Crazy for Crust

Jun 13

Mocha Brownies with a Crust

These Mocha Brownies with a Crust are an amazing brownie infused with Gevalia coffee for a great afternoon pick-me-up!

Mocha Brownies with a Crust by | Coffee and chocolate in every bite!

I love having parties. I think I always have. I would much rather host a party than go to one – that way the control freak in me can hoard every single detail. If you ever come to a party at my house, don’t bother offering to bring anything; my answer will be no.

Seriously, I’m a total control freak. You just may make the best baked beans ever, but that may clash with my Italian Trattoria theme. {Yes, I know I have issues.}

My favorite part of any party (that I’m planning, hosting, or attending) is dessert. Obviously. And you know what pairs really, really good with dessert? Coffee.

Coffee is one of those things at parties that always gets forgotten, am I right? Halfway through dessert you realize you never pressed the “on” switch? If you do make coffee, you know someone will drink it. Coffee is one of those party things like vodka that people just say, sure, why not have a cup?

So when I make coffee for a party, I want it to be good. And, being me, I want to include it in as many desserts as possible because really, coffee is my favorite thing everrrrrr.

Mocha Brownies with a Crust by | Coffee and chocolate in every bite!

Recently I had a little coffee party at my house. It was a small get-together, just my parents, Jordan, and me. I wanted to thank them for watching her while I was in Austin for BlogHer Food. (Because, conveniently, the day after I made my reservations, my husband told me he had a conference in New Jersey…the same weekend.)

Thank goodness for grandparents!

parents gevalia party

And of course, besides games with the granddaughter, we needed treats. Like brownies.

Mocha Brownies with a Crust by | Coffee and chocolate in every bite!

These brownies are Mocha Brownies. They are some of the best ones I’ve made yet! And they start with a box mix…and that’s one of my favorite things about them. They are so easy to make.

The brownies have a crust. I love, love, love putting a crust on brownies. My favorite part of a pan of brownies is the gooey center, and when you put a crust on them the entire pan tastes that way.

I topped the shortbread crust with a brownie mix that was infused with coffee. And then the icing is coffee flavored too. These are coffee to the extreme!

Mocha Brownies with a Crust by | Coffee and chocolate in every bite!

When you’re using coffee in a chocolate dessert, like cake or brownies, you don’t taste it at all. The coffee flavor only enhances the chocolate flavor. But when you use coffee in a frosting like I topped these mocha brownies with, you taste every single bit, so you want it to be a good coffee, with amazing flavor.

Gevalia has been brewing coffee since the 1800s, and the cast-iron roasting method they use creates a smooth tasting coffee, one that’s never bitter. I really enjoy Gevalia, and used it when I made my Mocha Coffee Cake a few months ago. They have several different flavors, and now they even have the single-serve cups for your single-serve coffee makers!

The Gevalia coffee was perfect for the gathering with my parents because we all have different ways we like our coffee. I like it stronger, my dad likes it lighter. You can buy Gevalia at Safeway (or their affiliate brands near you) and, if you’re buying the single-serve cups you can buy different strengths for different party attendees. Plus, Safeway has a great selection of everything you’d need for a party. They’re my favorite grocery store here in Northern California!

Mocha Brownies with a Crust by | Coffee and chocolate in every bite!

Can you see how fudgy that brownie is? It’s to die for, paired with the crunchy shortbread crust!

These brownies were a big hit with my family. I even left a couple without frosting, so Jordan could enjoy them. (She could have had a little, but that girl doesn’t need any extra caffeine!)

grandparents gevalia 2

But I think my parents did – especially after a weekend chasing her around! 😉

Mocha Brownies with a Crust by | Coffee and chocolate in every bite!

If you’ve never made brownies with a crust, you must start. You’ll agree it’s the best way to eat brownies! (And, your friends and family will love them at your next gathering!)

Mocha Brownies with a Crust

Brownies infused with coffee and a mocha frosting...and a crust!


For the Crust:

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar

For the Brownies:

  • 1 box brownie mix (9x13 pan size)
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup oil
  • 1/4 cup brewed coffee

For the Frosting:

  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 Tablespoons brewed coffee


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9x13” pan with foil and spray with cooking spray.
  2. Mix butter, flour, and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix until the dough comes together, but it will still be a little crumbly.
  3. Pour into pan and press with your fingers to make the crust.
  4. Bake crust for 10 minutes. While it’s baking, make the brownies. Mix all brownie ingredients in a medium bowl and stir by hand until combined. Pour over hot crust.
  5. Bake brownies for 21-23 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean 1 inch from the side of the pan. Cool completely before frosting.
  6. When the brownies are cool, make the frosting. Beat melted butter and powdered sugar with a handheld mixer in a large bowl. Mix in vanilla and coffee and beat until smooth. Pour over brownies and spread evenly. Chill to set. The frosting will stay set in the refrigerator, and get softer as the brownies come to room temperature.
  7. Makes 24 brownies.

Mocha Brownies with a crust

Other delish brownie recipes:

Fudgy Brownies with Orange Frosting


Carrot Cake Brownies


Sweets from friends:
Dulce de Leche Brownies by Mom on Timeout
Chocolate Caramel Covered Potato Chip Brownies by Something Swanky
Marshmallow Cheesecake Swirled S’more Brownies by The Sweet {Tooth} Life

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

62 comments on “Mocha Brownies with a Crust

  1. Today was obviously a brownie day.
    These sound soooo good!

  2. coffee party? brownies with coffee in them? These look so darn good. You should have invited me to that party, I am a coffee fiend and loooooove anything with chocolate.

  3. I JUST tried coffee for the first time in March! My dad drinks it every day, but since he gets really bad headaches if he misses a day, my mom told my brother and me to never try it. Well… I had a coupon for Starbucks that I didn’t want to waste! And I received another one this month from Safeway for half-price frappuccinos — they’re my new favorite thing! I want to make them myself at home (to control the caffeine and sugar; I don’t need much of each!), but I don’t have a coffee maker. Slight problem.

    Anyway, a very tangential way of saying I’d love to try your brownies! I used to hate coffee in my desserts, especially chocolate and brownies because I can still taste it, but now that I’m warming to the flavor, that might’ve changed!

    • That’s how I started too – fraps and ice mochas. Now it’s the real thing, first thing in the morning! :)

      • I think that’s what my mom is afraid of — me turning into a daily black coffee drinker too! 😉 (Then again, she has a chai latte every day, so she’s still getting a daily dose of caffeine too…)

  4. Your mocha brownies do sound AMAZING. P.S. I’m loving your new couch.

  5. Shortbread and brownies are great together!

  6. I would also much rather host. Control, control, control :)

    Looks yummy!

  7. Coffee is one my all time favorite things to drink and to add to chocolate goodies. These brownies with the crust and coffee frosting are totally begging me to make them! Love!!!

  8. Haha Dorothy, we are so alike. I never let anyone bring anything when I host parties – like EVER. #imacontrolfreakandiknowit. I love the idea of adding a crust to your brownies…and coffee, too. These look great!

  9. A coffee party sounds fabulous :) These bars look beautiful!

  10. These look wonderful and I am LOVING all of the coffee in them!

  11. Was just thinking today I needed to make mocha brownies!! These look awesome! Coffe and chocolate are so good together, but in brownies! Swoon!

  12. I LOVE coffee. Specifically espresso drinks! I’ve wondered how the Gevalia coffee is. My grocery store, Publix, sells it as well. Thanks for the review of it. I’ll have to pick some up next time I need to refill on K-Cups!

    These brownies are uber fantastic and so easy to make since they are made using brownie mix. I love it! Pinned. Have a great weekend, Dorothy!

  13. So chewy and decadent!! Great brownies!! Haven’t tried Gevalia yet… Familiar with the commercials though.

  14. Coffee baked into brownies and two flavors in one, with the white and dark, and the two textures, this is so perfect for me!

  15. I love anything with a shortbread crust! Yum! brownies with a crust and frosting…..WINNNNNER!

  16. Shortbread crust…on brownies?? That sounds perfect!!

  17. I love the crust, oh my gosh!!! I bet Jordan had a pretty darn good time with her grandparents! And I know what you mean, I always tell people they don’t have to bring anything either. Like you, I have a theme in my had and have it all worked out!

  18. So intrigued by these delicious looking brownies, Dorothy! They look perfect for indulging!

  19. I LOVE the idea of adding a crust to brownies!! It’s totally something that takes them up a notch!!

    And I can TOTALLY relate to your control ways…. Whenever I plan anything, I’m the EXACT same way. I tell people just bring your smiling faces and they still show up with stuff!! I’m like, I had this perfect menu planned and what am I going to do with your nana’s auntie’s best friend’s dish? :)

  20. These look almost too good to eat! Almost…

  21. I can totally relate – I’d much rather host and am a total control freak! :) These brownies sound great! Coffee flavor is one of the best!

  22. I love crust on anything but never had it on brownies. I want to change that now!!

  23. Whenever 3pm comes around, I always need some coffee and something sweet. I think this brownie fits the bill for both cravings!

  24. OOOOH! Crust on a brownie sounds fantastic! Great idea!

  25. These look so tasty! I wish I could take a big ole bite!!!

  26. Okay . . . but if I’m coming, can you just TELL me the theme, and then I will find something ABSOLUTELY perfect to go with?? No? Okay, I understand. I’m a total control freak too. And unless you want me to hand you a recipe, you really shouldn’t bother, lol! These look delicious, Dorothy! And I LOVE that they have crust!

  27. You’re right, these are to die for! I love it paired with the buttery shortbread crust! Yummy!

  28. These brownies look fabulous! Love how they have a crust AND frosting!

  29. Parties are the best! So fun to host and so fun to be at! I’m going to have to try that frosting . . . and shortbread crust. It all sounds sooooooo good!

  30. Brownies are my greatest weakness! Most of my family actually likes the crunchy edges; my aunt used to work at a nursing home and the kitchen staff would save all the brownie edges for her. I think she had a whole stockpile in the freezer. I’m more of a gooey center kind of girl though. Nothing beats a soft, warm, fudgey brownie, especially if it’s topped with peanut butter!
    I’ve never really heard of brownies with a crust, so I’ll have to tuck this idea away for a day when I need some inspiration. Looks great!

  31. Oh, my. These look terrific.

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  33. I agree, coffee makes chocolate a gazillion times better. Liked your recipe a lot.

  34. True quote from earlier today “Start making the second batch.” This was from my nephew after he took just one bite. Any time I need a new recipe, yours is the first site I go too! It doesn’t matter if I need something for my Airman nephew in Montery or his 13 year old brother here in PA, I can always find a simply scruptious, easy to follow goodie. Thank you!

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