classic brownies

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brownies have always been one of my favorite desserts, and you just cannot beat a not-too sweet, full of chocolate flavor classic brownie

classic brownies

There are probably as many brownie recipes are there are people looking for brownie recipes. I know I have many right here on the blog. There are fudgy brownies, avocado brownies, even brownies made with no flour at all.

I’ve made them with biscoff, stuffed them with peppermint patties, and made them in a mug.

classic brownies

What I have not done is make a brownie that reminds me of the ones I used to love as a kid. And as a kid I LOVED brownies. Still do, only every time I make them or buy them I end up disappointed. They are either too flat or too fat, too dry or too sweet, not chocolatey enough, or just plain too rich.

Brownies should be simple and not at all fussy. A dessert you would take to a potluck or bake sale not some fancy dinner party. Although, you could bring brownies to my house for dinner any time you want. We never had a family picnic growing up that did not include a pan of brownies covered in powdered sugar.


I cannot tell you how many pans of brownies I have made only to be let down with what was supposed to be the perfect classic brownie, just like the ones grandma used to make (although I’m pretty sure hers came from a box). But I have never been let down by any recipes I get from Cook’s Illustrated, so I was cautiously optimistic when I made their classic brownie recipe.

These classic brownies are everything the recipe promised and more. They are sweet without being too sweet. They have just the right amount of chocolate, the flaky top I love, crispy edges, and a center that is moist without being too fudgy or cakey.

In a word PERFECT.

classic brownies

classic brownies


  • 1 1/4 cups cake flour
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 6 oz unsweetened chocolate, chopped
  • 12 Tbsp butter cut into small pieces
  • 2 1/4 cups sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla


  • preheat oven to 325 degrees
  • line a 13 x 9 baking pan with foil, and grease the foil
  • whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt
  • melt the chocolate with the butter (using a double boiler) and then off heat whisk in the sugar
  • whisk in the eggs one at a time,vanilla, and then gradually fold in the flour using a spatula
  • the brownie batter should be very smooth
  • pour batter into the prepared pan, push batter into the corners  and smooth the top
  • bake 30-35 minutes, test for doneness using a pick inserted into the center (pick should have moist crumbs)
  • cool brownies in the pan on a rack until completely cool before cutting
  • lift foil out of pan, and cut into squares

These are the brownies I remember growing up, and my search for the perfect classic brownie recipe is over. Not that I won’t add to these later, but I’ll never use another base recipe again.


classic brownies