Oh the humble brownie, how I love thee. Chocolatey, gooey, satisfying in so many ways. They are one of my all time favorite deserts to make as well as eat!
***Update*** At $3.20 per batch of brownies, this recipe is super inexpensive. But even not counting the cost, this recipe is hands down one of the most delicious brownie recipes out there. Check out how the cost of this brownie compares to other popular recipes Recipe Round Up – Brownies.
I’m a big believer that practicing simple things is the best way to learn. That way you can focus on what is really important and really work on the basics. Brownies are one of those recipes that I love to make. They have only a few ingredients but just tweaking them a little can create very different results.
You can use different types of chocolate, or cocoa. But you can change more than just the ingredients. Changing the baking time can result in vastly different textures and tastes. And lets not forget all the different things you can add to them. Nuts, chocolate chips, peanut butter, toppings all go great on brownies.
Now talking about the ingredients, there are definitely different things that we can change to try to make the brownies as cost-effective as possible. Most brownies are flour, sugar, butter, eggs, chocolate, vanilla. Unfortunately chocolate is both the main ingredient as well as the most expensive. So while I certainly appreciate splurging on chocolate to make the best tasting brownie, we are looking for cost-effective deliciousness.
There are a few different tips and tricks that I have heard to make the brownies taste better. One is to rest the batter overnight in the fridge. I’ve done this technique when making chocolate chip cookies and it makes them better, so I figured why not! Another factor is the type of chocolate that you use. I’ve found that using cocoa powder is a less expensive than using any type of chocolate. And I think the recipes turn out better so double win!
When adding things to the brownies like nuts or chocolate chips, remember that even though you aren’t using a lot of nuts. Nuts are very expensive, so they will drive up your costs. However they have a nice satisfying crunch to them, and help break up the flavor in my opinion.
Now the recipe, this recipe is slightly altered from Alice Mendrich’s coca recipe. Her recipe is frankly amazing because of the exactness and the taste. I mean how many other recipes that you’ve seen tell you exactly how many times to mix something.
Tell me in the comments if you’ve made these brownies and if there are any tips and tricks that you’ve discovered!
These cocoa brownies are just simply amazing. You may need to let them rest on the counter after refrigerating them overnight.
Total: $3.20 for 25 brownies, $.13 per brownie
- 10 tablespoons 140 grams unsalted butter $.77
- 1 1/4 cups 250 grams sugar $.82
- 3/4 cup 80 grams unsweetened cocoa powder (natural or Dutch-process) $1.04
- 1/4 teaspoon salt $.003
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract $.15
- 2 cold large eggs $.22
- 1/2 cup 65 grams all-purpose flour $.19
- 2/3 cup 65 grams walnut or pecan pieces (optional) $.71
Combine the butter, sugar, cocoa, and salt in a medium heatproof bowl and set the bowl in a wide skillet of barely simmering water. Stir from time to time until the butter is melted and the mixture is hot enough that you want to remove your finger fairly quickly after dipping it in to test. (It might look gritty here but don't worry, it will smooth out later.) Remove the bowl from the skillet and set aside briefly until the mixture is only warm, not hot.
Stir in the vanilla with a wooden spoon. Add the eggs one at a time, stirring vigorously after each one.
When the batter looks thick, shiny, and well blended, add the flour and stir until you cannot see it any longer, then beat vigorously for 40 strokes with the wooden spoon or a rubber spatula. Stir in the nuts, if using.
Cover and refrigerate overnight.
Preheat the oven to 325°F. Line the bottom and sides of an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper or foil, leaving an overhang on two opposite sides.
Spread batter in prepared pan
Bake until a toothpick plunged into the center emerges slightly moist with batter, 20 to 25 minutes. Let cool completely on a rack.
Lift up the ends of the parchment or foil liner, and transfer the brownies to a cutting board. Cut into 16 or 25 squares.
Makes: 16 large or 25 smaller brownies