This stripped-down recipe for brownies requires almost zero technique, and uses only cocoa powder to achieve a dense, chewy, very chocolaty treat. Top with mint icing for a unique spin on an old favorite.

Chef John
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Ingredients

16
Original recipe yields 16 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C).

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  • Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium-low heat.

  • Combine sugar and cocoa powder in a large bowl; stir in melted butter until mixture is smooth.

  • Stir in 1 egg, vanilla, and salt. Mix in second egg.

  • Fold in flour and transfer to ungreased 8x8-inch square baking dish.

  • Bake in the preheated oven for about 35 minutes.

  • Remove from oven and cool in the baking dish for 10 minutes before removing to cool completely on a wire rack.

  • Mix powdered sugar, milk, and mint extract in a bowl until smooth.

  • Pour icing over cooled brownies. Spread evenly and allow to set, about 30 minutes.

  • Slice into 16 brownies.

Nutrition Facts

174 calories; 7 g total fat; 39 mg cholesterol; 88 mg sodium. 28.2 g carbohydrates; 2.2 g protein; Full Nutrition

Reviews (43)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 5 stars
07/18/2012
I thought it best to grease the pan first of all so I used wilton cake release spray. DId not want to make the icing as these were to sit on the counter at work for 8 hours so I changed the recipe slightly by using mint extract in place of the vanilla. Topped off with a little green powdered sugar. Anything mint works a treat for me! I just love both the basic taste and the texture of this brownie now that I have this recipe I plan on swopping out the extract to make a variety of different flavors. Planning on trying with orange extract next! Read More
(23)

Most helpful critical review

Rating: 3 stars
06/06/2012
Just ok. They turned out really crumbly not gooey like I wanted. Read More
(3)
52 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 33
  • 4 star values: 9
  • 3 star values: 6
  • 2 star values: 3
  • 1 star values: 1
Rating: 5 stars
07/18/2012
I thought it best to grease the pan first of all so I used wilton cake release spray. DId not want to make the icing as these were to sit on the counter at work for 8 hours so I changed the recipe slightly by using mint extract in place of the vanilla. Topped off with a little green powdered sugar. Anything mint works a treat for me! I just love both the basic taste and the texture of this brownie now that I have this recipe I plan on swopping out the extract to make a variety of different flavors. Planning on trying with orange extract next! Read More
(23)
Rating: 5 stars
07/18/2012
I thought it best to grease the pan first of all so I used wilton cake release spray. DId not want to make the icing as these were to sit on the counter at work for 8 hours so I changed the recipe slightly by using mint extract in place of the vanilla. Topped off with a little green powdered sugar. Anything mint works a treat for me! I just love both the basic taste and the texture of this brownie now that I have this recipe I plan on swopping out the extract to make a variety of different flavors. Planning on trying with orange extract next! Read More
(23)
Rating: 4 stars
05/08/2012
These were good. I am going to make them again but I will grease the baking dish. I thought "ungreased" was odd but left it that way. Brownies stuck. The pieces were good though! More brownie like than another recipe I tried. Read More
(15)
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Rating: 5 stars
04/27/2013
Chocolaty, dense and super moist. To make sure to get them moist do not bake by time. Set your timer 5 minutes less than recommended and check with a toothpick or bamboo skewer. Continue checking every minute or so until there is barely any batter on them. remove for oven immediately. They will continue to cook a little on the cooling rack. Meaning if they are perfect or cooked in the oven they will be over cooked when cooled. In this case not a moist brownie at all. Read More
(13)
Rating: 5 stars
12/25/2012
This recipe made my night!! Just got back from a potluck Christmas dinner at our friends place. After browsing some recipes and tips on making brownies, I decided to make a chewy one instead of another type. I wanted to do my first attempt with a very simple recipe, and I opted this one. Turned out my it was successful. They love it! Some of them wanted to learn how to make it. One of them said that's her first best brownies in town (we live in China)! A compliment and thank to Chef John! :D I accidentally use 2/3 instead of 3/4 cocoa, but like Chef John said, the quality of cocoa is very important to the result - I use brand Fry's from Canada (thanks to my lovely mom-in-law), don't know if that's the best over there but it works great! Didn't have 8x8" baking pan so I used silicone meatloaf pan, and it cooked well evenly - no uncooked part in the middle. I grease the pan with melted butter and didn't have prob at all when taking the brownies out of the pan. Since I use a small convection oven, I set the heat for 150 Celcius instead of 175, so it wasn't over-burnt, but instead of 35 mins it took 45 mins to cook - until the toothpick comes out clean. I'll definitely make it again, my husband loves it! It was finished too quick until I didn't even have a chance to take a picture, next time I'll post it here :) Read More
(11)
Rating: 5 stars
01/25/2014
Amazing!! I did make a few changes though. I didn't want to make the frosting so I put the mint extract directly into the brownie batter instead. I also added 2/3 cup of chocolate chips. The recipe says to use an ungreased pan but I didn't want to risk that they'd stick so I greased it anyway. They came out perfectly! Read More
(8)
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Rating: 5 stars
11/24/2012
turned out real good excellent and easy to do...did not grease the pan and the brownies came out of the pan with out an issue... Read More
(5)
Rating: 5 stars
01/23/2014
I suck at cooking and baking but I NEEDED chocolate one night. I made these minus the mint and omg I didn't burn them they tasted like brownies and they were soooooo good!!! I may make them again for Superbowl parties I'm going to:) Read More
(4)
Rating: 5 stars
12/22/2012
Loved it! I accidentally added less milk so the icing wasn't runny but I liked it that way because it gave a bit of a hard crispy texture. I took out the brownie upside-down and put the icing on the bottom rather than on the top seemed much easier to spread since the bottom of the brownie was perfectly smooth. Read More
(3)
Rating: 5 stars
11/26/2012
Yummy!!! Tried this recipe earlier this month it was super quick and required almost no technique. My little brownie queen loved this and I was so relieved...:) Read More
(3)
Rating: 3 stars
06/06/2012
Just ok. They turned out really crumbly not gooey like I wanted. Read More
(3)