How to Cook Brownies in a Cupcake Pan

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Baking individual brownies in a cupcake pan is not only simple but the results can be served in many ways: with a scoop of melting ice cream, under a dollop of freshly whipped cream, or frosted to perfection. For this tutorial, we use a boxed brownie mix and include some tips for transforming the mix into the richest, most decadent cupcake-shaped brownies you've ever eaten.

*Note: If you prefer to make your brownies from scratch, here is the only homemade brownie recipe you'll need.

Brownie cupcakes cooling.
Brownie cupcakes cooling. (Image: Charity Mathews, founder of Foodlets.com)

Things You'll Need

  • Cupcake pan
  • Baking spray with flour or cupcake liners
  • Box of store-bought boxed brownie mix
  • Optional: icing and sprinkles

Step 1: Preheat the Oven

When baking brownies in a cupcake pan instead of in a large pan, bump up the temperature for a perfect result. For example, the instructions on the store-bought brownie mix we used here called for baking at 350 degrees F, so we baked at 375 degrees F.

Step 2: Prepare the Pan

Since you'll be baking individual brownies, you want to be sure that your pans are greased thoroughly. Use a baking spray with flour to easily coat each cup quickly.

Grease each cup liberally.
Grease each cup liberally. (Image: Charity Mathews, founder of Foodlets.com)

Tip

  • For a colorful presentation, use paper or foil cupcake liners but to get more of those famous brownie "edges" skip the liners and use this spray method instead.

Step 3: Play Around With the Brownie Mix

To make a boxed brownie mix taste even more decadent, try one (or all!) of these following flavor boosters:

Substitute With Buttermilk: Replace the water or milk called for in the recipe with buttermilk. Its tanginess will match beautifully with the chocolate.

Always shake the carton before pouring buttermilk.
Always shake the carton before pouring buttermilk. (Image: Charity Mathews, founder of Foodlets.com)

Double Up On the Chocolate: For an outrageous chocolate experience, add about 1/3 cup of chopped chocolate to your batter. Be sure to get the shavings in there too. They'll melt right into the brownies for another level of chocolate flavor.

Use bittersweet or dark chocolate for the richest flavor.
Use bittersweet or dark chocolate for the richest flavor. (Image: Charity Mathews, founder of Foodlets.com)

Try a Little Coffee: Adding a teaspoon of brewed coffee brings out the chocolate in your entire batch of brownie cupcakes. It's delicious!

Add a small amount of brewed coffee.
Add a small amount of brewed coffee. (Image: Charity Mathews, founder of Foodlets.com)

Step 4: Measure Each Scoop

To ensure that each brownie will be about the same size, ladle out the batter using a 1/4 measuring cup. Scoop out the batter with a small silicone spatula, right into the prepared cupcake pan. Each cup should be about 3/4 full.

An ice cream scoop would also work perfectly.
An ice cream scoop would also work perfectly. (Image: Charity Mathews, founder of Foodlets.com)
Each cup should be about 3/4 full.
Each cup should be about 3/4 full. (Image: Charity Mathews, founder of Foodlets.com)

Step 5: Bake Your Brownies

You'll only need to bake your cupcake brownies for 25 to 30 minutes. Keep an eye on them. When the tops are cracked and firm to the touch, they're done.

Brownies fresh out of the oven.
Brownies fresh out of the oven. (Image: Charity Mathews, founder of Foodlets.com)

Step 6: Cool on a Wire Rack

One of the benefits of making brownies in a cupcake pan is how much easier they are to get out of the pan. Let the brownies cool for only 2 to 3 minutes before turning them out on a wire rack to cool completely before icing.

Use a knife at one edge to gently loosen the cups and they'll slide out easily.
Use a knife at one edge to gently loosen the cups and they'll slide out easily. (Image: Charity Mathews, founder of Foodlets.com)

Decorating Tips for Your Brownies

If you want to pipe icing on top, it's easy to make your own pastry bag with any sandwich-style bag. Fill with frosting, work the frosting down to one corner and snip the edge with kitchen scissors.

A DIY pastry bag.
A DIY pastry bag. (Image: Charity Mathews, founder of Foodlets.com)

Adding sprinkles but don't want to make a huge mess? Place your wire rack above a baking sheet to catch all the stray sprinkles.

Cupcakes with sprinkles on a wire rack.
Cupcakes with sprinkles on a wire rack. (Image: Charity Mathews, founder of Foodlets.com)

Or use larger candies which only require a few to get the job done.

Brownie cupcakes with vanilla icing.
Brownie cupcakes with vanilla icing. (Image: Charity Mathews, founder of Foodlets.com)

If You Liked That, You'll Love This...

Top those brownies off with this delicious easy to make whipped cream frosting.

(Image: Thalia Ho)

Also, did you know muffin pans aren't just for cupcakes, brownies and muffins? Here's how to use a muffin pan to cook hard boiled eggs. It's so simple, it's silly.

(Image: Ashley Manila)

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