These delicious almond joy brownies are made in a mini-muffin tin, topped with coconut, almond, and ganache for amazing bites reminiscent of a candy bar. Check out the Simple Cookie Recipes page for more great recipe ideas.
I've made Christmas cookies every year for as long as I can remember - starting with helping my mom and then in my own household (here's a list of the holiday goodies you can find on AOC). Through the years I've developed a list in my head of the characteristics a potential cookie/candy/treat needs before it makes the cut for our yearly goodie bags:
- Is it rich? The richer, the better- it is the holidays, after all!
- Is it different than an everyday cookie? Again...holidays and all that.
- Is it hard? When I'm making a bunch of cookies, I can't be bothered with complicated.
- Is is chocolate? I'm always leaning toward chocolate, and most people seem to like them best as well - but I will do a few non-chocolate confections just for balance!
- Does it have a "wow factor?" You know the kind I mean- usually ooey-gooey, pretty, and/or frosted.
I've been told that our Christmas goodie bag is the one most coveted at the holidays, so I think this list is secretly what everyone wants, too - even with all the fruitcake, gingerbread, and sugar cookie recipes out there.
Not that there's anything wrong with fruitcake, gingerbread, or sugar cookies. I'm just saying...
This recipe for mini almond joy brownies meets all these criteria - and then some - so they happily make regular appearances in our treat bags. And they are pretty easy even though they have a great "wow" factor that makes them look like they would be hard.
Mini Almond Joy Brownies
This recipe starts with a homemade brownie recipe cooked in mini muffin cups (the brownie part of the recipe below is adapted from King Arthur Flour brownie recipe and it is good regular brownie).
When they've cooled, combine unsweetened coconut with sweetened condensed milk. I know it's a bit harder to find unsweetened coconut, but the regular sweetened coconut combined with the sweetened milk is just too sweet in this recipe. Trust me.
And less sugar is always a good thing, no?
Mound spoonfuls of the coconut mixture on top of the mini brownies and topped each one with an almond. Voila- almond joy brownies.
Note: you can leave the almonds out and then call them "Mini Mounds Brownies."
To get that true candy bar feel, let's add a chocolate topping. Freeze the coconut-topped brownies for a few minutes and dip the tops in ganache that's made from chocolate, butter, and a bit of honey.
Once the glaze sets, you can store in an airtight container at room temperature or in the fridge.
These also freeze beautifully so you can made them up to a month ahead for best flavor.
And oh, do these bite-sized almond joy brownies have good flavor.
Homemade Mini Almond Joy Brownies
For the Brownies:
- 1/4 cup butter plus more for greasing the muffin tins
- 1/4 cup coconut oil*
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- 2/3 cup cocoa powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon espresso powder optional- enhances the chocolate flavor
- 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla
- 3/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour or all purpose
- 1 cup chocolate chips
For the Filling:
- 2 cups unsweetened coconut
- 1/2 can sweetened condensed milk**
- 36 whole roasted almonds
For the Ganache:
- 3/4 cup bittersweet chocolate chopped or chips
- 1/3 cup butter
- 2 teaspoons honey
Make the Brownies:
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 36 mini muffin cups using a pastry brush and softened butter.
- In a medium sized saucepan, combine the butter, coconut oil, and sugar. Stir over low heat until the butter and coconut oil are melted; continue to heat until the mixture is hot (110-120 degrees), but not bubbling (heating to this point will dissolve more of the sugar which creates a shiny top on your brownies).
- Crack the eggs into a mixing bowl and beat them with the cocoa, salt, baking powder, espresso powder and vanilla until smooth. Add the hot sugar mixture and stir. Add the flour and beat til smooth. Quickly stir in the chocolate chips (not too much or they will all melt).
- Use a small cookie scoop (or some other way to get an even amount of batter into each cup) to fill the mini muffin tin cups evenly with the batter.
- Bake 8 to 10 minutes. Place tins on a rack to cool before removing brownies.
Make the Filling:
- Combine the coconut and the sweetened condensed milk in a medium sized bowl until well mixed.
- Scoop about a teaspoon of coconut mixture onto the center of each cooled brownie, molding it into a smooth top. Place an almond in the center of each coconut mound.
- Freeze the mini brownies for 15 minutes.
For the Ganache Glaze:
- Combine all the ganache ingredients in a microwave-safe glass dish or in the top of a double boiler over a low burner and heat just until melted (about 30 seconds in the microwave).
- Remove the brownies from the freezer and dip the tops in the ganache glaze. Let sit until glaze is set and then store in an airtight container.
Other Easy Treats You May Like:
Note: this recipe was first published in 2011 and has been updated with pinnable image, new formatting and printable recipe. Enjoy!