Best Homemade Brownies

The BEST brownie recipe! With crispy edges, fudgy middles, and rich chocolate flavor, these homemade brownies will disappear in no time.

Best Brownie Recipe

For years, I couldn’t seem to find a recipe for brownies that met my standards. Anytime I made homemade brownies, I wanted them to be just like the ones I ate as a kid – super fudgy, moist, and chocolaty, with crispy edges and crackly tops. But the thing is, these brownies didn’t come from a recipe. We always made them from a box. Nowadays, I prefer to bake from scratch, but no brownie recipe I tried could live up to the chocolate brownies of my childhood.

So this fall, as I flipped through Michelle Lopez’s new book Weeknight Baking, her recipe for Boxed Mix Brownies, From Scratch caught my eye. Would I finally be able to make homemade brownies that would be just as delicious as the ones from a box?

The verdict: yes! I’ve had this brownie recipe on repeat since the first time I tried it. It calls for basic pantry ingredients, and it’s hardly more difficult than using a mix. As for the brownies, they’re true perfection – glossy, fudgy, and filled with rich chocolate flavor. Trust me, you’re going to want to make them ASAP!

Another thing you should do ASAP is check out Weeknight Baking! This book is packed with crave-worthy recipes that are meant for busy weeknights. Each one comes with fun variations (I have my eye on the matcha snickerdoodles) as well as tips for becoming a more efficient baker. After years of juggling a 9-to-5 job and running her blog, Hummingbird High, Michelle is full of wisdom on how to bake on a busy schedule. She writes, “We’re all doing the best we can with what we have. And I’m going to help you bake any night of the week that works for you.” If you love baking, you’ll love this book.

Recipe for Brownies ingredients

Homemade Brownie Recipe Ingredients

Back to Michelle’s recipe for brownies! In order for it to turn out like (aka better than) the boxed mix, Michelle uses granulated sugar, all-purpose flour, salt, and chocolate chips. Then, she adds these key ingredients:

  • 2 eggs + water – Michelle uses a bit of water with the eggs to achieve the moist, gooey texture of boxed mix brownies without any commercial emulsifiers. And because this recipe doesn’t contain any baking powder, eggs are essential for helping the brownies puff up in the oven.
  • Powdered sugar – The trick to making homemade brownies that are just like ones from a box! Powdered sugar contains cornstarch, which helps thicken the batter without the chemical additives you’d find in a mix.
  • Unsweetened cocoa powder – Michelle recommends using Hershey’s Special Dark Dutch-processed cocoa powder (I used Whole Foods’ 365 Cocoa Powder). Make sure to sift it if it’s lumpy!
  • Oil – While many recipes for brownies use unsalted butter, Michelle’s calls for canola oil, just like the boxed mix. I use olive oil because it’s what I keep on hand, and I love the rich flavor.
  • Vanilla Extract – 1/2 teaspoon vanilla really amps up the chocolate flavor.

That’s it! These fantastic homemade brownies are so easy.

How to make brownies from scratch

How to Make Brownies from Scratch

First, mix together the dry and wet ingredients in two separate bowls. Combine the sugar, flour, powdered sugar, cocoa powder, chocolate chips, and salt in a medium bowl. Then, whisk together the eggs, olive oil, and water in a large one.

Dry ingredients in a mixing bowl

Next, combine the wet and dry ingredients. Sprinkle the dry mixture over the wet one, and fold until just combined. The batter will be thick!

Homemade brownies batter

Then, pour the batter into an 8×8 inch baking pan lined with parchment paper. Use a rubber spatula to spread it to all four sides of the pan and to smooth the top. The mixture will be very thick – that’s ok.

Pouring batter into a pan

Finally, bake! Transfer the pan to a 325-degree oven and bake for 40 to 45 minutes, until a toothpick inserted comes out with a few crumbs attached. Allow the brownies to cool completely before slicing and serving. Enjoy!

Store any leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days. They also freeze well for up to a month. Last time I made these, I doubled the recipe and stored the second batch in the freezer. It was so fun to have them on hand for a quick and easy dessert or afternoon treat!

Chocolate brownies Brownies on parchment paper

Best Brownie Recipe Tips

  • Better chocolate chips = better brownies. In her book, Michelle writes that one of the biggest secrets to making great brownies is using large, good-quality chocolate chips. She recommends Ghiradelli’s 60% Cacao Bittersweet Baking Chips, while I love Enjoy Life’s Dark Chocolate Morsels. Either brand would fantastic in this recipe!
  • It’s better to pull them out too early than to leave them in too long. No one likes dry brownies, so err on the side of caution when you’re making this recipe. Bake them until a toothpick inserted comes out with just a few crumbs attached. If you’re on the fence, go ahead and take them out of the oven. They’ll continue to firm up as they cool!
  • Wait for them to cool. Try your best to resist eating these guys straight out of the oven. Letting them cool makes them gooier and fudgier, and they’ll be less likely to crumble when you slice them. Plus, they’ll have an even richer chocolate flavor. Trust me, it’s worth the wait!

Weeknight baking book

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Best recipe for brownies

Best Homemade Brownies

rate this recipe:
4.93 from 3837 votes
Prep Time: 5 mins
Cook Time: 45 mins
Serves 16 brownies
The ultimate recipe for brownies! They're fudgy, moist, and super chocolaty, with perfect crispy edges. From Weeknight Baking by Michelle Lopez.


  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar*
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup cocoa powder, sifted if lumpy
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar, sifted if lumpy
  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
  • 3/4 teaspoons sea salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup canola oil or extra-virgin olive oil**
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla


  • Preheat the oven to 325°F. Lightly spray an 8x8 baking dish (not a 9x9 dish or your brownies will overcook) with cooking spray and line it with parchment paper. Spray the parchment paper.
  • In a medium bowl, combine the sugar, flour, cocoa powder, powdered sugar, chocolate chips, and salt.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, olive oil, water, and vanilla.
  • Sprinkle the dry mix over the wet mix and stir until just combined.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared pan (it'll be thick - that's ok) and use a spatula to smooth the top. Bake for 40 to 48 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out with only a few crumbs attached (note: it's better to pull the brownies out early than to leave them in too long). Cool completely before slicing.*** Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days. These also freeze well!


*If you'd like to reduce the sugar, I've had success with 1 cup granulated sugar instead of 1 1/2 cups.
**I like to use olive oil because it's what I keep on hand and I enjoy the pairing of olive oil with chocolate. Keep in mind that you will taste it here. For a more neutral flavor, use canola oil.
***When these brownies come out of the oven, they'll be super gooey in the middle. Allow them to cool completely, about 2 hours, before you slice into them to give them a chance to set up. They'll continue to firm up the longer they're out of the oven. If you still prefer a firmer brownie, store them in the fridge.



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Rate this recipe (after making it)

  1. Beth

    This brownie recipe is the absolute best! I have made them at least 20 times, LOL, for my family and they turn out perfect every single time. Thank you!!!

  2. Gaye

    5 stars
    Made these for a second time in an 8×8 pan for 40 minutes and it’s perfectly gooey in the middle. I can see how using a bigger pan can result in a dryer brownie. Using the right size pan is important for this recipe. Delicious, thank you!

  3. H

    1 star
    Not great results. I’ve made these three different ways now and they all turned out bad. I tried the original way but with canola oil. Then I did less sugar and olive oil and finally full sugar and olive oil. They came out dry and the edges were always hard as a rock. And yes, I used the specified pan size.

  4. Susan

    5 stars
    Thank you for this delicious recipe! I’ve made it twice this month and will continue to use it as it yields the most fudgy, scrumptious brownies.

  5. Alicia

    5 stars
    Best brownies I’ve ever made! I’ve been scouring for years trying to find the best brownies that are more fudgey then cakey and that don’t burn on the edges when I bake them. These are truly the best and so easy to make! I’ll be making these for years to come! Thank you!

  6. Kim

    2 stars
    Like other comments, I baked for 40mins at 325f, the brownie was so dry!
    May be the author confused the baking time 20-25mins to 40-48 mins?

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      Hi Kim, did you use an 8×8 baking dish or a larger one?

  7. Nancy

    2 stars
    I don’t know if I did anything wrong, but they’re honestly kinda dry and I didn’t even bake them for the amount of time specified.

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      Hi Nancy, did you use an 8×8 pan or a larger one? Did you change any of the ingredients?

  8. EA

    Hi there could you please add the measurements in grams/ milli litre? Thank you

  9. Barbara

    5 stars
    Made them exact except added coffee instead of water. Used canola oil. Pulled them out at 35 minutes. They tasted exactly like the king Arthur gluten free brownies I always buy at my local Whole Foods and are my absolute favorite. These were so easy to make and a huge hit! Never buying a mix again. These are dense, decadent, and yummy in the center.

  10. Abbi Owen

    5 stars
    They’re absolutely delicious! The first time I made them, I left them in the oven too long so they weren’t as fudgy as I’d hoped, but so delicious! Making them again now, and won’t make that mistake again. I also added peanut butter chips for a different pop of flavor 🙂

  11. Val

    5 stars
    Can it be doubled for a 9×13 pan?

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      I haven’t tried but some others have. Watch the timing, they may need to bake a little longer since the batter will be thicker.

  12. Grace Gamble

    5 stars
    Absolutely perfect brownies. Made them on a whim when I really wanted some chocolate and happened to have all the ingredients lying around. They exceeded my expectations! A perfectly fudgy and sweet interior and perfect slight crisp on the top. I will be making these all the time now!

    • Ashley

      4 stars
      I didn’t have enough sugar so I subbed with a c of brown sugar, also added milk instead of water and used grated unsweetened baking chocolate in place of the chocolate chips. They turned out very well. Chewy and rich and not too sweet. I baked them for 40 mins and cut into them about 10 mins after I pulled them out and they were set pretty well and still warm. Overall a pretty good recipe!

  13. Sk

    5 stars
    Absolutely perfect! Amazing recipe, I omitted the chocolate chips because I dislike them generally, added a teaspoon of instant coffee, and some brownie frosting and they are the absolute best brownies I’ve ever had! So fudgy and delicious but not too sweet! Excellent best brownie recipe ever! I made them in my air fryer and I’m so happy and proud of how they came out

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      I’m so glad you loved the brownies!

  14. Sonita

    5 stars
    THESE ARE SOO GOOD!! Not too sweet and not too bitter! So delicious, my mum loves them and so do I. This is going to be my go to recipe for brownies from now on!!

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      I’m so glad you loved them!

      • erika

        what’s the heat setting/bake time if i use a 9×9 pan?

  15. Madeline

    5 stars
    These are the best brownies I have ever had. Fudgy, chewy, chocolaty, and perfect.

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      I’m so glad you loved them!

  16. Karla

    5 stars
    Loved this recipe! I swapped out the water for some espresso and it turned out amazing

  17. Carla

    5 stars
    I wish I could share a picture because mine turned out perfectly! I love that this recipe makes fudgy rich brownies, not cake. And it never feels under baked in texture, just gooey? Amazing. They’re perfect. I’ve made them over ten times by now and it’s always pretty great!

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Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.