outrageous brownies

I know that this is quite boring and stereotypical but I have PMS this week and my cravings come with, as my husband likes to say, “very specific instructions.” I wanted brownies. But, like every woman with a spastic relationship to her hips and, in turn their relationship the butter, sugar and 70 percent chocolate that makes our taste buds go round, I paused. And paused. How could I adjust my Very Strong Need for a bite of chewy, dense, bitter-laced homage to cocoa mass with my need for my favorite skirt to fit it my favorite way?

A-ha! I would make them tiny, and I would stash them in the freezer and eat but one each day. Just. One. I am brilliant, a master of compromise, I assured myself and got to work.

A while back, I confessed that my favorite brownie recipe in the entire world was the one I’d been making since high school — the “One Bowl Brownie” recipe from the back of the Baker’s Unsweetened Chocolate box. They are dense and chewy and moist with a thin crisp of a crust atop, they’re bitter-sweet and my god, you make them in one bowl! In a kitchen without a dishwasher, they’re a dream come true. Best yet, the actual use of Baker’s unsweetened chocolate is optional; they respond well to all levels of fancy.

paying people off with baked goods

But the people told me I was wrong. The swarmed en masse to my comments and email and ear and murmured things to me, things about these “outrageous” brownies that blew all other brownies out of the water. They told me one taste, and I’d say “Baker’s unsweetened who?” But when they said that magic name – “Ina Garten” – I was sold, because I love me some Ina and in my kitchen, she’s never done me wrong.

Somehow, the prospect of using a pound of butter, even in something that creates a commensurate quantity of product, was too much for me, so I halved it. The recipe was no one-bowl cinch, but not particularly difficult minus the part where I tapped out the excess flour all over myself and the floor. (Does anyone else HATE buttering and flouring pans? Because, ecch, I think I do enough for everyone.) And the results… well, this is where I have been torn for days. The office? Loved them. The husband? Him, too, especially from the freezer. And me? At first, I was wildly disappointed. I love adding instant coffee or espresso powder to melted chocolate to heighten the flavor, but the amount in this recipe (3 T in the full recipe) is really overpowering.

ina garten's outrageous brownies

But, in the days since I baked them, they’ve grown on me. The coffee makes them extra-bitter, fighting the good fight with the sweetness, keeping it in check. The chips are an awesome textural surprise. The edges, especially in the mini-muffin molded ones are really well-executed. I’m not throwing away my Baker’s recipe just yet, but they’re winning me over. One at a time.

Except for last night, when I had two.

ina garten's outrageous brownies

Ina Garten’s Outrageous Brownies
The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook

1 pound unsalted butter
28 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips, divided
6 ounces unsweetened chocolate
6 extra large eggs
3 tablespoons instant coffee granules
2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
2 1/4 cups sugar
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, divided
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
3 cups chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter and flour a 12x18x1 inch baking sheet. Melt together the butter, one pound of the chips, and the unsweetened chocolate in a medium bowl over simmering water. Allow to cool slightly.

In a large bowl, stir (do not beat) together the eggs, coffee granules, vanilla, and sugar. Stir the warm chocolate mixture into the egg mixture and allow to cool to room temperature. In a medium bowl, sift together 1 cup of flour, the baking powder, and salt. Add to the cooled chocolate mixture. Toss the walnuts and 12 ounces of chips in a medium bowl with 1/4 cup flour, then add them to the chocolate batter. Pour into the baking sheet.

Bake for 20 minutes, then rap the baking sheet against the oven shelf to force the air to escape from between the pan and dough. Bake for another 15 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. Do not overbake!

Allow to cool thoroughly, refrigerate, and cut into squares.

Ina’s notes: Flouring the chips and walnuts keeps them from sinking to the bottom.
It is very important to allow the batter to cool well before adding the chips, or the chips will melt and ruin the brownies.

Do ahead: This recipe can be baked up to a week in advance, wrapped in plastic, and refrigerated.

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80 comments on outrageous brownies

  1. I’m totally with you on the Baker’s One Bowl Brownies. They aren’t glamorous, but they are exactly what you want when you’re craving a brownie. My mom always made these growing up, and I still think it’s a perfectly wonderful recipe, despite the disparaging reputation that ‘back of the box’ recipes have.

  2. Brownies, in my kitchen, also fill that need for something decadent when nothing else will do. I have a tried and true recipe too, but am always doctoring it up to see if it can possibly get any better. Sometimes it does. These look so delicious I could lick my screen. Maybe next time I make brownies I will use the mini-muffin and freezer technique. And hide them well.

  3. Have you ever tried those baking sprays that have flour in the can (like Pam for Baking or whatever)? You could eliminate the butter-and-flour step with the swift burst of a spray can…

  4. Christina

    These brownies are delicious! My Mom has made them before. Have you made Ina’s lemon bars? They are fabulous too. And while I’m on the subject of Ina Garten, have you tried her Roasted veggies with orzo? It is one of my favorite recipes and it’s very versatile.

  5. Just those pictures and that description have won me over. It’s the bitter coffee/ sweet chocolate contrast that sounds so enticing. Of course, me being so disciplined that I only eat one at a time is unlikely.

    Long, long after everyone else in the world discovered Ina Garten, I’ve just purchased one of her cookbooks and now have a whole list of things I plan to make from it. That Ina, she’s alright.

  6. M

    I’m pretty sure I’ve seen every episode of Barefoot Contessa on the Food Network. I wonder if she’s done with tv. I don’t think there’s been a new one in a long time. Anyway, I think she’s great. Her food is so fancy looking, but so do-able.

  7. Michelle

    The brownies look delicious and now, of course, I’m craving them. And, I don’t think I’ll find any while I’m at work:) I use the Pam Baking Spray with flour all the time. It’s awesome and there’s no mess. I’d highly recommend it. I also want to say that I’m new to the ‘Smitten Kitchen.’ A good friend of mine just introduced me to it last weekend, and I love it!! Keep up the good work!

  8. Christine

    See Michelle, I told you…You will love Deb and all of her stories and amazing treats!!! Maybe…just maybe…we can get her to make the famous fake Oreo’s again! The recipe…OH MY GOD!!! So goooooood!

  9. deb

    Jessica G – Hooray for Baker’s! I mean, I know brownies are just a matter of taste – some like them cakey, others like them fudgy – but I think I expected more from these than I got. They didn’t convince me that the extra steps (flouring pans, extra bowls, pots, dishes) were worth it. But, ahem, my cravings demand I eat another very soon.

    Kate – The best ones can be doctored, that’s what makes them so good. I don’t think these would take well to doctoring.

    Luisa, Michelle – I’m so getting that stuff now. I echewed cooking sprays for so long, until I spoke to a friend (who, now that I remember, makes world class brownies and I need to get the recipe) who worked at an excellent bakery and said they always sprayed their pans. I don’t know why I was so resistant!

    Christina – I haven’t, but I’m (god, only I could say such dork-ass things like this) between lemon bar recipes right now so it will be a good time for me to try it. I did try her roasted veggies with orzo, but think I used couscous instead, and it was excellent.

    Julie – If you love a strong coffee taste, you will love these. Love them.

    M – I totally agree. I wonder if she’s signed up for another season; it would be a bummer if she didn’t. Hey, do you think that’s her real kitchen?

    Christine – I will totally do those again. I’ve whipped them up for a few parties lately as they are so easy. Funny enough, it was right about that entry that I decided I wanted a food blog, to tell stories exactly like that.

  10. Christine

    Deb, That is Ina’s real kitchen! It’s a beautiful house on AMAZING property in the Hamptons. Did you know she used to work in D.C. for the government? A self trained ‘cook’ not ‘chef’ she likes to say. I think she’s great!

  11. I, too LOVE Ina…but I also find it hard to tear myself away from the Baker’s one bowl. It’s simple AND delicious. Maybe next time u can incorporate some of Ina’s ideas into the Baker’s one bowl recipe? Use some espresso powder, some chips..all that good stuff?

    Oh and on the pan thing, I use the wrapper from softened butter to butter my pans, keeps my fingers clean and I used up ALL the butter…even the melty parts on the paper!

    Btw, I’ve been reading u for a long time…love ur writing back on ivillage…and I love food too. Look forward to reading more of ur food entries! =D

  12. ahh these made me drool!!! I am the same when it comes to chocolate and that time of the month. I think there is some gentic or hormonal predisposition towards chocolate whenever it rolls around to that time. Hope you got to satiate your cravings!!!

  13. I actually skip the buttering of the pan and go straight for the parchment paper lining and it works! I also have placed the nuts on top of the mix so they steam/stay crunchy, and swirled some fancy cherry jam through some plain batter. The cherry jam stir-in requires a bit of adjustment in your timing… a few minutes longer, but not too much.
    By the way, everyone at my school requests these brownies regularly (something to do with the coffee I’d expect).

  14. deb

    Christine – Every time I see her kitchen I say to Alex, “That one. That’s the one I want.” And he says, “One day,” I think just to humor me because we all know that you couldn’t fit that in a small NYC apartment. Cook, not chef – that’s a great way to put it.

    Ina, hire me. Please.

    Jnet – Look what I found on the new Chow! I have a good feeling about this one; I should be trying it out in about 28 days. Cough. It reminds me a lot of the bakers with a higher amount of chocolate (something I think the Baker’s could stand for) and a lot of other small things I like: no baking soda or powder, so they stay dense, and just a teaspoon of espresso. I’ll report back!

    And also, thank you.

    Jenjen – I hate being so typically female, but yeah, it’s true. Seriously, a few days later, I like chocolate but I don’t HAVE TO HAVE IT RIGHT NOW. However, with recipes like the one I just mentioned to Jnet, maybe it’s not a bad thing.

    Tammi – Hooray! I tend to wake up hours before my husband on the weekends and watch what he calls “my stories” – Ina and Chiarello, mostly. Hopefully next weekend I’ll have more time for them so I can see if there’s anything new. (More about my Big Exciting Sunday Plans later.)

    Yuke – Brownies for dinner! I heartily recommend it at least once.

    Ms. George – That’s really good to know. I often skip greasing cookie pans and use parchment instead, but I get too nervous with cakes. I’m going to try that soon.

    I think it was the coffee that my office loved about them, too. Caffeine fiends, they are.

  15. Anyone excited for Nigella Lawson coming to Food Network? I’m pretty sure it’s October 1st, 1pm. I can’t wait. I’ve also heard HER brownie recipe is to die for.

    Oh, and unfortunately Barefoot Contessa was a mix of dessert recipes yesterday, that had previously been aired.

  16. z.

    I’ve searched for the Baker’s brownie recipe and I found that one chocolate square is 1 ounce, correct? (damn this americans and their crazy measures!)

  17. deb

    Tammi – I am very curious about Nigella’s new show, too.

    z. – 1 square = 1 ounce. Isn’t that crazy? Of course, I often use better chocolate than Bakers for it, but I think the proportions and the outcome in that recipe are great.

  18. Rachel

    I love Ina Garten and I love Baker’s One Bowl Brownie recipe. Is that a conflict of interest? Here is what I do to jazz up the Baker recipe. I stir in a 1/2 to 3/4 cup of high quality semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips. Simple. Everyone that eats the result believes the brownies to be really special. Now I sound like “Semi-homemade with Sandra Lee.” (Ewwww…)
    That aside, your blog recently became a highlight of my cubicle imprisoned day. And given me refreshing ideas for the post work me…!

  19. erika

    This doesn’t solve your flour-all-over-the-place dilemma, but my grandmother taught me this little tip: “flour” the pans for any chocolate cake type recipe with powdered cocoa! That way your finished edges and corners aren’t dusted with white flour and the no-stick factor is equal to that of flour.

  20. Deb,

    I’m a brownie lover AND grease-and-flour hater, too. My solution is the ‘Large Bar Pan’ by Pampered Chef ( Words cannot convey how amazing this is for making hassle-free brownies. I use this stoneware in my kitchen every day, but especially that time of the month when I want an evenly-moist, totally sinful brownie. They come out beautifully, every time, with no greasing and flour-dusting. Not ever. (By the way, their new Warm Caramel Brownie recipe is to die for. To. Die. For.

    Just thought you should know you’re missing out! :)


  21. Taylor

    What does it mean when it says “Bake for 20 minutes, then rap the baking sheet against the oven shelf to force the air to escape from between the pan and dough.” What does rap mean??

  22. Funny story. I seem to have forgotten what my standby brownie recipe is. So I’ve been searching. I love Ina, so last night I totally randomly chose her Outrageous Brownie recipe and made it. i did it in the wrong size pan, however — so in order to completely bake, they sort of overbaked in places. Also, they are a little too bitter for me. They’re good, but not The One. So my friend suggested that her favorite is the one of the back of the Baker’s chocolate box. I haven’t tried it yet, but it sounds like it could be a winner. So I thought I would check your site, and here you are, comparing the two!! I’ll definitely try the One Bowl Wonder next time.

  23. I tried Ina’s brownies a year or so ago and didn’t like them at all. Then I tried the Baker’s One Bowl Brownies & loved them!
    Most recently though, the newest one I tried was a King Arthur brownies recipe off the back of a package of King Arthur unbleached all-purpose flour. Oh, they were so good. I think I’ve finally found the one!
    You might look into it if you are interested in trying another one the next time the urge hits. I don’t think I’ve ever met someone that is like me in having that very specific craving for a brownie during PMS. Nothing else satisfies, does it?!

  24. Nadia

    Sorry I posted this comment with the wrong recipe earlier. I wasn’t sure from your wording (above) if you’d halved the entire recipe or just the butter, but even at half the butter, 225g to 1 1/4 cups of flour, strikes me as way too much. I still think your classic brownie recipe is the best. I’ve made that one several times now with mild variations — just 1 tsp salt instead of the leavening agents, less sugar and some sweet milky cream chocolate instead of some of the dark stuff — to serious raves. I love trying out different brownie recipes but it’s important to appreciate the honest to goodness standby. This outrageousness ain’t for me.

  25. hecowe

    Try the Baker’s One-Bowl recipe, adding two teaspoons of dark cocoa (from King Arthur’s catalogue) and leaving out the pecans — then make a little drizzle to go over the top of the cooled brownies — 2 c. powdered sugar, a 1/2 tablespoon of butter, a teaspoon of vanilla and a tablespoon or so of milk. Voila! Oreo brownies, anyone? (My husband won’t eat nuts with chocolate; I HAVE to play with recipes to keep my life exciting…!)

  26. Emily K.

    Deb, how long do you bake them in a regular sized muffin tin? I’m worried that I’ll overbake. I made them before in a baking sheet — so, so yummy. But I’m making these for company and I don’t want to screw the timing up! Thanks.

  27. Patricia

    If you don’t like to grease and flour pans, you could always make a mixture of butter and flour and just brush it in the pan. You could make a good amount and keep it for future use of cakes and such. :)

    How long would it take to bake in standard muffin tins, and how many would it make? I’m reluctant to get the 12×18 pan.

    Thanks so much!

  28. Katie

    My absolute favourite brownie recipe is the Chatelaine “Best Ever Brownies” (
    I like them for several reasons. They are fudgy and slightly-cakey around the edges, not too dense (they look similar to your pictures here). They also don’t get horribly stuck to the pan, just a bit of butter or oil and thats it. I don’t know why so many brownies I’ve tried get too stuck to my pans, even with grease & flour. These also use cocoa and melted chocolate which gives it a very rich chocolate flavour, not disgustingly sweet. I can also play around with the recipe a lot, I can add walnuts, chocolate chips or coffee if I want. They also have a very slight “crackly” top, and are easy to cut. Some brownies I’ve made have a hard crackly top which leaves a big gap between the top and the actual brownie, and falls apart all over the place, very annoying!

    Ina’s are good, but I always have to cut the recipe in half which is annoying since you don’t get even measurements, and I found them to use much more butter and chocolate than is really necessary for a simple pan of brownies.

  29. Kallie

    I just baked these, full pound of butter and all, and all I can say is WOW. They’re delicious! Best brownies ever! The only difference I made which wouldn’t change texture like omitting 1/2 the butter…was 1 T of regular coffee instead of 3 T instant coffee as I had seen MANY happy chefs do on other sites for this recipe. I hope people realize this recipe isn’t for beginners. And frankly, if you’re going to make a change as huge as 1/2 the butter, you no right to review them anyway, since you didn’t make these brownies – you made your own version.

  30. Rachel

    So, I’m a bit late in responding to this post, but just wanted to mention something that may be helpful to you. In pastry school I learned that you can actually make a paste of butter and flour and brush that in to the mold/pan of whatever you are baking instead of buttering and then flouring. It has saved me from many messes and I hope it will do the same for you (unless of course you’ve already received this tip).
    I LOVE your blog and everything about it, thanks for putting so much into this every day!

  31. Francheska

    I just made something called ”Brownie in a mug” you just mix flour, sugar, oil, cocoa, vanilla and zap it in the microwave

    Now I pretty much have to buy a pound of butter tomorrow and make these to make up for that aberration I just made

    It was just awful but when it’s ”that” time of the month and I crave chocolate desperate measures must be taken

  32. claire

    Deb, I’m happy to assert discovery of you and your blog has made my (small and rather sad, hehe) life that bit better, but I cannot agree with you on the brownie issue. Both recipes shown are way too cakey for me; I adore brownies and keep “suitably-sized” chunks in my freezer AT ALL TIMES…maybe its a Brit/US thing, or just personal but I like mine fudgy to almost truffley and mousse-like in texture under the crust…and they HAVE to be darkly intense in the chocolatey factor :) mmmmmm…..
    Anyway, I guess I’ll be sticking to my usual favourite recipe -cant say its minimal faff and bowl usuage but by god its worth it. I tend to keep the added chunks simple, and I’m not a fan of nuts in there, but the oreo pieces idea sounds fab alice! Thanks so much -i’ll be doing that one, and maybe playing with the biscuits too :) a good one for a party is celebrations brownies (mini sweets like milky way, snickers, galaxy) and malteasers -a sweet per portion gives a nice surprise.

  33. Katy Newton

    Ha, that’s quite interesting. I’m British too and people here do like a really squidgey, almost liquid brownie. I can’t find my most frequently used brownie recipe online, but it involves beating a lot of egg and sugar into a mousse and then very carefully folding a lot of melted chocolate and a very small amount of flour and cocoa into it. It contains nothing else apart from chocolate chips, and it produces a very soft, almost liquid brownie. It’s very similar to what you get if you order a brownie in a restaurant, but when I first had brownies (when I was 7 and brownies were SO cool because they were AMERICAN) they were cakey and chewy with a bit of luscious give in the middle and lots of walnuts and you could just munch one with a glass of milk. I think that’s a bit closer to the way brownies are supposed to be.

  34. IlEnE

    I too am a Baker’s Chocolate Brownie baker BUT with two important changes. Make that three.

    1) brownies are baked in 9in square pan NOT oblong.
    2) Add 1/4 tsp salt
    3) Bake for one hour at 325 F.

    This will rock your world. Seriously. The best brownie you ever made,

  35. Hi Deb,

    Just had to add my favourite brownie recipe that we have been making for years. The addition of chocolate syrup makes them really fudgy. Silver Palate is an oldie but goodie resource!

    Double Chocolate Brownies

    This recipe is adapted from the Baby Brownies recipe in “The New Basics Cookbook” by Julee Rosso and Sheila Lukins (Workman Publishing, 1989). They are even better frozen.

    12 ounces good quality semi-sweet or bittersweet (not unsweetened) chocolate
    ½ cup chocolate syrup (Nestlé’s Quick or Hershey’s work well)
    2 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature
    2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    4 eggs, lightly beaten
    1 ½ cups white sugar
    ½ teaspoon salt
    1 cup all purpose flour

    1. Preheat oven to 350 Degrees F. Butter and flour a 9 x 13 inch baking pan. Set aside.

    2. Put chocolate in a microwave safe bowl and melt on medium power for 2 minutes. Stir and melt for another 1-2 minutes, on medium power if necessary. Add the syrup and stir well. Add the butter and beat the mixture with a whisk until smooth. Stir in vanilla and eggs and mix well.

    3. Sift together the sugar, salt and flour. Add dry ingredients to the chocolate mixture and blend thoroughly.

    4. Pour batter into prepared pan and bake, just until cooked, 40-45 minutes.

    5. Allow brownies to cool completely in the pan. Cut into squares, rectangles or triangles.

  36. Morgan

    I noticed your frustration about flouring cake pans and I just wanted to say that I have used Pam for Baking (which says it has flour mixed in, although I’m not sure how they do that) instead of flouring the pans and it has worked marvelously. Cooking sprays in general kind of weird me out, but in this case I can deal with it. Even with diligently greasing and flouring the bundt pan, and making sure no spot goes unnoticed, I still always end up with the cake in (at least) two pieces. One quick coat of the Pam, and it’s done. No flouring, no mess, no worrying if I did it right. It’s amazing…

  37. Laura

    I saw the original episode these aired on, and I thought I had to try them. I have made them numerous times since, and have gotten RAVE reviews from everyone that has had them. I make the entire recipe, and I use an extra large Calphalon cookie sheet to bake them in. I also sub chocolate chunks instead of the chips in the completed batter, and I keep them in the fridge. I don’t know why, but for some reason these brownies when they are chilled are even better. These are amazing! I am actually making them tonight for a party tomorrow, and I almost fell out of my chair when I was looking through your recipes and saw the name “outrageous brownies’. I was wondering if I could find something better, but since you even have these, I am sticking with this idea!

  38. lingmind

    so, i had seen this recipe on here and though briefly about making them “someday,” but hadn’t. then today i happened to see the episode where Ina makes these, and i seriously Laughed Out Loud at what the ingredients looked like going in. soooo much butter and soooo many eggs and *2* cups of sugar!! all that coffee!! then a HUGE bowl of melted chocolate!! then more chocolate chips!! and nuts!! it was amazing and hilarious and looked delicious. i think you’re right when you say that her stuff is amazing but surely she’s really trying to kill us. i guess when i looked at this before i just scanned it and didn’t register the full magnitude of ingredients. as good as they sound, they scare me.

  39. Eileen

    I’m also on the hunt for the perfect brownie recipe. For years, I’ve been loyal to a recipe by my great aunt, but as I get older, I want more & more chocolate flavor, so I’ve been scouring recipes to choose a new one to try. These are under serious consideration! I do agree with the woman who pointed out that if you removed half the butter in this recipe, you actually haven’t tried Ina’s brownies. We all adapt recipes a little, but your PMS must have been clouding your mind for you to think that was a small change. LOL

  40. deb

    I didn’t halve the butter. I halved the whole recipe, so I’d only be using half the butter. I realize that this is not what the post makes it sound like happened.

    In the almost 5 years (!) since this post, I’ve added other brownie recipes I like more: Classic Brownies from Cook’s Illustrated, a Spiced Brownie (spices optional), Cheesecake-Swirled Brownies, White Chocolate Brownies, Peanut Butter Brownies and Minty Grasshopper Brownies. I guess I’m a little obsessed.

  41. Kristin

    I tried this recipe yesterday and was very pleased with the result except for one teeny tiny little thing. Or rather, several teeny tiny things. They looked perfect in the pan (and the taste was delicious) except that I kept finding these little chewy, flavorless bits all throughout the brownies! I have no idea what they could be! Granted, I’m a novice baker, but I’m pretty sure I followed the recipe instructions to a T. I feel like I gave the chocolate mixture sufficient time to cool off, and I tempered it when adding it to the egg mixture, but I guess I still didn’t get it right, because that’s the only thing I could think of that could have caused these little chewy bits. They were almost like pieces of coconut. Any ideas?

  42. Meghan

    I absolutely love the Baker’s one bowl brownies. When I’m feeling like I really need something rich, I add a homemade buttercream frosting to them, and it makes them that much better!

  43. Damon

    I know this is not your favorite brownie recipe, but after having made it about half a dozen times (and that’s keeping in mind that one doesn’t have a legitimate excuse to make brownies all that often, so that’s a lot) I can definitely confirm it’s mine. And it seems to be quite well-liked among my family and friends. So thank you for posting it — there’s a reason I consider your blog the go-to for desserts.

  44. Kim

    I also wanted to add to my previous comment that I use less butter and sugar than suggested: I use 200g unsalted butter and 300g sugar instead of the given measurements. They are perfect that way!

    Also, I don’t know why, but my comment didn’t show up yet!

    Kim x

  45. Kim

    wow these look soooo delicious!! I’m in love!

    I can feel your pain re needing a chocolate fix and taking in consideration your hips! I must tell you that I’m a chocolate and baked good addict, and eat more baked goods a day than I do actual food :( all to compensate for the empty calories those delicious devils hold!

    I must tell you about MY favourite brownie recipe of ALL! The BEST BEST BEST extremely RICH, chewy brownies E.V.E.R.!! Jamie Oliver’s Bloomin Brilliant Brownies. Please PLEASE try them! You won’t be sorry! I make them sans the suggested nuts and cherries. They’re gorgeous on their own with no added flavours like the mentioned. Here in Europe we use dark chocolate, so I use Cadbury Bourneville choc, and it’s THE BOMB! I’m not sure what the US equivalent is (i.e. bittersweet or unsweetened or semisweet? I’m so confused with those terms!!).

    If you do, post about them! All your readers will LOVE them :)

    Enjoy, with love,

    Kim x

  46. Francheska

    I’ve been wanting to make this recipe forever but I’d have to decide between paying the rent or buying the ingredients

  47. June2

    But see, I’m from the school that says that brownies have to have that glossy crisp shell on top – otherwise they’re not real. So that’s one strike in favor of the Bakers recipe. Have never gotten the science on how to make that shell happen dependably. Thinking it may have to do with not mixing it too much.

  48. Shelley

    This has always been my go-to brownie recipe. It never ever fails me. I’ve had people tell me it’s the best brownie they’ve ever had. I use brewed coffee instead of instant, and I also cut the portion of chocolate chips and add some trek mix from Trader Joe’s called Happy Trekking. It’s got tart cherries, pistachios, almonds, and chocolate chunks. I chop it up first, of course.

  49. Teri

    I love, love, love this brownie recipe. I saw the show where Ina made them and then I tried them. And at that time I realized this was the best brownie a girl could ever want/have!! The problem is, they always crumbled and would fall apart as soon as I cut them up.

    I’ve just recently discovered your blog and saw this as one of your recipes and there it was, the thing I was doing wrong. I don’t think on Ina’s recipe it says to refridgerate the brownies. With all that butter in them, DUH, why didn’t I think that if I refridgerate them, the butter would solidify and they wouldn’t crumble?? (I used to own a cafe/bakery, I should have known this)

    So I made them last night, refridgerated them, cut them up this morning and guess what?? They didn’t crumble!!!!! I had whole squares!!! I did a happy dance!! (I live alone, nobody saw thank goodness) I brough them to work today for my co-workers and they were gone within 10 minutes. I was told to bring them anytime I felt like baking!!! (the plate was brought to me clean, I’m thinking someone licked it!!)
    Deb, I love, love, love your blog!!! I can only aspire to have a blog like yours one day. When I find the time, of course.

    1. deb

      Chandana — In this small quantity, nope, it won’t matter. I only use large eggs too! That extra-large thing is a strange thing that appears in all Ina Garten recipes.

  50. Uk Hils

    Your recipes look fab!
    I was out with friends a couple of weeks ago and had the most fantastic brownie cake/ bar I could ever have imagined.
    I’ve tried looking on web for the middle bit of the bar but no luck perhaps you could help by giving me some suggestions please:-
    The base was thin layer of dark choc brownie with thin layer of caramel on top then a layer – this is the bit I can’t find a recipe for- of softish brittle peanutty creamy layer with a few rice crispies in it, then another layer of caramel and another thin layer of brownie finishing with a layer of caramel, peanuts and chocolate bits !!!
    OMG it was fabulous! Help please

  51. Cecilia

    Hi Deb,
    I was looking for a mini brownie recipe and this just might be it!
    – how long would you bake in mini muffin tin?
    – did you do the “rap the baking sheet against the oven shelf” with the mini muffin tin as well?
    – did you butter/flour the mini tins?
    Thanks! Enjoying your website :-)

    1. deb

      Hi Cecilla — I don’t remember how long I baked them for (I made these over 6 years ago!). I don’t think I rapped the pan but it cannot hurt too. You should prepare the small tins the same way you would the large.

  52. Carolelinda

    Have made these brownies several times and people pretty much go crazy over them. The most recent batch crumbled a little when I cut them, but they are so fudgy you can just squish the crumbly part back onto the brownie! This is the ultimate brownie for real brownie lovers.

  53. Karen

    I needed to make brownies to take to work for a birthday event, so I was looking for a recipe that made a very large batch. I made these and thought they were a bit too cakey for my liking. I made another batch and left out the baking powder so they had a more dense texture. Love the recipe.

  54. Liz

    If i want to make these for family and daycare who don’t do nuts, what could i substitute for the 3 cups of walnuts??
    Thank you!

  55. Candy Unruh

    I have had 3 burnt brownie attempts. Following the recipe as published in your cookbook. I calibrated my oven temp and still burnt the 3rd pan of brownies. This has been very frustrating
    What do you recommend.
    Candy Unruh


    I have made these many times (IG brownies). I don’t like the coagulated choc. chips in the brownie, but like the chocolateyness. I’m thinking of adding the equiv. ganache, but with less cream than usual added to the xtra 12 oz. chips to the batter swirled in. Bake. Eat – hopefully with a softer xtra chocolateness, not the hard chips. What do you think? Worried about the amnt of additional moisture.
    Thanks. CH.

  57. Rosita Thibodeaux

    These brownies are indeed outrageous! Outrageously decadent, and truly a chocolate lover’s delight. I can’t wait to make this recipe for Thanksgiving especially since my birthday is on Thanksgiving again this year! I love everything about your website and I appreciate your hard work and dedication. Thank You for sharing your recipes and techniques. I also love your energy and attention to detail!

  58. Julia Romashko

    So, Deb, 14 years after your original post on these, if you make these now, what do you do? We made these tonight, and while good, I definitely think they either have too much butter or too little flour.

      1. Julia Romashko

        Thanks for responding! I’m thinking I may try them once more and reduce the butter, and add some ground almonds. Walnuts are out, due to allergies. Otherwise, I have a feeling I’m going to stick with my favorites, which is from the back of a Nestlé box!

  59. Rebecca

    I’ve been trying different brownie recipes during the pandemic, and I gotta say- these are the best. I thought My Favorite Brownies were too cakey, and I didn’t get a crackly top. These are fudgy, rich, with a beautiful shiny crackly top. I just made them for the second time and didn’t have exactly the right amount of chocolate chips, and had to use half salted and half unsalted butter, and they were STILL amazing. I also love that this recipe makes a TON of brownies without having to double the recipe. I bake em up in a 10×15 glass Pyrex, and they are perfect. I added 2 minutes on to the final cooking time. I also find that they’re great if you chill them the night you make them. Oddly enough I’ve made them both times in the dead of winter, so I just leave the Pyrex out on my unheated sun porch overnight. Makes them easy to slice cleanly the next day.