Rocky Road Brownies

from 2 votes

Rocky Road Brownies start with an easy, homemade brownie base and end with chocolate chips, mini marshmallows and chopped, salted almonds loaded on top. The chocolate gets melty, the marshmallows gooey and everything is utterly delicious. If you love sweet and salty desserts, you’ll love these rich and fudgy brownies!

Rock road brownies topped with chopped almonds. A piece of brownie is pulled off the corner.

My dad has always loved Rocky Road ice cream. One of my most vibrant memories as a child was fishing out the “gross” almonds and “icky” marshmallows so that I could enjoy the chocolate ice cream sans a crunchy or fluffy interruption.

Twenty years later, I’m baking brownies and finding any excuse to work marshmallows and salted almonds into a dessert that needs little more than a napkin and an ice-cold glass of milk. The setup on this one is simple: Homemade brownies are baked and then topped with chocolate chips, salted almonds and mini marshmallows before going back into the oven for a burst of heat that makes the ‘mallows melt into the fudgy base below.

The brownie base is super simple, too, and you likely have all of your ingredients in the pantry or fridge. Looking for more sweet and salty desserts? Try my Chocolate and Brie Panini, Cheesecake-Filled Chocolate Turtles and Sweet and Salty Dark Chocolate Bark.

Why You’ll Love Rocky Road Brownies

  • Rich and fudgy brownie base. 
  • Perfect blend of sweet and salty flavors.
  • Easy to make with simple ingredients you likely already have on hand.
  • Kid-friendly recipe that little ones will love helping to make and devour.
  • Enjoy them warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream for an extra-indulgent treat.


  • Unsalted butter: You’ll need one stick and two tablespoons of unsalted butter for these marshmallow brownies. Be sure not to use salted: You want to control the amount of salt you’re adding—plus, you’ll be topping these brownies with salted nuts.
  • Sugar: Provides sweetness and helps create a chewy texture in the brownies.
  • Cocoa powder: Instead of using melted chocolate for the brownie base, I like to use cocoa powder. It’s easier and adds pure chocolate flavor.
  • Vanilla extract: Adds depth and complexity to the chocolate flavor. Swap: For an extra boost of flavor, you could swap in vanilla paste instead.
  • Eggs: Did you know eggs come in different sizes? That’s why I call for large eggs.
  • All-purpose flour: This nutty brownie recipe calls for less flour than many, which makes for an ultra-tender result that just holds together.
  • Semi-sweet chocolate chips: Melty pockets of chocolate throughout the brownies for added richness and indulgence. Swap: You can use dark chocolate chips or chunks for a more intense chocolate flavor, or swap them out for white chocolate chips for a different twist.
  • Mini marshmallows: By using mini marshmallows (rather than full-size ones), they melt more quickly and allow you to get plenty of marshmallows with each brownie.
  • Salted almonds: Chopped, salted almonds make this a sweet-and-salty dessert. If you can’t find them, you could use regular roasted almonds and a sprinkle of flakey salt.

See the recipe card for full information on ingredients and quantities.

How to Make Rocky Road Brownies

  1. Preheat the oven. Heat the oven 325°F and line an 8-inch square baking dish with parchment paper, allowing the excess to hang over the sides. This will allow you to lift the brownies up and out of the pan once they finish baking.
  2. Melt the butter-cocoa mixture. To a heat-proof bowl, add the butter, sugar and cocoa powder. Place the bowl over a saucepan with an inch or so of simmering water, making sure the bottom of the bowl doesn’t touch the water. (This is called a double boiler.) Stir until the butter is melted and the mixture is smooth. Let cool for 10 minutes. 
  3. Add the eggs, vanilla and flour. Stir in the vanilla, then whisk in the eggs one at a time. Once the batter is thickened, mix in the flour until it’s just incorporated. Overmixing it will develop gluten, leading to tougher brownies. Pour the batter into the prepared baking dish.
  1. Bake. Bake the brownies for about 20 minutes or a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean (a few crumbs clinging to it is fine, just not wet batter).
  2. Add the toppings. Remove the pan from the oven, sprinkle on the chocolate chips, marshmallows and almonds and bake for 5 minutes more.
Rock road brownies in a square baking pan topped with chopped almonds, mini marshmallows and chocolate chips.
  1. Serve. Once cool, use the parchment paper sling to lift the brownies out of the pan, slice and serve.

Kelly’s Recipe Tips

  • Why a Double Boiler: A double boiler allows you to gently and evenly melt the butter, cocoa powder and sugar mixture and keep a watchful eye on things (you can’t do that in the microwave).
  • Making a Parchment Paper Sling: To easily make a parchment paper sling, cut two wide strips of parchment, crossing them in the pan like a plus sign.


Store leftover brownies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days. If you’re concerned about the nuts getting soggy, store the brownies in an airtight container in the refrigerator. This can help preserve the crunchiness of the nuts for a longer period.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use regular-sized marshmallows instead of mini marshmallows?

I wouldn’t recommend using regular-sized marshmallows as they won’t melt as quickly or be as evenly distributed once you cut the brownies.

Can I add other nuts besides almonds?

While almonds are classic in Rocky Road, you can substitute almost any nut. Peanuts, walnuts or pecans would all be delicious.

Rocky road brownies topped with chopped almonds. A corner of the brownies is pulled off.

More Easy Brownie Recipes

I have enough experience in the world of brownies to know that nuts can be a total turnoff to some. But have no fear. Skip them in the topping, or take your pick of the brownie lineup below. There’s a little something for everyone…

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Rocky Road Brownies

Take your brownies to the next level with this recipe for Rocky Road Brownies loaded with chocolate, salted almonds and marshmallows. They ooey, gooey and utterly delicious.
Author: Kelly Senyei
5 from 2 votes
Closeup view of homemade Marshmallow Brownies with Salted Almonds
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 16 (1-inch) brownies


  • 10 tablespoons (1 ¼ sticks) unsalted butter
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 7/8 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (natural or Dutch-process)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cold large eggs
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 1/4 cups mini-marshmallows
  • 1/2 cup salted almonds, roughly chopped

Special equipment:

  • An 8-inch square baking pan


  • Preheat the oven to 325°F and line the pan with parchment paper or foil leaving an overhang on two sides.
  • Combine the butter, sugar, cocoa and salt in a heatproof bowl or saucepot. Set the bowl atop a saucepot of simmering water to create a double-boiler. Stir the butter from time to time until it’s melted and the mixture is smooth and hot to the touch. Remove the bowl from the double-boiler and set it aside to cool for 10 minutes.
  • Using a wooden spoon or rubber spatula, stir in the vanilla and then stir in the eggs, one at a time, stirring vigorously between each addition. Once the batter looks well-blended, shiny and thick, stir in the flour until it’s fully incorporated. Spread the batter into the prepared baking pan.
  • Bake the brownies for 15 to 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out with a few moist crumbs. Remove the brownies from the oven and immediately sprinkle them with the chocolate chips, mini marshmallows and chopped almonds. Return the brownies to the oven for about 5 minutes, just until the marshmallows begin to melt. Remove the brownies from the oven and let them cool completely on a wrack.
  • Using the parchment paper or foil overhang, lift the brownies out of the pan, and slice and serve.

Kelly’s Notes

  • A double boiler allows you to gently and evenly melt the butter, cocoa powder and sugar mixture and keep a watchful eye on things (you can’t do that in the microwave).
  • To easily make a parchment paper sling, cut two wide strips of parchment, crossing them in the pan like a plus sign.
  • ★ Did you make this recipe? Don’t forget to give it a star rating below!


Calories: 216kcal, Carbohydrates: 27g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 11g, Saturated Fat: 6g, Cholesterol: 39mg, Sodium: 49mg, Potassium: 136mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 19g, Vitamin A: 250IU, Calcium: 25mg, Iron: 1.3mg


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Brownie batter recipe adapted from BitterSweet.

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  1. I just made these, and they were amazing. Fudgiest. Brownie. Ever. I upped the toppings a bit because I love almonds. I will be making these again for sure.

  2. Thanks for visiting my blog…these brownies looks super amazing !!!! Loved them ….nice close up clicks too !!

  3. Wow! I’m trying to cut back on the sweets but I think I’ll have to make an exception with these brownies!

  4. I LOVE Rocky Road! Still my most favorite ice cream flavor ever :) So this is definitely getting bookmarked!!

  5. I bet the salted almonds are absolutely fabulous amongst all the chocolate and marshmallow!!

  6. It wouldn’t be safe to leave me with a pan of these brownies!! Ooey gooey deliciousness! PS: I used to always pick nuts out of my ice cream :)

  7. These pictures are making me want to lick the screen! What a great combination of flavors.

  8. I made these last night. OMG! so yummy! two of my favorite things stuck together. I just love marshmallows and having them all gooey and toasted on top of brownies is just genius! I used salted peanuts and it was just as good but I think next time I will add more chocolate chips on top too. Wonderful recipe =D

  9. would LOVE to do an interview with you about you and your cookbook
    (see my blog for past interviews)
    email me if you have any questions
    (yes it’s free!)

  10. I love the combo of almonds and chocolate. In fact i made a batch of spanish salted almonds brownies a few weeks ago too! Addictive…

  11. They look amazing! So gooey and scrummy. I just wanted to say that I love your photography too – all your food looks stunning :)

  12. This looks so ooey and gooey and sticky and perfect. I need to make them. As always, your photography is perfection and makes me wish I could reach into the computer screen. Pinned!

  13. I love this brownie recipe! I’ve made them before and their fudginess is out of this world!! And I am loving the marshmallow and salty almonds added. So gooey, rich, decadent, perfect.

  14. This looks so incredibly good, I’m at a loss for words. I just need to make these soon!

  15. I just love how gooey these are! Isn’t it amazing how age really changes taste preferences?

  16. Everything about this post is amazing. The pictures, the recipe, the story to go along with it… but mostly the recipe. Can you bake me some?

  17. Those look amazing. So gooey and sticky and messy, but all the best desserts are always messy!

  18. Oh my goodness these look incredible. I am now doing a three day juice cleanse and this is not helping :)

  19. Well, I was going to make the pecan bars for my new neighbors but now maybe I’ll make these! Or maybe both! Your photos are as delicious as your recipes!!!

  20. oh my god these look amaaaazing!!! you are really challenging my diet right now Kelly!! love this spin on Rocky Road it’s so creative :)

  21. Absolutely incredible! I’ve never craved brownies so bad so early in the morning! Thanks for sharing, Kelly.

  22. These look great Kelly! When I was a kid I tried to avoid those almonds too…now on the other hand I LOVE ’em!

  23. It’s amazing how our palates change as we get older. I hated coconuts in chocolate when I was a kid..but now I love them. How do you stay so thin with so much yummy goodness around you?

  24. I’ll take these brownies with everything please!! Fantastic and delicious looking :)

  25. That Alice Medrich brownie recipe is my new favorite. LOVE IT. And your brownies look to-die for good (and normally I pass on nuts in desserts) but gosh, these look so good!