Instant Pot Dark Chocolate Caramel Brownie Pudding is gonna knock you right out of your chair! Deep, dark, gooey chocolate, caramel swirls, crunchy nuts, and flaky sea salt in every spoonful. Can you handle it?
As a mama of young kids, I spend a lot of precious energy trying to teach my kids proper dinner time etiquette.
If that's not enough, I spend my last tiny bits of mental strength for the day on reminding them of their after-dinner cleanup chores, homework, and bedtime routine.
I try so, so hard to keep a calm and loving demeanor, but inside I'm screaming, “WHAT AM I DOING WRONG!?” And if we're being honest, that scream is sometimes heard on the outside too . . .
Well friends, I've figured it out!
When my kids hear the words “CARAMEL BROWNIE PUDDING”, it's like a bomb of sweetness, manners, and responsibility just went off in my kitchen.
- “Kids! It's time for dinner!” “Sure mom! Can I set the table?”
- “Who's on dish duty tonight?” “We can do it, mom! You go relax.”
- “Time for homework!” “I already did it, mom. Sis offered to help me too!”
- And then . . . silence . . . where is everyone? Oh, they're in their bedrooms getting ready for bed without being reminded 6 times.
I'm confused, overjoyed, and as irritated as can be all in the same moment.
But as a fellow chocolate lover, well, I guess I get it.
So do I plan on making Dark Chocolate Caramel Brownie Pudding every night of the week to make my life utter bliss? No.
Did I spend a good 30 minutes debating the idea in my head? Yep.
WHY YOU WILL LOVE INSTANT POT BROWNIE PUDDING
- Fudgy to the most EXTREME extreme! Dangerously close to eating hot fudge straight out of the jar.
- Melty caramel bites appear like little hidden treasures when you least expect it; squeals of delight approximately every 30 seconds.
- Three brownie textures all in one pan. The outer edge is more cake-y, then it turns a little fudgy, then the center is like the glorious center of a lava cake. IN ONE PAN!!!
- Crunchy nuts! I know not everyone agrees with nuts in brownies, but the added texture is paramount, in my opinion. Macadamia nuts are not typically what you'll find in brownies, but one bite and you'll wonder how walnuts got dibbed the go-to brownie pairing.
- Let's not forget the crunchy, flaky sea salt bites on top. If your palate wasn't already lit up, that touch of salt will be the ultimate ignitor.
HOW TO MAKE INSTANT POT CARAMEL BROWNIE PUDDING
- Mix up a Betty Crocker Dark Chocolate brownie mix and pour it into a 7 inch round cake pan
- Whisk together brown sugar and cocoa powder and sprinkle it on top
- Dot with caramels and chopped nuts of choice
- Pour boiling water over top – make sure no dry bits of cocoa powder remain
- Use a sling (foil or silicone) to lower the pan into the pressure cooker pot
- Cook for 30-35 minutes, done!
SEE RECIPE CARD BELOW FOR DETAILED COOKING INSTRUCTIONS
CAUTION: This pudding is HOT HOT HOT, as evidenced by the bubbling chocolate brook you'll see when you remove it from the pressure cooker.
I HIGHLY recommend waiting a solid 10 minutes to let things cool and thicken before diving in. Your burn free palate will thank you.
There are few things worse than getting excited to eat something amazing and then burning off all your taste buds on your first bite, am I right?
TIPS FOR MAKING EASY CARAMEL BROWNIE PUDDING
- Go with Betty Crocker Brownie mix. After several near-fails, I decided Betty is my buddy. If dark chocolate isn't your thing, she also makes a milk chocolate brownie mix.
- If you want it more on the cakey side with just a little bit of lava center, go for a 35 minute cook time. If you prefer extra pudding-like texture, cook for 30 minutes. If you can't decide, go for 33 and make notes for the next time you make it.
- I recommend using the hard, individually wrapped, square caramels. They are just firm enough to not completely melt into the brownie batter. Soft caramels still taste amazing, but will disappear, and that's just sad.
- Add the nuts! I know, I know, it's controversial, but something this rich and decadent needs a little crunchy relief here and there. You can, of course, leave them out, but with the exception of allergy concerns, try it!
- Flaky Maldon Salt. Love it more than life. A box will last you forever and it will change your life. Chocolate and caramel need salt like new mamas need an undisturbed nap.
- Serve it with ice cream. Nothing fancy, just simple vanilla is all it needs. Add a scoop to each bowl while the pudding is hot. Cold, melty ice cream swirling throughout like a vanilla waterfall . . . Speechless.
- Cook times for this brownie pudding can be a bit finicky. If you find your pressure cooker (or even altitude) leaves you with uncooked batter or a fully cooked brownie after 30 minutes, make notes, and adjust for next time. If you cook it in an 8-quart pot, you may want to knock off 5 minutes.
- LET IT REST. We've talked about this already, I know, but DO IT! As it rests, the pudding center will thicken making it much easier to scoop and serve.
HOW TO STORE, REHEAT, AND FREEZE BROWNIE PUDDING
- Store: Cool leftovers in the pan, cover with plastic wrap, and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
- Reheat: Leftovers reheat well in the microwave, however, it may not be quite as fudgy.
- Freeze: Yes, you can freeze brownie pudding! In fact, it's a tasty treat straight from the freezer. Freeze in individual size portions, then reheat in the microwave for a minute or so. Again, it will not be the same pudding texture that it was initially, but it will still be any chocolate lover's dream.
VARIATIONS FOR BROWNIE PUDDING
- Add 1/2 teaspoon mint extract to the brownie batter and sprinkle the top with Andes Chocolate Mints.
- Nix the nuts and add crushed toffee bits.
- Substitute the caramels with maraschino cherries.
Admittedly this is not the “healthy” food I typically like to present on my blog, but I fully believe that a ridiculously rich brownie pudding that creates a room full of giggles, cheers, and cartwheels of joy is indeed healthy for my mind, body, and soul.
So please, for a moment, kick any thoughts of “working this one off” to the curb. Does a kid question taking his brand new shoes through the “ultimate splash puddle?” Not even for a second. And so should you, experience sheer joy with each and every fudgy bite of this indulgent treat.
And please, write back and let me know what you think of this one! I'm dying to know if it turns your children into angels as well.
MORE INSTANT POT CHOCOLATE DESSERTS
- How to Make Homemade Chocolates in the Instant Pot
- Instant Pot Hot Chocolate Cheesecake with Marshmallow Ganache
- Instant Pot German Chocolate Cheesecake
- Instant Pot Triple Chocolate Cheesecake
- Instant Pot Chocolate Molten Lava Cake
- Instant Pot Healthier Chocolate Syrup
TOOLS USED TO MAKE INSTANT POT CHOCOLATE CARAMEL BROWNIE PUDDING
- Instant Pot
- 7 inch Cake Pan
- Betty Crocker Dark Chocolate Brownie Mix
- Kraft Caramels
- Maldon Flaky Sea Salt
- Silicone Sling
For more incredible Instant Pot desserts like this one, check out my cookbook, Instantly Sweet.
Instant Pot Dark Chocolate Caramel Brownie Pudding
Dark, rich chocolate pudding with swirls of caramel and sprinkle of flaky sea salt.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 30 minutes
- Total Time: 50 minutes
- Yield: 6 servings 1x
- Category: Dessert
- Method: Pressure Cooker
- Cuisine: American
- 1 (18 ounce) package dark chocolate brownie mix (I use Betty Crocker)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 eggs
- 4 tablespoons butter, melted
- ¼ cup milk
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- ¼ cup cocoa powder
- 8 – 10 store bought caramels (I use the individually wrapped square Kraft caramels)
- ¼ cup coarsely chopped macadamia nuts, walnuts, or pecans
- ⅓ cup boiling water
- For serving: Vanilla ice cream, caramel sauce
- Spray a 7 inch cake pan with non-stick spray.
- In a small mixing bowl, whisk together brownie mix and baking powder.
- In a large mixing bowl, mix eggs, butter, and milk until blended. Add dry ingredients and mix until blended. Scrape batter into the cake pan.
- In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the brown sugar and cocoa powder. Sprinkle evenly on top of brownie batter.
- Top with caramels and walnuts (don’t stir it).
- Pour ⅓ cup of boiling water over the cocoa powder. Press any dry spots of cocoa powder into the water.
- Pour 1 cup water into the pressure cooker pot and place a trivet inside.
- Center the filled pan on a foil or silicone sling and lower the pan onto the trivet.
- Secure the lid and turn pressure release knob to a sealed position. Cook at high pressure for 30 minutes for an extra gooey brownie pudding, 35 minutes for a less gooey, more set brownie pudding.
- When cooking is complete, use a natural release for 5 minutes and then release any remaining pressure.
- The top of the brownies should be set with a thick pudding layer underneath. If the top layer is still wet, cook for another 5 minutes. Warning: the pudding will be VERY hot.
- Carefully remove the cake pan to a wire rack and let cool uncovered for 5-10 minutes.
- Spoon warm Brownie Pudding into bowls and top with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, a drizzle of caramel, and a pinch of flaky sea salt.
- I highly recommend using Betty Crocker brand brownie mix. If you prefer a lighter chocolate, there is a Milk Chocolate flavor.
- I also highly recommend not using super soft caramels since they quickly melt into the batter and deny you of the prize caramel bites.
- Nuts add a delicious crunchy texture amidst the rich, gooey pudding, but they can of course, be omitted, if needed.
Keywords: instant pot dessert, brownie pudding, chocolate dessert