★★★★★

Turtle Brownies

Homemade Brownies topped with gooey caramel, chocolate chips and pecans. Turtle Brownies are a decadent dessert the whole family will love!

These Turtle Brownies are every bit as decadent as a brownie sundae or a Turtle Cheesecake except you can eat them with your hands! Try our Turtle Fudge for another gooey caramel treat.

Slice of turtle brownie on a white plate with a stack of brownies in background.

Why this Recipe is the Best

You know what often gets lost in turtle candies and desserts? The chocolate.

I mean, there’s chocolate in some form.

But too often, the chocolatiness of it all is overtaken by the caramel or the pecans. Don’t get me wrong, I am ALL ABOUT caramel and pecans on my chocolate desserts. I just also want to TASTE the chocolate!

Enter: this recipe.

This recipe uses cocoa powder AND semi-sweet chocolate chips in the brownies. It’s based off my fudgy brownies!

The result is a Turtle Brownie where the rich, complex flavors of chocolate exist in harmony with the sweet caramel and nutty pecans. In short, this is the very best Turtle Brownie recipe you will ever make.

You can thank me later.

Ingredient Notes

Ingredients needed to make turtle brownies.
  • Chocolate – You’ll need semi-seet chocolate chips as well as unsweetened cocoa powder in this brownie recipe. I choose Ghirardelli for both!
  • Eggs. This recipe calls for FOUR eggs. THAT is how you achieve gooey brownies with a chewy center and crispy crust. And they puff up to a thick, chewy treat.
  • Pecans – Nut pieces are baked right into the batter to give them an irresistible crunch in every bite.
  • Caramel bits – The Kraft baking bits are my pick for topping turtle brownies. Larger caramel candies can work too, if you unwrap them first and chop them into small pieces. You can also use your own caramel sauce if you prefer.

Step by Step Instructions

Step by step photos showing how to make turtle brownies.

STEP 1. Make the brownie batter

In a medium sized saucepan, melt butter then remove from heat.

Add chocolate chips and sugar, stirring until melted and well blended.

Add in dry ingredients JUST until blended, being careful not to overmix.

Fold in the chopped pecans.

STEP 2. Add toppings

Pour the batter into a square baking dish lined with parchment paper.

In a small bowl, melt caramel bits with cream. Stir until smooth. Drizzle over brownie batter, using a knife to swirl. Add additional pecans and chocolate chips on top.

STEP 3. BAKE

Bake for 35-40 minutes.

STEP 4. Cool.

Remove the baked brownies from the oven and cool completely before slicing.

Turtle brownies cut into squares on parchment paper.

Tips and Tricks

  • For a “cleaner” look, cut the brownies into bars or triangles while they’re still cold. A plastic knife works like a charm for evenly and cleanly cutting cooled brownies.
  • LINE your baking dish with parchment paper (or foil). Not only does it make clean up easier, but you can just lift your fudgy brownies out of the pan and cut them!
  • DO NOT OVER STIR. When you add in the dry ingredients, use slow but big stirs to incorporate the dry into the wet. Just when you see no more dry, STOP STIRRING!
  • Want to eat them sooner? Chill them in the refrigerator so they are easier to cut. Want to make a brownie ice cream sundae? Eat them warm with homemade vanilla ice cream!
  • Store these Turtle Brownies for up to one week in an airtight container in the fridge. I think they taste best cold, but you can also enjoy them at room temperature.
Thick brownie topped with pecans and caramel.

Recipe FAQs

Can you make brownies without the topping?

Of course. If you’re looking for a delicious, chocolate brownie without the turtle garnishes, feel free to make these as a regular pecan brownies!

What size pan do you need for brownies?

I use a 9-inch square baking dish, then cut these into squares. A 9 x 13 inch dish will work too, but the brownies will be thinner.

How many brownies does this recipe make?

This recipe yields about 16 brownies. Feel free to cut them into smaller pieces to serve a crowd if desired.

More Brownies

Making thick and fudgy brownies is my specialty (well, in addition to making the perfect rice krispie treat recipe)!

Here are a few of our favorite flavors!

Walnut Brownies– fudgy with nutty bites of walnuts. Could swap for pecans too!

Oreo Brownies– thick brownies with chunks of Oreo Cookies…the perfect combo!

Chocolate Mint Brownies– brownies topped with mint buttercream and chocolate ganache!

M&M Brownies– the classic brownie recipe with candy pieces! Try it with Reese’s Pieces too!

Peanut Butter Brownies– swirls of peanut butter in thick, fudgy brownies.

Caramel Brownies– gooey swirls of caramel sauce in rich brownies. A delicious dessert!

Yield: 16 brownies

Turtle Brownies

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes

Homemade Brownies topped with gooey caramel, chocolate chips and pecans. Turtle Brownies are a decadent dessert the whole family will love!

Ingredients

For the brownies:

  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • ½ cup semi-sweet chocolate morsels
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ cup pecans, chopped

For the topping:

  • 11 oz caramel bits
  • ¼ heavy cream
  • ½ cup pecans, chopped
  • ½ cup semi-sweet morsels

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 9-inch baking dish with parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. In a medium sized saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Remove from heat and add in chocolate chips and sugar.
  3. Stir until chocolate is completely melted. Add in eggs, one at a time, stirring completely after each addition. Stir in vanilla.
  4. Add the cocoa powder, flour, salt, and baking powder. Using big strokes, stir in JUST until mixed and no longer see dry ingredients. DO NOT BEAT OR OVER STIR. Gently fold in pecans.
  5. Pour batter into dish.
  6. In a small glass microwave safe bowl, add caramel bits with heavy whipping cream. Microwave in 30-second intervals, stirring between each set, until smooth. Drizzle melted caramel over brownies, using a knife to swirl into the batter. Top with additional pecans and chocolate chips.
  7. Bake for 35-40 minutes, allowing to cool COMPLETELY before cutting.

Notes

  • These can be made in ONE bowl. Whether you use a medium sized saucepan, or microwave safe large bowl...clean up is a breeze!
  • I use semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips in my brownies, use what you have on hand! You can even toss some in at the end to make them chocolate chip brownies! Or toss in some walnuts for some nutty brownies!
  • LINE your baking dish with parchment paper (or foil). Not only does it make clean up easier, but you can just lift your brownies out of the pan and cut them!
  • DO NOT OVER STIR. When you add in the dry ingredients, use slow but big stirs to incorporate the dry into the wet. Just when you see no more dry, STOP STIRRING!
  • Want to eat them sooner? Chill them in the refrigerator so they are easier to cut. Want to make a brownie ice cream sundae? Eat them warm!
  • Nutrition Information:

    Yield:

    16

    Serving Size:

    1

    Amount Per Serving: Calories: 376Total Fat: 20gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 78mgSodium: 141mgCarbohydrates: 49gFiber: 2gSugar: 39gProtein: 4g

    *Nutrition facts are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate. Please see a registered dietitian for special diet advice.

    Did you make this recipe?

    Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Instagram

    Turtle Brownies take a a delicious dessert (brownies) and make them even better by adding caramel and pecans! No one can resist this delicious and indulgent dessert filled with chocolate and nuts.

    About Aimee

    Aimee is a dessert lover (specifically rice krispie treats), workout enthusiast, self-taught foodie, and recipe creator.

    Learn more about Aimee.

    Affiliate Disclosure:**There may be affiliate links in this post! By clicking on them, or purchasing recommended items I may receive a small compensation. However, I only recommend products I love! Thank you for supporting Shugary Sweets! See my disclosure policy for more info**

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    Posted on July 20, 2021

    Comments & Reviews

    1. Thanks a lot for sharing this amazing recipe! Super easy to make and it tasted really delicious! Will surely have this again! Highly recommended!

    2. So rich, gooey and sweet. WE HAD to eat them when they were still a bit warm. For us, there’s no other way to have a brownie. And these hit the spot!

    3. I made the chocolate cake w/coffee for my moms 96th birthday and she ate the whole slice. She has dementia so her eating is erratic. But both my husband and sister loved the taste and moistness of it
      And I too was pleased with it.

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