Cosmic Brownies

Rich, fudgy, and covered with bright little sprinkles, these homemade cosmic brownies are delicious. They taste just like those coveted lunchbox treats, only better!

With just a bit of time you’ll be skipping down memory lane. These indulgent retro brownies are sure to be a new family favorite! For more chocolate brownie goodness try Homemade Little Debbie Fudge Brownies, Rich Fudgy Flourless Brownies, and Triple Chocolate Brownies.

cosmic brownies on a white plate 

A Childhood Favorite

When I was in elementary school I was always jealous of the kids who had store bought treats in their lunches. Especially Little Debbie Cosmic Brownies. I mean how can a kid resist thick and chewy brownies covered in fudge and topped with bright crunchy candies? They can’t. Sometimes I traded parts of my lunch just to get a half of one. Sad, but true. Shhh…don’t tell my mom 😉

Anyway, since Stephen is always begging me to make brownies (and only brownies) I decided I’d do something different. He’s always going on about how I should make things and cover them in a fudgy ganache, so these brownies seemed perfect.

You won’t believe how good they are! We ate one after another and still wanted more! It’s a good thing this recipe makes 24 brownies, because we were hooked! They got the stamp of approval from Stephen and from several other Little Debbie obsessed taste testers. I couldn’t be happier! Enjoy and happy baking!

Fudgy Brownie Cookies |

How to Make Cosmic Brownies

PREP. Line a 9×13 inch pan with aluminum foil and lightly spray it with baking spray. (Note: The size of the pan will help create the perfect thickness and the sprayed foil will prevent the brownies from sticking- plus it makes getting them out of the pan so easy, just lift and remove, cut and serve!)

BEAT. Using a combination of both regular sugar and brown sugar will help keep these brownies extra moist. Beat the sugars along with the butter and vanilla until light and fluffy. This not only helps the sugar to dissolve but also helps create a soft and chewy texture.

COMBINE. The addition of two eggs also keeps these brownies nice and dense. And if you’re like me, dense brownies are the best brownies!

MIX. Now add the dry ingredients. I used all-purpose flour and natural unsweetened cocoa powder.

(Note: I’ve actually made these brownies with a special dark cocoa and a Dutch cocoa, but they do not taste like Little Debbie Brownies. If rich and dark is your thing, go for it. If you’re looking for an exact copycat, stick with the natural! I played around with the recipe a bit and decided that a little bit of cornstarch helped give these brownies the perfect texture. It helped make them more fudge-like. In my opinion, it’s absolutely necessary so don’t be tempted to ditch it! Most of my brownie recipes don’t include baking powder but for this particular one it helps lift these ever so slightly.)

WHISK. Add a pinch of salt to enhance the flavor of the chocolate, whisk everything together and incorporate it along with the milk.

BAKE & COOL. Spread these into the prepared pan, put them in the oven to bake and then let them cool.

GANACHE & SPRINKLES. Whip up the ganache, pour over the top and sprinkle, sprinkle, sprinkle!

Let these cosmic brownies cool until the ganache has set and dig in! 

a stack of little debbie cosmic brownies

Troubleshooting and Storing

If your brownies turn out dry, then next time try baking them for 5 less minutes. The best brownie baking practice is to always under bake them. Another reason these cosmic brownies could be dry is because of your elevation: baked goods finish quicker than you expect at a higher elevation.

If the ganache doesn’t set, you should put the brownies in the fridge for 20 minutes or so. If the ganache is too liquidy, try whisking in a little bit of powdered sugar to thicken it up.

Store: These should be stored in an airtight container either at room temperature for 3 days or in the fridge for a week. 

Freeze: Slice the brownies and place in an airtight bag and freeze for up to 4-6 months. Defrost in the fridge and then bring them to room temperature on the counter with the bag opened to avoid condensation. 

Homemade cosmic brownies topped with rainbow sprinkles

 For more brownie recipes, try:

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Homemade Cosmic Brownies

Cosmic Brownies Recipe

Rich, fudgy, and covered with bright little sprinkles, these homemade cosmic brownies taste just like those coveted lunchbox treats, only better!
5 from 11 votes
Pin Rate
Course: Brownies & Bars
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 18 minutes
Total Time: 28 minutes
Servings: 24 brownies
Calories: 224kcal
Author: Andrea
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  • 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup natural unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup butter - (1 ½ sticks), melted
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 tbsp whole milk
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • pinch salt
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract

For the Ganache

  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup milk chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream


  • rainbow chip sprinkles - if desired


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9x13 baking dish with foil and lightly spray with baking spray such as Pam, set aside.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat melted butter, sugars and vanilla until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing until incorporated.
  • In a medium size mixing bowl whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, cornstarch, and salt. With mixing speed on low, alternate adding dry ingredients and milk. Mix just until combined.
  • Remove bowl from stand and pour batter into prepared pan. The batter will be thick, so using a rubber spatula, spread into an even layer. Place in oven and bake for 18-25 minutes (I live in high altitude so my bars tend to bake quicker). The brownies will be done, so do not over-bake or you will have dry brownies! Remove from oven and allow to cool in the pan.
  • Meanwhile to prepare the ganache, in a 2 c. glass measuring cup, combine chocolate chips and heavy cream. Microwave on half powder (mine is usually power 10, so I did 5) for one minute, stir, then repeat. Stir chocolate until all of the chips are melted and it becomes smooth. Beat for 1 minute and then pour over the top of the brownies. Spread evenly and sprinkle with desired toppings. Serve warm or cold.



-Sprinkles, miniature M&M's, or chocolate covered sunflower seeds are great substitutions for the rainbow crunch chips. I found mine (Wilton brand) at Jo-Ann Fabric & Crafts, but you can also get them from Amazon with the link above.


Serving: 24serving | Calories: 224kcal | Carbohydrates: 28g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 37mg | Sodium: 64mg | Potassium: 122mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 20g | Vitamin A: 285IU | Calcium: 32mg | Iron: 1mg

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About the Author


Hi I'm Andrea!

Hotelier turned Food Blogger to help make your life simple, one recipe at a time.

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  1. Hi Andrea!
    I love the candy sprinkles you have on top but can only find nonpareils and other round crunchy sprinkles. Can you tell us where to get the ones like you used? Thank you!

  2. 5 stars
    These are absolutely delicious, truly one of the only homemade brownie recipes that are worth making from scratch! They’ve made it on my holiday treat trays for the past few years and everybody raves about them. The only thing I do every single time is substituting the milk in the final steps of batter making for a strongly brewed coffee (or even instant coffee dissolved in warm water in a pinch); it doesn’t make the brownies taste like coffee, it just makes the chocolate flavour stronger. If you’d like to just use milk as the recipe states, I’d recommend making sure to season your brownies well (don’t skimp on the salt, this recipe can take up to 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon of salt, if using unsalted butter, in my opinion). I’ve also done a peanut butter ganache on the top of these using 1 cup peanut butter chips + 1/4 cup peanut butter for a Reese’s brownie in the past that was also well enjoyed. Just such a delicious base brownie recipe, whether you’re sticking to the Cosmic Brownie aesthetic or not 🙂