Fudgy, chewy, and slightly gooey. That’s exactly how I would describe these brownies. They’re not just any old caramel gluten free brownies. These are caramel coffee gluten free brownies. Topped with extra homemade caramel sauce.
This brownie recipe was inspired by the “denver brownies” recipe in the book Creme de Colorado. It’s one of my favorite cookbooks I love to look through, and try to adapt many of the recipes to be gluten free. It’s a pretty basic brownie recipe… so I wanted to challenge myself to make them as extravagant as possible. I’m talking fudgy and chewy chocolate brownies. With caramel of course. Because caramel always makes brownies taste even better.
I hope you’re a caramel fan, because this brownie recipe swirls a homemade coffee caramel sauce throughout the batter. Ensuring that each and every bite has that nice caramel chew.
Homemade Coffee Caramel Sauce
Have you tried making caramel sauce at home? It’s definitely worth it! This caramel sauce is not only flavored with freshly brewed coffee, it’s made with canned coconut milk instead of heavy cream.
The best part about this coffee caramel sauce is that it requires only a few simple ingredients, and doesn’t require a candy thermometer:
- Just combine your coffee and brown sugar in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil.
- Let it boil for 3-4 minutes while stirring occasionally. Turn down the heat, add the coconut milk and bring back up to a boil.
- Once boiling again, reduce the heat to simmer (around medium-low heat) for about 30 minutes until it’s very thick and coats the back of a wooden spoon. It should be reduced to more than half. Your caramel may take more or less time to thicken depending on humidity and temperature of your kitchen, or even the size sauce pan you use.
Yes, you need some patience with this caramel sauce. It may seem like a long time to simmer, but we want a very thick caramel here. So be patient, because I promise it will be worth it!
Once the caramel has thickened, pour it into a bowl and let it cool completely while you make your brownie batter. If the caramel sauce is still slightly too thin, just place it in the refrigerator and it will begin to thicken.
One very important tip here: make sure you simmer and not boil. The first time I made this sauce, I accidentally let it boil at a high heat for way too long…. well, let’s just say there was a fine line between the sauce thickening and completely separating. I didn’t want to waste it, so I poured the caramel into a bowl and grabbed my hand beaters. Did it work? You bet! It’s a neat little trick if you find your caramel separated. Just let it cool slightly and then beat it until it all comes back together.
Once your brownie batter is mixed together, pour or drizzle 3/4 of your coffee caramel sauce over the top of the batter. Insert a knife into the batter and carefully swirl the caramel around a few times or to your liking.
Because of how thick this caramel is, it will set up as the brownies cool and will be slightly chewy. Just be sure to let them cool completely before cutting!
Oh, and guess what? Cover your leftover brownies with some foil, and they are even better the next day.
Caramel Coffee Gluten Free Brownies
- 3oz semisweet chocolate chips or chunks
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1/2 cup Bob’s Red Mill 1:1 gluten free flour (see notes below for alternatives)
- 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (not dutch process)
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 2 tsp gluten free vanilla extract
- 1 cup canned full-fat coconut milk, room temperature
- 1/4 cup freshly brewed coffee
- 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
- 1/2 tsp gluten free vanilla extract
Make the Caramel:
- In a small sauce pan over medium heat, combine the coffee and brown sugar and bring to a boil. Continue to whisk and let it bubble for 3-4 minutes.
- Turn down the heat, slowly add in the canned coconut milk and whisk until combined, then bring the sauce back up to a boil. Once the sauce comes back to a boil, reduce to medium-low heat and let it simmer (looking for small bubbles, do not boil over high heat!) for about 30-35 minutes while stirring occasionally. Time may depend on humidity in your kitchen and the size of your sauce pan. The sauce it done when it's very thick, has reduced by at least half, and can coat the back of a wooden spoon.
- Take the sauce off the heat and stir in the vanilla. Let it cool while you make the brownie batter. The caramel will thicken even more as it cools.
Make the Brownies:
- Preheat oven to 350℉. Line a 8” by 8” square baking dish with parchment paper. Set aside.
- In a microwave safe bowl, heat the butter at 15-second intervals until melted. Add the chocolate chips or chunks and continue to stir together until the chocolate has completely melted and combined with the butter. Transfer to a large mixing bowl and whisk in the sugar. Make sure this mixture has cooled before adding in the eggs, whisking until smooth. Stir in the vanilla.
- Using a rubber spatula or wooden spoon, stir in the gluten free flour, cocoa powder, and salt until totally combined and smooth. The batter will be very thick.
- Pour the batter into your baking dish and spread evenly. Drizzle 3/4 of the coffee caramel sauce over the top of the batter and swirl the caramel around with a knife (I swirl back and forth several times).
- Bake for 35-40 minutes (mine took about 37). The edges will pull away from the sides and a toothpick inserted in the brownies will still have moist crumbs attached. The longer you bake them, the less fudgy and gooey they will be, so don't over-bake. Let them cool completely before cutting - they will be gooey, and will set as they cool. If you cut them too soon they will crumble. Top with leftover cameral sauce before serving.
- You can use coconut sugar in place of brown sugar in the caramel sauce if you wish.
-Try topping them with some sea salt to finish!
- I always use Bob’s Red Mill 1:1 gluten free baking flour, which contains xanthan gum. If using a different flour for this recipe, use a 1:1 type flour of your choice that also contains xanthan gum. If using any other type of flour, I can't guarantee your results will be the same.
- Be sure to reduce your caramel sauce to a simmer and let it lightly bubble until reduced to a very thick sauce. Do not boil your caramel sauce over high heat for a long period of time, or your sauce may separate. If this happens, don't panic! Pour your sauce into a bowl, let it cool slightly, then use an immersion blender or hand beaters to bring it back together.
- Make sure to cool your brownies completely before cutting them, or they will crumble. Cutting with a plastic knife can help give you nice clean edges!
Recipe inspired by the “denver brownies” recipe in the book Creme de Colorado.
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