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Updated: Apr 12, 2019

It was my brother-in-law's birthday recently. I told my sister that I would be totally happy to make a cake. I didn't want to frost it, though, so she could just do that. Done? Not done. It turned out that neither of us really wanted to frost a cake. So she made a guava rum cake, and I was tasked with making brownies.

I haven't made brownies for a few years. I definitely had a tried and true recipe a few years back but I blanked and can't remember what it was, or where I found it. I had to start over. Luckily, recipes on Allrecipes have reviews! And there are so many recipes for everything. (I almost got distracted and made something else!)

Anyway, I found this recipe and did my best to make it fit my situation. By 'my situation', I mean that I wanted a recipe for a 9x13 pan, I was short on cocoa powder, and I didn't want to take out the hand mixer.


  • 1 cup butter

  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten

  • 1 cup sugar

  • 1 tablespoon vanilla

  • 1 cup flour

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder, sifted

  • 2 individual packs of unsweetened instant hot chocolate

  • 8 ounces chocolate chips

Note: Remember how I said that I was running out of cocoa? I went to the store to buy some and for some reason, my options were $12 of Cadbury's drinking chocolate, $3 of Swiss Miss, or very expensive cocoa powder. I chose the Swiss Miss and hoped for the best.


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a 9x13 pan.

  2. Melt the butter in the microwave. Whisk in the sugar, eggs, and vanilla. (If the butter is very hot, you might want to wait for it to cool before adding the eggs.)

  3. Add the salt, baking powder, and cocoa. Mix until just combined. Don't over mix! Mix in the flour, then the chocolate chips.

  4. Pour the batter in the pan. It will be a little thick so you'll need to spread it out.

  5. Bake for about 35 minutes. It will not be totally firm in the middle. Let it cool in the pan for about an hour before you cut it, or until the bottom of the pan is cool.

The (still amazing!) first piece that I ruined when I took it out of the pan.

Notes on this recipe:

  • Several comments on the original recipe said "DON'T OVER MIX" very aggressively, so I'm sharing that with you all.

  • Literally no one noticed that I replaced a third of the cocoa with hot chocolate mix. If you do have enough cocoa, I would use 3/4 cup for the recipe.

  • Definitely use a nonstick pan if you have one. Considering I wasn't using a nonstick pan, these were not terribly hard to get out of the pan, but I still lost the first few that I tried to take out. I had to be very patient in cutting the brownies and working them out with a spatula because they're so fudgy. I don't have a solution. I ate what was left in the pan pretty cheerfully, though.

  • They're dense and fudgy and amazing. You can cut the sugar down and the recipe will still work; the trade off is that they'll be more cake-like, less brownie-like.


"Box brownie texture with homemade brownie taste." - Me

"Maybe we don't need to take all of these to Larissa's house." - My mummy, left

I don't know what else to tell you. I literally ate the scraps that were left in the bottom of the pan with a dessert fork. They were still so delicious.

Note for storing the brownies: They've been in an airtight container for the past few days and they're still as chewy and great as when I first cut them. I might suggest that over foil so the edges don't get hard.


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