A Dash Of Chile Powder Is All You Need To Liven Up Your Boxed Brownies

Boxed brownies may seem pretty pedestrian, but they're a great way to make your favorite baked good when you're short on time or just want something simple. You can certainly appreciate a box of brownie mix without anything added, but plenty of fun ways to supplement them will make them that much better. 

Typically, you might anticipate chocolate chips, marshmallows, or peanut butter are the best additions to your brownies, but there's a spice that stands out for the unique way it enhances this chocolate confection. Unlike nutmeg or cinnamon, chile powder isn't a spice you'd likely consider for baking. However, it can seriously up the ante when it comes to the flavor of your brownies. If you want to spice up your (baking) life, add a sprinkle of chile powder to your brownies. Once you take that glorious first bite, you'll be blown away by the extra layer of flavor it adds to your brownies.

Why you should add chile powder to your brownies

If you're not used to pairing chocolate and chile peppers, then adding it in powder form to your brownies may seem a little too spicy for you. What you'll end up with, though, is a brownie that doesn't taste at all like it came from a boxed mix.

Chocolate and chile peppers are a winning flavor combination. They mesh well in dishes like anything with mole sauce and treats like Mexican hot chocolate. The richness of the chocolate and the spice of the chile peppers provide a fresh flavor contrast that's perfectly complementary. You don't need a lot of chile powder to make your brownies stand out either — start with ½ teaspoon and add more if you'd like the batter a little bit spicier. Just that slight hint of chile powder can make a huge difference in how your brownies taste, so the next time you're craving a change to your usual boxed brownie mix, head to your spice rack and pull out those dried peppers. A little chile powder will make your guests scarf down your brownies in no time.

Other ways to elevate boxed brownie mix

Boxed brownie mix doesn't need to be boring — and with tons of ingredients to choose from, there are countless ways to make them fun. You don't need to be a professional chef to incorporate these tasty ingredients.

If you like the idea of adding a little bit of spice but would rather stay away from chile powder, cinnamon and nutmeg make excellent alternatives, especially if you're baking for the holidays. Cloves and cardamom may not be your initial thought when choosing spices for your brownie mix, but paired with cinnamon or nutmeg, they'll tie in nicely to your chocolatey mix. You can even pair the spices with other brownie ingredients, like cookies, pretzels, or even a little liquor. Chile powder is an unexpected but top-notch addition to any boxed brownie mix, but other spices work just as well to amp up the flavor and make them taste homemade.