Confession: Box brownies are where it’s at.
- Why mess with perfection? Especially when someone has already done all of the hard work FOR YOU? Brownies are finicky enough with their bake time, so I take the low road and rely on the old standby: the box brownie.
- If you wanted to know, this recipe is one that has worked for me (but I haven’t tried it in awhile).
- From years of baking brownies that were imperfect in some kind of way, here’s what I’ve learned about making brownies:
- 1. Always use coffee instead of water. I love coffee, and you may not, but it gives a richer, more chocolatey flavor than straight up water. So go ahead, infuse your brownies with a stronger flavor!
- 2. Err on the side of under baking your brownies. Listen, we’ve all had brownies from both ends of the spectrum. From brown little bricks to “Wait, are you sure you baked these?” brownies are a TRIP in terms of bake time. Watch for the crackly top and DO NOT WAIT until your toothpick/fork/skewer comes out clean after you poke it into the brownies. It’ll be too late by then. You want some moist crumbs, and you want soft brownies, so don’t fall for that piece of advice. It works for cake; it doesn’t work for brownies. No one will mind if they’re a little on the gooey side as long as you have napkins.
- 3. Line your pan with aluminum foil and a ton of nonstick spray. Brownies are clingy little things, and using both of these tools is necessary for brownies that don’t stick to the side of your pan. I bought a “really nice” nonstick pan at Williams Sonoma, and it is one of the WORST when it comes to unsticking bars from it. Go with the foil. It makes removing the brownies AND cleaning the pan way easier, too! #winning
- 4. Chill time doesn’t hurt. It’s painful to wait, but really, letting your brownies sit in the fridge overnight or even for a few hours will give the ingredients time to come together and enhance the flavor in a magical way. Brownies are like chocolate chip cookie dough here; let them sit for optimal taste.
- 5. Salt your brownies. I am biased because I love anything that’s sweet and salty, but really, you need SOMETHING to balance the overwhelming chocolate sweetness. Sprinkle some salt on top of your brownies before you bake them. Bonus points if it looks pretty and the flakes are large enough to notice. You won’t regret it, and your teeth will be happier.