Fudgy coffee brownies studded with walnut. These classic brownies will be an all-time favorite.
The first recipe of the New Year.... I thought about doing something healthy like a salad, but then I thought it would be better to stick with the essence of what this blog is... desserts. And what better than some fudgy coffee brownies to start things off? In the past year I've made quite a few different brownies like these blueberry brownies, cookie dough brownies, and peppermint bark brownies. It seemed fitting to continue that on into this year as well. I mean, come on... New Year, New You or New Year, New Brownies. Exactly, it's not even a choice.
This recipe is adapted from the cookbook Southern Girl Meets Vegetarian Boy by Damaris Phillips. She shares southern meals with a vegetarian twist - plus carnivore substitutions for the non-vegetarians! The recipes are amazing, the photos are beautiful. She makes it hard to choose just one recipe to try - and whether or not to try the vegetarian or meaty versions. In the book she mentioned these brownies being like the ones someone she knew used to make and when I tried them, I was also taken back to brownies I also had when I was younger, but hadn't had in many, many years. It's that perfect nostalgia brownie that makes you want to hide under the table with the whole pan and a big glass of ice cold milk. (I may have done that with these brownies...let's not go into detail about that.)
I made a few changes to her recipe, however. In the original version, we use black walnuts. To make it more accessible to more people, I opted for regular walnuts. She also calls them coffee brownies, but I did not taste the coffee enough. To give it more of a pronounced coffee flavor, I actually added a bit more than double the coffee in the recipe. These brownies are fudgy and a little chewy with an addictive crunch from the walnuts.
Coffee Brownies with Walnuts
- 10 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 cup light brown sugar
- ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 ½ tablespoons instant coffee or espresso I love using espresso here
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 2 large eggs
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- ½ cup all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup chocolate chips
- ¼ cup chopped walnuts
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line an 8 x 8 baking pan with parchment paper, leaving the ends overhanging.
- Place water in a small saucepan and heat to boiling, then turn down the heat to low. Place a heatproof bowl (that is big enough to touch the water) over the small saucepan.
- Add the butter and heat until melted. Add the sugar, cocoa powder, coffee, and salt. Stir until well combined and remove from heat.
- Allow the mixture to cool slightly, then swiftly beat in the eggs and vanilla extract. Stir in the flour.
- Fold in the chocolate chips and walnuts.
- Pour the batter into the baking pan and bake the brownies for 20 - 25 minutes, or until just set.
- Allow to cool completely before cutting into bars.
I love reading all your posts and your recipes. I'm so tempted to try out this particular recipe very soon. May I ask how do you achieve that nice shiny crackly top surface for all your brownies? I've read elsewhere that I'd need to beat the sugar and eggs until frothy, pale and thick. But your instructions didn't call for that. From your pictures they really have a lovely top! Hope to get a clear understanding before I try out this recipe.
Amanda Powell says
Hi Lynn, I don’t do anything special to get the crackly tops. The top on these brownies weren’t overly crackly. They’re shiny, but not really crackly. I do whisk everything really well after adding the eggs though, but I don’t beat them separately or until they reach a certain stage.
You could certainly whip the eggs and sugar together and then add it to the melted chocolate though and see how that works out for you. Just add everything else as normal into the chocolate as it melts except the sugar, then whip the sugar and eggs and when the chocolate mixture is cooled slightly, add in the whipped egg/sugar mixture and continue on with the recipe as normal. I haven’t made these particular brownies like that, but it’s worth trying.
If you are serious about crackly tops, you can also try whipping together the egg whites and the sugar as though it’s a meringue until it reaches soft peaks. Mix the yolks into the batter like normal, then fold in the meringue at the very end of the brownie batter process, right before folding in the nuts.
Thanks so much Amanda! Thanks for giving me so much details. I truly appreciate it. Let me try out with your original method in your recipes first. I hope I could achieve that nice shiny 'crust' top for my brownies.
Sweet jesus the texture on these looks absolutely perfect! Fudgelike and decadently delicious.
Its definitely in the top 3 of the best brownies of my life!