Yield: 8″ square pan perfect fudge brownies // Total Time: 45 min. // Disclaimer: This post includes affiliate links.
If you are looking for brownies that are both perfect and ridiculously easy to make, you’ve come to the right place!
Perfect fudge brownies
What makes the perfect fudge brownies perfect? Well, I guess perfect is subjective as everyone is searching for different characteristics for their brownie. But if you have been on the hunt for brownies that are thick, rich, perfectly fudgy, and have that shiny crackled top, you’ve definitely come to the right place! Seriously, these brownies are ridiculously delicious and easy to make. All you need is 8 ingredients that are probably in your pantry already!
Perfect fudge brownies recipe tips
Weigh your ingredients
Weighing your ingredients is important for getting the recipe perfect and getting consistent results. Not weighing your ingredients can lead to adding too much or too little of an ingredient which can turn your brownies from rich and fudgy to tough and chewy. If you haven’t already, I highly recommend purchasing a kitchen scale. This one is super cheap and worked well for me when I was starting out!
Mix the dough carefully
When adding in the flour, only fold the mixture just until no flour streaks remain. Overmixing the dough leads to more gluten formation, which can make the brownies tough and chewy rather than fudgy.
How to get a crinkle top on brownies
The secret to getting those perfectly crackled tops is actually quite simple! All you need to do is whisk together the eggs and sugar to get them nice, light and fluffy prior to adding them to the rest of the brownie batter. Whipping up the eggs and sugar brings more air into the batter, which after baking collapses, forming that perfectly crackled top. And if the thought of bringing air into your brownies sounds scary, don’t worry, these brownies are super fudgy!
How to know when fudge brownies are done baking
Fudge brownies are a little hard to tell when they’re done baking because they are essentially meant to be a little “raw”. You won’t be able to use the toothpick test on these brownies, because if the toothpick is coming out clean, the brownies are severely overbaked. The brownies are done when the edges have completely solidified and the middle of the brownies only SLIGHTLY wobble. The brownies will continue to cook in the hot pan so it’s important to not slice into the brownies until they’ve fully cooled to room temperature.
Use a metal pan, not a glass pan
You should almost always use a metal baking pan over glass when it comes to baking treats. Glass does not conduct heat as well as metal, which means your bake is going to take longer and you will probably not get any crispy edges. If you’re using a glass pan, please note that your brownies will take a bit longer to bake.
How to get clean cuts on brownies
Brownies and bars can be annoying to cut, especially when they start dragging the batter and it seems like half of the brownies have ended up on your knife! To get perfect brownie cuts, get a clean knife and a tall glass of hot water. Dip the knife in the hot water, then make a slice in the brownies. Continue dipping and slicing to be left with perfectly cut brownie slices!
How to make your chocolate even more chocolate-y
The secret to getting more flavor out of your cocoa powder? Bloom it! The process of blooming your cocoa is simple. Just mix hot espresso or water into your cocoa powder prior to adding it into your recipe. Doing so exposes cocoa solids in the cocoa powder and in turn brings out more of their flavor. If you are looking to do it in this recipe, simply whisk together the 40g of cocoa powder with 60g (~2 oz.) of hot coffee, espresso, or water before starting the recipe. Then, incorporate it after melting together the butter and chocolate!
Ingredients and substitutions
All purpose flour: lends some structure to the brownies and makes them slightly chewy. If you’d like to make these gluten-free, you can use a 1:1 swap gluten free flour.
Salt: helps balance and bring out the sweetness and flavor of the brownies.
Unsalted butter: makes the brownies tender and gives them that melt-in-your-mouth feel. You can use salted butter in place of the unsalted, just be sure to omit the extra salt from the brownies.
Semi-sweet chocolate: where the main flavor of these brownies comes from! I use chocolate chips as I have noticed that they are better for bringing out that crackled top when compared to using a baking bar. Make sure you use good quality chocolate chips here as this part makes up the entire flavor of the brownies!
Granulated sugar: sweetens the brownies, helps lock in moisture in the batter, and helps contribute to that perfect crackled top.
Dutch-processed cocoa powder: lends a deeper chocolate flavor to the brownies. I love using dutch process cocoa because it has a deeper and richer flavor than natural cocoa, but natural cocoa powder can easily be substituted in here. Just note that your brownies will be a little lighter in color.
Instant espresso*: helps bring out the chocolate flavor from the chocolate and cocoa (*optional but strongly recommended!) If you are looking for even more chocolate flavor, try blooming your cocoa with espresso! Instructions on how to do so are listed earlier in this post.
Eggs: binds the brownie batter together, adds moisture to the brownies, and is the main contributor in getting that perfectly crackled top.
How to make perfect fudge brownies
Melt the butter and chocolate.
Start by melting together the butter and chocolate, either in the microwave or on the stove top. Once the mixture is completely melted and smooth, whisk in the cocoa powder and instant espresso. Set aside.
Whip up the eggs.
This step is super important in getting that classic and desirable brownie crinkle top. It seems excessive, but you’re going to need to beat the eggs and sugar together on high speed for 4 minutes. Trust the process!
Gently stir the chocolate mixture into the beaten eggs, then whisk in the dry ingredients just until no flour streaks remain.
Pour the brownie batter into a prepared 8″ baking dish. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until the brownies only slightly wobble when the pan is moved. Wait for the brownies to fully cool to room temperature before slicing. Serve plain or with some vanilla ice cream and enjoy!
Perfect fudge brownies q&a
Can I double these fudgy brownies?
Of course! Simply double all of the ingredients and bake the brownies in a 9×13″ pan, or bake them in two 8″ square pans. Be sure to keep an eye on the brownies if baking in a different sized pan, as the bake times may vary. If you’re looking for a smaller batch of these brownies, you can check out my small batch brownies here!
What makes brownies cakey vs fudgy?
The amount of flour in the brownies is the main decider in if a brownie will be cakey or fudgy. Brownies that have more flour in them develop more gluten (structure) in the batter, which makes them cakier. These brownies use a small amount of flour relative to the other ingredients, which makes them fudgier. We also don’t use any baking powder or baking soda in these so that they stay super dense.
Do I need to use instant espresso?
Not if you don’t want to! The instant espresso is simply there to complement and enrich the flavor of the chocolate. You can not taste it in the brownies. However, if you are avoiding espresso for any reason you can definitely leave it out and you will still have delicious fudge brownies.
How to store fudge brownies
These brownies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days, or stored in the freezer for up to 3 months.
Why do you measure in grams?
My recipes are all written in grams because it is the most accurate way to bake. When you use a kitchen scale, you ensure that your baked goods turn out as close to the written recipe as possible. Plus, the cleanup is way easier when using a scale! I will provide standard cup measurements but please note that I have not tested the recipe using cup measurements and therefore can not guarantee your recipe will come out how mine did. Here is my favorite kitchen scale.
A note on oven temperature
Ovens vary and fluctuate in temperature. For example, I always have to set my oven to 330°F if I want it to bake at 350°F. If you love to bake like I do, I highly recommend getting an oven thermometer. They are super helpful for letting you know when your oven might be lying to you! I use this one.
Tools and ingredients
You can find all my favorite tools and ingredients that I use on my Amazon Storefront page, here!
Did you make these perfect fudge brownies?
If you made these fudge brownies I would love to see them and know your thoughts! Please leave a comment and review down below, and tag me on Instagram @freshbeanbakery. If you have any questions about the recipe I will gladly do my best to answer them in the comments below!
Perfect Fudge Brownies
- 170 g unsalted butter (¾ c.)
- 270 g semi-sweet chocolate chips (1 ½ c. + 1 tbsp.)
- 40 g dutch process cocoa (¼ c. + 2 tbsp.)
- 1 ½ tsp. instant espresso powder *optional
- 3 eggs
- 300 g granulated sugar (1 ½ c.)
- 120 g all purpose flour (1 c.)
- ¾ tsp. salt
- Preheat the oven to 350°F / 175°C. Grease and line a 8" square pan with butter and parchment paper.
- In a medium saucepan set over medium heat, melt together the butter and chocolate. Turn off the heat, then immediately whisk in the cocoa powder and instant espresso.
- In a medium sized mixing bowl, use a hand mixer or stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment to beat together the eggs and sugar for 4 minutes.
- Slowly whisk the melted chocolate mixture into the egg mixture.
- Add in the flour and salt. Whisk together just until no flour streaks remain.
- Pour the brownie batter into the prepared pan. Bake for approximately 30 minutes, or until the brownies are set on the outsides and only slightly jiggle in the middle.
- Wait for the brownies to fully cool before cutting. Serve, and enjoy!
I made these for the second time this week and everyone at work thinks I’m some kind of master baker! Lol! I did use a glass pan bc that is all I have but 10-20 mins extra and still perfection. Thank you so much!!
Thank you so much for making these, so happy you and your coworkers enjoyed the recipe! 🙂
I’m unsure what’s gone wrong – followed the recipe & using a 8 inch square pan but it seems like it makes very thick brownies and they have been cooking for 45 mins so far and still not cooked, hmmm
hi, there are a few factors that could lead to this; your oven might not be getting hot enough (sometimes the temp displayed is not what it really is inside!) or if you are using a glass pan it will take much longer (I don’t recommend glass for baking for this reason). Also, fudge brownies will never look done with a toothpick since they are meant to kind of be “wet” in the center. They are done when the edges are set and they only ever so slightly wobble in the center. I hope this helps and hope they turn out for you!
Hey, your recipe is amazing!!!!
Thank you so much, so happy you like it! 🙂
Thank you so much! <3
30 mins baking time isnt working for me, the middle area is still raw, however the edges are perfectly cooked.. i keep putting it in and out of the oven. it tastes great tho! :>
Hello! If it’s not done after 30 minutes that could be for a variety of reasons – if you’re using a glass pan it will take much longer, if your oven temperature is off (I highly recommend an oven thermometer, my oven runs lower than it claims to be!) Also, baked goods continue to bake when taken out of the oven so if the edges are done and the middle isn’t wobbly anymore, it should be perfectly cooked once you let it sit and come to room temperature. I hope this helps!
Have to write A comment having spend most of my weekends for the past 5+years trying to make the best brownies and some good some not so good , but omg these were unreal my go to recipe now thank you so much !! x
Ah thank you so much, so happy you love the recipe!!
Hi! Am I misreading the instructions? How can I add the espresso to the melted chocolate without it seizing? My first batch was ruined but I’m determined to try again 🙂
Hi! The instant espresso shouldn’t be seizing so long as you are using the powder, if you are using espresso brewed with water then it will seize the chocolate. I hope this helps and I will update the instructions to say powder so that’s a little more clear – thank you!
Hi thank you so much for this recipe, can I reduce the sugar a bit? If yes, what quantity can I reduce that won’t affect the outcome, thanks
Hi! So sorry for the late reply – I have not tested this recipe with reduced sugar, the most I would probably recommend reducing it by would be 25-50%. The sugar acts not only as a sweetener but also helps lock in moisture and gives it some texture so you are bound to have some changes when you reduce it. I’d love to hear how it turns out if you try them with reduced sugar!
I loved them:) baked them a little too long the first time
Made the brownies, they are excellent!!! I opted to put the expresso in the brownies.
Thank you so much for making them, I’m so happy you liked them! 🙂
How much expresso and when do you add it?
Hi! Sorry, the espresso should be listed as optional. If you want to add it you would add 1 oz and add it at the same time as the cocoa!