Homemade Brownies in a Pan

Homemade Brownies

These homemade brownies are dense, chewy and chock-full of chocolate! They’ve got a beautiful shine on top and a moist interior that’ll have you asking for seconds….and thirds!!

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Brownies cut into squares

There are few things that I enjoy better from a box mix rather than the homemade version.  Until recently, I could whole-heartedly say that I hadn’t met a homemade brownie recipe that was better than store-bought. 

Well recently my sister-in-law introduced me to this recipe that she had cut out of a magazine years and years ago.  I was leery as homemade brownies I’ve tried in the past were just “mehhh.”  And why go through the extra work when a box mix was better??

But you guys….this recipe is IT.  It’s the needle in the haystack that I wasn’t even sure existed.  And thinking back on some lessons of food science, I totally understand why!!  Lucky for you all, I’m sharing this pearl of a recipe I’m SO excited to have come by. 

ingredients needed to make homemade brownies

What ingredients do you need to make homemade brownies?

  • Cocoa Powder
  • Salted Butter
  • Hot Water or Coffee
  • Granulated Sugar
  • Large Eggs
  • Vanilla Extract
  • All-Purpose Flour
  • Salt
  • Baking Soda
  • Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips or Chunks
  • A High Quality Chocolate Bar, like Ghirardelli

How do you make chewy homemade brownies?

If you love a good, dense, chewy brownie, this recipe is for you! (And if you like a soft, moist, cakey brownie, try my Texas Sheet Cake!!) And luckily, making homemade brownies is really quite simple!

First, you’ll preheat the oven, grease a 9×13 pan and gather all of your ingredients.

Then, in a mixing bowl, you’ll whisk the cocoa powder and melted butter. This will help disperse any clumps of cocoa. Then, you’ll pour the hot water (or coffee) over the cocoa/butter mixture and whisk until well-combined. What’s the purpose of the hot water, you may ask?? We’ll get to that in a bit.

pouring hot water into the batter

Next, whisk in the sugar, eggs and vanilla. Once combined, stir in the flour, salt, baking soda and chocolate chips.

adding chocolate chips to the batter

Spread the batter into the prepared pan and top with pieces of the high quality chocolate bar and bake!

pouring brownie batter into pan

How do you know when brownies are done baking?

Great question. Brownies are difficult because you can’t see the “golden brown” appearing like you can on chocolate chip cookies. Instead, you will notice that the outer edge will be set and the middle will have a shiny, flaky-looking top.

Use a toothpick and insert it about 1 inch from the edge of the pan. If it comes out clean, the brownies are done. (It will NOT come out clean from the center of the pan – this is a good thing! The brownies will set as they cool and be deliciously fudgy!)

cut brownies on parchment paper

What’s the secret to making the best homemade brownies?

Blooming the chocolate and NOT overbaking!

When you add a hot liquid to cocoa powder, it helps it “bloom,” meaning it enhances the flavor of the chocolate. You can “bloom” the chocolate with any hot liquid, but for this recipe, I go with either hot water or coffee.

The most important thing with this recipe (especially if you’re going for a chewy, fudgy brownie) is to make sure you do not over-bake the brownie!!! Over-baking a brownie can take them from fudgy and delicious to dry and cakey. Learn how to tell if your brownies are done a couple paragraphs above! 🙂

stack of moist brownies

Alright, all you chocoholics, time to get baking! Be sure to tag Dance Around the Kitchen in your photos – I’d love to see how your brownies turn out! 🙂

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Homemade Brownies in a Pan

Homemade Brownies

These homemade brownies are moist, chewy and chock-full of chocolate!!
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 40 mins
Course Dessert
Servings 24


  • Oven


  • 3/4 c cocoa powder
  • 2/3 c salted butter melted
  • 1/2 c very hot water (or coffee)
  • 2 c sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 1/3 c flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 12 oz bag semi-sweet chocolate chips (or chunks)
  • 1 4 oz high quality chocolate bar (I like semi-sweet chocolate) chopped


  • Preheat oven to 350F and grease a 9×13 pan.
  • In a mixing bowl, whisk together the cocoa powder and melted butter.
  • Pour the very hot water in and whisk until well-combined. Let cool for a couple of minutes.
  • Whisk in the sugar, eggs and vanilla.
  • Then, stir in the flour, salt, baking soda and chocolate chips.
  • Spread the batter into the prepared 9×13 pan and top with pieces of the chopped chocolate bar.
  • Bake for 25-30 minutes.
Keyword brownies


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