This Cosmic Brownie recipe just channels childhood. It’s inspired by the Little Debbie Cosmic Brownies, with their two layers of chocolate and fun rainbow chips.
The brownies themselves have a fudgy texture and are full of chocolate flavor while the topping is a simple ganache that you can make in minutes. Then, they’re topped with small rainbow chocolate chips that make it feel like it’s a party.
The next time you’re looking for a fun treat that’s decadent, too, try making these easy homemade brownies.
Why You’ll Love Homemade Cosmic Brownies
What’s not to love about these delicious, chocolatey brownies?
- Pretty – With their rich chocolate topping and colorful candies, these brownies are eye-catching on any dessert table.
- Convenient – You can find most of these ingredients in the baking aisle.
- Versatile – These brownies are great for nearly any occasion.
- Easy – Who needs a boxed mix with a recipe this easy?
You may already have most of these ingredients but if not, they’re easy to find at the grocery store.
For the Brownies:
- Vegetable oil – Oil helps to make the brownies moist.
- Unsalted butter – Melt the butter before adding it to the batter.
- Sugar – Granulated sugar works well for this recipe.
- Light brown sugar – Make sure to pack the brown sugar to get the right amount.
- Eggs – Large eggs are best for this brownie recipe.
- Light corn syrup – Be sure to use the light variety. Dark corn syrup will add too much molasses flavor.
- Vanilla extract – You can use any brand from the store or make your own homemade vanilla extract.
- Flour – All-purpose flour is the way to go for these brownies.
- Cocoa powder – Be sure to use unsweetened cocoa powder.
- Coarse kosher salt – Salt helps to bring out the sweetness of the other ingredients.
For the Chocolate Ganache:
- Heavy cream – To ensure that you have a rich ganache, be sure to use heavy cream instead of light.
- Light corn syrup – This gives a light sweetness to the ganache.
- Vanilla extract – Vanilla helps to bring out the chocolate and sweet flavors.
- Coarse kosher salt – Salt balances the ingredients.
- Semi-sweet chocolate – Be sure to chop the chocolate finely so that it melts easily.
- Candy-coated chocolate chips – These will go on top of the ganache. If you have leftovers, make some potato chip marshmallow bars!
How to Make Cosmic Brownies
The colorful, chocolate-topped brownies are so easy to make.
- Add butter, vegetable oil, sugar and brown sugar to the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment and beat until fully mixed.
- Whisk in the whole eggs, extra egg yolk, corn syrup and vanilla.
- Sift the cocoa powder, flour, and salt into a separate bowl.
- Pour the dry ingredients into the bowl with the wet ingredients.
- Using a rubber spatula, mix until just combined, being careful not to overmix.
- Next, add the brownie batter to the prepared pan with cooking spray and smooth it with an offset spatula.
- Bake until an inserted toothpick comes out clean and the top is shiny.
- Allow brownies to cool in pan briefly. Then, transfer brownies to a wire rack to come to room temperature.
- Add corn syrup, vanilla, and salt to a preheated saucepan. Mix together until completely combined.
- Remove the mixture from the heat and add chocolate chips. Mix until smooth.
- Pour the chocolate onto the brownies, spreading to the edges.
- Add candy coated chocolate pieces on top.
- Refrigerate. Once the chocolate topping is set, slice the brownies.
What to Serve with Cosmic Brownies
At our house, we love serving brownies with a big glass of cold milk or chocolate milk but they’re also good with whipped hot chocolate, white hot chocolate, or whipped coffee. When it’s just us adults, we also like to serve these alongside grown-up drinks like an espresso martini, white chocolate martini, or hot buttered rum.
We love these brownies as they are but you can add or swap ingredients, too.
- Nuts – Fold nuts into the brownie batter or sprinkle them on top.
- Sugar – To reduce the sugar, try using your favorite alternative.
- Candies – Choose another colorful candy or rainbow sprinkles to sprinkle on top or fold the color coated candies into the batter.
- Extract – Replace some or all of the vanilla extract with another flavor. Coffee extract and almond extract are both good options.
Storage, Make Ahead and Freezing
You can store brownies on the counter for 3-4 days or place them in the refrigerator or freezer.
Make-Ahead: Make the batter ahead and refrigerate it in a baking dish for up to 3 days before baking.
Refrigerator: Store brownies in the refrigerator in an airtight container or resealable bag for up to 1 week. You can also wrap them individually in aluminum foil.
Freezer: Freeze brownies for up to 3 months. Store them in a single layer in a freezer bag or freezer-safe container or wrap them in plastic wrap.
Common Questions About Cosmic Brownies
Cosmic Brownies are fudgy brownies so they’re dense and moist and the delicious fudge icing is heavenly. The colorful candies make it fun and add texture.
Little Debbie says that the Cosmic Brownies were inspired by the Cosmic bowling trend of the 1990s.
Cosmic Brownies are rich and chocolatey with a smooth, soft chocolatey topping.
More Homemade Brownies
Cosmic Brownie Recipe
For the Brownies:
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 7 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
- 2 large eggs plus 1 egg yolk
- 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¾ cup flour
- 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/2 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Coat the bottom and sides of an 8-x 8-inch baking pan with cooking spray and line the bottom with parchment paper. Set aside.
- In the bowl of stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment or in a large mixing bowl, cream together the butter, vegetable oil, sugar and brown sugar until fully mixed.
- Add the whole eggs, egg yolk, corn syrup, and vanilla, whisking until sugars dissolved and mixture is smooth, approximately 5 minutes.
- In a small bowl, sift or whisk together the cocoa powder, flour, and salt.
- Add the dry mixture to the wet ingredients, until just combined. Do not overmix.
- Pour the batter into the prepared baking pan. Use an offset spatula to smooth the batter. Tap on the counter a few times to level.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes or until they pass the toothpick test. Tops will be shiny.
- Remove and cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes.
- Arrange a wire rack over a rimmed baking sheet. Set aside. Run an offset spatula or butter knife around the edges of the pan and then invert the brownies onto the wire rack and let cool completely.
- In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, heat the cream . Stir in the corn syrup, vanilla, and salt until fully mixed.
- Remove from the heat and stir in the chocolate chips until melted.
- Pour the ganache over the brownies, using an offset spatula to spread to the edges. Sprinkle liberally with candy coated chocolate chips while ganache is still tacky.
- Refrigerate until ganache is set and then cut into 16 small squares, wiping the knife between each cut.