These classic fudge brownies are the perfect compromise between fudgy and cakey brownies, guaranteeing everyone will be pleased!
Anyone with a bowl can make a one-bowl brownie recipe. I’ve seen brownie recipes with very little flour, just some Nutella, and an egg. I’ve seen no flour, no egg – so many variations, it can actually boggle the mind! I first started out this recipe as a way of developing my own one-bowl brownie recipe, but it just never came together with everything I wanted. I wanted a rich, chocolatey, and fudgy brownie that was also a little bit cakey. I wanted the traditional crackly top that looks so inviting and actually melts on the tongue like a chocolate meringue. For me, the only way to get all the things I wanted in a brownie was to use both melted chocolate and cocoa powder and to whip, whip, whip my eggs and sugar and then go from there. It takes 3 more minutes than a one bowl brownie and it’s never failed.
This recipe makes four 4X4“ brownies, eight 4X2” brownies, sixteen 2X2” brownies, thirty-two 1X1” brownies, or one serving for The Boy. I wish I was kidding.
- 1 stick (113g) unsalted butter
- 3 oz (85g) bittersweet chocolate (about 70% is good), coarsely chopped
- 1 tsp espresso powder or instant coffee crystals
- 3/4 cup (98g) all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup (75g) dark or dutched cocoa powder (exactly what “dutched” cocoa is, is a story for another day, but it will say dutched somewhere on the label. Hershey’s Dark cocoa powder is actually dutched, but just doesn’t say that 😒 Ugh)
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp fine grain salt
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 3/4 cup (150g) granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup (50g) brown sugar (dark or light)
- Preheat oven to 350°. Spray an 8X8 baking pan with non-stick spray and line with parchment paper, allowing some to hang over the sides to act as handles for lifting the brownies out at the end. If that makes ABSOLUTELY no sense to you, just really spray your pan really, really well. The brownies will come out. Pretty sure. Melt butter in a small saucepan. Add chocolate and espresso to the melted butter and stir until melted and well mixed. Allow to cool.
- Sift flour, salt, baking powder, and cocoa powder together. Set aside.
- Combine eggs and sugars in stand mixer and, using the whisk attachment, whip together for about 3-4 minutes, until the mixture thickens and lightens in color. Using really well whipped eggs like this helps to give the brownies their traditional “crackly paper” top. I love that part 😍
- Drizzle the cooled chocolate mixture into the eggs and sugar and combine until completely incorporated. Remove the bowl from the mixer and, using a silicone or rubber spatula, fold the flour mixture in by hand just until the last bits of flour have completely mixed in. I don’t use a mixer for this part because over-mixing the flour can lead to too much gluten development. That’s just fancy baking talk for “it will make your brownies tough and chewy.” No thank you.
- Pour into prepared 8X8 pan and bake in 350° oven for 30-35 minutes, turning the pan around half way through. I start checking at 25 minutes so I don’t over bake cuz no one wants a dry brownie. How do you know when a brownie is done? Tricky question, since a toothpick inserted in the center will always come out with some chocolate on it, but this is my take. When they are done the edges of the brownies will be definitely set and the center will have no jiggle. You may also start to see some of the crackling of the top, usually near the edges as well. (They’ll finish their crackle as they cool and as you cut them.) Best bet? Take them out as soon as you see these signs since they’ll continue cooking in the pan for a few minutes. If you want to cut these brownies into nice and tidy squares, perfect for sharing, allow to cool for at least an hour before removing from the pan and cutting them with a sharp chef’s knife. If you are an absolute beast and want to dig right in, maybe wait 10 or 15 minutes and just fork it. Neatness doesn’t always count. These brownies will theoretically last for 3 days in a covered container. I say “theoretically” because I’ve never actually seen 3 day old brownies in my house.