When you know how to make brownies, you’re never at a loss as to what to bring to a potluck, a bake sale or a family party. We’ve got chocolate baking tips, new and classic brownie recipes and how-to videos that open the doors to brownie greatness—from classic cake brownies to deep, rich, almost fudge-like brownies to brownies that double as cheesecake and peanut butter treats. For more easy treats that include s’mores and fruit-filled treats, take a look at our collection of bars and squares recipes, too.
The baking basics apply to brownies, as well. Rule #1: “Don’t mess with the basic ingredients.” Unlike making chili and other free-for-all savory dishes, baking requires a careful attention to measuring to ensure scrumptious results with the texture you want—whether that’s cake-like, fudgy or chewy. Check out our how-to-measure video for tips on getting the techniques down, and if you’re lacking a key ingredient, see our substitution guide to see what other ingredient or combination of ingredients will do the same job in the recipe.
The type of chocolate you’ll use depends on the recipe you choose, but more often than not brownie recipes call for unsweetened chocolate. Unsweetened chocolate is made with solid chocolate liquor and is bitter alone, but when combined with sugar, butter and the other ingredients, it gives brownies their gloriously rich chocolate flavor. A pinch of salt also brings out the sweetness of the chocolate. A prime example of this is the classic BAKER’S ONE BOWL Brownies recipe. There are plenty of yummy exceptions, of course, such as these ooey, gooey, supremely fudgy Divine Truffle Brownies. Blondies, a scrumptious cousin of brownies, use no chocolate at all; instead, they’re made with brown sugar, although chocolate may be added. Two excellent examples include Caramel Swirl Blondies and Double-Chocolate Chunk Blondies.
As you know from your own experiences, chocolate has a few natural “go-withs.” It goes well with peanut butter, cream cheese, nuts, fruit and more. Sometimes you can even score three or more favorites in one recipe, as in these Peanut Butter Cheesecake Brownie Babies. Check out our Cheesecake Center for more ideas, and this how to make Cheesecake Brownies video. You also may want to thrill the PB lovers in the house by investigating this video on how to make Triple-Layer Peanut Butter Brownies.