Kahlua Brownies with Browned Butter Kahlua Icing

This recipe has been featured in a post on The Recipe Girl blog: Fudgy Kahlua Brownies.

Yield: 16 brownies

Prep Time: 30 min

Cook Time: 45 min

Kahlua Brownies w/ Brown Butter Kahlua Icing

These are a FUDGY sort of brownie (the best kind)… not a cakey brownie to be found in this bunch.


2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup unsalted butter
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 1/2 cups light brown sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 cup + 2 Tablespoons Kahlua (or another coffee liqueur), divided

1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter
2 Tablespoons kahlua
1 Tablespoon whipping cream
2 1/4 cups powdered sugar (more or less), sift after measuring


1. Preheat oven to 350Β° F. Line a 9x9-inch pan with foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray.

2. Prepare brownies: In a medium bowl, sift flour, baking powder and salt; set aside.

3. Set a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water (pan shouldn't be touching the water). Place butter and chocolate chips in bowl and stir until melted and smooth. Remove from heat and let cool a bit.

4. In a large bowl with an electric mixer, mix sugar, eggs and 1/2 cup Kahlua. Pour in buttery chocolate mixture and beat until mixed well. Mix in dry ingredients and beat just until combined.

5. Pour brownie batter into prepared pan. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until top cracks slightly and toothpick inserted in center comes out mostly clean (it might be slightly gooey on the bottom of the toothpick- that's okay!) Remove brownies from oven and immediately brush warm brownies with 2 Tablespoons of Kahlua. Let brownies cool completely. I like to refrigerate them after they have cooled down a bit.

6. Prepare Icing: Place butter in saucepan and heat until lightly browned. Remove from heat and add Kahlua & whipping cream. Whisk in powdered sugar until you have the consistency that you desire (you should be looking for a thick, smooth icing that is still pourable). Pour on top of cooled brownies and spread to edges to cover completely. Refrigerate until set. Chilled brownies are easiest to cut... use a large, sharp knife, wipe clean after each cut, and you'll get nice, clean cuts.


*Store brownies in covered container. They're best if eaten within a couple of days.

Source: RecipeGirl.com

65 Responses to “Kahlua Brownies with Browned Butter Kahlua Icing”

  1. postedJun 15, 2009 5:14 AM

    That’s one tall fudgey wicked looking brownie, and the icing just takes it over thetop! I must make it! Thanks for posting it!

  2. postedJun 17, 2009 2:06 PM

    Oh my gosh, these look incredible, Lori! Would love some right now. Can’t decide what sounds better–the Kahlua or the browned butter!

  3. postedJun 17, 2009 7:44 PM

    I just ‘stumbled upon’ your site and I think this is the most excited that I’ve been about a recipe on a food blog. I’m thinking these have “Father’s Day” written all over them. So pantry friendly. Looking forward to getting to know your blog better. It’s so cute!

  4. postedJun 18, 2009 7:43 AM

    The brownies look incredible, dense and fudgy! And, who could resist browned butter icing? Perfect for father’s day!

  5. postedJun 18, 2009 11:25 AM

    Awesome Job on the these BROWNIES!
    I Love all the PHOTOS you have on your site, it make me hungry and wanting to visit your site more and more. job well done!!!!!!!!!

  6. postedJun 21, 2009 11:01 PM

    I love your icing idea. Browned butter Kahlua icing….yum!

  7. postedJul 7, 2009 3:27 PM
    Kristyn Eagleton

    Ok, I cheated. I used a box mix but used kahlua instead of the water. But I did make the brown butter kahlua frosting. YOU WILL NEVER GO BACK TO REGULAR PLAIN OL’ DUMB FROSTING AGAIN.

  8. postedJul 7, 2009 5:15 PM

    That looks really naughty. Nice photography!

  9. postedJul 13, 2009 9:07 AM

    OMG! Made a double batch this weekend and took some to work! Had to beat one guy off with a stick! Never been so relaxed on a Monday morning…Kahlua brownies and coffee. This could become a tradition!

  10. postedJul 13, 2009 11:14 AM

    OMG! I am in so in love with these! I had a friend invite us over for dinner she asked if I wanted anything special and I sent her your recipe and I’m in love! This changes my entire outlook on brownies = )

  11. postedOct 25, 2009 7:39 PM

    Thank you! Will make these for 25 people Saturday!

  12. postedFeb 8, 2010 10:23 AM

    Made these for the super bowl they were a big hit, very delicious!

  13. postedFeb 11, 2010 6:36 AM
    Three Food Words

    I made these last night and they were divine! had to bring the rest in to the office so we wouldn’t eat them all!

    The brown butter frosting gave me LIFE!!!! Gonna use it on some cupcakes this weekend. This recipe definitely added to the arsenal!

    Love Love Love your site!

  14. postedMar 18, 2010 6:17 AM

    This icing inspired an amazing browned butter espresso icing for my brownies. Loved it.


  15. postedApr 30, 2010 5:23 AM

    Thank you very much for recipe. I made my first brownies ever and they are delicious!

  16. postedJul 15, 2010 2:09 PM
    Courtney Poteete

    I made these for my office – everyone LOVED them! Thank you!

  17. postedAug 7, 2010 5:23 PM

    Thanks for the recipe. I have made them 3x already and everyone loves it. πŸ™‚

    It’s so easy to cut into bars.

  18. postedAug 20, 2010 2:00 PM

    Although I love the original version of these brownies, I just made them with Chambord Raspberry Liquer, and they were just as amazing!

  19. postedDec 13, 2010 12:49 AM

    I tried these last night. I came by your site while looking for banana-kahlua recipe and found this instead. I just had to make it.

    Brownie turned out awesome πŸ™‚

    I’m not a big sugar fan so I put a lot less sugar (about 2/3rds) but ended up making up for it with using more kahlua. The brownies are really moist and don’t need any icing (imho) but I made some anyway.

    All was perfect except that the brownies did collapse in the center after cooling. Any idea why? I probably woulnd’t mind so much except it does look weird when I flipped it over to ice.

    I probably put on 3-4 Tbsp of kahlua at the end for it to soak through – maybe this could’ve caused the collapse?

    I’d love to make this for christmas and send them out instead of christmas cookies, so would be nice to have “square” looking ones.

    Thanks again for putting this up.

    • December 13th, 2010 @ 1:13 PM

      @Dary, When bars and cakes collapse in the center, that’s a pretty good indication that they were not quite done in the middle. In other words, the batter in the middle didn’t have a chance to turn into cake during the baking process. Timing can be tough sometimes since all ovens are different. Checking the center w/ a sharp, thin knife is usually the best way to go… it should come out pretty clean w/ a few crumbs attached. I also just take my hand and gently pat the middle to see if it feels like it has baked enough and is slightly firm. Good luck!

    • December 13th, 2010 @ 1:14 PM

      @Dary, And since you mentioned that you used more liquid in the recipe, this is probably why they did not turn out. The modifications in the recipe may have caused collapse, I’m afraid.

      • December 14th, 2010 @ 1:14 AM

        @Lori Lange,

        Thanks for this. I suspected this might be the case. The skewer did come out clean in the middle.

        Next time, I’ll cut down on the alcohol πŸ™‚

  20. postedDec 21, 2010 12:01 PM

    These are incredible! The Kahlua taste is not too strong yet not too subtle. I did modify the recipe a bit- I used 6 squares of Baker’s unsweetened chocolate instead of the 2 cups of semisweet chocolate chips for fear that the recipe would be too sweet. I think they turned out amazing!

  21. postedMar 25, 2011 8:06 PM

    Oh my, Recipe Girl, these look amazing! I can’t wait to give them a try. I made some homemade coffee liqueur a couple weeks ago and have been dying to try it out in something chocolate.

  22. postedJun 20, 2011 5:17 AM

    Made these for Father’s Day and they were delicious! I had to cook them 8+ minutes longer than the recipe called for….but I have a new oven that I’m still getting used to. These were my first ‘from scratch’ brownies and I’ll definitely be making them again!

  23. postedJun 24, 2011 7:14 AM

    made these with amaretto (no kahlua on hand) and skipped the icing, followed someone’s tip about baking in a 13×9 too. holy moly they are perfectly moist and fudgy, bringing them into the office today to get them out of ym house πŸ˜‰

  24. postedJun 25, 2011 9:36 AM

    Made these after seeing them on another site, yum! I used Tia Maria, because I had no Kahlua and the cost of just to make brownies was a little steep. The icing makes them perfect and I think I would make it just because it tastes so darn good!

  25. postedAug 2, 2011 2:58 PM

    Hi Shelley, thanks for that suggestion… I’ll see if that’s an option.

  26. postedOct 29, 2011 9:54 AM

    I just had a quick question. Is it normal to have the top of the brownies to have cracks in them when you take them out of the oven? Also, do you ice them on top (where you’ve poured the 2 tblsp of Kahlua), or do you flip them over before icing? Thank so much πŸ™‚

    • October 29th, 2011 @ 4:30 PM

      Cracks on top are okay, except that might mean that they are slightly over-baked. Ice the brownies right on top of the Kahlua (no need to flip them over).

  27. postedDec 21, 2011 7:43 PM
    E Christina Dabis


    I could hardly wait to make your Kahlua Brownies with the Kahlua Icing and today I made them. I caused one problem to occur due to my old age, and that involves stirring the ingredients together. My shoulder just couldn’t take the pain so I used an electric mixer. I suspect that cause too much air to be injected into the batter. However, the flavor was great.

    I did place a generous tablespoon of Kahlua onto the dessert plate and then put the brownie in the middle of that delicious puddle. *innocent smile* I had to, after all, compensate for my own mistake, right? Right.

    • December 22nd, 2011 @ 6:23 AM

      So glad you had success with these!

  28. postedMar 4, 2012 3:50 PM

    Hi, I just came across your site. I will definitely be making the Kahlua chocolate chip cookies you posted. My friend made just regular Kahlua cookies w/out the chocolate chips, so I am also trying to find that recipe.

    However, since I am a newbie when it comes to baking, what or where can I find whipping cream? Do you mean whipped cream?

    I prefer to use alcohol in my baking rather than drink straight up shots, if you know what I mean, so this sounds perfect. Thank you!

    • March 4th, 2012 @ 8:35 PM

      Whipping cream can be found near the buttermilk and milk… you’ll see heavy whipping cream and regular whipping cream in a carton- get “whipping cream” (not whipped cream in a can).

  29. postedMar 5, 2012 7:14 AM

    Thanks, Lori! Walmart should be okay?

  30. postedJul 20, 2012 9:27 AM

    Hey there, just wanted to share my gluten-free modification on this. I used a standard gluten-free flour mix, but also substituted (by accident) milk chocolate chips instead of semi-sweet. I think that helped with the texture, because you never would have guessed there was any gluten-free mod made. Great recipe, I get a ton of requests to make it!

  31. postedDec 24, 2012 9:24 PM

    the icing looks perfect, lori!

  32. postedMay 11, 2013 3:07 PM

    loved these, moist and tasty, lasted a week in the frig (works with bailey’stoo)

  33. postedMay 18, 2013 10:30 PM

    Made these ~ Perfect is all I can say, they look exactly like the pic and taste great

    But… I have now had someone ask what the alcohol content is after cooked? Any idea? Doesnt bother me they are super yum but is a good piece of info if you have it.

    • May 19th, 2013 @ 6:14 PM

      I’ve heard that most of the alcohol “bakes out” in the cooking process.

  34. postedJul 29, 2013 10:28 AM

    These are Fantastic brownies!! The only thing I would say is what’s up with the double boiler thing — I’m not a pioneer woman. I have a microwave to melt that stuff.

    • July 29th, 2013 @ 8:56 PM

      If that works for you, go for it! I do the same sometimes.

  35. postedAug 2, 2013 8:55 PM

    Have you made these in a mini muffin pan?

    • August 3rd, 2013 @ 5:55 AM

      I have not.

  36. postedSep 21, 2013 5:04 PM

    hey, just wondering if anyone has used Bailey’s Irish Cream instead of the Kahlua for this, and if this can be done using regular melted butter instead of browned butter? i tried my first browned butter recipe the other day and hate the flavour. πŸ™‚

    • September 23rd, 2013 @ 8:13 AM

      I believe the answers to your questions are yes, and yes. Let us know how it works out!

  37. postedNov 5, 2013 6:44 PM

    Thank u for sharing this recipe but if I dont have coffe ricor what can i use?

    • November 7th, 2013 @ 8:28 AM

      Regular coffee might work okay.

  38. postedNov 9, 2013 4:51 PM

    I’m not a big brownie eater, but I really want to give these a try. They look so good.

  39. postedNov 27, 2013 8:33 PM
    Kay Abernethy

    I stated these brownies at 8pm and didn’t finish until nearly 11. I frankly didn’t think they were that easy. Also, it is way too much powdered sugar for no more liquid that is put into the icing. About a cup and 1/2 is what I will use if I ever make them again instead of 2 1/4. Made the icing too dry and hard to spread. I knew I should have increased the liquid that went into the icing. Haven’t cut them yet. Will give them tonight to set up in the frig first.

  40. postedNov 27, 2013 10:12 PM
    Kay Abernethy

    Lori, I take back what I wrote about these brownies earlier. I just cut them and they turned out beautifully and I tasted one and it is pure decadence. They will be the hit of our Thanksgiving meal tomorrow. Worth every minute I put into them and I will make them for Christmas too! Thanks for a great recipe Lori. Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family.

    • November 28th, 2013 @ 6:14 AM

      You’re very welcome- I’m so glad they turned out!

  41. postedDec 15, 2013 3:17 PM

    These were absolutely the best brownies I have ever tasted….let alone made!
    Thanks for sharing.

  42. postedJan 17, 2014 7:23 PM

    these sound awesome!

  43. postedFeb 1, 2014 12:27 PM

    Going to try making these for dessert tonight at my parents’ place. My mom makes a amazingly killer Kalua cake…thought we try to mix it up with these. If they’re a hit, well make more tomorrow for the Super Bowl!!

  44. postedMay 8, 2015 4:12 PM

    Hey there! I am going to make these, and I was just wondering what kind of butter is best. With salt or without? I know most baking calls for without, but just checking! They look great! I can’t wait to make them!Β 

    • May 19th, 2015 @ 6:55 PM

      either is fine. I usually use salted unless the recipe itself calls for a good amount of salt.

  45. postedNov 7, 2015 1:43 PM

    My husband made these today – they are decadent…..we had to add more butter and whipping cream to the icing, otherwise it would have been too dry. Absolutely delicious!Β 

  46. postedFeb 15, 2016 7:24 AM

    Absolutely wonderful!! Perfection!
    Did have to had more whipping cream to the icing so it would be pourable but the icing doesn’t even need a brownie.

  47. postedFeb 23, 2016 4:50 PM

    Storage…really think they will last that long?

    • March 2nd, 2016 @ 10:58 AM

      *Store brownies in covered container. They’re best if eaten within a couple of days.

  48. postedApr 6, 2016 8:17 PM

    The brownies was superb and my family and friends loved it! It was absolutely delicious! Previously I have tried to search for the prefect recipe for kahlua brownies but most of them were either light or cakey (i prefer fudgy ) Thank you for the fantastic recipe πŸ˜€Β 

    • April 11th, 2016 @ 4:21 AM

      glad to hear!

  49. postedApr 18, 2016 8:35 PM

    These were amazing. The browned butter is just the perfect touch. Thanks for the great recipie.Β 

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