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Mayan Brownies. Ground cinnamon, cinnamon chips and cayenne gently warm this deliciously spiced brownie. Fudgy cinnamon infused ganache tops it off!

Mayan Brownies

Servings 16 brownies


For the brownies:

  • 1/2 cup 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa I used Triple Cocoa
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon espresso powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon I used Vietnamese cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
  • 1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
  • 2 Tablespoons mini cinnamon chips

For the cinnamon infused ganache:

  • 2 " of cinnamon stick broken into pieces
  • 3 ounces heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla
  • 6 ounces chopped good quality, dark chocolate


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease or spray a 9" square baking pan. (I like to line mine with foil and then spray for easy removal and cutting.)
  2. In a medium bowl melt butter in microwave. Don't boil it, just heat it until it's melted. Set aside to cool for a minute.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk flour, salt, espresso powder, cinnamon and cayenne together until thoroughly combined. Stir in chocolate and cinnamon chips to coat them in the mixture. Set aside.
  4. Whisk sugar into melted butter then add cocoa and whisk to combine. Add eggs and vanilla and continue to whisk until thoroughly combined.
  5. Add flour/chip mixture to butter mixture and stir until combined.
  6. Spread batter evenly in pan. Bake for 30-35 minutes or just until a toothpick inserted into center comes out with some moist crumbs attached.
  7. Allow brownies to cool completely.
  8. Make ganache. Place cinnamon stick and cream into a small sauce pan. Bring to a boil, then remove from heat, cover and allow to steep for 30 minutes. Strain the cream to remove cinnamon pieces and pour back into sauce pan. Add corn syrup, stir then return to heat until the cream is just starting to simmer. Stir in vanilla and chopped chocolate and remove from heat, continuing to stir until all chocolate pieces are melted.
  9. Spread evenly over brownies and allow to cool. Cut into squares. Because of the ganache, I like to store these brownies in the refrigerator.

Recipe Notes

*I used Vietnamese cinnamon which is a sweeter, more powerful cinnamon than the typical grocery store cinnamon. If you're using grocery store cinnamon, you might want to add an additional 1/2 teaspoon or so to the recipe to punch up the flavor.

*If you prefer a stronger cinnamon flavor in your ganache, or simply do not have a cinnamon stick, just bring cream and corn syrup to a simmer, then add the chocolate, vanilla and 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon, stirring until chocolate is completely melted and smooth.

*I opted for a thin layer of ganache on my brownies, but if you want a thicker layer, simply double that part of the recipe :)

*Store brownies in the refrigerator. They also freeze beautifully. For a fudgy brownie, serve cold. For a cakier brownie, serve at room temperature. For a great base for a delicious scoop of ice cream, serve warm.

*For super clean cuts, chill in the refrigerator to firm up ganache before cutting.

*The amount of cayenne in the recipe is perfect for just a warming spice flavor. It kind of has the effect of a hot cinnamon candy and was not too strong for my kids. If you are looking for more kick, increase the spice to taste, but do so cautiously.

*You can use natural unsweetened cocoa or dutch process cocoa in this recipe or a mix of cocoas. Different cocoas will produce different flavors.

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