shaped ice cream. You can use your favorite brownie batter, just make sure it’s the appropriate amount for a 9-inch round cake pan. I tested and suggest:

Both brownie recipes are perfect for the brownie baked Alaska cupcakes, too. Cupcake baking time is similar for both recipes and included in the written recipe below.

How to Make Swiss Meringue

It tastes like marshmallows! Toasted soft and gooey marshmallows, the best part of a campfire s’more. The toasted meringue exterior cracks as you take a bite and soft marshmallow melts down into the ice cream. For this reason, we’re applying a thick layer of that glorious marshmallow meringue.

We’ve made the meringue a few times before:

  1. S’mores Tartlets
  2. Peanut Butter Hi-Hat Cupcakes
  3. S’mores Brownie Cupcakes
  4. Sky High Chocolate Mousse Pie (this recipe was a baking challenge in 2017!)

You can watch me prepare the meringue in the helpful video below. Whisk egg whites, sugar, and cream of tartar together constantly over a pot of simmering water. The egg whites will gently heat and the sugar will dissolve. The cream of tartar stabilizes and shapes the egg whites, just like we discussed in our angel food cupcakes.

Meringue topping for brownie baked Alaska on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Swiss Meringue Tip: When gently cooking these 3 ingredients together, simply use a large pot and bowl. You can use the stainless steel bowl that comes with your stand mixer or a glass bowl (I used one from the set I keep recommending). You’ll need your stand mixer in the next step anyway.

Once the egg whites, sugar, and cream of tartar are gently heated, begin whipping. This step incorporates air into the meringue and after a few minutes, you’ll have stiff glossy peaks. Go ahead and taste it. It tastes like homemade marshmallow fluff!!

You Can Use a Kitchen Torch for Baked Alaska

Spread that marshmallow goodness all over the ice cream and begin torching. I suppose this should be called “torched Alaska” instead? I know plenty of you don’t own a kitchen torch, so oven instructions are included in the recipe below. Baking is the more traditional step anyway. (But I will say one thing! Kitchen torches are surprisingly inexpensive for what you get and when my mom offered me hers, I thought to myself… will I ever use this thing?? and the couple times a year that I need it, I’m glad I have one. It really makes a difference!)

Meringue topping for baked Alaska on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Toasted meringue for brownie baked Alaska on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Baked Alaska Cupcakes

The mini baked Alaskas are so much fun and, conveniently enough, much quicker and easier.

  • no special size bowls required
  • no extra freezing
  • no extra assembling

Simply scoop any flavor ice cream on top of the baked and cooled brownie cupcakes, then cover with meringue topping. I know many of you will appreciate the simpler cupcake version. And, to be honest, it was fun serving individual baked Alaskas to my friends the other week!!

Want to make the brownie baked Alaska cupcakes even more exciting? Use different flavor ice creams so it’s a surprise which flavor you’ll get!

Brownie baked Alaska cupcakes with coffee ice cream, a brownie base, and a creamy toasty marshmallow meringue topping! Easy recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Brownie baked Alaska cupcakes with coffee ice cream, a brownie base, and a creamy toasty marshmallow meringue topping! Easy recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Baked Alaska, the big guy or the smaller cupcake version, is wildly fun. If you’re looking for a unique dessert with a mega wow factor, this one’s it. Everyone… and I mean everyone… was impressed when I served these. Many had no idea there was ice cream hiding underneath and both the adult and kid’s eyes widened when I cut into it. MAGIC!!! You can begin preparing it a few days ahead and the meringue-covered Alaska holds up well in the freezer before torching/baking. And using your favorite ice cream flavor is an awesome way to customize it for your crowd.

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This brownie baked Alaska recipe shows how easy it is to make this incredibly impressive and delicious dessert! Made with a brownie base, mint chocolate ice cream, and a toasted marshmallow topping! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Brownie Baked Alaska

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 9 hours
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Total Time: 9 hours, 40 minutes
  • Yield: serves 10-12
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Brownie baked Alaska combines fudgy homemade brownies with your favorite ice cream flavor and is topped with toasted marshmallow meringue for a truly memorable and impressive treat.


Ingredients

Meringue

  • 4 large egg whites, at room temperature
  • 1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Special Equipment

  • Kitchen torch (if you don’t have one, use the oven as directed in step 10)
  • 9-inch 2.5 quart bowl (I recommend the one in this set)
  • Plastic wrap/cling wrap

Instructions

  1. Please watch the video tutorial in the blog post to help guide you. Read the recipe in full before beginning as the ice cream is time sensitive.
  2. Remove ice cream from the freezer and allow to soften on the counter for 10 minutes. As it softens, line a 9-inch 2.5 quart bowl (I recommend the one in this set) with plastic wrap with enough overhang to easily remove the ice cream as a whole once it’s frozen.
  3. Scoop softened ice cream into another large bowl and using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat until creamy. Spread ice cream into prepared lined bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and freeze for 8 hours and up to 3 days. I freeze it overnight. The longer it’s frozen, the sturdier the cake and neater the slices.
  4. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Grease a 9-inch round cake pan, then line with parchment paper. Grease the parchment paper as well. The brownie is difficult to remove from the cake pan as a whole without the parchment.
  5. Pour brownie batter into prepared cake pan and bake for 32-38 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out mostly clean without any wet batter. (This brownie recipe is thick and could take a little longer in your oven.) Allow to cool completely in the pan. Once cool, run a knife around the brownie edges, then invert the pan to fully release the brownie as a whole.
  6. Remove bowl of ice cream from the freezer. Peel back the plastic wrap and place the brownie layer on top (which will be the base of the baked Alaska). Cover back up with plastic wrap and freeze for 30 minutes. (Make the meringue while you wait.)
  7. Make the meringue: Place egg whites, sugar, and cream of tartar in a heatproof bowl. Set bowl over a saucepan filled with two inches of simmering water. Do not let it touch the water. (You can use a double boiler if you have one.) Whisk constantly until sugar is dissolved, about 4 minutes. Transfer the mixing bowl to an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. Add the vanilla. (FYI I forgot to add it in the video!) Beat on high speed for 5-6 minutes until stiff glossy peaks form.
  8. If using the oven in step 10, preheat oven to 450°F (232°C) now.
  9. Remove ice cream/brownie from the freezer. Carefully remove from the bowl and peel off the plastic wrap. If using a kitchen torch, invert onto a heatproof serving plate or cake stand. If using the oven, invert onto a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil.
  10. Spread meringue all over the ice cream, completely enclosing it. Use a spoon to create big peaks and swirls. Make sure there is absolutely no ice cream peeking out. If using the kitchen torch, toast the entire meringue topping. If using the oven, bake in preheated oven for 4-5 minutes until toasted.
  11. Use a sharp knife (I suggest a serrated knife) to cut thin slices and serve immediately. Store leftovers in the freezer.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead Instructions: Step 3 can be prepared up to 3 days in advance. Brownie base can be prepared up to 3 days in advance as well. Cover and store at room temperature. My recommendation for making ahead is to assemble the entire brownie baked Alaska with meringue topping, freezing for up to 1-2 days, then torching or baking right before serving. The meringue covered Alaska holds up wonderfully in the freezer and your guests will love to watch the meringue toast! The brownie will be pretty hard, but warms up quickly as you begin slicing.
  2. Special Tools: KitchenAid Stand Mixer | Glass Mixing Bowls | Egg Separator9-inch Round Cake Pan | Muffin Pan | Kitchen Torch
  3. Ice Cream: Ice cream is sold in 1.5 quart containers. You need 2 for the full baked Alaska. If making the baked Alaska brownie cupcakes, you only need 1. See next recipe note for baked Alaska brownie cupcakes.
  4. Cupcakes: To make baked Alaska brownie cupcakes, line 12-count muffin pan with liners. Pour brownie batter evenly into each, filling about ¾ full. Line a 2nd muffin pan with liners if there’s extra batter. (This brownie recipe makes about 14 and this brownie recipe makes about 18.) Bake either recipe for 22-26 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out mostly clean without any wet batter. Allow brownie cupcakes to cool completely (in the pan or out of the pan, doesn’t matter!). Once cool, unwrap each. Make meringue as directed in step 7. Top brownie cupcakes with a scoop of ice cream. Continue with step 10.

83 Comments

  1. Looks amazing! I never tried something like this before! Thank you very much for your surprising lessons! I would definitely try this challenge! Have a wonderful summer!

  2. This looks so fun Sally! Can’t wait to try it. I totally agree on the cake and ice cream. I don’t like them together! I LOVE brownies and ice cream though!!! 🙂

      1. Here’s a question – after you’ve whipped the ice cream, is it still solid enough that you’d be able to a marble-y ice cream layer with 2 flavors? Or would this just turn into a soupy mess?

      2. It won’t be completely melted, just a little soft and creamy. You’ll definitely be able to swirl two flavors together.

  3. YUM!!! The only time I have made baked Alaska was with a brownie also. Mint choice. chip ice cream looks wonderful. Never thought to do the meringue like this. Almost like my 7 minute frosting. I do love cake and ice-cream but ice-cream and anything is good to me. Haha!!

  4. Same on the cake and ice cream! I feel that ice cream gives the cake a weird texture when they collide. I’ll always take my cake zapped in the microwave for a few seconds with a glass of milk and my ice cream by itself. 🙂 I have always heard of baked alaska but never really knew what it was. How fun! Blue Bell (a ice cream brand available in the South) has an ice cream called Cookie Two Step that is cookie dough and cookies and creme ice cream combined, so you know what I’m thinking….

    1. Oh Sarah! That ice cream sounds delicious and absolutely perfect for this recipe! I can’t wait to hear what you think 🙂 Happy baking!

  5. Ah Sally, you make it look so easy! I LOVE Baked Alaska – it reminds me of the cruise I one went on, where they served us Baked Alaska on our last night. I hope it warm up where I live so I can give this a shot this month!

  6. Oh. My. Goodness. When you told us what this months challenge was gonna be, I was thinking I wouldn’t make it because I didn’t think I would like it. But now…. I have to make it! Brownies & Ice cream is like the best dessert combo ever! I think this will be on the menu for Father’s Day. 🙂
    And… I have never heard of anyone else who doesn’t like cake & ice cream. I do not like it (or pie & ice cream)! Ice cream soggs up the cake! Ikk. People just think I’m crazy to not like that combo but I’m glad there is someone else out there like me. 🙂
    Thank you Sally for inspiring me!

    1. The perfect Father’s Day dessert! And I’m glad I’m not alone with the cake & ice cream 🙂 Brownies all the way! Hope you have fun making this!

  7. Hey Sally!

    I’ve made the Nutella brownies before and they were AMAZING and I’m wondering if you used the mint ice cream with the Nutella brownies? I’m just wondering if the Nutella and mint go together or if you used the regular brownie recipe? Thanks!!

  8. I can’t wait to make this! I’ve been craving ice cream cake and I seriously Love ice cream and brownies together. The perfect pair! Now the hard part – what flavor ice cream to use?????

  9. What is the baking time for each brownie recipe when baking as cupcakes? Can’t wait to try the mini versions!! I don’t have the self control for the big one…

  10. This looks great, I may make this next weekend! Question about your make ahead tips. Would I put the entire thing together (brownie base, ice cream and meringue) and freeze? How would I make sure the brownie wasn’t rock hard when I went to take it out of the freezer, torch and serve it?

    Thanks 🙂

    1. So sorry I was unclear about that! The frozen brownie will begin to quickly thaw as you slice and serve the baked Alaska.

  11. What a stunning dessert to make. I Love that you included ice cream in our baking challenge (is there anything better!!?? I don’t see any directions in the recipe for the cupcakes and how many does this recipe make??

    1. Hi Wendy! Love your enthusiasm about the June Baking Challenge!! Thank you!
      See my recipe notes for the cupcakes.

  12. If I were to make this ahead of time (thinking of serving it for Father’s Day and prepping the day before), how would you recommend storing it in the freezer? Plastic wrap seems like it would cause a meringue-y mess and I would worry about ice crystals if I just use a cake stand or cake saver. Thoughts?

  13. Hi Sally,

    I have meringue powder I bought for making your royal icing recipe not too long ago. I’m just thinking of other ways that I could use it. Could the meringue powder be used to make the meringue instead of egg whites for this recipe?

  14. I have very strong feelings against cake and ice cream together. I get teased a lot for it, so I am so very happy to see others feel the same way! I think they screw up each other’s texture.

  15. When I made the meringue, it wouldn’t spread over the ice cream- it all kind of clumped together and wouldn’t stick to the cupcakes. What do you think I was doing incorrectly?

    1. Hi Mia! Change anything about the meringue recipe? I can’t imagine why it wouldn’t stick– it should be sticky!

  16. Hi Sally,

    I’m hoping to make this for a girls night on Saturday. I will need to take it to my friend’s house before and she has limited freezer space in drawers so I am going to make a 6 inch version. In terms of make ahead could I make the meringue just before I go and put it on a couple of hours later when I remove the brownie and ice cream from the freezer at my friends? Will that effect the meringue? I could make and freeze the whole thing but I’m not sure if it will fit in a small freezer with the meringue on it.

    1. Hi Louise! This is definitely a fun dessert for a girls night, awesome choice. I recommend preparing the meringue, loosely covering it, then letting it sit for a couple hours at room temperature. It’s never been a problem for me. Give it another 10 second whip, then spread all over the ice cream + toast.

  17. Sally, I’m very excited to bake this for my husband for Father’s Day. He is mostly vegan– what do you think about using orange sherbet, instead of ice cream? The only question I would have is would it hold up to the baking part? (He will be ok with ice cream if sherbet won’t work.) Thanks 🙂

    1. Hi Cathy, I’m not sure how sherbet would hold up. For a vegan option my first thought would be to reach for a coconut ice cream instead of sherbet. Let me know how it turns out !

      1. I don’t have a big conclusion– I did have some melting, but cut the freezing time a bit short out of necessity. I can see that having the torch would be far better than sticking the thing in the oven at 450 degrees… Sending you a picture soon.

        Checking online, there are recipes for Baked Alaska using orange sherbet, so I’m guessing it can be done. Thanks and happy first? Father’s Day to your husband. 🙂

  18. HI Sally, I love your recipes and have saved a lot of them cause I bake anything I like a lot more than once. If it’s a Sally recipe I know it’s good. Lately I’ve noticed that you no longer provide a link to Pinterest on many of your recipes, is there a reason?
    Your baby is beautiful!
    Please keep your baked goods coming, I always appreciate that you have tested them so I can trust them.
    Sincerely,
    Cheryl Tabish

    1. Thank you so much Cheryl! My website was redesigned last month and we are working on adding that Pinterest button back. 🙂 Appreciate all the requests and feedback!

  19. My husband used to love baked alaska, so I will surprise him on Father’s Day with the mini version. And what wouldn’t be better with brownies? He’s been on a brownie kick lately so this is perfect! Thanks for all the great recipes over the years. (I made your raspberry chocolate coffee cake 5 years ago to serve my daughter’s bridesmaids on her wedding day, yum! And not to long ago she sent me an email saying tht one of her friends loved your blog and I migh twant to check it out. She laughed when I told her I’d been following you for 5+ years!!!)

    1. Oh Marlene that is so sweet!!! Thank you for being a dedicated reader and it’s so nice to hear from you! Hope your husband enjoys the brownie baked alaska cupcake!

      1. Well, Sally, I had high hopes. I made the Nutella brownies in the cupcake pan—delish!— and made up two with a scoop of coffee chip gelato on top, keeping them in the freezer until after dinner. My fail was cutting back the recipe to use only one egg white and the corresponding amounts of sugar etc. However, there wasn’t enough volume to whip up the meringue to the stiff peak stage. I tried for ages, then gave up and served the brownie and ice cream on their own, with a bit of the soft meringue. Yummy, but not Baked Alaska. Guess I would have been better off with more egg whites and making up a bunch of the individual ones to freeze. Live and learn!

      2. Next time you need a big dessert, you can try the whole recipe. 🙂 I’m so happy you tried it though, thank you for participating and reporting back, Marlene!

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