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Brownie muffins aren’t usually true muffins at all. Rather, they’re brownies made from a traditional brownie mix that has been poured into muffin tins. This kind of muffin doesn’t usually rise, so there is no muffin top. Instead, the result is a round brownie with a slightly concave center. Bakers often make brownie muffins to ensure all of their brownies are the same size. They may also use mini muffin tins to create miniature two-bite brownies.
Making brownie muffins isn’t usually much different than making traditional pan brownies. The baker may use a personal brownie recipe or a brownie mix from a box. The muffin tins must be lightly sprayed with cooking oil or greased with butter or shortening to prevent the muffins from sticking. Bakers may want to lower the oven temperature slightly, or take five to 10 minutes off of the cooking time to ensure these individual brownies don’t become dry or start to scorch.
Whether small or large, brownie muffins are typically extremely versatile dessert items. They can, of course, be eaten alone as a quick, sweet treat. One may top larger brownies with a scoop of ice cream, or sandwich the ice cream between two brownie muffins. Miniature brownie muffins may be used as a topping for ice cream, along with more traditional fare.
These muffins may also be served as individual cakes topped with whipped cream or some kind of flavored glaze. Chocolate, vanilla, white chocolate, and fruit glazes — such as cherry, strawberry, and raspberry — are all generally tasty choices. Some may also use them as the base for a sundae, topping them with everything from chopped bananas to nuts and colorful sprinkles.
One also has many options for what to put into brownie muffins. Traditional chocolate chips and nuts may be combined with peanut butter or white chocolate chips, dried fruit, or cream cheese and caramel. Small brownies can typically be rich and decadent because they’re often small enough to get just a taste of the flavors without becoming overwhelming.
Those that are bent on creating brownie muffins that rise to create muffin tops can generally achieve this with an ordinary muffin recipe. All that’s required is a little extra moisture to make them thick and dense. Butter, oil, applesauce, yogurt, and sour cream can all help this happen. A dollop or two of any of these ingredients should create a dense, cake-like muffin that tastes just like a brownie. They’re also typically just as versatile as their concave cousins.
I like to make brownie muffins because it helps me with portion control. Instead of eating a half of a pan of brownies I can grab one of the little brownie cups, walk alway and only eat that. I might be tempted to eat more, but seeing each discreet brownie really helps me resist.