During this whole COVID-19 self-quarantine situation, I’ve realized how much I miss going out to eat. It also made me realize how much I don’t really like to cook. And I was ticked off when I went outside to grill some chicken the other night and my propane tank was empty. [Lame…yes, I know I should have checked on it earlier, but it’s been a wet winter] Then I improvised and sauteed the chicken with portabella mushrooms and vidalia onions, created a merlot reduction and served it over polenta. Fancy schmancy.

So…I’ve been home a lot cooking. And experimenting. And my recycling bin shows I’ve been enjoying a lot of adult beverages, as well. But my sweet tooth. Damn.

Well this morning I got up early. Besides coffee, what did I make? Fudgey Wine Brownies. And I gave many of them away. But around lunch time I started thinking sweets again. So I decided I wanted to try something new that would be gluten-free with a little punch (I have Lyme Disease—sugar and gluten are the enemy in my diet, but I do cheat). These are cake-like, and a modest-size square should satisfy the sweet tooth. But the addition of Irish cream into the glaze made these truly indulgent.

From start to finish this took about 40 minutes.


  • 1/2 c strong coffee (I had some left over, but you can use 2T instant coffee in 1/2 c hot water and let it sit for a bit)
  • 1/2 c melted butter or vegetable oil (I used canola)
  • 1 c firmly-packed brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 c Cup4Cup gluten-free, multi-purpose flour (regular white flour could be used)
  • 1 t cocoa powder
  • 1/2 t baking powder
  • 1/2 t baking soda
  • 1/2 t salt


  • 1 c powdered sugar
  • 3 T Irish cream (or milk)
  • 1/2 t pure vanilla extract

The Steps

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Grease a 9×13 baking pan (I used a ceramic one, so baking time was about 17 minutes)

In large bowl combine coffee, butter/oil, egg, brown sugar and whisk together

In another bowl add dry ingredients: flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cocoa powder; incorporate into wet ingredients and mix until creamy

Add batter to pan, spreading evenly

Bake for 15-20 minutes (after 15 minutes or so check with a toothpick to see if the brownies are done; add more time if needed, depending upon your baking pan—ceramic and glass tend to bake a bit faster than metal)

Once brownie “cake” is out of the oven, combine powdered sugar, Irish cream and vanilla

Whisk to fully incorporate

Pour glaze over the warm (un-cut) brownies and spread over the top with a spatula

Cut into bars once cool

Coffee "brownie"