This recipe for Homemade Brownies really is the best because they are made with REAL chocolate AND cocoa powder so that they are the most decadent, extra fudgy and dense brownies you've ever tasted. You won't believe how easy it is to make brownies from scratch with a tissue-thin crinkly crust that rival any mix!

If you are a brownie lover, be sure to check out some of our other popular recipes like these Mississippi Mud Brownies, Mint Brownies, Gooey Swirled Nutella Brownies, Cream Cheese Brownies, and Easy Caramel Pecan Brownies!

Three brownies stacked on top of each other.

Brownies can be a divisive dessert. Some people like them fudgy, others prefer them cakey. Frosted or unfrosted? With nuts or without? Box mix or from scratch? Are you an edge person or do you like the middle best? These are the questions that keep me up at night.

These are my favorite fudgy brownies. They are chewy and dense and moist and super rich. I recognize that it's a bold claim, but this really is the best brownie recipe that I make in place of a box mix. Which, let's face it, is the gold standard for many people.

Plus, these homemade brownies are made from scratch in one bowl, by hand. I have tested them dozens of times and am confident that any home baker can make brownies that aren't just as good, but better than a mix!

Homemade brownies cut into squares.

One of my favorite things about brownies from scratch is the way they smell. The process of melting chocolate and butter to combine sugar and eggs fills your kitchen with the most incredible aroma that you just never get with a mix.

And the resultant brownies are have such an intense chocolate flavor with sweet bits of melted chocolate chips throughout. We've never gone back to mixes once we started making these. And my husband was a die-hard box mix guy, so that's saying a lot.

A brownie set on it's side in a pan full of more brownies.

What makes brownies fudgy?

Fudgy brownies have a higher fat to flour content whereas more cakelike brownies do not. This recipe balances that ratio through butter and chocolate with a relatively small amount of flour to bring you a deliciously fudgy result. 

Ingredients to make brownies from scratch

Ingredients measured into bowls and measuring cups for making brownies from scratch.
  • Butter: I use salted butter in almost all of my baking. You could use oil instead, But I find that it doesn't give the richness of butter.
  • Bittersweet or semisweet chocolate: I tried to suss out the difference between bittersweet and semisweet chocolate, but it seems like an almost impossible thing to do. I have made this recipe with both, including using semisweet chocolate chips (Ghiradelli makes bittersweet baking chips that work really well), but ultimately my favorite batch was made with a bar of chopped bittersweet chocolate. The better quality chocolate you use, the better your baked goods will taste.
  • Cocoa powder: My preference is dutch process cocoa powder (Rodelle is my favorite brand) but you can use regular unsweetened cocoa powder as well. I always have Hershey's or Ghiradelli unsweetened cocoa powder in the cupboard and those work well too.
  • Sugar: After much testing, I have decided that using part brown sugar and part granulated sugar gives the best results in chewy brownies with a deep, rich flavor and a crackly crust on top.
  • Eggs: For years I made this recipe with an extra egg yolk, but I'm no longer convinced it adds enough to justify it. These are still ultra fudgy with just three whole eggs and it makes the recipe easier anyway.
  • All-purpose flour: I use unbleached all-purpose flour in this recipe and in most of my baking unless I specify otherwise.
  • Salt: Can't make baked goods without a little salt!
  • Vanilla: This common baking ingredient amplifies the other flavors, rather than being noticeable on its own.
  • Semisweet chocolate chips: Totally optional to stir these in at the end before spreading the batter into the pan, but my family loves them. If it were just me, I would skip the chocolate chips and use walnuts instead, but I often get voted out on this particular issue.
Brownie batter in a pan lined with parchment paper.

How to make brownies from scratch

  1. Melt butter and bittersweet chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl. This can be done in the microwave in 20-30 seconds bursts, stirring between each burst until smooth.
  2. Whisk the cocoa powder into the hot butter and chocolate mixture. I started doing this every since I learned about how heat makes the flavor of cocoa powder "bloom" and it really does seem to give a more robust, chocolatey taste.
  3. Whisk in the sugars, followed by the eggs. This can be done by hand or with an electric mixer, but beating the eggs and sugar well helps develop that crackly crust that is so coveted in good brownies.
  4. Sprinkle the flour and salt over the top and stir in with a wooden spoon or spatula. Stir in the chocolate chips or walnuts, if using. The batter will be very thick.
  5. Pour the batter into a 9x9-inch metal pan lined with a parchment paper sling. I'm notoriously bad at cutting straight lines when things are in a pan. With a sling, you can lift the brownies out and slice them, which is so much easier!
  6. Bake for 30 minutes in a 350 degree F oven. Do not overbake! A toothpick inserted into the center should come out with a few crumbs on it when they are done. If the toothpick is still wet with batter, let them cook for just a couple minutes longer.
Brownie batter in a glass bowl with chocolate chips being stirred in with a wooden spoon.
Brownie squares on parchment paper next to glasses of milk.

Tips for the best homemade brownies

  • "When in doubt, pull them out" is my rule for how long to bake brownies. You want a toothpick to come out with crumbs attached. If you test them in one or two spots and the toothpick is coated with wet batter, they aren't done yet. But if there are crumbs clinging to the toothpick, then it's time to pull those suckers out of the oven! I would rather have these on the extra fudgy side than have them turn out overbaked and dry.
  • Be sure to cool completely before cutting. The chocolate flavor actually develops as the brownies cool, so if you can hold out, giving them a chance to really cool down makes them even more delicious!
  • Choosing the right pan. You can make these in an 8x8, 9x9, or even a 9x13-inch pan. You will get a different thickness and need to adjust the baking time accordingly, but they all work. A 9x9-inch pan (what I use most often) takes about 30-35 minutes to bake these. If you use a 9x13-inch pan, the brownies will be thinner and bake in a shorter amount of time, more like 20-25 minutes. An 8x8-inch pan will take more like 40-45 minutes to bake.
  • Store in an airtight container on the counter or in the fridge for up to 5 days. You can also freeze them for 2-3 months.
  • One thing I have found is that brownies baked in a metal pan tend to bake faster than when using a glass pan. If you are using a glass baking dish, you may need to increase your bake time by 5 minutes.
Brownies from scratch sliced into squares on a piece of parchment paper.

Ideas for taking a basic brownie recipe and making it "extra"

  • Salted Caramel Brownies: Make salted caramel and pour it over the top when the brownies are done baking, then sprinkle with a little flaky sea salt. It's messy, but worth it. Or pour it over the batter and swirl it in with a knife before baking for a different approach!
  • Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Brownies: Unwrap some peanut butter cups and press them down into the batter after pouring it into the pan.
  • Coconut Pecan Brownies: Mix ¾ cup chopped pecans into the batter, then sprinkle ½ cup sweetened coconut and another ¼ cup chopped pecans over the batter before baking.
  • Brownie Sundaes: Nothing is better than a warm brownie with a scoop of ice cream, hot fudge sauce, and a cherry on top!
  • Use it as a mix-in: Consider chopping up 3-4 brownies and adding them to your favorite ice cream base next time right when it's done churning! I'm thinking something like blackberry swirl ice cream with brownie chunks!
Two brownies stacked on top of each other on a wire cooling rack.

More homemade brownies & bars

Did you make this recipe?

Let me know what you thought with a comment and rating below. You can also take a picture and tag me on Instagram @houseofnasheats or share it on the Pinterest pin so I can see.

Stay in the know

The BEST Homemade Brownies

4.72 from 153 votes
Amy Nash
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 45 mins
Course Brownies and bars
Cuisine American
Servings 16 Brownies
This recipe for Homemade Brownies really is the best because they are made with REAL chocolate AND cocoa powder so that they are the most decadent, extra fudgy and dense brownies you've ever tasted. You won't believe how easy it is to make brownies from scratch with a tissue-thin crinkly crust that rival any brownie mix!

Ingredients
  

  • 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate chopped
  • ¾ cup salted butter cut into chunks
  • ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup light brown sugar
  • 3 large eggs room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup chocolate chips

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a square 9x9" baking dish with a parchment paper sling or spray with baking spray.
  • In a large microwave-safe bowl, combine the bittersweet chocolate and butter. Microwave on high in 20-30 second bursts, stirring well between bursts of heat until melted and smooth. Whisk in cocoa powder.
  • Add granulated sugar and brown sugar, whisking well to combine. Add eggs and vanilla, beating well either by hand with a whisk or using an electric mixer.
  • Sprinkle the flour and salt over the brownie batter and gently stir it in with a wooden spoon or spatula. Stir in chocolate chips.
  • Pour the brownie batter into the prepared baking dish and spread into the corners. The batter will be thick.
  • Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of the brownies comes out mostly clean with only a few crumbs attached. Be sure not to overbake.
  • Cool completely before cutting. Store in an airtight container for up to 5 days on the counter or in the fridge.

Notes

  • 8x8-inch baking pan: These will be thicker and take longer to bake, more like 40-45 minutes.
  • 9x13-inch baking pan: This recipe can be spread into a larger pan and baked thinner for 20-25 minutes.

Nutrition

Calories: 271kcal | Carbohydrates: 34g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 60mg | Sodium: 168mg | Potassium: 113mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 26g | Vitamin A: 320IU | Calcium: 22mg | Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe? Show me on Instagram!Mention @HouseOfNashEats or tag #houseofnasheats!

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About the author

Hi, I'm Amy

I enjoy exploring the world through food, culture, and travel and sharing the adventure with mostly from-scratch, family friendly recipes that I think of as modern comfort cooking.

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Reader questions and reviews

  1. I followed the recipe exactly and the brownies came out perfectly! They were super fudgy and has the crackling top layer. A+. 

  2. Hi! If I don’t have salted butter, how would I adjust the recipe? Would I just add a little extra salt? Any idea how much? There’s a blizzard outside so I can’t get to the store 😔

  3. Oh my goodness! I made these last night and subbed in gluten free flour for my son.  I’ve made A LOT of brownie recipes over the years as it is the one dessert that GF flour doesn’t totally ruin. :). And these were, hands-down, the best yet.  The kids went crazy, my husband was in heaven, and I loved them (and the easy clean up). Delicious. 10/10. 5 stars. Thank you!

  4. These got two thumbs WAY up from my kids (and me). I've been making a homemade recipe we love for a while, but they are quite dense (and to be honest, the adults like them more). I switch those up with the boxed kind, because they have that crackly crust and soft center. These are like the perfect combo of the two. Thanks for the recipe!

  5. We were craving brownies in our house, and I wanted to enter the February Chocolate Challenge, so I chose to make these amazing brownies and I'm SO glad I did! It didn't take long at all--so easy and so delicious! I'm definitely making them again!

  6. These look amazing! I especially like how you explain to use a mixer to mix the eggs and sugar and butter together to achieve that Crackle, glossy top. Genius! Can't wait to try these. Have a question, though. What brand / percentage of cacao chocolate bar do you use, please.

  7. I love brownies! These brownies were super rich and super delicious. A small serving of these will satisfy your chocolate craving. And this coming from a family that all LOVE desserts and have a super sweet tooth. Amy's advice to wait until fully cooled is spot on. I tried one several hours after coming out of the oven while it was still a little warm and it was good. But after trying one again when fully cooled it was amazing!!! We will be making these again soon.

  8. I made these yesterday and they are fantastic!! Rich, dense, and fudgy, with multidimensional flavor! Many fudge brownies are too chocolately with a one-note flavor that turns the kids off, but we all loved these. The brown sugar, the high amount of salt, the three types of chocolate... wow! After searching through many recipes online, I immediately knew this was the one to try. It did not disappoint! Also, they hold up very well to being sliced and don’t fall apart like many fudge brownies do. 

    Note:  I use a very dark, not Dutch processed cocoa powder, which tends to be over-powering in most recipes. So I reduced the amount of cocoa to 1/3 c and increased the flour by 1 1/3 T. I was glad I did because the cocoa flavor did not take over this time.

  9. Just looked at mine pan in the oven.........the butter is bubbling up and looks nothing like a brownie pan!  What did I do wrong?  I bake all the time and I can't ever remember seeing a batter cook apart like this.

    1. That is a very strange result! Sounds to me like maybe a mismeasurement happened and you doubled the amount of butter! I know that has happened to me a time or two!

  10. Could leaving the brownie batter at room temperature for a while instead of immediately baking them affect how the brownies turn out to be? 
    I’ve made this recipe twice. The first time they turned out so good!! The second time they turned  out to be really greasy and I can’t figure out why. I  used 3/4 cup (170g) of butter. 

    1. Hmm, that's a good question. I have never made the batter then waited to bake them for a while, but yes, I could see it affecting the brownies. I don't think of these brownies as being greasy so that's the only thing I can think of.

  11. Oh my goodness. I cannot resist a new brownie recipe, and these look to die for! Guess I know what I'm making as a treat this weekend. Thanks for sharing!

  12. Have you ever doubled this recipe?  I’m wondering if I should lower the temp and increase time or just increase the time.  I’m going to try this recipe today.  Can’t wait!

    1. Yes, you can definitely double the recipe! I usually just increase the time and leave the temperature the same.

  13. I had this same issue too with a 9x9 glass dish. I cooked the for probably close to 40 mins cause I wasn't sure they were done. I just took them out and letting them cool. We'll see how they turn out I guess.

  14. We just made these for the 2nd time this month!  My 10 yr old, 4yr old and 2yr old loved helping.  The toddlers needed a bath afterwards lol.  Up until we found this recipe we would just use box mixes but they really don’t compare.  These aren’t much work considering the reward at the end.  Thank you so much for sharing.  The tip about not over baking is crucial!  A little under is for sure better than over.  

  15. They’re in the oven baking now. Weren’t too difficult to whip up either. The batter tasted great so they likely will too. I also put in about a cup of pecan pieces hope they’re delicious. 

  16. I have made these brownies at least half a dozen times, with nuts and without. They are my new go-to for a quick dessert.  Love everything about them!

  17. I used walnuts dark chocolate chips and milk chocolate chunks you talk about some good brownies they were the best I ever made

  18. I shamelessly make these brownies weekly during the cold months. They are absolutely scrumptious and a crowd favorite in our house. I substitute the bittersweet chocolate for chocolate chips as that is what I keep in my pantry, absolutely delish!

  19. I really don't like cakey brownies, but my idea of fudgy brownies is a very moist, chocolately brownies. The recipes I see are beyond moist, to looking wet and underdone. Are these the right amount of moistness and not mushy wet?

    1. No, these were definitely not mushy wet, just dense and moist and fudgy. I wonder if you are noticing the spots of melted chocolate from the chocolate chips in it. Those were still definitely molten when I photographed these particular brownies so they might look shinier.

  20. I made these this afternoon. Recipe is super easy to follow. And, best of all, they taste AWESOME! Thank you so much! I’m always on the lookout for new recipes for my hubby. He’s a sweet freak. Can’t wait to try them with a scoop of vanilla ice cream! I’m new to the kitchen so easy to follow recipes are always a big plus!

  21. absolutely my favorite recipe! i have made many good brownie recipes but all pale in compariosn to this one! I add just a tiny bit more chocolate and insteda of microwaving the chocolate and butter together i heat them together in a bowl over hot water! highly reccomend!

  22. 5 stars
    These turned our great. I didn't have bittersweet chips so I used semisweet. They still were great! Thanks for sharing!

  23. 4 stars
    Baked these at night and waited to eat them this morning - for me they turned out more cakey than fudgy.

    Steps I made that probably affected outcome: I used 9x13 pan and baked for 22 mins on top rack in the oven. I should have taken it out between 18-20 mins, probably would have had better luck. Only had dark brown sugar so didn’t use light. And used 3/4 cups white sugar instead of the whole cup.

    Still tasted delicious.

  24. 5 stars
    These are super delicious! I now have a go-to recipe for brownies - THIS! I made them to share with friends who just had a baby and it was a HUGE hit! I made it in a 9x13 pan and cooked it for 25 minutes which was perfect for my oven. They were perfectly moist and gooey and fudgy, (not cakey, light and fluffy) in my opinion, they were just how a brownie should be! I'm saving this and recommending it to anyone who asks about it! Thank you for a delicious recipe!

  25. This is just a question about the 1-2-3 next to your ingredients list. I noticed that the ingredient amounts increase, but there's no other information on what to do with the 'additional' ingredients. Is it simply, if you want to make multiple batches, these are the ingredient amounts? Sorry about my confusion. BTW - these look amazing! I will definitely be downloading this recipe.

  26. 5 stars
    Best homemade brownies I've ever made. Made a triple batch and half were gone right of the bat. Thank you Amy for sharing.

  27. 5 stars
    Perfect brownie recipe! Last time, I uses espresso chocolate chips for a different twist - even tasty for a non-coffee drinker 😉

  28. 5 stars
    It was really good, my family and I really enjoyed it, I just should have left it like 10 minutes more, but they where awesome

  29. 5 stars
    Truly decadent and easy! Don’t miss out on these. I recently found Amy’s House of Nash eats and try something new every week! All of the recipes blow me away. Super organized, lots of options and modifications and so delicious. These brownies are killer!

  30. Your title makes me wonder what box mixes you’ve used? Because I have never ever had box better than scratch. And I’m midline old.

    1. We've tried ALL of them. Ghirardelli is probably our favorite. But honestly, if you haven't tried these yet, I highly recommend making them along with a batch of your favorite boxed mix and blind-tasting them side-by-side. I stand by what I said. 😉