For years now my oldest son has requested an ice cream brownie cake (or brownie “pie”) as his birthday cake. The first year I made one it was a disaster in terms of appearance, but tasted oh so good. Over the years I’ve mastered the technique in making it look as good as it tastes. He turned 20 this month, so when he returned from college for the Thanksgiving holiday, I had this waiting for him. Food is love.
Brownie Ice Cream Cake
Use your favorite brownie recipe, or prepare a boxed brownie mix, according to package directions. Instead of using the batter in a 9×13-inch pan, put 2/3 of the batter into a deep baking pan (I used a disposable foil pan), and the remaining 1/3 into a similar sized square pan. Bake for about 2/3 of the time listed on the package (since they are thinner they will take less time to bake).
Note: For the one baked in the square pan, I used a baking liner which makes transferring it to the top much easier. But we’ll get to that later on.
IMPORTANT: Make sure the pan for the base is deep enough to hold all the ice cream that will go in later on! This one is about 2 1/2 inches deep.
When they are done baking and have been removed from the oven, allow to cool for a little while.
Do not remove the brownie from the deep pan, but do remove the thinner one from the square pan (when it’s cool enough to handle, of course!).
Allow to cool completely before starting the next step.
Now is a good time to take your favorite flavor of ice cream out of the freezer, so that it can get soft (but not melted).
On top of the brownie base in the deep pan, drizzle a decent amount of chocolate syrup (optional), then scoop the softened ice cream onto that.
My youngest child can’t have mint chocolate chip ice cream, which is the flavor the birthday boy requested, so a portion of the cake was made to be solid chocolate (I used a permanent marker to mark on the outside of the foil pan which section had the chocolate ice cream … makes cutting into it much less of a guessing game!)
Drizzle more chocolate syrup on top of the ice cream. Again, this step is optional. If you have a young child helping you, as I did, they may not agree with you that it is optional. You have been warned.
Carefully flip over the thinner layer of brownie, placing it on top of the ice cream, and remove the baking liner. (See how easy that was!)
Gently push the top brownie to compress the ice cream just a bit. Not too much… just enough to get out any excess air.
Drizzle more chocolate syrup over the top layer of brownie. You think I’m going to tell you this is optional, right? Well, no! You must drizzle the chocolate on top. You must! Not optional.
Cover and freeze.
When ready to serve, remove from freezer about 5 or 10 minutes before you want to cut it.
Note: Once you cut it in the foil pan, you may end up cutting through the foil. Or maybe that’s just me. Anyhoo, after cutting pieces for everyone I transferred the remaining cake to a freezer safe container, and back in the freezer it went. Until the next morning. Yes, when you’re 20 and home from college for a few precious days, you may have brownie ice cream cake for breakfast.