Guinness Brownies

The five-month stretch between New Year’s and Memorial Day can be grueling. I’d even go so far as to call it unbearable, if it weren’t for one critical date in between: ST. PATRICK’S DAY. Steel yourselves for bad limericks and be prepared for blarney, because my lucky lads and lasses, I adore this pseudo-holiday more than I can express. I might not be able to convince you to share my fervor, but I hope I can persuade you to try these Guinness Brownies.

Guinness Brownies - Super moist and chewy brownies with a hint of beer! Decadent, fudgy, and easy to make. You won’t be able to stop eating them, and they are the perfect St. Pattys dessert! Recipe at wellplated.com | @wellplated
Ultra moist and densely chocolatey, these Guinness brownies are one of those exceptional desserts that, despite their decadence, are mysteriously easy to eat en masse. I blame the Guinness, which adds a malty depth to the brownies. The Guinness keeps the brownies from being overly sweet, and thus makes second (and third) helpings dangerously easy to enjoy.

And if it’s not the Guinness in the brownies that is to blame for their irresistibility, then surely it must be the Guinness frosting that’s spread on top.

Guinness Brownies – Super moist and chewy brownies made with a hint of beer and topped with Guinness frosting. If you’ve like fudgy brownies, you will LOVE this stout brownie recipe! Recipe at wellplated.com | @wellplated

I am partly Irish, and even though I have been told endlessly that St. Patrick’s Day is a much larger celebration in the U.S. than it is in Ireland, I do not see that inconsistency as any reason not to honor it. In college, I enjoyed my first pint of Guinness in Dublin at a bar bearing my Irish maiden name. Eleven years later (#OLD), I enjoyed my second and third and fourth Guinness Brownies in my Milwaukee kitchen. Going forward, I plan to enjoy many more Irish-inspired recipes, the best of which I’ve saved to share with you.

Guinness Brownies with Guinness Frosting. Fudgy, chewy brownies that are easy to make and everyone will love. Perfect St. Patricks’ Day dessert! Recipe at wellplated.com | @wellplated

While working on this Guinness brownie recipe, I found many other stout brownie recipes online, but nearly all of them called for reducing the Guinness to a syrup on the stove before adding it to the brownie batter. This seemed too fussy and time consuming. I don’t know about you, but when I am craving a brownie, I want need it ASAP. I decided to see if I could make the Guinness Brownies by adding the beer directly from the bottle, skipping the reduction step completely.

Guinness Brownies – Super moist, chewy brownies topped with creamy Guinness frosting. Decadent, gooey, and so easy to make! Recipe at wellplated.com | @wellplated

Overall, I was pleased with the results, as were my guests who fought over the leftovers. The Guinness flavor is quite subtle, but I was still able to detect it. I served these brownies at a party where both Guinness lovers and Guinness haters were present, and both groups approved.

Guinness Brownies – Moist, chewy brownies. Super decadent with creamy Guinness frosting. If you’ve never had beer brownies before, you HAVE to try this stout brownie recipe! Recipe at wellplated.com | @wellplated

If you do want a bolder Guinness flavor, I’d recommend reducing 1 1/2 or even 2 cups of beer down to the 1 cup called for in the recipe. Let the reduction cool to room temperature, then follow the directions as stated. Unfortunately, I don’t have a good beer substitution, so if you prefer not to cook with alcohol, I’d recommend these Mint Brownies, which are every bit as fudgy and festive, instead.

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Guinness Brownies

Easy Guinness Brownies. Super moist and chewy brownies with a hint of stout beer. The perfect St. Patrick’s Day dessert!

Yield: 16 brownies

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 30 minutes (including cooling)

Ingredients:

FOR THE GUINNESS BROWNIES:

  • 8 ounces semisweet chocolate, cut into pieces
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour (or substitute white whole wheat flour or all-purpose flour)
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons Irish stout beer (such as Guinness), at room temperature with any foam skimmed off
  • 3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips

FOR THE GUINNESS FROSTING:

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2–3 tablespoons Irish stout (such as Guinness)

Directions:

  1. Place the oven rack in the center position and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spray an 8×8-inch baking dish with nonstick spray. Line with parchment paper, leaving some hanging out opposite sides like handles. Spray again, then set aside.
  2. In a large heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water (do not let the bottom of the bowl touch the water), melt together the chopped chocolate and butter. When the chocolate is almost melted, remove from the heat and stir until the mixture is completely melted together and smooth. Let cool 5 minutes.
  3. In a separate bowl, sift together the whole wheat pastry flour, all-purpose flour, cocoa powder, and salt.
  4. Once the chocolate mixture has cooled, whisk in the granulated sugar until combined. At this point, the mixture will look grainy. Stir in the eggs, one at a time, fulling combining between each addition. Keep stirring until chocolate mixture is smooth and glossy (about 40 strokes). Stir in the vanilla extract.
  5. Add the dry ingredients to the chocolate mixture a few tablespoons at a time, stirring in between each addition, just until the flour disappears. Slowly stir in the beer. It will foam as it is added, but keep working in additions and stir until the foam subsides. Fold in the chocolate chips.
  6. Scape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top. Place in the oven and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of the brownies comes out with just a few moist crumbs clinging to it, 25 to 30 minutes. Cool to room temperature, then remove from the pan using the parchment-paper handles.
  7. Meanwhile, prepare the Guinness frosting: In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or a large mixing bowl, beat the butter until light and fluffy, about 1 minute. With the mixer running on low, slowly beat in the powdered sugar. Add the vanilla extract and 2 tablespoons of stout. Continue beating until the frosting is smooth and fluffy, about 3 additional minutes. If you’d like a thinner frosting, beat in 1 additional tablespoon stout. Spread over the cooled brownies. Slice and enjoy.

Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or freeze for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator.

All images and text ©/Well Plated.

Nutrition Information

Serving Size: 1 brownie

  • Amount Per Serving:
  • Calories: 346 Calories
  • Total Fat: 18g
  • Saturated Fat: 11g
  • Cholesterol: 60mg
  • Sodium: 33mg
  • Carbohydrates: 48g
  • Fiber: 3g
  • Sugar: 38g
  • Protein: 3g

Did you try this recipe? I want to see! Follow Well Plated on Instagram, snap a photo, and tag it #wellplated. I love to know what you are making!

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About Erin Clarke

I’m fearlessly dedicated to making healthy food taste incredible. Wearer of plaid, travel enthusiast, and firmly convinced that sweets and veggies both deserve a place at the table. MORE ABOUT ERIN…

11 comments

  1. This brownies look absolutely incredible. Very intrigued by the addition of Guinness. Nice work!! (:

  2. Erin, if you keep posting recipes like this you will destroy my svelte, old body.  (Truthfully, I’m not really svelte, but it’s difficult to justify the calories here).  But I’m saving the recipe because it appeals to both me and my husband.  

    • Susan, this comment made me giggle! These brownies are definitely a special treat, but when you really are craving something chocolatey, they hit the spot :-) If you do try them, I hope that both you and your husband love them!

  3. Erin
    Is there a lower carb version of these..
    Im a type 2 diabetic..
    It’s hard yes..
    I love a dessert when I can..
    Which is not often. Ugh.😐
    If you can guide me Or come up with a lower carb/ lower calorie/fat option .
    I hate that I can’t eat what I want too..
    All these recipes look so darn delish..Maybe chocolate avocado black bean?? I don’t know..
    Warm regards.
    Looks yummy..Thanks…
    Kim😉

  4. The cake part of these brownies turned out great, but I had a major frosting fail. Not sure where it went wrong. The frosting was too sweet and too liquidy.

    Adding the Guinness to the brownies was fun though, and we got a head start on St. Patty’s day. I might just skip the frosting next time and save some calories/sugar.

    Rating: 2
    • Hi Amy, I’m sorry to hear the frosting turned out too liquidy for you! It could be that the butter was too soft/melty or that there wasn’t quite enough powdered sugar. If you wanted to give it a try again, I would also start with just 1 tablespoon of stout and add more from there. I’m glad you enjoyed the brownie part though, and it does taste delicious on its own!

  5. I made these in preparation for an office bracketolgy happy hour tomorrow (Go Irish!), and after Bryan practically licked the bowl clean from the leftover frosting, I think it’s safe to say they are and will be a success. 😀☘️

    Rating: 5
  6. Brenda Mahendran Reply

    Hi Erin,
    This looks soooo good. Will defo try it! However will the frosting turn out as good if I whisk the ingredients instead of using the stand mixer?

    • Hi Brenda, I haven’t tried mixing this by hand, but I’m not sure creaming the butter and sugar by hand would result in the proper consistency. I’m guessing that for the best texture you’ll need the power of a stand or hand mixer.

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