Cook's Illustrated Chewy Brownies

Yesterday was the one month mark for Stephen's mission. Hooray! He is doing well. Loves it so far. Want to see a pic?

Elders: Lamb, Foster, Nieman, and Blair on a snowy day in Provo, 
headed to Puebla in April...

I made these brownies the other day and mailed them off to Stephen. They are super moist and chewy. Not quite as dense as Williams Sonoma Triple Chocolate Brownies (my favorite so far for mailing)  Click on the link above for recipe and packaging instructions. Cook's Illustrated Chewy Brownies are a little more on the tender side. Really great chocolate flavor and amazingly moist and chewy.
Since we live an hour away from the MTC, I can use same day package service from Btown to Provo for a few dollars.  I've sent cookies, cinnamon rolls, brownies. No worries so far about cookies crumbling , cinnamon rolls being smashed or brownies drying out.   In a month, I know this will change.  Btown to Puebla, Mexico is a bit more of a jaunt.
So I'll keep baking and sharing.
Finding the treat that travels best.
This is my mission in  life.
Yes, I'm serious.

Cooks description/science behind this recipe:
To devise a properly chewy brownie recipe, we first had to discover the perfect ratio of oil to butter. We then combated greasiness by replacing some of the oil with egg yolks, whose emulsifiers prevent fat from separating and leaking out during baking. We found that unsweetened chocolate provides the strongest chocolate flavor. Finally, folding in bittersweet chocolate chunks just before baking gave our chewy brownies gooey pockets of melted chocolate and rounded out their complex flavor.

Cook's Illustrated Chewy Brownies
Adapted from Cook's Illustrated March 2010
print recipe

1/3 cup Dutch processed cocoa
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoon boiling water
2 oz. unsweetened chocolate, finely chopped
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 1/2 cups sugar
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon baking soda (optional)*
4-6 oz. bittersweet or semi sweet chocolate, cut into 1/2 inch pieces

Place rack on second lowest position in oven. Preheat oven to 350.

Make a foil liner for a 9x 13 pan by turning the baking pan pan upside down. Tear a piece of foil the length of the pan, leaving extra (about 2 inches)  hanging down on both ends.  Form the foil over the outside of the pan, Then flip the pan over, and place the molded foil to the inside of the pan. Spray the foil with cooking spray.

Whisk cocoa and boiling water together in a large bowl until smooth. Add unsweetened chocolate and whisk until chocolate is melted. Whisk in melted butter and oil. Mixture may look curdled at this point. Add eggs,  egg yolks and vanilla. Continue to whisk until smooth. Whisk in sugar until fully incorporated.  Using rubber spatula, fold in flour, salt, baking soda and bittersweet chocolate all at once, taking care to not over mix.
Scrape batter into prepared pan and bake until toothpick inserted in center comes out with a few moist crumbs attached, about 30-40 minutes. Do not over cook. Transfer pan to wire rack and let cool completely, about 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Remove from pan using foil liner to lift brownies out of pan.  Cut when cooled.

-*I added soda, because there was not any other leavening in the recipe, and I wanted to make sure the brownies were not too flat. This addition may not be needed especially at lower elevations.
-For best results, use this method for packaging and shipping.
-I raised the brownies to the center of the oven (from the bottom rack) at the 30 minute mark. Total baking time for me, about 37 minutes.


  1. These brownies look absolutely delicious really yummy! gloria

  2. I happened upon your blog, and am enjoying it much. You will be so grateful you baked all those goodies! My eldest son is serving in Buenos Aires - I baked every week for him when he was in the MTC - we live in NY. It did get a bit spendy. He now has 6 months left (so exciting!) and I've been so grateful that I baked for him when I could. I've missed it so much that my latest package to him contained the ingredients for no-bake cookies. He & his companion loved them!

  3. No bake cookies are a great idea! I've adopted the same thought as you - I know the packages will be few and far between once he leaves for Mexico, so I'm taking advantage now!

  4. Si, What great brownies. I used the same day service for the MTC as well. My daughter is 2 months away from coming home from her mission. Can't wait! She's in Puerto Rico.

    It went by faster than I hoped. Thank goodness.

  5. si, i recognized your brownies over at remod! they look so yummy! i love that you do all the experimenting for us, how generous of you to share your knowledge and your beautiful photos! your son is lucky to have such a sweet mom!


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