Caramel Pecan Brownie Cake
If you’ve spent any time perusing the recipes here at BoB, I hope you’ve taken away the fact that I love to share simple recipes with big results. I’m a firm believer that you should be able to make fantastic baked goods without a lot of fuss.
And this Caramel Pecan Brownie Cake is a very fine example of that.
It all starts with brownies. Then comes a nutty caramel topping. Then we add even more chocolate and nuts. This thing is rich and gooey and sweet and nutty and all-out fabulous. And it’s so easy to make!
For the brownie layer, I used my go-to Favorite Fudgy Brownies recipe. Those are usually baked in an 8-inch square pan, but I baked them in a 9-inch round springform pan so that they’re a bit thinner. Plus, making them round allows you to serve them in slices like a cake.
After the brownies have baked, it’s caramel time. I took the simple route with a caramel topping made with soft caramels and cream. It’s much like the filling in my Turtle Tart, but I stirred in toasted pecans afterwards for some added crunch and flavor. You’ll definitely want to take the time to let the caramel chill after you’ve spread it on top of the brownies. That little bit of refrigerator time will help it set up and keep itself together.
Once the caramel is set, then just drizzle with a simple chocolate ganache and top with a handful of toasted pecans. You’ll have a gorgeous, mouthwatering dessert that is sure to be a crowdpleaser. Everyone will think you’ve slaved in the kitchen!
Caramel Pecan Brownie Cake
Yield: 8 to 10 servings
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
If you love rich, gooey, nutty desserts, then this Caramel Pecan Brownie Cake may be your new favorite sweet treat!
For the brownies:
- 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate (about 70%)
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
For the caramel topping:
- 11 ounces soft caramels (about 40 caramels)
- 1/3 cup heavy cream
- 1 & 1/2 cups roughly chopped pecans, toasted*
For the ganache:
- 2 ounces semisweet chocolate
- 2 tablespoons heavy cream
- 1/4 cup roughly chopped pecans, toasted*
To make the brownies:
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a 9-inch springform pan.
- Place the chocolate and butter in a microwave-safe bowl. Heat in the microwave at half power in 30-second increments until the butter is melted and the chocolate melts when stirred. Stir until smooth. Set aside to cool slightly.
- Mix the sugar, brown sugar, eggs, and vanilla until well-blended. Add the chocolate-butter mixture, and mix until smooth.
- Add the flour and salt, and mix just until combined.
- Transfer the batter to the prepared pan, and spread evenly. Bake 30 to 35 minutes, or until a pick inserted into the center comes out clean. Set aside to cool.
To make the caramel topping:
- Place the caramels and cream in a medium saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until the mixture is smooth.**
- Remove from heat and stir in the pecans. Pour the caramel over the brownies in the pan, and spread evenly. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.
To make the ganache:
- Place the chocolate and cream in a microwave-safe bowl. Heat at half-power in 30-second increments until the chocolate melts when stirred. Stir until smooth.
- Remove the sides of the springform pan and place the brownie on a serving plate.
- Drizzle the ganache over the top of the chilled caramel topping. Sprinkle the pecans over the ganache. Allow the ganache to set at room temperature or in the refrigerator before serving.
*To toast the pecans, spread them in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet lined with foil or parchment paper. Bake at 350°F for about 10 minutes, or until toasted and fragrant.
**You can also make the caramel in the microwave. Place the caramels and cream in a microwave-safe bowl, and heat at half-power for a minute and then at 30-second intervals until it’s easily stirred and smooth.