'The Pioneer Woman' Ree Drummond's 'Hidden Secret Brownies' Conceal a Sweet – and Weird – Surprise That Make the Treats Their Fudgiest
8th August 2021

We all have our favorite stand-by recipes for fudgy, rich, and even cake-like brownies. But it’s always fun to try those brownie recipes that throw an unexpected ingredient into the mix and result in a blast of amazing chocolate flavor and texture. The Pioneer Woman Ree Drummond’s Hidden Secret Brownies are right up that alley.

Here’s her recipe and the magical ingredient that makes it click.

The secret ingredient in Drummond’s Hidden Secret Brownies

As Drummond points out in her book The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Recipes from an Accidental Country Girl, “Brownies, brownies, brownies. There are so many different recipes for brownies, it makes my head spin around, fall onto the floor, and roll down the street. Do you like your brownies fudgy? Cakey? Moist? Crackly? Crumbly? Do you use any ol’ baking chocolate, or do you break out the big guns and buy the top-of-the-line stuff from San Fran? Or do you use cocoa powder instead? Or do you just throw up your hands and buy a box mix? Me? I don’t like to overthink it. I just want some brownies, okay?”

With that said, this brownie recipe of Drummond’s – and she has several – bests the others with its surprising ingredient of beets. Yup, beets. The sweet root vegetable adds an intensity to the chocolate flavor. Plus, you’ll reap the nutritional benefits of this powerhouse food.

What else you’ll need for Drummond’s brownies

In addition to the veggie, you’re going to need on hand for this recipe (full instructions here): nonstick cooking spray, unsweetened dark chocolate, salted butter, sugar, eggs, vanilla extract, toasted walnuts, flour, cocoa powder, confectioner’s sugar, and of course, beets. You’ll also need a stand mixer for this recipe.

In addition, you’ll want to have your beets ready and roasted before you start assembling all your other ingredients. You could buy them already prepared at the store or try, as Drummond’s recipe on the Food Network website suggests, roasting your beets by wrapping them in foil and then baking in a 400-degree oven until they’re tender for about 40 minutes. Once they’ve cooled off, the skins can be removed and the beets chopped.

And how to make Hidden Secret Brownies

These delicious brownies come together so quickly and make the perfect afternoon snack.

First, preheat your oven to 350 degrees and spray a square pan with baking spray. Drummond suggests lining your pan with parchment paper, so when it comes time to get your brownies out, it’ll be effortlessly simple.

The butter and sugar are creamed in the stand mixer, to which are then added the eggs. Melt the chocolate and add to the mixer along with the vanilla, beets, walnuts and combine. Drummond recommends adding in the flour and cocoa powder a little at a time, just until it’s combined, and to be careful not to overmix it.

The batter is placed in the greased pan and baked for almost an hour, then completely cooled. Lift the brownies out using the parchment, which you’ll remove, and then cut the cooled brownies into squares. Sprinkle them with the confectioners’ sugar and enjoy!

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