Christmas tree brownies are a festive treat sure to bring holiday cheer! They start with a simple boxed brownie mix and are spruced up with baking staples for rich, fudgy brownies with a crinkle topping perfect for decorating. They’re the perfect easy Christmas baking project for kids to help with!
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When we think about holiday baking, we probably think about chocolate crinkle cookies, spritz cookies, and those ever-popular peanut butter blossoms. However, if you have a soft spot for brownies, these Christmas tree brownies will be your new favorite holiday treat.
This festive dessert is made with a store-bought chocolate or fudge brownie mix, which means they’re as easy as can be. And then there’s the fun part—decorating them!
Easy Christmas Tree Brownie Recipe
You don’t need any fancy cookie cutters or special equipment for making these Christmas tree brownies. Instead, simply pour the batter into a standard baking pan—the kind we all have on hand. Once they’ve cooled, you’ll cut them into triangles to make the tops of your Christmas trees.
Mini candy canes make the trunks. Then, you’ll frost each brownie with green icing and decorate with an assortment of festive sprinkles and M&Ms—and yes, this is the point where you call your kids into the kitchen and enlist them to help!
Christmas tree brownies couldn’t be easier to make, and they’re destined to be a hit at any holiday party.
See recipe card below this post for ingredient quantities and full instructions.
- Boxed brownie mix – I like Betty Crocker Fudge Brownie Mix.
- Vegetable oil – Canola oil works, too.
- Mini candy canes
- Vanilla frosting – You can use homemade buttercream frosting if you’d like, but we just pick up a can of frosting in the baking aisle.
- Green food coloring – Gel food coloring will give you the boldest colors without watering down the frosting.
- Christmas sprinkles
- Christmas M&Ms
- Make the brownies richer by folding chocolate chips into the batter.
- Use pretzel sticks or rods instead of mini candy canes for the Christmas tree trunks.
- Try cream cheese frosting instead of vanilla.
- Use small tubes of colored icing to draw garlands on the Christmas trees.
How to Make Christmas Tree Brownies
- Prepare: Preheat your oven to 350ºF and line a baking pan with foil. Then, spray the foil with cooking spray.
- Make the brownie batter: Empty the brownie mix into a large bowl, and whisk in the water, vegetable oil, and eggs.
- Bake: Pour the brownie batter into the pan, and smooth the top. Bake the brownies for about 32 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out almost clean.
- Cool and cut: Let the brownies cool completely. Then, gently lift them out of the pan using the foil. Cut the cooled brownies into 3 even rows, and cut each row into 5 triangles.
- Make the trunks: Break off the curved end of the candy canes, and stick the straight candy cane into the bottom of each triangle like a tree trunk.
- Frost the brownies: Stir the frosting with some green food coloring. Pipe the frosting onto the Christmas trees using a piping bag fitted with a small star piping tip, or spread it on with an offset spatula or butter knife.
- Decorate: Add the Christmas sprinkles and M&M’s to the trees.
Cut the foil large enough so it hangs over the edges of the pan. This makes it easier to lift the brownies out when they’re done!
How to Store Christmas Tree Brownies
Christmas tree brownies will stay fresh for up to 4 days when stored in an airtight container at room temperature. If you’re stacking them, place parchment paper between the layers to keep them from sticking together.
To freeze any leftovers, wrap the brownies individually in plastic wrap, and place them in a freezer-safe bag or container. Freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before serving!
If you’re making these to freeze for later, I recommend adding the candy cane, M&Ms, and sprinkles just before serving. They won’t hold up well in the freezer.
Using canola oil and brown sugar are two ways to make a brownie more chewy.
In addition to making these Christmas tree brownies, you can easily doctor up a brownie mix with some extra ingredients to make it more festive. Try adding candy canes, M&Ms, Christmas sprinkles, or even chopped peppermint patties for an extra special holiday treat. You can also flavor the frosting with peppermint extract, but start with a small amount—it’s very strong!
Fudgy brownies have more butter or oil and chocolate, and less flour. You’ll also want to be sure that you don’t overbake the brownies for that perfect fudgy texture.
Christmas Tree Brownies
- 9-inch baking pan
- Medium bowl
- 1 box brownie mix (16 ounces) I like Betty Crocker Fudge Brownie Mix
- ¼ cup water
- ⅔ cup vegetable oil
- 2 eggs
- 15 mini candy canes
- 1 container of vanilla frosting (16 ounces)
- Green food coloring
- Christmas sprinkles
- Christmas M&Ms
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F and line a 9-inch baking pan with foil. Make the foil large enough so that it hangs over the edges of the pan. This will make it easier to lift the brownies out of the pan after baking. Spray the foil with non stick baking spray
- Add the brownie mix to a medium sized bowl and whisk in the water, vegetable oil and eggs.1 box brownie mix (16 ounces), ¼ cup water, ⅔ cup vegetable oil, 2 eggs
- Pour the brownie batter into the prepared pan and spread it so that it is even and smooth.
- Bake the brownies for about 32 minutes. A toothpick inserted into the center of the brownies should come out almost clean (a few crumbs on the toothpick is okay.)
- Let the brownies cool completely then gently lift the brownies out of the pan using the foil.
- Cut the cooled brownies into three rows that are 3 inches wide.
- Cut each row into 5 triangles.
- Break the curved end of the candy canes off and stick the straight candy cane into the bottom of each triangle, making it look like the christmas tree trunk.15 mini candy canes
- Mix the Vanilla frosting with some green food coloring. Pipe the frosting onto the Christmas trees using a small star piping tip. You can cover the entire christmas tree brownie in frosting or just zig zag the frosting from the top of the tree to the button as if it were a string of christmas lights on the tree. You can also skip the piping bag and simply spread the green frosting over the whole brownie with a butter knife.1 container of vanilla frosting (16 ounces), Green food coloring
- Add the Christmas sprinkles and M&M’s to the trees. Get creative! You can really decorate your tree however you’d like.Christmas sprinkles, Christmas M&Ms
- Enjoy the Christmas tree brownies right away or store them in an airtight container at room temperature for 3-4 days.