As I was trying to choose a recipe to share with you all this week, it occurred to me that there have been far too few recipes here on The Sweeter Side that feature what is arguably the best, most delicious food in the entire universe — chocolate. It was time, I immediately decided, to remedy that.
As I sat on my couch, digging through my ever-growing list of recipe ideas and must-make desserts (snacking on a piece of dark chocolate, I might add) there was just one problem…everything I’d made notes on over the last few months required a healthy amount of bake time in the oven. Chewy brownies and rich chocolate cakes abounded, and that’s not to say there aren’t plenty of such recipes to come, however it’s August. August is the one month of the year where I, an avid baker, vow to turn off my oven for the entirety of the month, because holy moly it’s hot down here in Texas.
And while we’re almost through the dog days of summer, there’s no turning back now. So, it was back to the drawing board. Satisfy my chocolate craving sans oven, you say? Challenge accepted.
These No-Bake Brownies are my solution to what turned out to be a very, very good problem to have (because, chocolatey taste testing!). I know, brownies without an oven might sound a bit crazy, but when you combine graham cracker crumbs with a little condensed milk and a little more melty chocolate, something magic happens.
Dense and chewy, they offer a rich and fudge-like texture that’s so irresistibly satisfying you may decide to never go back to their baked cousin. Okay, so maybe I’m being a little dramatic, but they’re really, really delicious, you guys. Chopped almonds provide a hearty crunch and dried cranberries impart a tart, chewiness that perfectly balances the rich blend of cocoa powder and bittersweet chocolate. Add tender coconut flakes to the mix because how can you not?, drizzle with a little bit more chocolate for good measure, and you’ve got yourself a showstopping, no-bake dessert that takes just minutes to pull together and even fewer to disappear. Enjoy! XO, Katie
Adapted from Bakeless Sweets
- 1 cup graham cracker crumbs
- 1/2 cup chopped almonds, plus more for garnish
- 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes, plus more for ganrish
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries, plus more for garnish
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup cocoa powder
- 3/4 cup sweetened condensed milk
- 5 oz. bittersweet chocolate, melted
- dark chocolate, for drizzling
- white chocolate, for drizzling
- Line an 8-inch round or square pan with parchment paper and lightly grease with butter or baking spray.
- In a large bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs, almonds, coconut, cranberries and salt, and stir until well combined. Add the cocoa powder and mix well.
- Pour in the condensed milk and melted chocolate and stir to thoroughly combine. The dough will be very firm.
- Scrape the mixture into the prepared pan. Cover with a piece of parchment paper or plastic wrap and use your hands or a flat object (tip: use the bottom of a measuring cup) to press the dough firmly and evenly into the pan. Refrigerate for at least one hour.
- Before serving, remove from the pan, drizzle with chocolate and sprinkle with reserved toppings, then cut into squares or slices. Leftover brownies will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.