Mexican Brownies

20 servings
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes

Mexican Brownies are an easy gooey chocolate brownie recipe with a kick! Sweet heat fudge brownies made with cinnamon, chili powder, and chocolate chunks.

Give your favorite go-to Chocolate Brownies a little kick with some ground cinnamon and chili powder in this tasty new Brownie Recipe!

Mexican Brownies stack of five brownies

These sweet cinnamon and chili spiced fudgy brownies taste like a cup of Mexican hot chocolate and are made completely from scratch. This recipe starts with our super easy chocolate brownie batter and adds a few tweaks to make them extra special and delicious. The mild chili powder adds just a hint of heat so the whole family can enjoy these warmly spiced new brownies.

No need to head to a Latin market to pick up the ingredients for these Mexican Brownies, everything you need will be in your pantry or a regular grocery store. Some Mexican Brownie recipes use ground cayenne pepper, but this recipe is family friendly using chile powder so get the same chili pepper flavor without the tingly burn from hot peppers. The ground cinnamon adds a layer of earthy sweetness for a delicious brownie unlike any other you’ve had.

Mexican Brownie batter preparation collage

This Mexican Chocolate Brownies recipe starts a little differently than other brownie recipes by melting the butter and cocoa powder in water. This method of preparing the cocoa powder is called “blooming” and it intensifies the chocolate flavor in the cocoa, for the chocolatiest brownies ever. This blooming method is one you should try with all your chocolate cake and brownie recipes!

Mexican Brownies are delicious, sweet and spiced treat that make a great dessert on holidays and special occasions. Top your Mexican Brownies with powdered sugar, using a stencil or lace doily to make a design. Balance out the mild heat with a scoop of sweet Vanilla Ice Cream for a tasty sundae. Add a teaspoon ground cinnamon to Cream Cheese Frosting for extra Mexican Cinnamon Brownie goodness.

Mexican Brownies sliced close up on parchment paper one bite removed

What is Mexican Hot Chocolate?

Mexican hot chocolate is a sipping cocoa made with cacao nibs, cinnamon, and spices. It is usually very rich, thick and chocolatey and not as sweet as American cocoa. The subtle flavors of the chilis and cinnamon bring out the warmth of the bittersweet chocolate flavor and give it a nice kick. These Mexican Brownies use the same ingredients to make a fudgy treat with a hint of cinnamon and spice flavors.

Mexican Brownies Collage of batter preparation steps

How to Make Mexican Brownies

  • Prep: Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray an 9×13 baking dish with baking spray.
  • Bloom Chocolate: Add water to a saucepan and bring to a boil. Turn off the heat, add in the butter and cocoa powder, then whisk until completely blended.
  • Brownie Batter: Pour chocolate butter mixture into large mixing bowl. Add in the sugar, eggs and vanilla extract and whisk until creamy. Stir in flour, cinnamon, chili powder, baking soda, salt until just combined. Fold in chocolate chunks.
  • Bake: Pour into baking dish and spread evenly. Bake for 35-40 minutes, until a toothpick inserted comes out with moist crumbs. Cool before slicing and serving!

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Frequently Asked Questions

Are Mexican Brownies Spicy?

There is not a lot of heat in the chili powder and cinnamon that this recipe calls for. If you’d like a bigger kick, add a teaspoon of cayenne pepper to the dry ingredients.

How do I keep brownies from overcooking?

Unlike baking cakes, you’ll want to pull brownies from the oven when a toothpick inserted comes out with moist crumbs. They may look slightly underdone, but if it has been 35-40 minutes, go ahead and pull them out. Once completely cooled, your brownies will still have crunchy edge pieces that are not too over done along with chewy inner pieces.

Do I need a special pan to make brownies?

You can bake brownies in any 9×13 baking dish. A metal pan with straight edges will give you the best quality brownies with even, crispy edges and chewy centers. If you love edge pieces, you can opt for a nonstick brownie pan with individual squares and adjust the cooking time down.

Mexican Brownies baked on parchment paper being sliced

Key Ingredients in Mexican Brownies

  • Unsalted Butter: It’s best to cook and bake with unsalted butter, so that you can control the level of salt in the recipe.
  • Unsweetened Cocoa Powder: Unsweetened cocoa powder is made from dried cocoa solids that have been separated from the cocoa butter and ground up. This recipe calls for regular unsweetened cocoa powder, not Dutch process.
  • Cinnamon: Cinnamon gives these brownies the distinct Mexican Chocolate flavor. Make sure to replace the spices in your pantry every six months for the best results in baking recipes.
  • Chili Powder: Chili powder is a blend of ground chile peppers along with other spices like cumin, paprika, and cayenne. The subtle amount in this recipe adds complexity to the flavor and brings out the cinnamon and chocolate even more.
  • Vanilla Extract: Vanilla is widely used in baking because it’s subtle sweet flavor helps to enhance all the other flavors in your recipe. Mexico is also a large producer of vanilla, so including it in the recipe brings in another authentic flavor that works naturally with the cocoa and cinnamon.
  • Dark Chocolate Chunks: You can find dark chocolate chunks in your grocer’s baking aisle, or buy a bar of your favorite dark chocolate and chop it up. The bittersweet flavor offsets the sweetness of the brownies and gives them a nice chunky texture.
Mexican Brownie ingredients in separate bowls

Variations on Mexican Brownies

  • Nuts: Toast ½ cup chopped pecans, almonds, or hazelnuts and fold the toasted nuts into your Mexican Brownie batter for an earthy crunch.
  • Spicy: Bring on the heat and make these Mexican Brownies a little spicier by adding a dash of cayenne pepper. Start with a ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper and add more to taste.
  • Chocolate Chips: Instead of chocolate chunks, you can use white chocolate chips, dark chocolate chips, or semi-sweet chocolate chips. For extra cinnamon flavor, add ½ cup cinnamon chips, or try peanut butter chips or toffee bits.
  • Brownie Bites: Bake your Mexican Brownies in a 24 cup mini muffin tin for easy and delicious brownie bites. Divide batter between muffin cups and bake for 20-22 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean with moist crumbs.
  • Hot Cocoa: Swap the cocoa powder for your favorite hot cocoa mix – try Abuelita’s for authentic Mexican hot chocolate flavor. Reduce the sugar to 1 ½ cups because hot chocolate mix has sugar already in it.
  • Mix-Ins: Fold in up to ½ cup mix-ins like mini marshmallows, pretzel pieces, crushed Oreos, M&M candies, Reese’s Pieces, or Salted Caramels.
  • Brownie Mix: To make a quick and easy version of Mexican Brownies, start with a box of brownie mix and prepare as directed. Just add the cinnamon and chili powder to the dry ingredients before adding to the wet ingredients. You can make brownie mix taste more homemade by replacing the water for milk, and the oil for melted butter. 
Mexican Brownies sliced close up on parchment paper with milk and cinnamon duster

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How to Store Mexican Brownies

  • Serve: Cool Mexican Brownies before slicing and serving, and keep covered at room temperature for up to 1 week.
  • Store: Store Mexican Brownies in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. Brownies are best served soft and warm, so bring to room temperature or heat in microwave.
  • Freeze: Once your Mexican Brownies are cooled, cut into squares. Freeze in a single layer on a baking sheet for one hour so they don’t stick together. Place frozen brownies in a sealed container and freeze for up to 4 months. Thaw at room temperature or refrigerator to serve.
Mexican Brownies sliced close up

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Mexican Brownies

Mexican Brownies are an easy gooey chocolate brownie recipe with a kick! Sweet heat fudge brownies made with cinnamon, chili powder, and chocolate chunks.
Yield 20 servings
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Author Sabrina Snyder


  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2/3 cup unsalted butter
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 12 ounces dark chocolate chunks


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray an 9×13 baking dish with baking spray.
  • Bring water to a boil in a saucepan.
  • Turn off the heat, add in the butter and cocoa powder.
  • Whisk until completely blended.
  • Pour mixture into large mixing bowl.
  • Whisk in the sugar, eggs and vanilla extract until creamy.
  • Add flour, cinnamon, chili powder, baking soda, salt until just combined.
  • Stir in chocolate chunks.
  • Pour into baking dish and spread evenly.
  • Bake for 35-40 minutes.
  • Cool completely before slicing.


Calories: 282kcal | Carbohydrates: 37g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 33mg | Sodium: 70mg | Potassium: 191mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 24g | Vitamin A: 249IU | Calcium: 24mg | Iron: 3mg
Mexican Brownies stack of five brownies and prep collage

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the cookbook Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients, published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

Dinner, then Dessert, Inc. owns the copyright on all images and text and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to publish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my disclosure and copyright policy. This post may contain affiliate links.


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  1. What can I say but, wow! These are absolutely delicious. If you love chocolate, and you love spicy stuff, you are going to love these brownies. they are not too spicy. I made a double batch and I’m so glad I did! Not only are they slightly spicy but they are really gooey as well. Will definitely make these again!

  2. …and I forgot to add to my previous comment that I even used Baker’s Joy in the individual brownie pan. Even that didn’t help get them out intact.

  3. Okay, recipe was delish. But here’s a tip. Don’t even attempt to use an individual 12 cup pan. Only six out of the 12 was I able to get out of the pan without destroying them. I tried it different intervals. Shortly after coming out of the oven, then after it just cooled down a bit, and then when it was completely cool. So I was 50% a winner in getting intact brownies out. Just use a pan. Save yourself the frustration.

  4. Making these today! I plan on using guajillo chili powder because we’d like a little more spice. Also, using a 12 cup Square individual brownie pan. I know you said reduce the cooking time.. any idea how long to bake? Thank you!