Bars + Brownies

Chocolate Brownie Bars

Chocolate Bars | The Vanilla Bean Blog

I was recently on Twin Cities Live and made the chocolate bars pictured.

They are based on a recipe from my cookbook: chocolate brownie base, buttercream filling, then topped off with chocolate ganache.

Indulgent, but delicious. I made them for Valentine’s day with edible rose petals, which made them pretty and terribly precious, but if you’re not into that sort of thing, plain tops will work just fine. 

I hope your weekend is full of good things. I am currently watching the snow fall down and trying not to think of my parents headed to the east coast for weeks on end while I pine for spring.

I did start reading I Capture the Castle (affiliate link) yesterday and can’t put it down; it’s delightful. xx

Chocolate Bars | Sarah Kieffer

More Brownie Recipes:

chocolate brownie bars on a white backround

Layered Chocolate Brownie Bars

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 27 minutes
Additional Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 57 minutes
These layered chocolate brownie bars have a delicious buttercream filling that's tinted pink with a bit of food coloring. Topped with chocolate ganache and dried rose petals. A beautiful dessert!
Sarah Kieffer
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate


Brownie Base

  • 4 tablespoons 57g unsalted butter, cold
  • 4 ounces 113g bittersweet chocolate, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons 13g Dutch process cocoa powder
  • ½ cup plus 1 tablespoon 80g all-purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • ¼ cup canola oil
  • ¾ cups 149g granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup 50g packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Buttercream Filling

  • 1 cup 2 sticks | 227g unsalted butter, room temperature
  • Pinch salt
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2-1 teaspoon flavored extract whatever you prefer! I like mint(optional)
  • 2 cups 226g confectioner’s sugar
  • A few drops of food coloring I used pink (optional)


  • 4 ounces 113g semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped fine
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • Edible rose petals if desired
  • Cacoa nibs chopped, if desired


For the brownies:

  • Adjust an oven rack to the lower-middle position. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease an 8 by 8-inch baking pan and line a parchment sling (a 9 by 9-inch pan will work, too).
  • In a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, melt the butter and the bittersweet chocolate until both are melted and smooth. Remove from the heat and add the cocoa powder, stirring until smooth. Set aside to cool slightly.
  • In a small bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt.
  • In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, oil, sugars, and vanilla. Add the slightly cooled chocolate mixture and whisk until smooth. Add the flour mixture and stir with a spatula until just combined.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake 22 to 27 minutes, until the sides of the brownies have set, the top is beginning to crackle and look glossy, and a wooden skewer or toothpick inserted into the center comes out with crumbs. The batter on the skewer should not be wet, but should have a good amount of crumbs clinging to it. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool completely. Place in the refrigerator and chill for an hour.

For the filling:

  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle, beat the butter on medium until creamy. Scrape down the sides and add the vanilla, mint, and salt. Mix on low until combined and then beat on medium for 1 minute.
  • Turn the mixer to low and slowly add the confectioner‘s sugar, a little at a time, mixing until combined, and stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl as necessary. Increase speed to medium-high and beat 6-8 minutes until light and fluffy.

For the ganache:

  • Place the chocolate in a small bowl. Heat the heavy cream in a small saucepan until it is simmering and just about to boil. Pour the cream over the chocolate, cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and let sit for 5 minutes. Remove the plastic and whisk until completely smooth. Let cool to room temperature before using.

To assemble the bars:

  • Spread the mint filling evenly across the chilled brownies. Return the pan back to the fridge and chill for 1 hour.
  • When the filling has chilled, pour the cooled ganache over the top, and using an offset spatula, spread the ganache in an even layer (decorate with edible rose petals and cacao nibs, if desired). Put the pan back in the fridge for 1 hour. Remove the pan from the fridge, and wait 10 minutes before cutting, to allow the glaze to soften slightly. Cut the squares and serve.


  • Reply
    Wednesday, June 8, 2022 at 5:56 pm

    5 stars
    I love this recipe! I adapted the filling a bit and they came out great: 1/2 teaspoon of Nielsen-Massey rose water for the flavoring extract and 1 oz powdered, freeze-dried raspberries or strawberries. The rose and berry combination is SO good.

  • Reply
    Sunday, September 12, 2021 at 12:36 pm

    Look for the old film of I Capture the Castle with Romola Garai, Rose Byrne, and Bill Nighy.

  • Reply
    Friday, July 20, 2018 at 5:26 am

    Thanks for sharing

  • Reply
    Klis Cakery
    Monday, March 26, 2018 at 7:08 am

    So beautiful, thanks for sharing.

  • Reply
    Monday, February 26, 2018 at 11:14 am

    These are beautiful! Where do you get your edible rose petals?

  • Reply
    Kelsey @ Appeasing a Food Geek
    Monday, February 26, 2018 at 5:26 am

    Oooh so pretty! Perfect for the Valentine’s theme. Thanks for sharing! xo

  • Reply
    Saturday, February 24, 2018 at 11:00 pm

    These chocolate bars look delicious! So pretty too!

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