A classic thick and fudgy brownie turned into an ultra decadent, rich, melt in your mouth brownie. Instead of regular butter, the addition of brown butter brings a subtle nuttiness to compliment the dark chocolate flavor. Freshly ground espresso is also added for the most heavenly combination you'll ever experience in a brownie! Easily made by hand or with the help of a stand mixer, this recipe was made for any chocolate craving!
How to Make Brown Butter
So the star of the show here is definitely the brown butter. Browning butter takes just 10 minutes to make and literally transforms any recipe you add it to.
Whats the difference?
When you melt butter and heat it continuously, the water in the butter evaporates and leaves just the milk and milk fats from the butter. Once those little bits start to brown, they start to smell intensely nutty. This buttery, nutty flavor makes these brownies absolutely irresistible.
Heat the butter
I highly recommend using a lighter colored pan so that it's easier to see when the butter starts to brown. Once the butter is completely melted, it will slowly start to foam, pop, and bubble. You want to stir it every 30 seconds or so to monitor its progress.
Don't burn the butter!
Stepping away even for a minute or two could take your beautiful browned butter to burnt butter in a short amount of time!
How do I know it's ready?
Once you get close to the 5 minute mark, start swirling the pan and moving the butter around to see through the foam on top. On the bottom, you'll see the tiny bits of milk fat. They will turn a golden brown at first, and then will quickly start to darken. Once the milk fat bits and the melted butter is an amber color, take it off the heat right away to stop the cooking process.
How to Make the Brownie Batter
The recipe for this brownie batter is actually so easy, and can be done with or without a stand mixer bowl.
Why espresso powder?
Adding coffee or espresso to chocolate enhances the chocolate flavor of the brownie batter intensely, resulting in a really delicious and rich chocolate brownie flavor. Here are a few different ways to find espresso or coffee grounds to use:
- Coffee or espresso pods- You can break the seal on one of the individual cups and empty the grounds into a container to use.
- Instant coffee granules work well, although know that they need to dissolve in a liquid, so you should add them to the melted brown butter to dissolve them.
- Grind your own! If you have a coffee grinder, grind some of the beans to a fine texture for use.
Getting that shiny crinkle top
There's just something about that super shiny crinkly top on a brownie that makes you feel like the best dang baker in the world. It all comes down to beating the eggs and sugar together. You want the sugar to almost dissolve, which when it bakes, creates the really beautiful and delicate thin layer of film on top of the brownies.
Pick the right brownie pan
Are you a thick brownie or thin brownie lover?
The kind of pan you chose to bake your brownies in will determine the fate of your brownie thickness. This recipe is made with a 8x8 inch baking pan, which gives us really thick, fudgy brown butter espresso brownies.
If you're looking for a thinner brownie, bake them in a 9x9 or 9 ½ x 9 ½ pan. Just know that they will bake much quicker than in a smaller pan.
- A 9 ½ pan will bake in about 20-25 minutes
- a 9x9 pan will bake in about 25-30 minutes
If you're unsure, insert a tooth pick into the center to make sure they're done!
Don't cut them too soon!
Once the brownie are done baking, don't cut into them too soon. While they cool, the brownies will continue to firm up. If you cut them right away they will be pretty messy.
More rich chocolate recipes
FAQ + Expert Tips
- How long does it take to brown the butter?
- It takes a total of 8-10 minutes to brown the butter
- Can I freeze them?
- Yes! Wrap them well in plastic wrap or place them in a freezer container with parchment in between the stacked brownies.
- How long do they last?
- The brownies will last 2-3 days in a sealed container at room temperature. Reheat them in the oven or microwave to soften them up like they're fresh from the oven!
- Don't over mix the batter
- Gently fold in the dry ingredients and stop mixing as soon as you don't see any dry flour. This will keep the brownies from loosing too much air before baking.
- Don't over bake the brownies
- Over baking the brownies will make them dry and crisp instead of soft, fudgy and gooey!
- Don't skip letting them cool
- You should let them cool until they are cut-able. If you cut them to soon the brownies will just fall apart.
Brown Butter Espresso Brownies
- 1 cup unsalted butter, 2 sticks
- 1 ½ cups dark chocolate chips
- ½ tbsp vanilla extract
- 3 eggs
- 1 ¼ cups cane sugar
- 1 cup flour
- 3 tbsp dark cocoa powder
- ½ tsp salt
- 2 tbsp espresso grounds
- In a medium, light colored sauce pan, heat 1 cup (2 sticks) of butter over medium high heat. Allow the butter to melt. The butter will start to foam and pop, make sure to stand by it and stir every 30 seconds or so, for about 5-6 minutes. When the butter turns dark amber in color and starts to smell nutty, remove the pan and pour into a bowl.
- Add the 1 ½ cups of chocolate chips to the butter, stirring to combine. Set aside and let cool.
- In a mixing bowl, add the 3 eggs and 1 ¼ cup of sugar. Whip the eggs and sugar together with the whisk attachment on medium high until the eggs are pale and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.
- Then with the mixer running on low, stream the chocolate and butter mixture into the eggs. Add the vanilla and mix until combined. Remove the bowl from the stand mixer.
- Sift in the 1 cup flour, 3 tbsp cocoa powder, ½ tsp salt, and 2 tbsp espresso grounds right into the mixing bowl. Use a rubber spatula to fold the dry ingredients into the batter, until just combined.
- Pour the batter into a greased or parchment lined 8x8 baking pan. Bake at 325F for 45-50 minutes or until a toothpick comes out with just a few crumbs on it. Bake around the 45 minute mark for extra soft and gooey brownies!
Making the Brownies Without a Stand Mixer
- In a large bowl, add the 3 eggs and 1/14 cup sugar. Mix by hand with a whisk for 2-3 minutes or until the eggs get pale and fluffy.
- Slowly pour in the cooled chocolate and butter mixture. Add the ½ tbsp vanila. Whisk to combine.
- Sift in the 1 cup flour, 3 tbsp cocoa powder, ½ tsp salt and 2 tbsp espresso grounds. Fold in with a spatula until just combined.
- Pour the batter into a greased or parchment lined 8x8 baking pan. Bake at 325F for 45-50 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out with just a few crumbs on it. Bake around the 45 minute mark for extra soft and gooey brownies!