Chilli chocolate brownies
11th August 2009

Chilli chocolate brownies

By Lauren Photography by Adam

After falling in love with chilli dark chocolate, I thought what better way to warm up a gloomy winter Tuesday than to make some chilli chocolate brownies for morning tea? Well, the warming effect was certainly intense! My first attempt at these sent a few of the more fragile members of staff running for the water fountain, which although highly amusing, wasn’t really the effect I was going for. So after a little tweaking, I think I have achieved a good balance of sweet and heat, but the temperature of the chilli will depend on its freshness: if you think that box of ground chilli has been lurking at the back of your pantry for any longer than six months, you may want to increase the measure from half to a three quarters of a teaspoon.  Be sure to use really good quality, seriously dark chocolate. These are rich and warming—perfect for a Dunedin winter!


  • --
  • 230g unsalted butter
  • 220g dark (70% cocoa solids or more) chocolate – divided in half
  • 1/2 tsp ground chilli
  • 1 tsp ground mixed spice
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 shot espresso (or 1 tbsp instant coffee dissolved in 2 tbsp hot water)
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1 cup white chocolate, buttons or roughly chopped chunks
  • Icing sugar for dusting


  • --
  • Preheat oven to 165ºC fan bake / 175ºC bake
  • 1. Place butter, half the dark chocolate, chilli and mixed spice in a saucepan and gently melt together, stirring to prevent it catching on the bottom.
  • 2. Transfer melted chocolate mixture into a large mixing bowl. Add vanilla extract, espresso, cocoa powder, brown sugar and eggs. Mix well.
  • 3. Sift in flour, baking powder and baking soda, and mix until flour is just moistened.
  • 4. Roughly chop the remaining half of the dark chocolate and stir through brownie mixture along with white chocolate. Pour into lined 20cm tin.
  • 5. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until firm around the edges and still slightly soft in the middle.
  • Dust with icing sugar and serve with whipped cream or vanilla ice-cream.


  1. Gorgeous photos! I love the combination of chilli and chocolate. Yum!

  2. Oh, but what type of chili? Plenty out there… which one?

  3. Lauren

    Thanks! Adam does an amazing job of the photography :)
    Chilli and chocolate is such a great combo isn’t it?
    I used good old ground dried red chilli.

  4. Sarah

    Love this recipe – have made it twice and is always a hit!

  5. Lauren

    I’m glad it is such a hit Sarah; we are big fans of chocolate brownie at my house too :)

  6. Emma

    I just made some chocolate, chilli and lime cupcakes for a school function and they turned out great. I used chilli paste as it gives it more flavour.

  7. Jeni


    I have a new Fisher and Paykel Active Vent Oven which I am absolutely loving. Having to make a heap of Brownies for a Graduation Dine & Dance and was wondering what the best setting on my oven is to do this. I have a trial one on Fan Bake 160 as the recipe I have says but wondering if Brownies would be best cooked with the Vent Bake setting?

  8. Kate

    Hi Jeni,
    I’m so pleased to hear you love your new oven! I had a lot of fun working on it during development so it’s great to hear some feedback. I would stick to fan bake and I’ll send you some more info on the active vent. Also I developed the choclate banana jam brownie for that oven so take a look at that recipe too:) Happy baking. Kate

  9. YH

    I made these and these were a great hit! A recipe keeper for sure :)
    I wrote a blog post about these brownies

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