Chocolate Cherry Merlot Brownies

Level: Intermediate
Prep Time: 20 min
Cook Time: 33 min
Cooling Time: 30 min
Yields: 16 brownies


Sweeten the moment with this unique, wine lover's dessert. Bursting with merlot-soaked cherries, these fudgy brownies are bound to spark passion.


  • 1 1/4 cups (6-oz. pkg.) dried sweet cherries, chopped
  • 1/2 cup Merlot wine
  • 2 bars (8 oz.) NESTLÉ® TOLL HOUSE® Dark Chocolate Baking Bar, broken into small pieces
  • 1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup butter, softened
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


PREHEAT oven to 350º F. Grease 9-inch-square baking pan.

MICROWAVE dried cherries and wine in small, uncovered, microwave-safe bowl on HIGH (100%) power for 1 minute. Set aside for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Drain cherries; discard wine.

MICROWAVE chocolate in small, uncovered, microwave-safe bowl on HIGH (100%) power for 45 seconds; STIR. If pieces retain some of their original shape, microwave at additional 10- to 15-second intervals, stirring just until melted; cool to room temperature.

COMBINE flour and salt in small bowl. Beat sugar and butter in medium mixer bowl until well mixed. Add eggs and beat until light and fluffy. Beat in melted chocolate and vanilla extract. Stir in flour mixture until blended. Stir in drained cherries. Spread into prepared pan.

BAKE for 33 to 37 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out slightly sticky. Cool completely in pan on wire rack. Cut into bars.

NOTE: Sweetened dried cranberries can be substituted for the dried cherries.


by S. S , Houston, TX on Oct. 2008

This is my idea of the perfect dessert. Chocolate and rich. It went over very well.I added about 2-3 tablespoons of chocolate glaze over the top.

So Moist and Tasty

by D. Dee , Eureka, CA on Sep. 2008

Made for the first time tonight and the batch is gone. The merlot cherries add a sweet-tartness that gives the brownies and extra oomph! My family loves brownies but found this to be a nice change of pace.

chocolate cherry merlot brownies

by e. elaine , Little Falls, NJ on Jul. 2008

MMMMM!!! Moist, chewy, and rich. What a delicious treat.

Chocolate Craisin Merlot Brownies

by E. Esther , PHILADELPHIA, PA on Jul. 2008

This recipe was far more time-consuming than my usual one-bowl brownie recipe....but the compliments it generated made all the work worthwhile! My husband called these the best brownies ever. (And I did use the dried-cranberry suggestion, as there were no dried cherries available at the supermarket; they seemed to work just fine.)

Chocolate Cherry Merlot Brownies

by a. austin , WARREN, OH on Jul. 2008

I added some toppings to the brownies and were very good the rich brownie taste with my peanut butter sauce stood out above the flavor of the brownie would serve at any function with pride great for any family get together.

What's Not to Love?

by l. linda , CHAGRIN FALLS, OH on Jun. 2008

I made these brownies because I love chocolate and cherries - and I wasn't disappointed in how they turned out! I may try making them using an additional egg to make them more cake-like, since that is the way I usually make brownies from a mix. I also sprinkled 1 cup of semi-sweet chocolate chips on the brownies when I removed them from the oven. I waited a couple of minutes, then spread the melted chocolate over the brownies. Yum!

Chocolate Cherry Merlot Brownies

by C. CAROL , Iola, KS on Jun. 2008

These are so good. Everyone just loved them at club.

Yummy Chocolate Cherry Merlot Brownies

by p. patricia , LUFKIN, TX on Jun. 2008

These Brownies was so easy to make and moist very good.Imake these for my family they was gone in an flash.They said that it an change to have cherry in it not chocolate chip.They waiting for me to make some more.I definatey will be making these an gain.

chocolate cherry merlot

by a. andrea , , on Jun. 2008

Yummy! Yummy! Moist. Even the kids liked them. Great anytime but served at a Anniversary get together.

Well... not to be rude, but...

by L. Lynda , ST WALBURG, SK on May. 2008

... maybe I made a mistake somewhere but these brownies were dry enough to choke a camel. To be fair they were very good crumbled over ice cream as a topping. They didn't taste BAD, they were just VERY dry and as a result, very unpalatable by themselves. I tried them a second time with an entirely different brownie recipe and they were EXCELLENT. I couldn't find dried cherries so I used cherry flavoured "Craisins", which are dried cranberries. Word of warning - don't be tempted to drink the merlot after it's been drained from the fruit, it's NASTY, so use a merlot that you like enough to drink the rest of, but aren't so in love with that you hate to dump it down the sink after it's finished lending its loveliness to the fruit... But the brownies were excellent with my modified version. (I used a "One Bowl" version found inside an unsweetened baking squares box.)