Ten Ways to Fancy Up Your Brownies (or Other Desserts)


Here are ten great ideas to transform your brownies into fancy desserts that will impress your friends and delight your family.  You’ll want to keep these ideas and recipes handy.  You’ll refer to them often for other desserts. We used our New York Dessert Brownie mix because it makes brownies that are more cake-like, so they easily cut into nice, neat squares.

  1. Sundae Brownies.  Make sundaes out of your brownies with ice cream, whipped cream, a syrup, chopped nuts, and a cherry.
  2. Banana Split Brownies.  Make it a banana split with sliced bananas, ice cream, whipped cream, nuts, and a syrup. 
  3. Strawberry Shortcake Brownies.  Add fresh sliced strawberries and whipped cream.  Consider Orange Cloud Whipped Cream.  Orange and chocolate is a surprisingly delightful combination.
  4. Raspberry Cheesecake Brownies.  Top your brownies with our raspberry dessert sauce or make your own with fresh raspberries.  Add Raspberry Cream Cheese Whipped Cream.
  5. Strawberry Cream Brownies.  Top your brownies with a strawberry dessert sauce made with fresh strawberries and a squiggle of Bavarian cream.  Add Strawberry Cream Cheese Whipped Cream.
  6. Chubby Cherry Brownies.  Top your brownies with Chubby Cherry Topping and French Vanilla Whipped Cream.
  7. Peanut Butter Cream Brownies.  Add Bavarian cream, Peanut Butter Fudge Sauce, and Salted Peanut Butter Whipped Cream.
  8. Le Grande Brownies.  Drizzle your brownies with chocolate dessert sauce and pile them high with meringue.  Brown the meringue with a kitchen torch.
  9. Caramel Brownies.  Drizzle your brownies with caramel dessert sauce or make your own caramel sauce.  Top them with Caramel Nut Whipped Cream.
  10. Mint Brownies.  Add mint chips to the batter.  Top your brownies with Mint Chocolate Sauce.  Add French Vanilla Whipped Cream.

 See all our Designer Dessert Sauces.  This is what the pros use to make those fancy desserts you find in better restaurants.

 

Recipes for Sauces, Toppings, and Whipped Creams

Orange Cloud Whipped Cream
Lemon Cloud Whipped Cream
Fresh Raspberry Sauce
Strawberry Sauce
Raspberry Cream Cheese Whipped Cream
Strawberry Cream Cheese Whipped Cream
French Vanilla Whipped Cream
Chocolate Whipped Cream
Caramel Sauce
Chocolate Sauce
Chocolate Ganache
Caramel Nut Whipped Cream
Salted Peanut Butter Whipped Cream
Peanut Butter Fudge Sauce
Mint Fudge Sauce

Orange Cloud Whipped Cream

2 cups whipping cream
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons orange flavor
1 tablespoon orange zest
Whip the cream to soft peaks.  Add the sugar, flavor, and zest and continue whipping.

Lemon Cloud Whipped Cream

2 cups whipping cream
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons lemon flavor
1 tablespoon lemon zest
Whip the cream to soft peaks.  Add the sugar, flavor, and zest and continue whipping.

Fresh Raspberry Sauce

Raspberries alone are not tart and flavored enough for a dessert sauce even when thickened with a starch. There are two possible solutions: Cooking the fruit down to concentrate the flavors or adding a jelly for thickness and flavor. This recipe uses the latter.

12 ounces, about 3 cups frozen, unsweetened raspberries
2/3 cup red currant jelly
about 1/4 cup sugar

1. Thaw and puree the raspberries. Strain them twice through a sieve/strainer or until nearly all of the seeds are removed. Place the puree in a small saucepan. Add the jelly.
2. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the jelly is completely melted and blended with the fruit. Sweeten to taste with the sugar while it is still hot.
Stir to make sure that the sugar is dissolved. Let cool.

Yield: About 1 1/3 cups of raspberry sauce.

Strawberry Sauce

Strawberries alone are not tart and flavored enough for a dessert sauce even when thickened with a starch.  There are two possible solutions:  Cooking the fruit down to concentrate the flavors or adding a jelly for thickness and flavor.  This recipe uses the latter.
12 ounces, about 3 cups frozen, unsweetened strawberries
2/3 cup red currant jelly
about 1/4 cup sugar

  1. Thaw and puree the strawberries.  Place the puree in a small saucepan.  Add the jelly.
  2. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the jelly is completely melted and blended with the fruit.  Sweeten to taste with the sugar while it is still hot.  Stir to make sure that the sugar is dissolved.  Let cool.

Yield: About 1 1/3 cups of strawberry sauce.

Raspberry Cream Cheese Whipped Cream

Consider this as a colorful topping for any raspberry dessert.  It’s also a nice alternative to whipped cream in fruit salads calling for whipped cream
1/3 cup sugar
4 ounces cream cheese
2 cups whipping cream
2 drops deep pink Americolor food color gel or equal (optional)
1 teaspoon raspberry flavor

  1. Place the sugar and cream cheese in the bowl of your stand-type mixer.  Beat until the sugar is creamed through the cream cheese into a soft, consistent mixture.
  2. Add the cream, color, and flavor.  Beat until soft peaks form.

Hold the whipped cream in the refrigerator until you are ready to use it.  It can be rewhipped as long as you don’t over-beat it.

Strawberry Cream Cheese Whipped Cream

Consider this as a colorful topping for any strawberry dessert.  It’s also a nice alternative to whipped cream in fruit salads calling for whipped cream
1/3 cup sugar
4 ounces cream cheese
2 cups whipping cream
2 drops deep pink Americolor food color gel or equal (optional)
1 teaspoon strawberry flavor

  • Place the sugar and cream cheese in the bowl of your stand-type mixer.  Beat until the sugar is creamed through the cream cheese into a soft, consistent mixture.
  1. Add the cream, color, and flavor.  Beat until soft peaks form.

Hold the whipped cream in the refrigerator until you are ready to use it.  It can be rewhipped as long as you don’t over-beat it.

French Vanilla Whipped Cream

You can make this with or without the cream cheese.  The cream cheese will help stabilize the whipped cream so that it does not melt as quickly.
1/3 cup sugar
4 ounces cream cheese
2 cups whipping cream
1 teaspoon French vanilla flavor

  1. Place the sugar and cream cheese in the bowl of your stand-type mixer.  Beat until the sugar is creamed through the cream cheese into a soft, consistent mixture.
  2. Add the cream, color, and flavor.  Beat until soft peaks form.

Hold the whipped cream in the refrigerator until you are ready to use it.  It can be rewhipped as long as you don’t over-beat it.

Chocolate Whipped Cream

2 cups whipping cream
1/2 cup milk chocolate chips or 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup granulated sugar or to taste
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

  1. Whip the cream until soft peaks form.  (See tips in the next section.)
  2. Melt the chocolate in the microwave for one minute at high heat, stir, and continue heating until melted.  Let the chocolate cool for three to five minutes.  The chocolate should be warm and still liquid but not hot.
  3. Stir 1/3 of the whipped cream into the chocolate.
  4. Stir the chocolate mixture and the extract (along with the sugar, if used) into the remaining whipped cream.

Caramel Sauce

1 12-ounce can of evaporated milk
1 1/4 cup brown sugar
6 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions
Mix all the ingredients except the extract in a heavy saucepan. Heat over medium heat, stirring often, until the mixture boils. Gently boil for eight to ten minutes or until the mixture thickens. Remove from the heat and stir in the extract. Cool until the sauce thickens to serving consistency.

Chocolate Sauce

This is an example of a cooked sugar sauce with corn syrup added to reduce the chances of crystallization.

Ingredients:

2 cups sugar
1 cup water
2 tablespoons corn syrup

3 ounces unsweetened baker’s chocolate (for a very dark sauce, use 4 ounces)
4 tablespoons butter

Directions:

  1. Measure the sugar and water into a clean saucepan.
  2. Over medium heat, stir and cook until the sugar is dissolved and the solution comes to a boil. Cook for one minute.
  3. Melt the chocolate and butter in the microwave in a medium bowl.
  4. Very slowly hot syrup into the chocolate mixture. Pour the chocolate sauce back into the saucepan.
  5. Bring the sauce back to a boil. After it reaches the boiling point, cook for four more minutes. Let cool.

Store in a covered container in the refrigerator.

Chocolate Ganache

Ganache is a simple chocolate sauce that is luscious, easy to make, and very versatile. By altering the ratio of whipping cream to chocolate, you can make it thin for an ice cream topping, thick like a paste for a sandwich filling between two cookies, or somewhere in between to drizzle over a cake. Light corn syrup is sometimes added to create glaze for drizzling.
The following recipe will yield a thick, paste like ganache. You may thin your ganache with more cream.

Ingredients
1 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
8 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, cut into pieces
4 tablespoons butter

Directions
Bring the cream and vanilla to a boil. In a medium bowl, pour the hot cream over the chocolate. Stir until the chocolate is melted. Stir in the butter. Let the ganache cool until it reaches the desired consistency.

Caramel Nut Whipped Cream

1 cup whipping cream
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon caramel flavor
1/3 cup salted snacking nuts, chopped
Whip the cream, sugar, and flavor together in your stand-type mixer with a whip attachment.  Continue beating until stiff peaks form.  Fold in the nuts.
Notes:  Whipped cream will melt as it sits, especially if not refrigerated.  A half teaspoon Instant Clearjel per cup of whipping cream will help it hold up.  Whipped cream can be whipped again to revive it.

Salted Peanut Butter Whipped Cream

2 cups whipping cream
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup peanut butter
1/3 cup salted peanuts, chopped
Whip the cream, sugar, and peanut butter together in your stand-type mixer with a whip attachment.  Continue beating until stiff peaks form.  Fold in the peanuts.

Peanut Butter Fudge Sauce

This is simply a ganache with peanut butter added.
3/4 cup heavy cream
9 ounces dark chocolate wafers
1/3 cup peanut butter
Bring the cream to a boil. In a medium bowl, pour the hot cream over the chocolate. Stir until the chocolate is melted. Stir in the peanut butter. Let the sauce cool enough for serving.  If the sauce becomes too thick, reheat the sauce or stir in more cream.

Mint Fudge Sauce

1 cup cream
12 ounces mint chocolate chips
3 tablespoons butter
Directions
Place the cream in a heavy saucepan.  Add the chips.  Cook and stir until the chips are melted and the mixture is smooth.  Stir in the butter.
Let cool for ten minutes before using.  Store in the refrigerator for up to one month.  Reheat in the microwave before serving again.

 

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