Texas sheet cakes are something I never make because I never ‘need’ an enormous chocolate cake laying around. I don’t love cardio that much.
Enter an 8-inch pan of ultra fudgy brownies topped with Texas sheet cake frosting, which is a boiled cocoa powder frosting, and I’ve got the best of both worlds. I can fulfill my chocolate fix with a manageable pan size.
The brownies are an easy, one-bowl, no-mixer recipe that’s as fast as using a boxed mix and they turn out fudgy with zero cakiness.
It’s a brownie base I’ve fallen in love with because it’s easy and always delivers amazing results. Rich, decadent, and many of the Related Recipes below use the same base.
The frosting comes together in about 1 minute on the stove (sometimes called 1-minute frosting) and you can add nuts if you prefer them on your Texas sheet cake.
I like to store the brownies in the fridge because I like chilled chocolate desserts but they’re fine at room temp too.
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Texas Sheet Cake Brownies
The brownies are an easy, one-bowl, no-mixer recipe that’s as fast as using a boxed mix and they turn out fudgy with zero cakiness. The frosting comes together in about 1 minute on the stove (sometimes called 1-minute frosting) and you can add nuts if you prefer them on your Texas sheet cake. I like to store the brownies in the fridge but they’re fine at room temp.
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick)
- 6 ounces dark or bittersweet chocolate, chopped (I used Trader Joe’s 72% Pound Plus Bar)
- 2 large eggs
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon brewed coffee (leftover or cold coffee is okay), optional but recommended
- 1 teaspoon instant espresso granules, optional but recommended
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter (half of 1 stick)
- 3 tablespoons milk (I used unsweetened cashewmilk)
- 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 3/4 to 2 cups confectioners’ sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup chopped walnuts or pecans, optional
- Brownies – Preheat oven to 350F. Line an 8-inch square pan with aluminum foil leaving overhang and spray with cooking spray, or grease and flour the pan; set aside.
- To a large microwave-safe bowl, add the butter, chocolate, and heat on high power to melt, about 2 minutes. Stop to check and stir after 1 minute. Heat in 15-second increments until chocolate has melted and mixture can be stirred smooth. Allow mixture to cool momentarily before adding the eggs so they don’t scramble.
- Add the eggs, sugar, vanilla, optional coffee, optional espresso granules (neither make brownies taste like coffee and both enhance and round out the chocolate flavor), and whisk vigorously to combine.
- Add the flour, salt, and stir until smooth and combined without overmixing.
- Turn batter out into prepared pan, smoothing the top lightly with a spatula as necessary.
- Bake for about 20 to 25 minutes, or until center has just set and is no longer glossy. A toothpick should come out clean or with a few moist crumbs, but no batter. Allow brownies to cool in pan on top of a wire rack while you make the frosting.
- Frosting – To a medium saucepan, add the butter, milk, cocoa powder, and heat over medium-high to melt butter. Whisk constantly until butter has melted. Allow mixture to come to a boil and boil for about 15 seconds before removing from the heat.
- Add 1 3/4 cups confectioners’ sugar, vanilla, and whisk until smooth and combined. If you like a tighter frosting add the remaining 1/4 cup sugar.
- Optionally add the nuts.
- Evenly add frosting to the brownies, using a spatula to spread it as necessary.
- Allow brownies to cool uncovered for at least 1 hour before slicing and serving. I prefer to cover the brownies with foil and refrigerate for a few hours or overnight because they’re easier to slice when chilled and I prefer the taste when chilled. Brownies will keep airtight at room temp for up to 1 week, in the fridge for up to 2 weeks, or in the freezer for up to 6 months.
Adapted from The Best Turtle Brownies
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 623Total Fat: 33gSaturated Fat: 17gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 15gCholesterol: 83mgSodium: 144mgCarbohydrates: 76gFiber: 4gSugar: 59gProtein: 7g
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Made these last night. Enjoyed them today! Such intense chocolate flavor from the 2 coffee additions! Thanks for this amazing recipe for the fudgiest brownies ever! I think I will hide the leftovers!
Thanks for the 5 star review and glad that these are the fudgiest brownies ever and yes, the coffee really boosts the flavor!
These are awesome! Made them for a party and they were a huge hit. They’re easy, tasty, and that icing is dangerously delicious. Thanks for sharing!
Thanks for the five star review and glad they were a huge hit!
Averie, do you frost these after fully cooled or while warm (like TX sheet cake)? If the latter, how long should the brownies cool before making the frosting/frosting the brownies?
Thanks!!! I’m sure these will be just as yummy as your cosmic brownies and your copycat Starbuck’s double chocolate brownies!
Step 6 into 7 should help you but after you take brownies out of oven and they are cooling, make the frosting and then add it. You don’t need to wait for them to cool so in that sense it’s like a regular TX sheet cake and you add the frosting to a warm cake.
Glad you loved the Cosmic Brownies AND the Starbucks ones. And now these! You’re on a brownie roll!
Who needs an oven for these brownies. The batter is divine, no baking required! Okay, so I have some in the oven right now – less than there should be, but some.
I agree…I never need an oven for brownie batter or cookie dough :)
Ok I made these and they’re delicious. I followed the recipe to a T and it was perfect. I did receive lots of compliments on these brownies. Yes, they are better chilled too. Thank you!
I knew these would be great. I doubled the recipe for a 13 x 9 and brought them to work. Everyone loved them! Thank you for the great recipe.
Hello! Do you sift the powdered sugar for the frosting first or does it matter in this recipe?
I didn’t sift.
well these definitely sound like a DREAM COME TRUE. Can’t wait to make these!!!
Oh my! These look heavenly! I need some right now!
hey girl this looks so yummy! I love chocolate!
Yum! So chocolatey and good… the frosting on these looks amazing!
Boiled frosting is so ‘old-fashioned’ tasting to me…reminds me of my grandma and I love it!
I’m sitting here eating breakfast and I’m like “neeeeeed these for breakfast dessert!”
These look amaaaazing! I’m on an overlong quest to find the ultimate brownie recipe and am having the best time ever. Can’t wait to try these!
OMG THAT FROSTING. I could eat them straight from the pan with a fork!
Oh, man, I think I could eat the entire pan!
Thank you – me too :)
Wow, this looks divine! Will have to try ASAP!!!
This is brilliant–I like Texas sheet cake but I love brownies even more! A scaled down version is also nice. I am a big fan of chilled brownies–something about the texture or density but I can’t quite find the right words this am. Time for that second cup of coffee!
The chilled texture on really rich chocolate is wonderful I think too! And yes to a scaled down version and loving brownies even more!