As long as I can remember, I have been in love with chocolate. And chocolate comes in many forms, but I must admit that I am pretty smitten with brownies and probably always will be. They are easy to make, even easier to eat, and there are about one million delicious variations out there. I’ve shared a number of brownie recipes here on our blog (like these
There has been one “drawback” though, and that is I ended up baking a LOT of brownies over the last few months. So to all my friends and family members that I pushed these extra brownie test batches onto … thank you for your support. Ha! I also have consumed an embarrassing number of brownies lately too—but it was in the name of research.
The building blocks of a great brownie are really quite simple. Brownie = fat + chocolate + sugar (or sweetener) + flour (or other grain, depending).
Some brownies are cake-like while others are more like a fudge. Many contain nuts, some have frosting, salt is pretty important to me personally, and there are are a million more things you can add or change along the way. Although I do have a few all-time favorites, I also have to admit that it somewhat depends on what you want out of your brownie. I’m going to share a bunch of quality recipes that run the brownie gamut, all of which I personally tested and many of these I’ve made MANY times to date. 🙂
Are you ready to bake some brownies?!?!
Let’s start with the basics. When I think of basic, or classic brownies, I tend to think of them in two categories: brownies made with melted chocolate, and brownies made with cocoa. There are also recipes that use some of both, but I tend to gravitate toward these two options. Why? Honestly, I think it’s because sometimes brownies are a spur of the moment thing I bake and there are times I don’t have chocolate or chocolate chips to melt, but I almost always have cocoa and the other ingredients I need in my pantry. So I tend to make brownies with melted chocolate IF I have good chocolate on hand, but if I don’t I make cocoa brownies. Maybe some of you are like this too?
With that in mind, here is my favorite brownie recipe made with melted chocolate:
My favorite brownie recipe made with cocoa:
With both of these classic brownie recipes, since the ingredients are so simple, it’s best to use the highest quality chocolate or cocoa that you can. In a pinch, anything will do, but the quality will show through in these recipes, making them go from really good to something truly special. My favorite chocolate bars and cocoa are from
What about a great brownie recipe with frosting? I cannot think of frosted brownie recipes without thinking of the Little Debbie variety that comes in small plastic sleeves (especially the Cosmic kind). During high school, I ate these at lunch more often than I care to admit. As a fan of frosted brownies, this is my favorite recipe I tested:
I was curious about what might be the best vegan or non-diary brownies out there and this is my favorite:
What about gluten-free brownies? I’ve tried many and here’s the truth—my all-time favorite gluten-free brownie recipe is in the
We’ve talked classic brownies, frosted, vegan, and gluten-free; so now I feel like it’s time to move on to wild-card brownie recipes I want to mention. I had it in the back of my mind that I needed to share some version of a brownie recipe that included caramel or salted caramel. That’s just feels right, no? But I ended up testing and loving this
Also have to mention that David’s blog is excellent and I own two of his cookbooks, and they are both out of this world in quality. If you’re looking for great dessert or ice cream recipes, David is the guy. 🙂
I also have to mention, like it’s mandatory because these are so dang good,
And here is another classic with a twist, favorite brownie recipe. It’s from our cookbook,
What about brownie mixes? Even though this post is all about sharing some of the best brownie recipes out there, I did want to mention three tips to make boxed brownies better.
-Use coffee instead of water. Whatever amount of water the box recommends, swap it out with (cooled) coffee because it will enhance the flavor!
-Add 1/2 cup or more chocolate chips. This ups the flavor and texture fo any box mix.
-Add flaky sea salt to the top before baking. It’s delicious and it ups the gourmet factor of your brownies too.
So those are many of my favorite brownie recipes, plus a few helpful tips and tricks! If you all have favorite online brownie recipes you’ve tried (or created and published yourself), please leave us all a link in the comments! xo. Emma
Double-Chocolate Surprise Brownies
- 1 zucchini (6 oz)
- 1/3 cup melted butter
- 2 large eggs
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 2/3 cup cocoa (I like Dutch-processed here best)
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup chocolate chips (semi-sweet is my favorite)
- candies or nuts for the topping (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 350°F
- Put the zucchini in a food processor and blend well. It should be like a very thick juice at this point. You don’t want any large pieces.
In a large bowl, stir together the zucchini, butter, eggs, vanilla, and sugars until just blended.
- In another bowl, whisk together the cocoa, baking powder, salt, and flour. Stir the dry ingredients in with the wet ingredients until combined. Fold in the chocolate chips.
- Pour the batter into an 8-inch square baking pan lined with parchment paper. Top with nuts or candies if using. Bake for 20-25 minutes.