Recipe: Speculoos-Swirl Skillet Brownie

(Image credit: Karen Biton-Cohen)

If you like your brownies chewy, dense, and rich with chocolate, this is the recipe for you. Add a few swirls of melted speculoos — that sweet cookie spread that’s second only to Nutella — and you have brownie perfection.

What better way to show off this brownie than in a striking, rustic pan? My handy dandy cast iron skillet has done it again, proving that it’s not just for savory dishes, but it can produce awesome desserts, too!

(Image credit: Karen Biton-Cohen)

Speculoos is a cookie spread is made out of caramelized biscuits with hints of nutty, gingerbread flavors. You can find speculoos as most major grocery stores. Look for it near the peanut butter, jams, and other condiments.

I think using almond meal instead of flour is key for making fudgy brownies with perfect flavor and texture, so it just so happens that the base for these brownies is gluten-free. Unfortunately, most jars of speculoos are not gluten-free — if you’re avoiding gluten and want to make these brownies, keep your eyes open for gluten-free speculoos, or use Nutella or nut butter instead — or make the base by itself! Any way you do it, you won’t be disappointed.

Speculoos-Swirl Skillet Brownie

Makes 15 to 20 brownies

8 tablespoons (4 ounces) butter
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 teaspoons instant coffee, such as Nescafe (or espresso)
1 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1/2 cup almond flour, sifted
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 heaping tablespoons Speculoos spread (gluten-free, if needed)

Preheat oven to 325°F.

Melt the butter in an 8- or 9-inch cast iron skillet over a medium heat. Pour the melted butter into a large mixing bowl, leaving a film of butter on the pan.

Whisk the cocoa powder and Nescafe into the bowl with the butter. Add the sugar, salt, and vanilla, and whisk until well combined. Whisk in the eggs, one at a time, then sift in almond flour through a strainer (this avoids lumps). Whisk well. Fold in the chocolate chips.

Pour the batter into the pre-greased pan. Melt the speculoos spread in a double boiler, or in a microwave, until runny. Drop dollops of the melted spread over the top of the pan, all over. Using a butter knife, gently swirl the speculoos into the brownies, running the knife lengthwise and crosswise.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Allow to cool completely before cutting into squares and eating.

Recipe Notes

  • If you’re gluten-free and can’t find gluten-free speculoos, make these brownies using Nutella or a nut butter instead.