Wednesday, November 11, 2015

The Best Brownies

I have always been a box mix brownie kind of girl. The box mixes are BOGO almost every week, they take all of 2 minutes to throw together, and I actually find them more delicious than homemade brownies. UNTIL NOW. Earlier this week I needed to make a bunch of brownies to take to a church event, so I decided to make several different kinds and for once and for all decide which brownie was the best. I tried a new recipe for a batch of homemade brownies, and I also made a Hershey's box mix and (my favorite) Ghirardelli box mix. I took a mixture of all three to the church event, and saved some of each for Caleb and I to do a blind taste test. 

The above photo shows how each brownie turned out. The Hershey's looks like it's going to be the richest as it's the darkest in color, the Ghirardelli looks like your standard brownie, and the homemade brownie is totally dominating the scene at twice as large as the box brownies. Here's how the taste test went down:

#1: Ghirardelli // we liked the chocolate chips, it was super chocolately, and pretty moist
#2: Hershey's // sticky, gooey, more milk chocolately, not as intense flavor, not as good as Ghirardelli, would not eat again
#3: homemade // richer, liked the chocolate chips, more of a brownie texture, moist, most intense flavor, hands down our favorite

We were both surprised that the homemade brownie was our favorite! We have declared this brownie recipe the best brownies we've ever eaten - they are that good. The winning recipe is originally from Taste of Home magazine, and the recipe is below, with my minor adjustments included.

Ultimate Fudgy Brownies
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2/3 cup butter, cubed
1/4 cup water
20 oz bittersweet chocolate chips, divided (I used Ghirardelli)
4 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a 9-inch square baking pan with parchment paper, letting ends extend up and over sides.

In a large saucepan, combine sugars, butter, and water; bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Remove from heat; add a generous 1 3/4 cups chocolate chips (this was a little more than a 10 oz bag). Stir until melted. Cool slightly.

In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whisk eggs until foamy, about 3 minutes. Add vanilla extract; gradually whisk in the chocolate mixture. In another bowl, whisk flour, baking soda, and salt; stir into the chocolate mixture. Fold in remaining chocolate chips.

Pour into prepared pan. Bake on a lower oven rack 40-50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out with moist crumbs (do not overbake). Cool completely in pan on a wire rack.

Lifting with parchment paper, remove brownies from pan. Cut into 16 squares.

source: recipe adapted from Taste of Home, September/October 2015


  1. I made these tonight. Just had to try them! :) Very yummy! I have a great brownie recipe, too, from Mary Jane Davis. Wonder what you would think of them.

  2. I can't even believe you've found something you like better than Ghiradelli!! This recipe sounds very rich and yummy. I'm going to have Ann make them while she's here, and we'll compare to our favorite homemade variety that she and I both make. I've always thought homemade was better :)

  3. Oh my gosh, those look incredible!! Brownies have always been my favorite dessert, but I've forgotten because there's not a great gluten-free box mix (and like you, I've always preferred box mixes). My other favorite brownie recipes are peanut butter brownie cookies, and Jessamyn's cookie dough brownies, but I still think nothing can beat just a great plain brownie. I am going to have to try these!! Ps I love that you guys did a blind taste test, ha!!