How to Make Brownies Without an Oven

I love brownies. The ooey gooey chocolaty goodness, the delightfully chewy texture, and don’t forget the sensational smell. But firing up the oven isn’t always ideal – especially on a hot summer afternoon. Is there any other way to whip up a batch of yummy brownies?

The oven isn’t the only option for brownies. You can bake a brownie in your instant pot, slow cooker, microwave, or air fryer. You can also go non-traditional by making brownies in the waffle iron. Finally, there’s the option to make no-bake brownies, which require no heat sources.

Hi! How’s it going? My name’s Michelle, and if you don’t know already, brownies are one of my favorite desserts. I bake them regularly – but I don’t always use my oven. I have used several other appliances to make brownies.

Want to know how to make brownies without an oven? Check out my top six alternatives below!

How to Make Brownies Without an Oven (6 Top-Notch Alternatives)

We love our ovens, but today, it’s time to surpass the oven and use different methods to bake brownies. Don’t worry, it’s easy, and you’ll love the results. In fact, you may enjoy one of these other methods so much that you never return to your oven again.

Let’s go!

1. Instant Pot

For the past year, I have been obsessed with my air fryer. Before that, it was my instant pot. Now, both of these appliances have become regular staples for baking and cookies.

And yes, you can bake brownies in an instant pot.

Every recipe is different, but this instant pot brownie recipe remains one of my favorites. The only drawback is that you might have to purchase an extra cake pan to sit inside your instant pot (unless you already have a six-inch cake pan in your arsenal).

The perk of using the instant pot is that brownie come out even chewier and even fudgier – if you can believe that.

2. Slow Cooker

Ah, the slow cooker. One of the best inventions of all time. Slow cookers just make life easier, don’t they? The set-it-and-forget cooking technique is undeniably attractive, especially for those in a rush 24/7 – like me.

While most people think of stews and soups when it comes to their slow cooker, don’t forget that you can make all kinds of desserts there, too – including brownies.

All you need to do is mix your favorite brownie batter, whether store-bought or homemade. Then, line your slow cooker with some parchment paper. Pour the brownie batter into the slow cooker and allow it to cook on low for around five hours.

This method is so easy and is an excellent option if you’re using the oven to cook dinner. You’ll surely enjoy the succulent moistness the slow cooker provides, too.

3. Microwave

Most people have heard the term “mug cake.” These delicious, tiny cakes are single-serving cakes created right inside your microwave. Well, there is also a thing called mug brownies.

Mug brownies are brownies that are made, well, inside of your favorite mug. That said, if you use this method, you’ll only be able to make enough for one or two servings rather than an entire pan of brownies.

The benefit of using the microwave is that it takes less than five minutes, so you’ll be munching on your decadent treat in no time. Find a good microwave brownie recipe and enjoy!

4. Air Fryer

Have you jumped on board the air fryer bandwagon yet? If you haven’t, you’re seriously missing out. The air fryer has become my go-to tool for just about everything, from reheating slices of pizza to baking cakes. Nowadays, I also use it to make some brownies!

Brownies in the air fryer achieve a delightful splash of crispiness. So, if you’re anything like me and like your brownies to have a bit more texture, you’ll love how your air-fried brownies come out.

Now, keep in mind that you will need to purchase a small baking pan or parchment paper liners to succeed. Otherwise, the brownie batter will fall through the cracks, and you’ll have a big mess rather than a big batch of decadent brownies.

Once you have your preferred product, mix the ingredients in your air fryer brownie recipe, bake for 15-20 minutes, and dive in!

5. Waffle Iron

OK, OK, so this won’t produce a “typical” batch of brownies, but it still gets the job done, right?

If you have a waffle iron sitting in your kitchen cabinet, go ahead and use it to make some yummy brownie batter waffles.

The fun thing about this idea is that you can eat it like a regular waffle with all your favorite toppings, such as whipped cream, walnuts, strawberries, and sprinkles.

You can make waffles for multiple people, too, so they can eat them exactly how they want. Serve for breakfast or dessert, and finish your meal feeling overly satisfied!

6. No Bake Brownies

No-bake recipes have been popping up left and right, and for a good reason, too. They’re ridiculously easy to make, and you don’t have to worry about obtaining a heat source. 

But did you know that no-bake brownies exist, too?

Instead of reaching for your go-to no-bake cookie recipe this weekend, try out a no-bake brownie recipe.

This no-bake brownie recipe is an excellent option because it only requires four ingredients and can be enjoyed in less than an hour.


See? You don’t need a brownie to enjoy a batch of brownies! Almost any other appliance can bake brownies, too. Oh, but I’ve got you covered if you want to keep learning about this topic. Below are some frequently asked questions you might want to check out!

Can you bake brownies on the stove?

You can make brownies on the stove, but it requires many additional steps and materials, so it’s not my favorite way to make brownies. I would say it is one of the more challenging ways to bake brownies, but if you want to use the stovetop method, here is a good recipe to follow along with.

Can you make Betty Crocker brownies in the microwave?

You can successfully make Betty Crocker brownies in the microwave. In fact, I’d make the argument that it’s easier to use store-bought brownie mix to make “mug brownies.”

Can you cook Pillsbury brownie mix in the microwave?

You can cook Pillsbury brownie mix inside the microwave. It’s relatively simple. Mix the ingredients, pour into a mug, and cook on high for 45 seconds to one minute. Keep an eye on your mix!

Can I use aluminum foil as a pan for brownies?

You can use aluminum foil as a pan for brownies. Here’s a great video showing how to make an aluminum foil pan: 

No Oven, No Prob! Let’s Make Some Brownies!

While the oven may be the traditional spot to make brownies, it’s not required. You can use many other appliances to get the job done, including your instant pot, slow cooker, and microwave. You can even nix the heat altogether and go with a no-bake option.

What is your favorite way(s) to make brownies without an oven? Comment below!

About Michelle
I have been a lover of sweets since day one. This led me on a self-taught baking journey starting at the age of 13. It's been over 10 years since the start of my baking adventures, and I’ve learned a lot along the way. Now, people rave about my delectable treats, whether it’s a chocolate cake or a strawberry crepe.

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