Brownie mix boxed brownies can be made even better with any one of these simple ideas. From add ins, to toppings, these brownie ideas are all delicious and perfect for an easy dessert!
Brownies, I love them in all forms. But, I mostly LOVE brownies from a box. In fact, I’ve never tried making brownies from scratch because I’ve never had better brownies than the brownies I’ve made, or the one’s I’ve had that came from a box.
But sometimes I want to add a little somethin’ somethin’ to my box brownies. So after trying a few things out here are some of my favorites and some other ideas I found online that sound equally delicious…
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1. Add chunks of your favorite chocolate candy bar to the mix. Chop up 1 large candy bar into 1 centimeter sized pieces and add them to your brownie mix. My favorites are peanut butter cups for a chocolate peanut butter fix, and milky-way for something caramely. Some other yummy choices, would be peppermint patties, twix, m&ms, almond joy, any of your favorite chocolate candy bars would be delicious!
2. Add vanilla extract to the brownie mix. Add 1 tsp to 1 TBS vanilla when you are mixing all the ingredients together. This will bring out the chocolate flavor, and add a delicious vanilla taste to the brownies!
3. Add chocolate chips to the brownie mix before baking. Try mixing the “chocolate” chips in with the brownie batter. You could add 1 cup of dark, semi sweet, milk, white chocolate, cinnamon, mint or even peanut butter chips. You could also try a mix, like peanut butter and chocolate chips, or mint and white chocolate, etc.
4. Top your brownies with white, chocolate or peanut butter chips after they bake. As soon as the brownies come out of the oven sprinkle chips on liberally, allow them to melt a little and then spread them over the top to create a frosting with them.
5. Add marshmallows to the brownie mix. Stir in 1/2 of a bag of small marshmallows into the prepared brownie batter. You could also wait to add the marshmallow till the brownies are almost done baking. Sprinkle the same amount on top and return the brownies to the oven to finish cooking and allow marshmallows to melt. To make “rocky road” brownies try mixing in the marshmallows and some chopped nuts; almonds, walnuts or pecans.
6. Add chopped nuts to your brownie mix. Chop up some nuts with a knife or a food processor and add them to your mix before baking. Try adding peanut, walnuts, pecans, cashews or almonds. Add 1/2 to 1 cup of chopped nuts depending on your preference.
7. Top the brownies with frosting. After your brownies are done baking, and have cooled a little, add your favorite frosting to the top. Homemade or from a can, either way is a winner. My favorites are plain chocolate or coconut pecan.
8. Add crushed peppermints. Crush peppermint candy canes in a bag with a rolling pin or with a food processor. Add about 1 cup of the crushed candy pieces to the brownie mixture. Try adding 1/2 tsp of peppermint extract for an even stronger mint flavor.
9. Add cookie pieces. Break or chop your favorite cookie into small pieces and add 1 cup of them into the mixture before baking. Oreos, Nutter Butters or Chocolate Chip Cookies are delicious. Try adding whole cookies to your brownies as well. Pour half of the batter, put a layer of cookies and then top with the rest of the batter.
10. Make cheesecake brownies. You’ll need 1 1/2 blocks cream cheese, 1 egg, 1 TBS flour, 1/2 cup sugar, and 1/2 tsp vanilla for the cheesecake swirl. Go to the cheesecake swirled brownies here for the full recipe.
11. Add caramel syrup to the brownies. After pouring the brownie batter into the pan, pour caramel syrup over the batter. Swirl caramel throughout the batter with a knife. To make “turtle” brownies also add some pecans into the batter.
12. Add 1 can of fruit to the brownie mix. Take your brownie mix, 1 egg and 1 can of fruit with juice (raspberry, cherry, etc) and mix carefully to keep the fruit pieces intact. This eliminates using oil in your brownies and makes them a little lower in fat. You could also try this with a boxed cake mix.
13. Make individual brownie bites. Do this by pouring the batter into a sprayed muffin pan instead of an 8×8 or 9×13 inch pan. Bake for about 15 minutes, checking them closely with a toothpick so they don’t overcook. (Try adding a piece of small candy or a cookie to the middle of the mix in each pan, rolos, kisses, oreos, etc.) Try bite sized brownies in a mini muffin pan.
14. Make brownie cookies. Mix brownie mix with 1 egg (instead of 2), 1/3 cup oil, 2 TBS water, and 1/4 cup of flour. Bake for about 8 to 10 minutes until the cookies look set. You could still try adding your favorite mixins to these cookies, chocolate chips, candy bar pieces, etc.
15. Try combining more than one of the suggestions to improve your mix brownies even more. Mix in candy chunks and add frosting. Try adding nuts and chocolate chips. Add cream cheese and fresh fruit.
Ps. Click on pictures for their sources.
What do you do to improve boxed brownies?
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If you like these 15 ideas for jazzing up boxed brownies, then you’ll love these too!
15 More Ways To Jazz Up Boxed Brownies
Will adding 3 eggs to family size brownies mix make them thicker
It might make it a bit thicker, and will make the brownies more cakey in texture
I’ve done Nutella swirled brownies and sometimes add chopped hazelnuts. Very good and easy elevated brownie!
Yum! Love that idea
70 lbs down with over 100 to go, I discovered D. H. Keto Friendly Chewy Fudge Brownie Mix. Added Lily’s Choc Chips and frosted with BirchBenders Choc Frosting, and chopped peppermint on top!
Thank you for making my Christmas heavenly!
That’s amazing! And that sounds so delicious!
Chris Blancher says
On the recipe to add can fruit to brownie mix; will pie filling work?
Yeah I think pie filling should work! It may need a little liquid, but I’m not sure.
I may be wrong but I think that is what they mean by canned fruit. Pie filling
Yes! You may be able to use something like canned peaches in juice, but I haven’t tried it. But it’s great with canned pie filling 🙂
David P Gegenhuber says
when you suggested Milky Way, I wondered about the caramel oozing out of the pieces when cutting them up, and Sugar Babies came to mind – perfect size too!
Mmm sugar babies sound super yummy! The milky way does get a bit gooey, but I like that texture in my brownies.
Made the brownies with cookies- used m&m chocolate chip cookies, and frankly they melted into the brownies so I did not think this alteration was very good. Perhaps with Oreos and maybe 2 cups?
Good to know, anything with chocolate chips or candies would probably melt, but I usually don’t mind extra melty chocolate in the middle. 😉
Looking for the recipe for box brownie mix that calls for butter in place of oil
You should just be able to replace the oil with butter 1:1. Let me know if you try it!
That’s exactly what you do. If it calls for 1/3 cup of oil,you use a 1/3 cup of butter
I also make a thicker batter by using 1/3 c butter,2 eggs and 2tbs of water
I always put caramel sauce on top before baking and sometimes cut up Rolo’s candy and add that to the batter OMG!! Fabulous
That sounds amazing with caramel and rolos. Yum!
Carol Mastin says
I do this frequently. Sometimes I substitute UNSALTED butter for 1/2 of the amount of oil I would think ghee may work just fine also The other half I use a good oil, like coconut or avocado oil or the oil from the top of a jar of peanut butter.
We buy the smuckers natural peanut butter where it separates and you have to stir the oil back into the peanut butter. There is usually plenty, and we dont stir it back in or PB is too runny. Instead we pour off the peanut oil from the very top of the jar. And add it back in towards the bottom of the jar. This oil works GREAT ! you get the peanut butter flavor, no extra calories like you would with addition of PB chips and I dont have to try to figure out what it would do to the texture if I added peanut butter in the mix.
One of my favorite ways to make brownies is to mix it up, only add 1/4 of the batter in a 7-8′ round cake pan and make it in the air fryer ! Preheat the air fryer for 1-4 minutes @400 degrees Once its all mixed, I can scoop out enough to make it about 1/2 inch thick or approx 1/4 of the mix. You then adjust a/f to whatever temperature the box calls for. They only need about 5-6 minutes to air bake depending on how deep it is. I pull the pan out set it in front of a fan to cool. Usually from brownie batter to to cooled brownies in about 8-10 minutes. Since there is just two of us, we dont need a whole 9X9 dish of brownies. The brownie mix will keep fine in the fridge. I have never had it go bad, but it doesn’t last around my house more than 3-4 days until it is all baked and devoured.
These sound like great ideas! I need to try the small batch in the air fryer for a late night treat.
Great ideas! I added chopped walnuts, vanilla and orange zest. They were delicious!!
So glad you like them. Your add ins are some of my favorites; especially the orange zest.
Emily J says
hi, what brownie mix do you recommend me to use?
I like Betty Crocker Fudge brownies or Ghiradelli mixes
I do not recommend the “cheesecake brownie” recipe, rather vomit worthy if I’m being honest. Ruined a perfectly good box of brownie mix 🙁
Oh shoot, I’m so sorry! I’ve updated this recipe in a separate post and it’s one of our most popular. I’ll update the instructions here to link to that.
Presuming all is well … I write ahead of time … I’ve replaced the oil with spreadable strawberry 🍓 cream cheese! Also added a tsp of vanilla (as suggested) to bring out the ‘dark chocolate fudge’ brownie flavor (using DH brand of brownie mix)!!! 😋
Shelby Hernandez says
What a shame! We absolutely loved them! A big hit at my house.
Did the PB cookie dough drops and wow, so amazing. Good idea!
So you can add these without changing the recipe on the box? Seems like they could turn out dry in some cases because the recipe on the box is ‘as is’…. adding nothing to it…. whereas adding ingredients uses some of the ‘ moisture’ in the mix… maybe? I’m not a baker so I may be wrong:)!
Most of these are adding liquid to the mixture, or leaving it the same, melted chocolate, fruit, cream cheese. I’ve made them with the cookies and the cookies are too dense to soak up any brownie mix so there haven’t been any problems.
Lizzy Cooper says
I was just wondering, when making the cheesecake brownies would adding can cherry’s be good? If so, how would I do it? I love cherry cheesecake!! Thanks Aimee ‘
I haven’t tried it, but I think you could use cherry pie filling and after you spread the cheesecake topping, top it with cherry pie filling and swirl it throughout the cheesecake. Let me know if you try it!
I have seen recipes for this. what they recommend if you’re making a brownie mix as usual to pull the fruit out of the pie filling and use that and do not use a lot of the “liquid”: I would think that if you just used the fruit and swirled it in it should work fine .
Can u use marshmallow fluff in the brownie mix ? Just a thought
I think it should work okay, I haven’t tried that one yet!
I want to add Cocoa Puffs. How much should I add to a box mix for a 13×9?
I’ve never tried adding cereal to my brownies, but you could try about 1 cup probably
mena marie says
hi! i want to make the brownie cookies but i dont see anywhere on here what size brownie mix to use? i have the mix for an 8in pan. if these recipes are calling for the 9×13 is that equal to 2 of the 8in mixes i have? i would really appreciate some help. thank you!!
Most brownie mixes can be baked in a 8×8 or 9×13 pan! I use an 18.3 or 18.4oz brownie mix
Kathleen Prucher says
Coconut Brownies – Just made these last night and got comments like “They are evil, they are so good” I use Ghiardelli brownie mix. Substitute coffee for water. Bake in oven for 18- 20 minutes to set. Take out & sprinkle chocolate chips, sweetened coconut, drizzle sweetened, condensed milk until it covers the top & sprinkle chopped nuts. Back in the oven for about 30 minutes or until the toothpick test comes out right. You have to account for the chocolate chips on top to gauge doneness. This is for a 9 x 13 pan.
Wow! I will have to try those. YUM!
The Dreamer says
OMG Evil!!! Sounds Divine!!!
I use a dark coffee instead of water. It gives the brownies a very interesting taste
I love these ideas! Thinking that you are using a box mix for 9×13 pans for these additions.
I’ve made them in 9×13 or 9×9 the smaller pan will make the brownies thicker and increase the baking time 🙂
Jennifer Johanning says
O. M. G!!! It’s almost 6:30 pm here, need to head to the store to get some box brownie mix and some of these add in’s!! Love that you respond so quickly to things, kudos and great ideas!!
I just made brownies and put homemade peanut butter icing on them. They’re amazing!
Aimee Berrett says
yum! thats one of my favorite ways to make brownies! Love chocolate and pb!
I need to try pb icing! I have a jar of powdered Pb! (on sale!)! 😛
I haven’t tried frosting with powdered peanut butter yet, but I bet it would be amazing. And always a good idea with brownies.
hi! i love your ideas but… i have powdered brownie mix do you know when and how should i add marshmallows to it??
Aimee Berrett says
Brownie Mixes are almost always a powder that you have to add eggs, and oil and water too. So you will prepare the mix like so then you can mix in the marshmallow to the batter and then bake, or you can put it on the top the last couple minutes of baking
Jenni Graham says
I’m going to try the marshmallows, thanks for that idea…my mouth is already watering! I’m going to add strong coffee instead of water, that’s one of Ina Garten’s tips for making anything chocolatey taste even more chocolatey 😁
Aimee Berrett says
Genius! Hope you love it!!
We fold frozen raspberries in just before they go into the pan and increase the baking time by 5-8 minutes. Yummy.
Aimee Berrett says
Mmm raspberries are my favorite. I have to try this!