These thick & chewy “better than the boxed” homemade brownies are easy to make and oh so delicious. You will never go back to the boxed kind again!!
Chock full of chocolatey goodness, these brownies have just the right amount of chew and softness. Your taste buds will thank you, trust me! For more chocolate heaven try Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies, Double Chocolate Muffins, and Double Chocolate Silk Pie.
Better Than Boxed Brownies!
That’s right, I said it. The word favorite does not get used lightly in our house. Especially when it comes to brownies… just ask my husband. He’s a brownie connoisseur and absolutely loves the Ghirardelli boxed brownies from Costco. They
are were his favorite.
But these homemade brownies, well, they’re are a game changer people. It took me over 8 times to get the recipe perfected. That’s a lot of taste testing!!! So what makes these brownies so amazing? Let’s find out…
First of all they’re so easy to make. And they’re relatively quick too! I don’t like making a huge mess in the kitchen and I hate that brownies take so long to bake! This recipe requires melting the butter and the sugar together in the microwave and needs only 25 minutes to bake!
Flour: This recipe calls for all ½ c. all-purpose flour, plus 1 tbsp cornstarch. You can also substitute ½ cup cake flour and eliminate the cornstarch.
Butter: I prefer using unsalted butter for baking, but if you like the flavor of a little extra salt, you’re welcome to use salted.
Cocoa Powder: The best type of cocoa powder for a rich brownie is Hershey’s Special Dark Dutch-Processed Cocoa Powder. Dutch process powder provides a rich and smooth flavor. If you are not too worried about it you can use a typical unsweetened cocoa powder.
Chopped Chocolate: I love using a Ghirardelli baking bar for the semi-sweet chopped chocolate.
How to Make Brownies
MELT. Melt the butter and sugar together in a microwave safe bowl. This is what gives you that nice shiny cracked top. In my microwave on HIGH, it only takes about 1 minute and 15 seconds.
STIR. Once the mixture is hot, set it on your counter, stir it together and let it sit for 5 minutes before stirring in the vanilla and cocoa powder. If you add the vanilla too soon it will evaporate and we definitely don’t want that!
INCORPORATE. Once the mixture has cooled enough to where it’s warm, add it to a large mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer. Turn the mixing speed on low and add one cold egg at a time, making sure each is incorporated.
WHISK. Whisk together your dry ingredients in a small mixing bowl. The secret to these thick & chewy brownies is the cornstarch, so don’t skip it! It may seem like a weird ingredient but I thick it adds a wonderful texture to bars and cookies.
COMBINE. With your mixing speed on low again, add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Beat on medium-low for about 30 seconds, then fold in the chocolate chips and chunks.
TIP: The combination of chunks and chips is key to making these brownies taste like the boxed mix. The chips stay intact in the baking process and give you that “crunch” if you will. The chopped baking bar chunks melt into the brownies and create pockets of silky fudgy goodness. They also help keep the brownies moist and tender.
BAKE. Once the chocolate has been incorporated, pour it into the prepared pan and place it in the oven. Bake these brownies at 325 degrees for approximately 22-25 minutes. Pretty quick, huh?!
COOL & EAT. They should be set in the centers before removing. Let them cool in the pan for 30-45 minutes before cutting and serving… if you can resist for that long 😉 We absolutely loved these brownies. My husband gave them the stamp of approval and said that they were by far the best/closest recipe to his favorite boxed brownies. I can’t wait to make them for him again!
Tips and Storing
What makes brownies fudgy?
- Melting the butter gives them the fudgy texture and shiny cracked tops.
- Don’t overmix after adding flour and accidentally add extra air (that will make them too cakey).
- Don’t overbake.
- Whisk butter and sugar very well.
- When testing it with a toothpick, it should come out with lots of gooey crumbs.
How to know when they are done? Use the toothpick method. For fudgy brownies, you are going to want some moist crumbs when you pull the toothpick out. For cakier brownies, the toothpick should come out mainly clean.
- You can either mix in the chocolate chips, or add them on top of the brownie batter before baking.
- Add oreo chunks, or edible cookie dough pieces
- Mix in M&Ms or Reese’s pieces
- Top with coconut flakes
How to cut brownies: Cutting brownies can be really tricky because they tend to get really messy. The trick is to run a butter knife under hot water and dab it off, then start cutting them. Each time you are about to make another cut, clean it off on a paper towel—this will allow you to make clean cuts and not tear your brownie pieces.
Storage: Store homemade brownies in an airtight container at room temp. They are best 1-2 days after baking. Make sure they stay covered so that they don’t dry out.
Reheating: If you want to reheat your brownies, you can easily microwave them in 10 second increments, up to 30 seconds, to get the chocolate chips all melted.
Freezing: You can freeze brownies for up to 3 months, either in one large pan that is wrapped air tight, or as individual squares. When you are ready to devour them, thaw them overnight in the fridge, and then bring to room temp before serving.
For more tasty brownie recipes, try:
Homemade Brownies Recipe
- 1/2 cup all purpose flour*
- 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 1/4 cup sugar
- 11 tbsp unsalted butter - (1 stick +3 tbsp)
- 2 eggs - cold
- 1/8 tsp baking soda
- 1 tbsp cornstarch**
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup chocolate chips - milk or semisweet
- 1/4 cup semi-sweet baking bar* - chopped
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a 8x8 inch pan with parchment or foil, set aside.
- In a microwave safe bowl, add the butter and sugar. Heat in the microwave on HIGH for about 1 minute and 15 seconds. Remove, stir, and cool on the counter for 5 minutes, then stir in the vanilla extract and cocoa powder.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer add the warm (but not hot) butter/sugar mixture. With mixing speed on low add one egg at a time, mixing just until incorporated.
- In a medium size mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, cornstarch, and salt. With mixing speed on low, gradually add dry ingredients. Mix until no flour pockets remain. Remove bowl from stand and fold in the chocolate chips and chunks.
- Spread the brownie batter evenly into the prepared pan. Place in the oven and bake for 20-30 minutes or until the brownies are set. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 30-45 minutes before cutting and serving.
-This recipe can easily be doubled to fit a 9x13 inch pan. The bake time might increase by 3-5 minutes. It will make approximately 24 brownies. I used a metal pan for these brownies, not pyrex.
**1/2 c. of cake flour can be substituted for the all-purpose flour and cornstarch.