Caramel Brownies – no one will guess that these ooey gooey brownies start with a cake mix. They are so easy to make, but every bite is pure indulgence!
Sometimes called “turtle brownies” or “knock you naked brownies”, these indulgent treats have been a favorite of mine since I was a teenager. I can’t make them often because they are sinfully addicting. Seriously, I can’t stop eating them. Who could resist that incredible caramel layer?
I took photos of these brownies while they were still slightly warm. Most things I like to eat all warm and gooey, but not these. I actually think they taste better after they have been chilled for awhile.
I love the balance of chewy brownie, soft caramel, and crunchy pecans and chocolate chips. These perfectly decadent brownies will satisfy any sweet tooth!
HOW TO MAKE CARAMEL BROWNIES
- chocolate cake mix – (I prefer using a dark chocolate, but any variety of chocolate cake mix will work.)
- evaporated milk – (Not to be confused with sweetened condensed milk!)
- butter – (I use regular salted butter.)
- caramels – (The square individually wrapped kind. I usually use Kraft caramels.)
- chocolate chips – (I like semi sweet or dark to balance out the sweetness of the caramel.)
- pecans – (You can use walnuts if you prefer.)
- PREP: Unwrap the caramels, spray a 9×13″ pan with cooking spray, and preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- BROWNIE BATTER: Stir together cake mix, melted butter, and evaporated milk till smooth. It will be thick. Spread half the dough into the prepared pan. Bake at 350° for 6 minutes.
- CARAMEL LAYER: Melt caramels and evaporated milk in a glass bowl in the microwave, or in a small saucepan over medium low heat, stirring often. Sprinkle chocolate chips and pecans over hot dough, then drizzle caramel over the top.
- TOP LAYER: Smash the remaining batter into pieces, and place them over the filling.
- BAKE: Return brownies to the oven and bake for an additional 18-20 minutes.
The brownies are much easier to cut into after they have cooled completely, but if you want them warm and gooey, feel free to dig right in!
You will probably want to serve them on a plate with a fork, because like most incredible desserts, they are pretty messy.
Make sure you cut these brownies into smaller squares, they are very rich!
HOW TO STORE LEFTOVER CHOCOLATE CARAMEL BROWNIES?
If you have any leftovers, wrap them tightly or store them in an airtight container. They will last at room temperature for up to a week.
I haven’t tried freezing them, but I think it should work just fine. I recommend letting them thaw at room temperature instead of heating them in the microwave. The caramel tends to get hot very quickly!
CARAMEL TURTLE BROWNIE VARIATIONS:
- Sprinkle about 1/2 cup of sweetened flaked coconut on top of the chocolate chips and pecans.
- Use another flavor of cake mix. I like them best with dark chocolate cake mix, but they are also great with german chocolate cake mix. I’ve even tried them with yellow cake mix.
- Feel free to substitute walnuts, peanuts, cashews, or any variety of nuts for the pecans. Or you can omit the nuts entirely.
- If you love salted caramels, try sprinkling a bit of coarse salt over the caramel layer.
- One layer of decadence not enough for you? You can drizzle more caramel on top and sprinkle with additional chopped pecans.
RECIPES WITH CHOCOLATE AND CARAMEL:
WANT MORE DECADENT BROWNIE RECIPES? TRY THESE:
Decadent Caramel Brownie Recipe
- 1 15 ounce box chocolate cake mix (I like dark chocolate or devil's food.)
- 1/3 cup evaporated milk
- 2/3 cup melted butter or margarine
- 50 caramels, unwrapped
- 1/3 cup evaporated milk
- 1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 3/4 cup chopped pecans
- Well grease a 9x13" cake pan and set aside. (I use the non-stick spray from Costco.) For extra easy clean up, you can line the pan with parchment paper.
- Stir together cake mix, 1/3 cup of evaporated milk, and melted butter in a mixing bowl till smooth. Spread half of batter into your prepared pan and bake at 350° for about 6 minutes.
- Meanwhile, melt caramels and 1/3 cup evaporated milk in a glass bowl in the microwave, stirring often.
- Remove brownies from the oven and sprinkle the chocolate chips and chopped pecans over top. Pour the caramel evenly over everything.
- Top with remaining dough. I take pieces of the dough and flatten them in my hands (kinda like play-doh) and place them over the top. It’s okay if you have small gaps.
- Bake for 18-20 more minutes or until a toothpick inserted just in the top layer comes out with moist crumbs, not batter.
- For easiest cutting, cool completely.
-While brownies are still warm, go around the edge of the pan with a knife or metal spatula to pull the caramel away from the sides.
-These are really rich, so cut them into small pieces.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 216Total Fat: 13gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 17mgSodium: 110mgCarbohydrates: 25gFiber: 1gSugar: 21gProtein: 2g
(originally published Oct 27, 2008, updated February 2021)
Take these easy homemade caramel brownies to any gathering, and watch them fly off the plate! You can even make them a day ahead of time.