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Caramel Filled Brownies

by on April 21, 2007 · 23 comments

This is one of my favorite caramel brownie recipes.

Caramel Filled Brownie

The original version of the recipe is in The Pastry Queen: Royally Good Recipes from the Texas Hill Country’s Rather Sweet Bakery & Cafe (an awesome book!), but I’ve made little changes to it over time. I usually halve the recipe and bake it in an 8 inch square pan, but since most people like making the full recipe, I’m typing the 9×13 inch version.

Anyhow, these have become a bake sale staple. I cut the brownies when they are very cold and firm, then wrap them in individual cellophane wrappers. They do soften up a little at room temperature, so if you like a less gooey brownie, I recommend keeping them chilled.



Caramel Filled Brownies
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Caramel Filled Brownies
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Serves: 24
  • 12 ounces bittersweet chocolate chips or chopped up chocolate (not semisweet)
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter (8 oz)
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 (14 oz) bag of caramels
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup of pecans, toasted and chopped
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (or more if you like)
  1. Line a 13x9 inch pan with nonstick foil or parchment paper.
  2. Place chocolate and butter in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave on high for 1 minute. Stir and repeat until smooth. Let cool for about 5 minutes.
  3. While chocolate cools, in a separate bowl beat sugar and eggs on high speed of an electric mixer for 3 minutes. Beat in vanilla. Stir chocolate mixture into the egg mixture. Using a mixing spoon or wire whisk, stir in flour and salt. Pour about half of this batter into the lined pan and bake for 20 minutes.
  4. Cool for 20 minutes. While first layer cools, prepare filling.
  5. Unwrap caramels (ack! Why don't they make unwrapped caramels!) and put them in a saucepan with the 1/3 cup of cream. Heat on medium low, stirring often, until caramels are melted. Stir about half of the chopped pecans into the caramel. Pour the caramel mixture over the brownie layer.
  6. Spread the remaining brownie mix over the caramel filling. It is kind of tricky, so do your best, but don't worry about covering all the caramel. Scatter chocolate chips and remaining pecans over the top.
  7. Bake at 350 degrees for another 20 minutes or until the top batter appears set but not dry. Allow brownies to cool completely (this should take a few hours). I like to cool them and then chill them because it makes slicing easier.
  8. Lift brownies from pan and place on a big cutting board. Slice into whatever size you feel like.
I recommend baking these a day ahead and letting them chill overnight before cutting. If halving, use an 8 inch pan. If you use a glass pan, you'll probably want to reduce the temperature by 25 degrees. I never use glass pans, but that's the general rule. If you use semisweet chocolate or something lower than 63%, the brownies might be too sweet. This recipe is pretty old, so when I first made it I had to use regular wrapped caramels. These days I just use the Kraft caramel bits.



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Published on April 21, 2007

{ 23 comments… read them below or add one }

Bev April 21, 2007 at 8:32 pm

You are bad, bad, bad!!! LOL! I am trying to lose weight….soooooo, maybe this isn’t the blog I should be reading every day??? If only I could send the *extras* to work with my husband…he refuses to take treats of any kind to his workplace because he says his co-workers don’t *deserve* them. :)

Anna April 22, 2007 at 8:59 am

Bev, I guess you could use some sort web site blocking software on me ;). Or maybe just look at the pictures instead of actually baking.

A lot of people seem to be dieting right now. Guess it’s swimsuit time.

Abi Jones April 22, 2007 at 9:24 pm

I was going to make these, but suddenly DC has gone from 40 degree winter days to 80 degree summer days with no Spring in between.

Well, that and I didn’t want to unwrap a whole package of caramels. I would probably just end up eating them.

Debbi June 23, 2007 at 11:47 am

I just made these last night for some friends. Holy cow are these sweet!! I only had about 1/2 bittersweet so the other 9 oz. I replaced with semi sweet which is part of the issue. They certainly are good though. The reynolds wrap trick did NOT work for me so my brownies did not come looking as nice as yours. We had 8 kids here last night and they polished off 90% of the brownies so they didn’t care how they looked. Thanks for the nummy recipe!

Anna June 23, 2007 at 11:55 am

Debbi, did you by any chance use the wrong side of the Reynolds Wrap? One sides is non-stick — the dull side. And of course, I’m referring the the “Release” variety, not regular Reynolds Wrap foil.

Weird about the sweetness. They seem to have a normal sweetness level to me.

Keep them in the refrigerator and you will find they get better with age!

Anonymous May 12, 2009 at 3:58 pm

These are amazing!! I made them for a party and everyone was blown away; my friend even asked for the recipe. I used Ghiradelli 60% bittersweet chips for the brownie and instead of using unwrapped caramels and cream, I just used a jar of caramel ice cream topping and thickened it with about a tablespoon of flour. I also omitted the nuts and the salt(I used salted butter). Delicious and very rich! I give it 5 stars :)

Caitlin May 12, 2009 at 3:58 pm

These are amazing!! I made them for a party and everyone was blown away; my friend even asked for the recipe. I used Ghiradelli 60% bittersweet chips for the brownie and instead of using unwrapped caramels and cream, I just used a jar of caramel ice cream topping and thickened it with about a tablespoon of flour. I also omitted the nuts and the salt(I used salted butter). Delicious and very rich! I give it 5 stars :)

Anna May 12, 2009 at 4:51 pm

Thanks for the review, Caitlin. I’m glad you brought this recipe to my attention today because I’m working on a Top 5 list and this one is one of my Top 5 brownies.

Ermie Magfloat August 12, 2009 at 8:38 am

These are just what I’m looking for, thanks. It’s so hard to find a caramel brownie recipe online that doesn’t cheat and use a cake mix! (Which is not as good. Ever.) All your recipes look good – I’ll have to remember this website’s name. :)

Clara Curtis November 8, 2009 at 10:45 pm

I love this recipe! I just omit the nuts, use semisweet chocolate chips instead of bittersweet (which I would actually prefer, but my friends prefer sweeter. Haha, just a sophisticated 17 year old palette I guess) and use Werther’s soft caramels. So much fun to make too! I need to learn how to develop my own recipes in the future! I posted it on my blog and gave you recognition for it, since you’re pretty much a genius. :]

Sue November 9, 2009 at 7:57 pm

These are awesome brownies! Really decadent. My husband LOVES them.

Sophie November 17, 2010 at 4:12 am

Good grief! Absolutely and positively sinful looking! I dig it ^_^

California Native March 20, 2011 at 10:40 am

Do you sell your treats online? This look so good!!

Anna March 20, 2011 at 1:32 pm

No, not yet!

Frk. Overballe April 6, 2011 at 1:28 pm

This was sooo good!!!! I served it at an university event, and everybody asked for the recipe! I hope you don’t mind my posting the recipe at

Yuriy January 21, 2012 at 11:59 am

Hey, anna. im considering making these, but i wanteed to ask if i could use caramel spread (basically like melted caramel, except not rigid) instead of a bag of caramels!

Anna January 21, 2012 at 12:42 pm

Hey there! Spread might be a little too soft, but if that’s what you have on hand it’s worth an experiment. Plus it sounds like you have an actual caramel spread rather than a caramel sauce. If you try it, just make sure to chill the brownies thoroughly before cutting. Let me know how it goes!

Ellen August 16, 2012 at 5:05 pm

Hello, if you do not want to unwrap all those caramels you can got tot the king Arthur flour website and order a block of outstanding merckens caramel. You can cut off a 14 oz piece. And it melts beautifully! I am trying these bars this weekend with that caramel!!!!!

Esther October 6, 2012 at 6:14 am

Hi, I was wondering if I need to change the baking time/temperature when I use a 8 inch square pan?

Jody November 15, 2012 at 11:02 am

Ok, these are seriously the best brownies I have ever had!! I have made three pans in less than two weeks and have taken them to work (twice), given to neighbors and friends and even sent them across the country for birthday parties!!! They will be my “cookies” at my sister’s annual cookie exchange!! These are easy to make and are ABSOLUTELY AMAZING!!!!!

Esther February 21, 2013 at 4:36 am

Hi, I really really love these brownies! How long can you keep them in the fridge? Cause I need them for monday and thursday, so I was thinking of making them on sunday and keep half of them refridgerated until thursday. Is that too long?

Anna February 21, 2013 at 7:43 am

Hi Esther,

They’d be fine until Monday or even Tuesday, but I’d put the ones you want for Thursday in the freezer. Glad you like the brownies!

Esther February 23, 2013 at 6:50 am

Thanks Anna!

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