“Better Than The Box” Chocolate Brownies

Baked brownies
This could be on your plate in about 45 minutes. 

I have a baking confession: for a long time, I had trouble finding a brownie recipe that was better than your standard boxed recipe. There’s something too easy about adding egg, oil and water to a mix and pulling rich, gooey deliciousness out of the oven 30 minutes later. Then comes the guilt: not because of the calories, but because… well, there’s a lot of “stuff” in those boxed mixes. Artificial flavor. Partially hydrogenated oils. I’ve tried lots of brownie recipes, but they’re all so much work for such a slightly better brownie. (Did I ever mention I’m lazy?)

Then I found this recipe, which I’ve modified slightly from Baking Illustrated(P.S. Buy the book, its awesome). It’s the perfect combo of delicious, without a lot of work.

You can alter the intensity of these brownies by using a slightly darker or lighter chocolate.

  • 5 oz of 70% dark chocolate, chopped/broken into chunks. (That’s one whole 3.5 oz bar (10 squares), plus 4 squares, if you don’t have a scale)
  • 2 oz of unsweetened chocolate, chopped into chunks. (Half box of Baker’s Unsweetened)
  • 1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons cocoa powder, such as Hersey’s Special Dark.
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup toasted chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350°. Grease a 8 inch square baking pan.

cut and panIn a small, heavy saucepan, melt the butter over low heat. Add the chopped chocolates and stir continuously until the chocolate is melted. Remove from heat, and whisk in the cocoa powder. Set aside to cool slightly.

Mix eggs, sugar, vanilla extract and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk in the melted chocolate mixture until well blended. Add the flour, stir until combined. Spread into the pan, top with toasted pecans. Bake 35 – 40 minutes.

Allow to cool until room temperature (if you can wait). These brownies supposedly last “up to 5 days in the refrigerator” but how did they figure this out? Mine never last that long!




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