Classic Mint Chocolate Brownies

Thick and fudgy brownies layered with sweet mint frosting and easy chocolate ganache. The classic mint chocolate combination!

mint chocolate brownies

Recipe #3 of the Christmas Cookie Palooza combines the mighty forces of mint and chocolate. I’m aware that brownies aren’t technically cookies but sometimes dessert just doesn’t have to make any sense. Like a recipe using cookie dough and salty pretzels and a dip in chocolate. No sense. But who cares? PS: make those.

cookie palooza logo image

I remember making these brownies for a Christmas party years ago. When I was a single lady without a food blog because food blogs were (are?) nerdy and weird. Along with my swirled chocolate covered pretzels (one of the first recipes published on my blog!), these classic mint chocolate brownies disappeared. Shocking.

mint chocolate brownies

mint chocolate brownies on a white serving tray

I decided to make the mint chocolate brownies again this year for three reasons. I mean three people. Me, Kevin, and my friend Katy who is turning 30 this weekend. We are serious mint chocolate lovers and I know you are too. Common, I know you’ve eaten this mint chocolate frosting with a spoon before too. Or is that just me?

Let’s get down to the mint-brownie-nitty-gritty. These classic mint chocolate brownies are made completely from scratch; no brownie mix in sight. In a pinch, you may absolutely use a box mix instead. But baking brownies from scratch really isn’t that difficult at all! In fact, the brownie layer is all mixed together in one bowl and doesn’t require many ingredients. Just your typical chocolate, eggs, sugar, and flour.

A little more on the chocolate: Brownies can be made with cocoa powder or solid chocolate. If using all cocoa powder, you’ll typically need more fat in the batter because cocoa powder does not contain the cocoa butter that solid chocolate does. My brownie recipe uses both cocoa powder and solid chocolate, which makes them extra chocolate-y. I prefer mint brownies with semi-sweet chocolate, though milk chocolate would be just fine if you want a sweeter brownie. (They’re plenty sweet as is!) I don’t suggest using unsweetened or bittersweet chocolate unless you love deep, dark chocolate.

A little more on the sugar: New readers might find this weird, but I’m sure you regular dessert lovers know how much I love brown sugar. It’s my favorite ingredient not only for its robust molasses flavor, but for all the moisture it brings baked goods. And it does the same for brownies! Brown sugar in brownies isn’t very typical, so if you think this is odd– it totally is. I use a mix of white sugar and brown sugar here. These combined sugars sweeten the brownies, while also enhancing their moist, fudgy texture.

A little more on the flour: I’ve typed this about 100 times in all my brownie recipes over the past 3 years. But let me repeat it real quick in case you’re new. More flour = a more cake-like brownie. Less flour = fudgier brownie. I prefer my brownies chewy and fudgy. So dense, it’s like eating fudge. Cakey brownies just aren’t my thing, so I use as little flour as I can without having the brownie fall apart.

These brownies are incredibly rich, fudgy, and moist. I know most of you hate that word.

Moist.

stack of mint chocolate brownies

Let’s move onto the other layers. I promise I’ll make the rest short. I can’t believe how much I just typed about brownie ingredients.

Once the brownies are completely cooled off (–> completely cool! that’s important.), frost them with a simple mint chocolate frosting. I use just over 1 teaspoon of peppermint extract in the frosting. If you like things a little more minty, feel free to add a little more. But be warned! Peppermint extract is incredibly potent; you don’t want the frosting to taste like toothpaste. I add 1 drop of green food coloring to give the frosting a very light mint green color, but feel free to leave the mint frosting layer completely white. After frosting the batch of brownies, make sure you set the whole thing in the refrigerator so the frosting can set. This makes for neater cutting.

Speaking of cutting! I’m a little psycho about this. I’m convinced that anyone who says they can cut these mint layered brownies perfectly with absolutely no smears is lying. I’ve been making these for about 8 years now and there is no way around a few messy spots. Unless you know a secret? If so, please share. All I do is make very quick cuts, using a very sharp large knife, and wiping the knife off with a paper towel between cuts. And this is what the brownies looks like. But, it’s good enough for me.

2 images of butter and chocolate chips in a glass bowl and melted chocolate and butter in a glass bowl with a spoon

The chocolate layer on top is a lot like chocolate ganache. Instead of chocolate and cream, we’re using chocolate chips and butter. I normally urge you to never melt chocolate chips, but this is an exception. Chocolate chips make the chocolate layer so easy. I combine them with butter because you want a softer chocolate topping. As opposed to a hard, heavy chocolate layer on top. The soft chocolate is easier to cut without messing up the frosting underneath.

mint chocolate brownie with a fork

forkful of mint chocolate brownie

Finally! I’m done. Please go make these classic mint chocolate brownies. And grab a glass of milk while you’re at it. They’re devilishly rich.

Follow me on Instagram and tag #sallysbakingaddiction so I can see all the SBA recipes you make. 

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stack of mint chocolate brownies on a white serving tray

Classic Mint Chocolate Brownies

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 1 hour
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Total Time: 6 hours
  • Yield: 24 brownies
  • Category: Brownies
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Thick and fudgy brownies layered with sweet mint frosting and easy chocolate ganache. The classic mint chocolate combination!


Ingredients

Brownies

  • 1 cup (230g) unsalted butter
  • 8 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 1 and 1/2 cups (300g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup (100g) packed light brown sugar
  • 4 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup + 3 Tablespoons (86g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1/4 cup (21g) natural unsweetened cocoa powder

Mint Frosting Layer

  • 1/2 cup (115g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 2 cups (240g) confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons (30ml) milk
  • 1 and 1/4 teaspoons peppermint extract*
  • optional: 1 drop liquid or gel green food coloring

Chocolate Layer

  • 1/2 cup (115g) unsalted butter
  • 1 heaping cup (around 200g) semi-sweet chocolate chips

Instructions

  1. For the brownies: Melt the butter and chopped chocolate in a medium saucepan on medium heat, stirring constantly, about 5 minutes. Or melt in a medium microwave safe bowl in 20 second increments, stirring after each, in the microwave. Remove from the heat, pour into a large mixing bowl, and allow to slightly cool for 10 minutes.
  2. Adjust the oven rack to the lower third position and preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line the bottom and sides of a 9×13 baking pan* with aluminum foil or parchment paper, leaving an overhang on all sides. Set aside.
  3. Whisk the granulated and brown sugars into the cooled chocolate/butter mixture. Add the eggs, one at a time, whisking until smooth after each addition. Whisk in the vanilla. Gently fold in the salt, flour, and cocoa powder. Pour batter into the prepared baking pan and bake for 35-36 minutes or until the brownies begin to pull away from the edges of the pan. A toothpick inserted in the center should come out with only a few moist crumbs when the brownies are done. All ovens are different, so keep an eye on them after 30 minutes and use the toothpick test to see when yours are finished. Allow the brownies to cool completely in the pan set on a wire rack. Once completely cooled, lift the foil out of the pan using the overhang on the sides. Place the whole thing on a baking sheet as you make the frosting. Do not cut into squares yet.
  4. For the mint frosting layer: In a medium bowl using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium speed until smooth and creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the confectioners’ sugar and milk. Beat for 2 minutes on low speed, then increase to high speed and beat for 1 additional minute. Add the peppermint extract and food coloring (if using) and beat on high for 1 full minute. Taste and add a drop or two more peppermint extract if desired. Frost cooled brownies, that you placed on the baking sheet, and place the baking sheet in the refrigerator. This allows the frosting to “set” on top of the brownies which makes spreading the chocolate layer easy. Keep in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour and up to 4 hours.
  5. For the chocolate layer: Melt the butter and chocolate chips in a medium saucepan on medium heat, stirring constantly, about 5 minutes. Or melt in a medium microwave safe bowl in 20 second increments, stirring after each, in the microwave. Once melted and smooth, pour over mint layer. Gently spread with a knife or offset spatula. Place the brownies, that are still on the baking sheet, in the refrigerator and chill for 1 hour (and up to 4 hours or even overnight) to set the chocolate.
  6. Once chilled, remove from the refrigerator and cut into squares. For neat cutting, make very quick cuts, using a very sharp large knife, and wiping the knife off with a paper towel between each cut. Brownies are OK at room temperature for a few hours. Cover tightly and keep leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: I recommend freezing the baked brownies, then thawing overnight in the refrigerator, then frosting with the mint and then the chocolate topping. This way the topping is nice and fresh. OR you can freeze the finished brownies, thaw overnight in the refrigerator and cut into squares.
  2. Peppermint Extract: I always recommend using peppermint extract in these brownies– I find that mint extract tastes more like spearmint toothpaste than true mint flavor.
  3. You’re probably wondering what else I could possibly write about brownies, but I want to let you know that this brownie recipe is a combination of these brownies and these brownies, only made into a larger batch for a bigger pan. If you’d like to make today’s recipe in a 9×9 or 8×8 size square baking pan, please halve the frosting and the chocolate topping. Then use this brownie recipe as the bottom layer.

Keywords: mint chocolate brownies

Mint chocolate lovers: try my mint oreo truffles too!

61 Comments

  1. Hi Sally. I am planning on making these brownies tomorrow but before I do I had a question about the top chocolate layer. Do you have to let it cool at all before pouring it onto the frosted brownies? I’m just concerned the frosting underneath will melt. Thank you in advance!

    1. Nope– the frosting will be very cold from chilling and you spread the chocolate layer on so fast, nothing has time to melt.

  2. Would it be possible to cut this brownie recipe in half? I saw your note at the bottom saying if you wanted to make a smaller pan to use the other brownie recipe, but was wondering if it would be possible to cut this one in half to fit a 8×8 or 9×9 pan? Would weigh out what was needed of course to ensure accuracy. What is the difference between this brownie and the other one you noted at the bottom of this recipe? Thank you! Can’t wait to make these 🙂

    1. Hi Chelsea! Yes, you could cut the recipe in half. I’m unsure of the baking time though.

  3. Oh my. I made these yesterday and just had to comment on how delicious they are. I’m trying to figure out how to hide them from family so I can eat them all! I may need a few extra runs this weekend!!

  4. Hi Sally,
    These look amazing. I love all your recipes. I was wondering if these brownies can be frozen with the icing and then thawed to serve for a party, or would it be better to freeze them and ice them after they have thawed?
    Thanks

    1. Hi Mary. I recommend freezing the baked brownies, then thawing overnight in the refrigerator, then frosting with the mint and then the chocolate topping.

  5. Hi sally! I dont have peppermint extract here in my place..can i use creme de menthe instead? Thank you

    1. That should be fine. When adding it, taste after adding a little and then add more until you are pleased with the flavor.

  6. These brownies are absolutely divine! They almost taste like you are eating straight up fudge! For me, cake-like brownies aren’t worth my time! Haha! Thank you so much for posting such a scrumptious recipe, you’re such a dear! Keep on doing what you’re doing, Sally 😀 

  7. Whats the difference between mint extract and peppermint extract? 

    1. To me, mint extract tastes too much like toothpaste. Peppermint has more of a cool mint flavor.

  8. These turned out so nicely! The mint layer tasted like junior mints and the brownies were so gooey that I wish you didn’t have to chill them. Also they ended up being prettier than I would’ve thought so I’m happy I went with this recipe instead of just regular brownies. 

  9. My daughter made these yesterday and they came out perfect! 

  10. I would like to make these to send to a friend who lives in another state.  Do you have any tips for how to successfully package them so that they are still in mint condition (pun intended) when they arrive??

    1. Pamela, these mint chocolate brownies really aren’t ideal for shipping because of all the melty, messy layers. They really do need to stay refrigerated. How about sending this bark instead? Stack it up tightly inside a tupperware then inside a box.

  11. What tool do you use to spread the layer of mint frosting? The offset spatula too? If I just use a butter knife or a wooden spoon would that give me an even layer of frosting and a pretty presentation? Sorry if this question seems silly, I am new to baking and I find that my sweets taste good but don’t look good, so I am really working on my presentation skills. 

    1. Not silly at all! I actually just used a knife for the frosting you see in the photos! Just worked it back and forth quite a bit.

  12. I have another question. For the ganache you say to melt the butter and chocolate chips directly in a saucepan on a stove? Wouldn’t a double boiler be safer? I don’t want the chocolate to burn. I don’t have a microwave. 

    1. If you’re constantly stirring, there will be no burning issue. A double boiler works, too!

  13. Hey Sally,

    I was wondering what is the difference between granulated sugar and light brown sugar. Because I have no granulated sugar on hand and my house doesn’t stock any, I was wondering if I could sub the granulated sugar with the light brown sugar? Will it make any difference? If its just a light flavour change, I wouldn’t mind.

    Thanks a bunch.

    1. Brown sugar is incredibly moist so not only will the flavor change, the texture may as well. Feel free to try it and let me know how it goes.

  14. Hi Sally! I made these over the weekend for my family and they were the most phenomenal, melt-in-your-mouth, decadent brownies we’ve had! Even my father-in-law commented on how delicious they were. He was amazed at the fluffiness of the mint buttercream layer. And my sister-in-law couldn’t believe how the moist the brownies were. Then of course both of my boys each had 3 servings. So addicting!! Definitely a keeper! Thank you so much! I have a picture I’d love to post of how mine turned out. Not sure if there’s a way to do that. If not, they came out exactly like your pictures but my photo and lighting quality isn’t the same as yours! 🙂 Thank you again!

  15. I made the chocolate mint brownies and they were well received.
    I had no problem cutting them will they were very cold. Then I let them sit before serving them.

  16. I can not rave about these brownies enough!  I made them for my husband because he loves mint.  I typically don’t like mint, but even I enjoyed these.  I took them to an Easter gathering and they were seriously gone in an hour. Even though the process is a little drawn out, it is totally worth it!  

  17. Jessica G. says:

    This was my third time making these brownies and they always get rave reviews! The brownie layer is so fudgy and delicious and the mint layer compliments it so perfectly. They will make the perfect birthday present for my dad tomorrow!

  18. Is it ok if you can use milk chocolate instead of semi-sweet?

    1. Milk chocolate works!

  19. I have made these 3 times in the past 2 weeks 🙂 But each time I made them they come out slightly different! I was wondering if you had any idea on why…
    The second time I made them, they were so much more fudgy on the bottom, and they stuck everywhere! I went to Florida when I made these so it could have been weather, but I also cooked them 5 minutes longer.
    This third time, The chocolate on top did not stay pretty and shiny, it became dull and a bit paler. Also, it cracked when I cut it. Tastes the same, but not sure why that happened either!

  20. These were amazing! I made them for a community gathering and they were gone like lightning! I didn’t even have a chance to sample them…but don’t feel too bad for me, I tasted plenty of the batter\frosting\ganache while I was baking and assembling!

  21. Hi Sally! These brownies look fabulous! I was wondering wether I could add crushed candy canes to the filling (excluding the green colouring) for peppermint candy cane brownies? I have a lot of candy canes leftover that I need to use up and thought these brownies were an excellent way to do so! Thanks!

    1. Sure, I don’t see why not!

  22. Hi Sally,
    Just wondering if it would be ok to use salted butter instead of unsalted butter for the mint frosting layer and chocolate layer. Thanks.

    1. Yes, you can substitute salted butter for unsalted in this recipe. No changes to the recipe needed, though you could reduce the salt in the brownies to 1/4 teaspoon if you’d like.

  23. Hi Sally,

    Loved your brownie recipe for the oreo iced brownies. How come you have several different brownie recipes? Can I use the same brownie recipe for the oreo brownie as well as the mint chocolate brownie? They seem to have the same ingredients, just different measurements. Thanks!

    1. Absolutely! I like to play around with different recipes, especially if the pan size changes. My seriously fudgy brownies are a wonderful base, but this recipe was before I developed that one. 🙂

  24. I was excited about this recipe, but it fell short for me. I actually made just the brownies and found them so sweet that I didn’t continue with the rest of the recipe. The top had a crispy texture, but the brownie itself was moist. I also found them short on chocolate flavor. I plan to make my favorite brownie recipe and then follow the rest of the recipe as it written.

    1. Darlene Garis says:

      I’ve made these for years thanks to my former neighbour sharing her recipe. Her recipe calls for several tablespoons of creme de’ menthe liquor to flavor/color the mint layer. Her brownie layer was too ‘cakey’ so I tweeked it to be fudgy. Yummo!

  25. I’ve made these twice in the last month, and everyone raves about them! When you want something deeply rich and chocolatey (with the wonderful diversion of mint), you will not be disappointed.

  26. Yum! When I buy the mint, I’m gonna make this! Another option is to use a biscuit or cookie cutter, but I haven’t tried it yet and I don’t know how it will work out.

  27. Recipe is tasty, but just too sweet. My daughter and I both have a sweet tooth, and we could barely eat a small square each. Good to last a long time, I guess.

  28. Wow these were absolutely scrumptious!! I will definitely be making this again, thanks Sally! 🙂
    For those who thought they were too sweet, I actually only used 3/4 of the total sugar amount (reduced the granulated sugar to 200g) and it was the PERFECT brownie!! I think I’ll use it for regular un-frosted brownies too! I didn’t bother with the chocolate topping layer either for fear of making them too rich, and they were so pretty with the green frosting 😀

  29. These are the best and yes totally fudgey. I’ll be making them again and again and again! Thank you Sally!

  30. Way tooo sweet…i made this 3x thinking maybe I made a mistake…..

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