Bourbon Chocolate Brownies with Butterscotch Rum Ganache

For a long time, I have been wanting to make a perfect little bite-sized treat that I could whip up easily and still make it to the party, event, bridal shower, etc. still looking and feeling like a rock star.

As I was perusing Pinterest the other day, I stumbled across an interesting recipe for Black & Tan brownie bars. No recipe – just a photo and a store whose main clientele are people who are having wedding receptions. So, with just that picture to go off of and a little thinking, I decided to start compiling a little more “spirited” recipe.

I finally decided to go with Bourbon Brownies (honestly because I thought it had a nice ring to it) and then added on the Butterscotch Rum Ganache. So darn delicious! After these were said and done I think I may have stumbled upon one of my favorite desserts ever. Topped with the butterscoth ganache and the salty pretzels, these were a formidable combination of delectable delights with just enough spirits to make a party out of these.

Although I like to bake with a “kick” thrown in from time to time, I really don’t drink very often. When I do, a glass of wine with dinner is pretty much the extent of my consumption habits. So when I went into the store trying to find my bourbon for this recipe it was actually quite a fiasco.

Knowing full well that I had no idea what I was looking for exactly and definitely not wanting to buy a full bottle of something we would never drink, I high-tailed it over to the little sample section. The problem there was there were tons of bottles all mixed together of everything you can think of  and I had no idea what I was looking for. I spent about 10 minutes picking up bottle after bottle trying to read the labels. Is whiskey and bourbon the same thing? I saw some labels with both, so I wasn’t sure. Finally, a store clerk saw me fumbling around and asked if he could help me find what I was looking for. I explained my whole situation to him and he chuckled a little and then found me a nice little bottle that clearly said bourbon on it. Good enough for me!

My big secret to making this devilish dessert is that I decided to make it quick & easy by using a brownie mix. Yep, not totally from scratch. A few weeks ago there was a really great sale on brownie mix and coupons to go with, so I stocked up on a few as “emergency” desserts. But, when I started to put together this recipe, I thought to myself, how cool would it be to just jazz up a normal brownie mix?! – less time, less effort, and a super cool dessert – sounds great to me! Of course, these can be made from scratch too, just use your standard brownie recipe and replace a little liquid with the bourbon. But for the strapped for time bakers out there, these can easily be made in 10 minutes + bake time!

Finally, my favorite part of these brownies was the delicious butterscotch rum ganache. I saved the leftovers in hopes to use it to dip pretzels in for a snack. Yum!

I am planning on using this recipe for the next wedding shower I attend, but I also think they would be great for a birthday party or holiday party!



Bourbon Chocolate Brownies

makes 12 servings


  • 1 family-size package of brownie mix (or make your favorite brownie recipe from scratch!)
  • 1/4 cup bourbon
  • If using box recipe: add eggs & oil according to package instructions from brownie mix

Butterscotch Rum Ganache


  • 6 oz. butterscotch morsels
  • 6 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 teaspoons imitation rum extract
  • Garnish: Pretzels


  1. Bourbon Brownies: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare 12 cup muffin tin and line with cupcake liners (or spray with cooking spray). In a large mixing bowl, mix together brownie mix according to package instructions, omitting water and replacing equal amount with Bourbon (should be about 1/4 cup). You can also add less bourbon if desired and add water as long as the total amount is equal to the package requirement. Bake for 12-14 minutes, until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Remove from oven and let cool.
  2. Butterscotch Rum Ganache: In a small sauce pan, heat butter and heavy whipping cream to just below boiling point. Pour over butterscotch morsels and add rum extract. Let sit for 20 seconds and then stir together until smooth.
  3. Dessert Prep: Remove cooled brownies and pour ganache on top (will be runny) then garnish with 2 pretzels each. Serve immediately or store in an air tight container.

8 Responses to “Bourbon Chocolate Brownies with Butterscotch Rum Ganache”

  1. Urban Wife says:

    Oh, wow. These look amazing!! I agree with you about being the occassional wine drinker but in my baked goods, sometimes a little “kick” is definitely the best thing to do. 😉

  2. Your blog is beautiful! Amazing photography. And I love how you started with a basic brownie mix and turned it into fabulous!!! Great stuff.

  3. Wow, these look so wonderful and your pictures are awesome!

  4. eliana says:

    I have to admit, I’m not a huge fan of brownies. But not even I could turn away from these if I had them in front of me. Man – they look amazing!

  5. Jordan says:

    This sounds soooo good. If these magically appeared in my kitchen I think I would devour the whole batch right then. This is the perfect food for a get-together, I am bookmarking this one!

  6. Karen says:

    These sound wonderful. I love pretzels with brownies!

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