Dark chocolate walnut brownies are a classic dessert that's easy to make at home. These rich, dark chocolate brownies are filled with crunchy walnuts and made entirely from scratch.
Brownies are one of my favorite desserts to make - salted caramel brownies and tahini brownies are my two other go-to recipes. But there's nothing like a rich chocolate brownie filled with crunchy walnuts. It's a classic for a reason.
I always recommend brownies to any beginner or novice baker. There's no leavening involved and they're made with simple baking ingredients, so you may already have what you need on hand.
These brownies turn out rich, decadent, and super chocolatey. The walnuts add a nice bit of crunch to balance the texture and flavor. They're great any time of year!
Ingredients and substitutions
- Butter - Unsalted butter and the listed salt can be substituted with salted butter if desired.
- Sugars - We're using a combination of granulated and brown sugars for the perfect chewy texture and sweetness. Granulated sugar helps give these brownies a crunchy crust and chewy texture, while the molasses in brown sugar adds depth of flavor and makes them more fudgy.
- Vanilla - Adds depth of flavor to your brownies.
- Egg - Adds moisture and structure to your brownies.
- All-purpose flour - Adds stability and balances with the wet ingredients in the recipe. I have only tested this recipe with AP flour, so I can't say for sure how other flours would turn out. Instead of making substitutions and potentially wasting ingredients, I recommend searching for a recipe written with the type of flour you'd like to use.
- Cocoa powder - I used Dutch cocoa powder in this recipe, but since there are no leavening agents, natural cocoa powder would also work.
- Salt - Enhances the flavor of the brownies and helps cut the sweetness.
- Chocolate chips - I like to use mini chocolate chips for my brownies, but you can use any chocolate chips you have on hand. They can also be omitted entirely for a less rich brownie.
- Walnuts - Can be substituted with chopped pecans, almonds, or peanuts. They can also be omitted completely without affecting the recipe.
Tips and tricks
Room temperature ingredients - For this recipe, you'll need melted butter and room temperature eggs. Room temperature ingredients incorporate seamlessly to create a smooth, even batter. Adding cold eggs can leave streaks when baked. To bring eggs to room temperature quickly, place the eggs (in the shell) in a bowl and cover with warm tap water. Allow to set for 10 minutes to bring to room temperatures.
Don't skip the salt - Salt plays an important part in dessert recipes. Not only does it balance the sweetness, it also makes your brownies taste better by enhancing the other flavors present, like butter, vanilla, and cocoa.
Walnuts on top - Sprinkle some extra walnuts and chocolate chips on top just before baking. This adds visual appeal when serving.
Parchment paper - Use parchment paper with extra hanging over the edges. This way, the brownies can easily be lifted from the pan after baking. This makes for easy slicing and serving.
Testing for doneness - Test the center of your brownies with a toothpick to see if they're done. If the toothpick comes out clean or with dry crumbs, your brownies are done. If the toothpick has batter on it, keep baking for a few more minutes, then check again.
Allow your brownies to cool before slicing - Slicing into warm brownies creates messy, crumbly edges. For smooth cuts, allow your brownies to cool most of the way first. Use a sharp chef's knife, wiping off between cuts, to make clean, even slices.
Frequently asked questions
Since there are no leavening agents in this recipe, like baking powder or baking soda, the type of cocoa powder you use won't affect the recipe. You can use either dutch cocoa powder (for a darker color and smooth, mild chocolate flavor), or natural cocoa powder (for a lighter color and stronger, slightly more bitter chocolate flavor).
Your brownies will rise a little, but not much. There's no leavening in this recipe, which means they'll turn out fairly dense and rich.
Brownies will keep for 3 to 4 days in a tightly sealed container in the refrigerator.
Yes, brownies are freezer-friendly and will keep in a tightly sealed container for up to three months. Make sure your brownies are cooled to room temperature before storing.
Yes, when doubled this recipe will fit in a 9x13 pan. Your baking time may increase by 5 minutes or so.
Dark Chocolate Walnut Brownies
- ½ cup (113 g) unsalted butter, melted
- ½ cup (100 g) granulated sugar
- ¾ cup (160 g) light brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- ¾ cup (90 g) all-purpose flour
- ½ cup (42 g) dutch cocoa powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup (90 g) mini chocolate chips
- ½ cup (56 g) walnuts, chopped
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Grease an 8x8 square baking pan or line with parchment and set aside. If lining pan, leave some hanging over the edges to easily pull brownies from the pan once cooled.
- In a large mixing bowl, add your melted butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla, stirring to combine. Add eggs and stir until completely incorporated.
- In a separate bowl, sift together your dry ingredients - flour, cocoa, and salt. Slowly stir dry ingredients into wet ingredients until combined. Scrape down the sides of your bowl.
- Stir in chocolate chips and walnuts. Pour into your prepared 8x8 pan and use a spatula to spread evenly to the edges. Batter will be thick.
- Bake for about 20-24 minutes, then test with a toothpick for doneness. Insert toothpick into the center of the pan. If toothpick comes out with wet batter, the brownies are not done. Continue checking every 2 minutes. If toothpick comes out with a few crumbs, then the brownies are done.
- Place brownies onto a wire rack and allow to cool completely before cutting and enjoying.
- Brownies will keep for 3-4 days in a sealed container at room temperature.
- Dutch cocoa can be substituted with natural cocoa powder.
- Walnuts can be omitted or substituted with chopped pecans, almonds, or peanuts.
- Doubled recipe can be prepared in a 9x13 pan. Baking time will increase by up to 5 minutes.