Want to know the secret to squidgy soft, perfect brownies? So did we
There's very few moments more soul-destroying than biting into a bad brownie. Expecting a soft squidgy taste explosion only to get a mouthful of dry, crumbly nothingness. So we went out of our way to find the top tips (and perfect recipe) for awesome brownies, every time.
It’s all about the chocolate
The base of any brilliant brownie is all in the chocolate you use: go for quality cocoa powder and chocolate. Don't use cooking chocolate; yes, it has higher quantities of cocoa butter so it's easier to melt but the flavour doesn't match up to proper chocolate.
Watch the flour
Without flour, your brownies are likely to turn into an eggy chocolate soup. Too much, and it's seriously going to impede your efforts. Measure the flour carefully and err on the side of less rather than more (Paul Hollywood, master baker that he is, advises any keen baker to invest in a set of digital scales). Swapping some of the flour with ground almonds can make them extra fudgy and boost the flavour, too.
The other ingredients
Salted butter rather than plain can bring out the flavour of the chocolate even more and as brownies aren't ever going to get any health awards, you might as well go for it. Use the correct-sized free-range eggs that the recipe tells you to use (if it says large, use large) and consider using dark muscovado sugar – if you like the flavour – to achieve extra squidginess.
Avoid overcooking them
Watch the clock and be brave. Take your brownies straight out of the oven while they’ve still got a wobble; they’ll continue to cook and as the chocolate cools, it'll firm them up too. Forget the toothpick test that you use when baking a cake – if the skewer comes out dry, your brownies are going to be dry.
Your baking tin
It’s really important with brownies to use the correct size tin (yawn). We know it’s boring but otherwise you’re in serious danger of making them too thin and overcooking them. Some wise owls like to make them in a cupcake tin and use an ice cream scoop to measure the batter out into each case. Make sure you fill them 3/4 of the way or they’ll overflow like mini chocolate volcanoes.
Keep an eye
Everyone’s oven is different so the best way to tell when your brownies are ready is to have a look and a feel. If it wobbles in the centre and springs back to the touch, they're ready to come out.
Sexing them up
Brush with a strong coffee syrup as soon as they come out of the oven or do as author Kir Jensen does (The Sugar Cube, Hardcover, RRP £15.99, Chronicle Books) and top them with dark chocolate ganache, a smidgen of sea salt and fruity olive oil. Lush.
The best brownie recipes on the internet
Here are some of our tried-and-tested favourites. Read the recipe through before you start and you’ll rock that oven to brownie glory like no one else.
Hard to beat and forever in our hearts.
Brazil nuts we'll have you know.
Makes them extra squidgy and soft … as does the genius addition of cherries.
Made with cauliflower. Yes, that's cauliflower. As well as ground almonds and white spelt flour. Interesting, and yummy.
Pop some candles in there and they're fit for a party.
Just to mix it up.
Liked this? Give these a go:
- It's just a dress – made of chocolate
- Cupcakes made from chocolate bars? Sure, why not
- 7 crazy chocolate flavour combos (trust us, they’re good)
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