Paisley Brownies

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I’m realizing that I’ve been posting a lot of sweet things lately. A disclaimer: the hummingbird cake and these brownies were prepared for a SEEDS meeting. So, truth be told, I am not sitting at home trying to alleviate all instances of writer’s block by consuming entire batches of the baked goods that I’ve featured in the past two weeks. 😀

These brownies are a version of the common ‘cheesecake’ brownie, but rather than give them such a conventional name, I went with the more exotic ‘paisley’ because that’s how I’m feeling on this unseasonably warm February Friday. And these brownies are, well, brownies (at least in the world according to Tiffany). If you like cake-like brownies, this recipe is not for you. But if you think that brownies should be chewy, slightly gooey, and extremely moist, then I would suggest that you try this recipe–pronto pronto!

And lastly, in the spirit of the Stylish Blogger Award, I’d like to thank Steph and Manu for passing on awards to me! Check out their super awesome blogs!

Paisley Brownies (Printable Recipe)


Brownie Batter:

1/2 cup earth balance or butter (softened)

1/2 cup sugar

3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 tablespoons vanilla creamer

1/2 cup flour

1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

pinch salt

pinch chili powder

Cheesecake Batter:

1 cup cream cheese–softened

1 egg yolk

1/4 cup sugar

the pulp from 1/2 vanilla bean (scraped)


*Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease 9in x 13in pan. Set aside. Melt earth balance and 1/2 cup of chocolate chips in medium saucepan over medium low heat until chocolate chips are completely melted and mixture is smooth. Add to large bowl. Whisk in eggs, sugar, creamer, and vanilla. Mix in flour, cocoa powder, chili, salt, and remaining chocolate chips. Spread 3/4 of brownie batter into prepared dish. Set aside.

*In a separate bowl, beat cream cheese, egg yolk, sugar, and vanilla just until fully incorporated. Dollop cream cheese mixture onto brownie layer. Add remaining 1/4 of brownie batter. Swirl two batters together with chopstick. (Note: As fun as it is to swirl the batters together… resist… over-swirling! Over-swirling will result in light brown brownies, not paisley brownies :D). Bake brownies 30-35 minutes or until set, but still chewy and moist!

Written by

Tiffany M. Griffin is the woman behind Como Water, Washington DC’s premiere veg-centric cuisine consulting company. Through cooking classes, demonstrations, catering, and consultations, Como Water gives people the opportunity to learn how to prepare veg-centric cuisine that boasts maximum flavor, with minimal effort. Tiffany is quickly becoming a go-to expert on the future of veg-centric cuisine, and is a regular contributor to Como Water, the blog, as well as to vegetarian and vegan sites across the Internet. For over a decade, this self-taught, entrepreneurial expert has developed a set of tried and true techniques for making simple, delicious, and sometimes decadent veg-centric dishes. Featured on the Steve Harvey Show and other leading media outlets, Tiffany was born and raised in Springfield, MA. She then earned Bachelors degrees in Psychology and Communications from Boston College and a PhD in Social Psychology from the University of Michigan. She now resides in Washington DC, where she has worked in the US Senate and at a federal agency on issues around health, food, nutrition, and international food aid/development, and of course, as the owner of Como Water. Tiffany gets culinary inspiration from the food she grew up eating, and from her travels throughout Latin America, the Caribbean, Western Europe, and Sub-Saharan Africa. She is dedicated to sharing her wealth of knowledge on veg-centric cuisine with others and to help others live by her mantra—love life, live long, and eat veg-centric cuisine!


  1. I love everything about these brownies. They look wonderful, delicious and festive. And the touch of chili powder…..oh yeah. Thanks for the recipe.

  2. I love the name! Great recipe!

  3. These brownies look marvelous!

  4. love the way you displayed the pics .. so easy to understand the recipe 🙂

  5. I just LOVE these swirling chocolate pix! Beauties. Look so good!

  6. I tried this before..and came out like nothing:)) On the other hand you did amazing job!!
    Really love how it came out for you, so delicious and beautiful!:)

  7. I have been on a sweet kick lately too! I’m not sure why (I’m blaming it on holiday season withdraw… yeah, that’s what I’ll keep telling myself). These look super delicious!

    Thanks for your kind words on Chef Dennis’ site today!

  8. They look full fat and tender. Yummy!

  9. Looks fabulous. nice flavours with chocolate, vanilla and chilli.

  10. Anything with such a wonderful swirl has to be good! Nicely done!!

  11. I love your name for these brownies…and I love cream cheese! Thank you for sharing your heart and these treats. I hope you have a blessed Saturday!

  12. Ooh the swirl on the brownies are perfect! I always overdo it.

    I misread the “paisley” as “parsley” at first. Tee hee.

  13. Those brownies are beautifully swirled! I always love rich chocolate treat!

  14. Beautiful swirls! Beautiful brownies, I really want to try them but I know if I make them I will have to eat them all!!

  15. Beautiful + delicious brownies=heaven!

  16. This is wonderful recipe! I love these brownies, so sweet with cream cheese and chocolate, absolutely lovely combination 🙂

  17. These are simply beautiful! People would ooh and ahh if I brought these out! 🙂 Great post!

  18. Paisley brownies…LOVE it!!! They look incredibly delicious…I truly love this combination more than plain brownies. Happy Saturday, Tiffany!!!

  19. Swirled deliciousness!

  20. These look very pretty! I have never been good at brownies. Perhaps I should give these a try.

  21. Brownie and cheesecake?! Oh my word, these are to die for! Great recipe! Thank you for sharing it!

  22. what a gorgeous brownie! I love the name, it’s so sixties!! but anything with cheesecake and chocolate is perfect!
    thanks for sharing a great recipe with us

  23. YUM! Your brownies look like a work of art…almost too good to eat! Well, almost- I still want to pop a few in my mouth! 🙂

  24. These are beautiful!

  25. This recipe is for me!!!!!!! I LOVE brownies and have never tried the cheesecake version… will have to now!!!

  26. Wow, I hope you are appreciated by your SEEDS colleagues! I’m with you on brownies as chewy, slightly gooey, and extremely moist. I love your name for these: Paisley Brownies suit these lovely swirly treats perfectly.

  27. Thanks for passing from my blog and it’s my pleasure to discover yours. These brownies have my name written all over them. I love brownies and cheesecake and like them chewy and gooey.

  28. Theres an award waiting for you.
    Cheers, Zen

  29. Hi Tiff, I know you already have a Stylish Blogger award but I think you deserve a second – see to see my award criteria.

  30. I think that Chef Dennis and I are from the same genre, I love the name paisley, too:)
    I never thought of swirled fillings as paisley, but I do now. Anyway, these are decadent.

  31. I’m in my fav paisley pajama pants and appreciating this lovely paisley brownies and getting seriously hungry.

  32. You can’t go wrong with chocolate and cheesecake especially when they are combined! Cute name too :o)

  33. Spicy, cheesy, chocolatey – all my favorite flavors are taken into account for in your brilliant recipe. Oh, and I like mine all gooey too and you’ve covered that as well! Perfect. 😉

  34. I was so intrigued by the name “Paisley” I had to check this out even though I shouldn’t be anywhere near brownies. I make these too but I call them Swirly Brownies. lol. And they are tasty!

  35. Tee-hee! Thanks for the mention, Tiff! Although, the linky link is broken, I think. LOL. These brownies looks amazing!! In the midst of this frigid cold, I would love a few of these brownies to get me in a better mood. :-p They look so gorgeous with the delicate swirls!

  36. Tiffkey:
    Could you please give me the equivalence in grams to the measure of cups you use
    I have a equivalence list in Spain, but I tried and I am afraid it is wrong.
    Love this brownie.

  37. i love cheesecake brownies…but i love the name you gave them a lot more – i may have to steal it! 😉 btw, i’m not complaining about the sweets… lol!

    • No need to steal it…. it’s for everyone to share! 🙂

  38. Lovely swirl. Mmmm….posting a lot of sweet items…I like this trend..yes yes. 😉

  39. These are so beautiful the way the pale cream cheese swirls through the dark chocolate! Heavenly combination, and a match made in heaven! I would love some for a snack with some soy milk!

  40. Cheesecake brownies are heart hugs. They look fantastic!

  41. Love the pinch of chilli! These look fabulous, but I really, really love the name too!!