Robb Walsh's Ancho Brownies

Robb Walsh's Ancho Brownies

[Photograph: Laurie Smith]

Folks love to say that everything is bigger in Texas, and while we're not sure about everything, these Ancho Brownies from Robb Walsh's Texas Eats by Robb Walsh are certainly big, sweet, and spicy.

A full pound of butter and loads of bittersweet chocolate go into these perfectly gooey meets cakey brownies but it's the ancho chile powder that makes them a thinker of a dessert. The heat is subtle, but the burn builds up, making a scoop of vanilla ice cream a must.

What Worked: These dense, chocolaty brownies have just enough ancho chile powder to give them an undercurrent of heat, something that pairs beautifully with a scoop of cool vanilla ice cream.

What Didn't: If heat is your thing, you might want to consider upping the ancho quotient.

Suggested Tweaks: These brownies showed us that chocolate can certainly stand up to a little heat. We're considering experimenting with chipotle next time around.

Reprinted with permission from Texas Eats by Robb Walsh. Copyright © 2011. Published by Ten Speed Press. Available wherever books are sold. All rights reserved.

  • Yield:makes 12 brownies
  • Active time: 20 minutes
  • Total time:45 minutes


  • 1 pound semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 1 pound unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 8 eggs, at room temperature
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1½ tablespoons ancho chile powder
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 cup pine nuts or pecans, toasted
  • Vanilla ice cream, 
for serving


  1. 1.

    Preheat the oven to 325°F. Butter a 9 by 13-inch baking pan.

  2. 2.

    Combine the chocolate and butter in the top 
pan of a double boiler, place over (not touching) barely simmering water in the bottom pan, and heat, stirring occasionally, until the chocolate and butter 
have melted and the mixture is smooth. Remove from the heat.

  3. 3.

    In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs and sugar until thickened and smooth. Add the flour, ancho powder, chocolate chips, and nuts and stir until thoroughly combined.

  4. 4.

    Pour the batter evenly into the prepared pan. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool in the pan on a wire rack. Cut into 12 squares. Serve with the ice cream.