Updated: Feb 27, 2019
About a year ago, I posted my first brownie recipe. They were quite tasty but they required a lot of steps and different ingredients. I rarely ended up making them because they were a lot of work and Ghiradelli brownie mix frankly tastes just as good. But I am a fierce opponent against baking mixes which do all of saving you one or two steps at the expense of not knowing what artificial chemicals you're eating. So then I ventured into the territory of my one true love, Ina Garten, and I used her Outrageous Brownie recipe for a while. While Ina's brownies are good too, they're not really how I like my brownies. I like a chewy brownie, but hers are fudgy and rich to the extreme. Not my cup of tea. I set out to find a recipe that was made from scratch, had the texture and flavor of Ghirardelli brownies, and could be made in a similar amount of time to the box mix.
Testing several brownie recipes, I've come to realize it's near impossible to beat the Smitten Kitchen. I've never made a recipe from that website that wasn't to die for. So I'm taking down my old brownie recipe and replacing it with the Smitten Kitchen recipe – the point of my blog is to share what I'm liking in the world of baking and keep a record of my favorite recipes, which is why I'm happy to share other people's recipes (with proper credit of course) if that's what I'm baking. These brownies have just the texture I live for, dense and chewy, but with enough structure that it doesn't taste like you're eating raw brownie batter. They use 100% unsweetened chocolate which I like because I use that in my chocolate buttercream, so I tend to have it on hand. Using the really dark chocolate is also useful because you only need 3 oz to have the same great flavor. Best of all-–this is a ONE BOWL recipe. What more could you ask for?
Original Recipe: https://smittenkitchen.com/2012/08/my-favorite-brownies/
Yields 16 brownies
3 oz (85g) unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 stick/half cup (113g) unsalted butter + more for the pan
1–1/3 cups (265g) granulated sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp flaky sea salt (Use just a pinch of fine salt if you don't have this)
2/3 cup (85g) AP flour
Place the butter and chocolate in a medium, heatproof mixing bowl over a pot of simmering water or melt in the microwave at intervals of 30 seconds.
As they melt, prepare an 8x8 baking tin by brushing the interior with melted butter and lining with parchment paper, leaving a 2" overhang. This will allow you to easily remove and cut the brownies.
When the chocolate and butter are almost completely melted (don't want to burn!) remove from the heat and whisk in the sugar, followed by the eggs, one at a time. Whisk in the vanilla and salt.
Fold the flour in using a silicone spatula, and spread into the prepared tin.
Bake for 25-30 minutes, until the brownies are set (they shouldn't feel liquid in the middle if you lightly press your finger). Cool in the tin for at least 30 minutes (super important!). Use the parchment paper to lift the brownies out of the tin and onto a cutting board. Cut into quarters, then cut each quarter in four. Dust with powdered sugar right before serving.