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Brownie Pie

Chocolate pie may not be a usual on your Thanksgiving dessert table, but this one from author Erin McDowell will garner requests year after year.

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Recipe Summary

Brownie Pie

Ingredients

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • ¼ cup vegetable, canola, or peanut oil
  • 8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup packed light brown sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • ⅔ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 6 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
  • ⅔ cup chopped almonds
  • 1 recipe Erin’s All-Buttah Piecrust, parbaked and cooled
  • Ice cream, whipped cream, chocolate sauce, and/or caramel sauce (optional)
  • Step 1

Preheat oven to 350°F, preferably with a baking stone on the bottom rack.

In a medium heatproof bowl combine butter, oil, and bittersweet chocolate. Set bowl over a medium saucepan of simmering water (being careful that bowl doesn’t touch water) and heat, stirring occasionally, until chocolate and butter are fully melted and combined. Let cool.

Add both sugars to the chocolate mixture and mix well with a spatula. Add eggs, one at a time, whisking to fully incorporate. Whisk in vanilla. Mix in flour and salt. Fold in semisweet chocolate and almonds.

Pour batter into piecrust. Bake 40 to 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into center of pie comes out with moist crumbs. (Avoid overbaking.) Let pie cool at least 20 minutes before serving. If desired, serve with ice cream, whipped cream, chocolate sauce, and/or caramel sauce. Serves 8.

The pie can be made ahead and stored at room temperature for up to 2 days.

Nutrition Facts (Brownie Pie)

Erin's All-Buttah Piecrust

Ingredients

  • 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • ½ cup cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • ¼ cup ice water, plus more as needed
  • Step 1

In a medium bowl whisk together flour and salt. Using your hands, toss butter through flour until each piece is well-coated. Cut butter into flour by pressing butter between your fingers and thumbs, flattening the cubes into big shards. For a flaky crust, mix until butter pieces are about the width of walnut halves. For a sturdier crust (for custard pies and for use with decorative techniques), mix until the butter is about the size of peas.

Make a well in center of flour mixture. Start by adding 1/4 cup ice water and tossing the flour mixture gently (rather than stirring) to moisten and incorporate the water without overworking the flour. Continue adding water, 1 to 2 tablespoons at a time, and tossing until dough comes together. (Dough should hold together easily without feeling wet or sticky.)

Form dough into a disk and wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes and up to overnight.

Once well chilled, roll out dough on a lightly floured surface until it’s about 1/8-inch thick. Press firmly and evenly, rotating the dough as you work to prevent sticking without adding too much flour. (Ideally dough will also be about 1 inch wider than your pie plate on all sides.)

To transfer dough to pie plate, starting at one end of dough, wrap it around the rolling pin. Lift pin to edge of pie plate and unfurl the dough. Press dough into the base of the pie plate and trim excess dough to 1/2 inch around outside edge of pie plate. Tuck dough under to be flush with the outer rim of pie plate. Crimp edges as desired, then refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

To parbake: Use a fork to prick chilled crust all over base and sides. Cut a square of parchment paper slightly larger than pie plate and press it into base of chilled crust. Fill crust with pie weights (such as dried beans) to brim, making sure weights are flush against sides. Place pie plate on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Bake on bottom rack of 425°F oven (preferably on a preheated baking stone) 12 to 15 minutes or until outer edge begins to brown. Remove parchment and pie weights and bake 2 to 3 minutes more or until bottom crust appears set. If crust puffs at any point, prick air bubble with a fork to deflate. Let cool completely before filling. Makes one single crust.

Make dough, wrap tightly, and refrigerate up to 2 days. For longer storage, wrap in plastic wrap then heavy foil and freeze up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in refrigerator and let stand at room temperature to soften slightly.

Cinnamon Crust

Add 1 Tbsp. ground cinnamon and 1/2 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg to the flour.

Gingerbread Crust

Add 1 tsp. ground cinnamon, 3/4 tsp. ground ginger, 1/2 tsp. ground allspice, and 1/4 tsp. ground cloves to the flour.

Raspberry Brownie Pie

There are some recipes I meticulously spend a LOT of time developing to get them just right (see: rainbow cake, babka scones for example). And then there are recipes which fall into place in one go. Often the latter are those that are a combination of recipes which I know really well. Admittedly, I made this out of curiosity and had no idea how it would turn out (especially the top layer which was a bit new to me) and I wasn’t expecting much. I left it in the fridge for two whole days before tasting it and when I did; I was blown away. My husband refused to let me share much of this with anyone else and devoured most of it the day after I shot these photos. It’s absolutely wonderful.

Thick and Fudgy Brownie Bottom

It took me a very long time to find a brownie recipe that I truly loved. I know that sounds crazy; there are a ton of recipes out there with hundreds of 5-star ratings. But I was very particular about certain things: I wanted more cocoa than chocolate (so the chocolate flavor would be more intense), more cocoa than flour too (I abhor a cakey brownie), sugar and butter to make a really fudgy texture, but not overly sweet, and I needed a guarantee it would always always give me the same result.

I found it early last year in these thick cocoa brownies . They kind of exploded on IG and for a hot moment everyone was making them and loving them. A year on, whenever an occasion or recipe requires a brownie layer I make that recipe and get the exact same brownie every time. Btw, I’ve found ways to streamline the process even quicker. You’ll see some of that here!

These will be even fudgier than usual brownies because they are cold. Have you ever had a chilled brownie? It’s like pure fudge. You’ll love it.

Terrifically Tart Raspberry Filling

I made this in the manner of key lime pie: fruit juice, egg yolks and sweetened condensed milk. It’s SUCH an easy filling; all you do is stir the ingredients together and then pour them on top and bake!

This raspberry layer is just, INCREDIBLE. It’s delightfully tart from a LOT of frozen raspberries and some lemon juice & zest. The texture is so smooth thanks to a can of sweetened condensed milk; it’s creamy and silky and somehow doesn’t at all seem like a custard. There’s no taste of milk or egg here, you simply get a burst of berry flavor.

How to make Raspberry Brownie Pie

  1. Make the brownie batter in the microwave or over a double boiler
  2. Partially bake the brownie.
  3. Stir together filling ingredients.
  4. Pour filling over brownie and bake to set.

Baking the Raspberry Brownie Pie

You’ll need an 8 inch cake pan to bake this in, a 2 or 3 inch high pan should do it as there is not ‘rising’ here.

Truthfully you could bake it in a square pan instead of in a round cake pan and get bars instead of slices. But there is something a little majestic about all these layers that I felt it deserved a bit more fanfare in its presentation. It slices so beautifully though so either is fine!

There are two baking sessions: one for the brownie bottom and one for the top; all together you don’t want this to bake for more than 30-35 minutes and the top only needs 10-12 minutes (just to set it).

Specific Ingredient for Raspberry Brownie Pie

Cocoa: I like dutch process cocoa in most of my recipes because it’s less acidic and more intense and rich.

Sweetened Condensed Milk: This is where the creamy silky texture comes in; the can (made up of just milk and sugar) makes this the kind of filling you just stir together in a bowl. Because it isn’t too sweet, it doesn’t get in the way of the tart of the fruit.

Raspberries: I’m specifying frozen here because we are going to puree them and more so because frozen will make this the kind of dish you can make year round. Frozen berries are harvested in season and have better flavor most of the time.

Lemon: The lemon zest brings a subtle, natural sweetness to the filling and the juice really enhances that tart aspect of the berries. You could use lime if you like instead.

FAQ For Raspberry Brownie Pie

What to do with those leftover egg whites?

Make double chocolate cookies! See Rye Brownie Cookies (you can use AP there) or small batch double chocolate cookies (make a triple batch). Alternatively, you can use them to make a meringue topping for the pie.

How do I prepare the pan to bake this?

Oil a cake pan and then press a sheet of parchment paper into it. It won’t be perfect, it doesn’t need to be. Use metal clips to hold it in place.

What should I top the pie with?

I think that a simple whipped cream and a dusting of cocoa are just perfect here. And I’m one to go all out for pie toppings. But because the bottom flavors are so intense, the whipped cream really calms and rounds it all out.

How long does the pie need to chill?

Ideally overnight but in a pinch, 4 hours.

How long does the pie keep?

In the fridge without the topping it will keep for a week! It’s a great make ahead dessert. Save the whipped cream which should be made right before serving as it can weep in the fridge.

Blackberry Lavender Brownie Pie

I was having a creative block in the kitchen recently. Usually recipes just pop into my head or I whip up something random up to satisfy a craving. It just wasn’t happening, and trying to be creative just isn’t something that works! I took a break, I stopped trying, and this Blackberry Lavender Brownie Pie happened. And it’s magic.

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There’s a lot going on with this beauty, so let’s unpack it, shall we? This Blackberry Lavender Brownie Pie has a blackberry swirl brownie crust, topped with a lavender dark chocolate icebox pie filling, then with honey blackberry meringue. The flavors are so complementary and the textures so divine!

The lavender flavor in the pie filling is thanks to lavender-infused cream. You’ll want to make this first so that it has time to chill before you need it. Make sure that you’re using culinary lavender, since other lavenders aren’t meant to be eaten and could have been sprayed with harmful chemicals. I bought my lavender here. If you aren’t a fan of lavender, you can skip this step entirely and just use plain cream for the filling.

The brownie crust is super easy to make, and I really love the swirls of blackberry with the dark chocolate! I used a seedless fruit spread because I didn’t want the crunchy seeds in there.

There’s chocolate extract in both the crust and the filling to really amp up the chocolate flavor. I highly recommend this (sometimes overlooked) extract! It lends amazing depth of flavor to chocolate baked goods! If you can’t find it in your local grocery store, you can find some here. Even better, make yourself some Homemade Chocolate Extract for next time!

Aaaaand because I put it in everything: vanilla bean paste! I really enjoy the flavor and love the little black flecks that it leaves in the meringue! <3 If you’d like to get some vanilla bean paste for yourself, you can find some here. If you’d rather substitute, you can use an equal measure of vanilla extract.

I’m really digging this recipe, and did a little happy dance with each bite! I hope you’ll make it and love it, too!