Brownies Chocolate Desserts

Knock You Naked Brownies

May 2, 2012

Please meet my new favorite brownie in the entire world, Knock You Naked Brownies. They don’t really knock your clothes off when you take a bite, but almost. I’ve had these bookmarked from The Pioneer Woman for way too long and finally got the chance to make them for a cookout. They were so good, I made a second batch to take to my mom’s work the next day. Those ladies love sweets as much as I do, so I had to share these with them. Just look at that gooey caramel oozing out of the center! I almost kept the entire batch to myself!

Knock You Naked Brownies by So How's It Taste

So, how’s it taste?

This is another one of those times where I wish the Interwebs were advanced enough so a brownie would pop out of your screen while you’re reading this. Nothing I type here is going to do it justice. They are incredibly rich and decadent, which a 9×9 pan makes 36 brownies and that sounds really small, but trust me, a few bites is all you need. The Pioneer Woman cuts hers into 12, which she must be a in a sugar coma after eating 1/12 of these in one sitting. I’ve got a crazy sweet tooth, and that seems too much for me. But cut them any size you like! Heck, don’t even bother and just grab a fork!

That oozing caramel gets me every time. It’s between two “brownies” which is really made from a cake mix. I’ve made these brownies twice now and used German Chocolate cake mix both times, but I’m convinced these would be over-the-top crazy good using Devil’s Food. I’m totally doing that next time. There’s also a layer of semisweet chocolate chips right on top of the caramel. It’s pure indulgent heaven. Totally worth the splurge!

Yield: 36 brownies

Knock You Naked Brownies


1 box (18.5 oz.) German Chocolate Cake Mix (I use Duncan Hines)
1 cup chopped pecans
1/3 cup evaporated milk
1/2 cup evaporated milk (additional)
1/2 cup butter, melted
60 whole caramels, unwrapped (I use Kraft)
1/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/4 cup powdered sugar


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9x9-inch square baking pan with cooking spray and line with parchment paper so the paper hangs over two sides. Spray the parchment paper with cooking spray.

2. In a large bowl or using a mixer, mix together cake mix, chopped pecans, 1/3 cup evaporated milk, and melted butter. Stir together until combined. Mixture will be very thick.

3. Press half the mixture into the prepared baking pan. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes. Remove pan from oven and set aside.

4. In a double boiler (or a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of boiling water) melt caramels with the additional 1/2 cup evaporated milk. When melted and combined, pour over brownie base. Be careful as you pour as the middle of the cake isn't as sturdy and a big splash of hot caramel may break it causing the caramel to sink to the bottom. Sprinkle chocolate chips evenly over the caramel.

5. Turn out remaining brownie dough on work surface. Use your hands to press it into a large square a little smaller than the pan. Use a spatula to remove it from the surface, then set it on top of the caramel and chocolate chips. It's ok if you can't lift the entire square. You can easily top the caramel with pieces of the dough and it will come together as it bakes.

6. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Leave brownies in pan to cool and put in refrigerator for several hours, until the caramel layer is set. Remove brownies from pan by lifting the parchment handles and allow to come to room temperature.Β When ready to serve, generously sift powdered sugar over the surface of the brownies. Cut into 36 brownies (or less if you want bigger brownies).

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  • Samantha May 2, 2012 at 12:50 pm

    I really wish that 5 of these brownies would pop out of my screen…

    • Leah May 2, 2012 at 1:51 pm

      Right?! Someone needs to get on that technology! πŸ˜‰

  • Tiffany May 2, 2012 at 12:50 pm

    these were so good! and everybody at the cookout was RAVING about them. i plan to make them after we move and have a housewarming party πŸ™‚

    • Leah May 2, 2012 at 1:50 pm

      Yay, these would be perfect!

  • Mrs. L May 2, 2012 at 4:25 pm

    I think I have to make them on the account of the name alone! And they look decadent. Might have to make these for breakfast πŸ™‚

    • Leah May 3, 2012 at 3:39 pm

      It was fun telling people what they were called and I think they’d be perfect for breakfast! πŸ˜‰

  • Kelli @ The Corner Kitchen May 4, 2012 at 11:19 am

    Wow! These look amazing….and dangerous πŸ™‚

    • Leah May 4, 2012 at 12:21 pm

      Very dangerous, lol!

  • pat July 21, 2012 at 7:51 am

    I have made these for years and have never had anyone not like…love them. Just a note I find if I hole half of the mix it gets fuffy. So I bake two pans, using the whole mix. Then when its time for the second half. Mix another batch fresh. Also I use only about half the carmel…otherwise just alittle rich. Most work is unwrapping the carmels.

  • Valerie August 6, 2012 at 9:47 pm

    These look delicious!! I am definitely making these! I was thinking about using sweetened condensed milk instead. Do you think that would be too sweet though?

    • Leah August 7, 2012 at 9:48 am

      In place of the evaporated milk? I’m not sure that would work since the condensed milk is so thick compared to evaporated. You could experiment & see though!

  • Steph September 4, 2012 at 8:55 am

    Ooo…I can’t wait to try these!!

  • Vicki September 4, 2012 at 5:26 pm

    Absolutely delicious!!

  • Carol September 4, 2012 at 8:59 pm

    These are my favorite brownies! I substitute chocolate chips for the pecans as my daughter is allergic to nuts. I cool them completely before cutting then store them in the fridge.. They come to room temp quickly and the caramel isn’t too gooey. I changed the name to caramel brownies for when I used to send these to school. The teachers LOVE these!

  • Carol September 4, 2012 at 9:02 pm

    Ooh. A handy tip. I melt my caramel in the microwave… And I use the caramel bits… No more unwrapping caramels:). I also pour the caramel over the back of a wooden spoon so it doesn’t sink down into the hot cake mix.

  • Amber September 18, 2012 at 12:00 am

    I’ve made these several times for work BBQ’s and such. HUGE hit! One thing I warn against it trying to double it. Making a 9×9 was perfect. I tried doing a double batch in a 9×13 and the sides started to get a little burned from cooking at the longer time. But they were still delicious!

  • Karen September 18, 2012 at 7:03 am

    I am having a hard time finding a 9×9 pan. Any ideas? I have 8×8 already, and the two grocery stores I have been to only had 8×8. Will it make a difference? If 9×9 is important, where can I buy? Thanks!

    • Leah September 18, 2012 at 7:07 am

      I think an 8×8 should work fine. The brownies will be a little thicker and the cooking time may vary slightly, but it should work.

  • Annabel September 24, 2012 at 7:51 pm

    If there is any food that can bring me close to removing my clothing in ecstasy, these brownies are it. They really aren’t too hard, they don’t take much time, and they taste like heaven.
    Helpful hint, though–the caramel takes a while to melt, so start that early on, so the bottom doesn’t have time to cool and harden before you’re finished.

  • tracie October 16, 2012 at 3:03 pm

    I add a sprinking of sea salt over the caramel(before the chocolate chips) as I am making it because I love anything chocolate with salted caramel.

    • Leah October 16, 2012 at 3:08 pm

      Yum, that sounds awesome!

  • Kensie October 24, 2012 at 11:31 am

    Just curious…. Do I make the cake mix to the directions at all?? Thanks

    • Leah October 24, 2012 at 11:51 am

      Hi Kensie! You’ll want to follow the directions in my post for the brownies, not the directions on the cake mix box.

  • Kristi November 19, 2012 at 9:27 pm

    Would these be good made the night before and chilled in the fridge the whole day? I want to make them for thanksgiving and the night before is the only time I will have. Thanks!

  • Mary November 24, 2012 at 4:56 pm

    Can these be succesfully frozen?

    • Leah November 25, 2012 at 1:15 pm

      I would think they would freeze ok, but I’ve never tried it.

  • Laura December 18, 2012 at 1:14 am

    Just to make sure I understand the recipe, I cook half the mix for 8-10 minutes, then pour the melted caramel and chocolate chips in the middle then pour the remainder of the mix into the pan?? I don’t cook the other half of the mix correct?

    • Leah December 18, 2012 at 9:07 am

      Hi Laura! You do need to cook the remainder of the mix once it’s put on top of the caramel and chocolate chips. Steps 5 & 6 in the recipe directions are where you do that.

  • Henry January 1, 2013 at 12:05 am

    Epic. Thanks!

  • Darlene January 9, 2013 at 6:17 pm

    If you use parchment paper it wont stick to pan….before cooking take two pieces of parchment paper cut so it hangs over all four sides of pan then wait for brownies to cool, then just lift parchment paper I grab mine at opposite corners and it comes out fine. But if you have another person to help each person grab a side that works too :). Then cut into squares they come out neat and clean πŸ™‚

  • Christa February 10, 2013 at 9:17 am

    I pressed the second half of the dough onto wax paper in roughly the same size/shape as the pan, then flipped it over onto the top. Worked like a charm. I also substituted dulce de leche for the wrapped caramels/additional evaporated milk (microwaved a bit to get smooth and spreadable), and used slivered almonds since I had them on hand. They came out DELICIOUS. Next time I might try with Carmelized pecans to up the indulgence, not that they need it!

  • Linda February 14, 2013 at 9:32 pm

    OHMYGOODNESS!!! The BEST brownie I’ve EVER had!!!

  • Maria February 16, 2013 at 9:23 am

    Hi I have a question. If i dont have the german chocolate cake mix, can i ue witch ever cake mix like betty crocker? Or i don’t know. ASAP

    • Leah February 16, 2013 at 9:46 am

      I’ve never made it with a different mix, but another chocolate flavor should work fine.

  • Mary May 4, 2013 at 7:08 am

    Combined everyone’s suggestions for fantastic results.
    Used Devil’s Food mix. Drizzled caramel but used only about 3/4, saved rest for ice cream.
    Used Crista suggestion for sea salt crystals, using just about two pinches to lightly cover caramel sauce.
    While first layer was baking, I rolled out second layer between two lightly sprayed wax paper sheets to the shape of pan. Refrigerated layer for several minutes while putting chocolate chip, and spreading caramel in first layer.
    Chilled second layer was very easy to handle.

  • Brittany May 9, 2013 at 10:14 am

    Hi! Looks so yummy. For the German chocolate cake mix, do you add the water, veggie oil and eggs like it calls for? Or are the butter and milk a substitute for that? Thanks for the recipe and let me know!

    • Leah Short May 9, 2013 at 10:25 am

      No, don’t follow the cake mix box directions. Just use what’s in the recipe. Hope you enjoy them!

  • Lauren June 21, 2013 at 10:04 am

    Hi! These look soo yummy! I’m going to make them tonight for a family cookout tomorrow. Do you think a squeeze bottle of caramel, like the kind you’d put on ice cream would we a decent replacement for the wrapped Kraft caramels? I’ve used them before in other recipes and they’re just so much work.

    • Leah Short June 21, 2013 at 10:14 am

      They sure are a lot of work! I’m not sure about the squeeze bottle. I don’t know if you’d get the same consistency. I’ve never tried. I think you can buy Kraft caramel bits and they’re unwrapped! I don’t know how much you’d have to use to equal the 60 caramels. It may list that on the bag.

  • Lisa August 4, 2013 at 5:28 pm

    I forgot to bake the first layer before putting the caramel on. I just baked it all together. Sure hope they turn out! Grrr

  • Kimber August 26, 2013 at 10:21 pm

    I made the brownie portion of the recipe, and filled it with raspberry filling. It was delish!!! Cant wait to do the real caramel filling and try that. Thank you.

  • Amber November 18, 2013 at 3:44 pm

    Mine are cooling as I type this. I cooked them a little longer because I was expecting the center to firm up more. Hopefully it won’t hurt the recipe. Also I used dulce de leche I made in the crock pot from a can of condensed milk instead of the caramel candies. I’m hoping this is a winner. I’m so anxious to try.

    • Leah Short November 18, 2013 at 4:34 pm

      Ooo sounds good! Hope they turn out!

  • Amber November 20, 2013 at 8:30 am

    They turned out amazing! Thanks for sharing the recipe!

  • Ose December 15, 2013 at 8:45 pm

    I am a little confused. I’m sorry. I actually let them cool in the pan to avoid the potential ooze. After a bit, I pulled them out and let them cool on a cooling rack. They are wrapped and in the refrigerator now. My question is, are these supposed to be served cold? Or am I supposed to pull them after a few hours in the fridge and let them get back down to room temp? I’m not really sure.

    • Leah Short December 16, 2013 at 8:11 am

      Hi! I would suggest letting them come up to room temperature before serving. It helps the caramel layer to set up by being in the fridge, but you don’t have to serve them cold. Enjoy!