Brownies, those delicious squares of chocolate goodness, are a magic medium: neither cookie nor cake, they exist in a heavenly limbo somewhere in between dense gooeyness and light crumbiness, ready to feature whatever flavors you like best. Though it often seems as though there are only two choices—cakey or fudgy—there are, in fact, many other answers to the question, “How do you like your brownie?” Chocolate chips or butterscotch chips, walnuts or pecans, coffee or peanut butter or dried fruit…yes, the list goes on and on. To help you hone your answer, here are five recipes for the perfect brownie, however you like it:
The Baked Brownie by Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito
This brownie is the valedictorian of brownies: not only is it Oprah’s favorite brownie, it was awarded best brownie honors by America’s Test Kitchen, and also by the folks at the Today show.
Saucepan Brownies by Susan Spungen
Baking from scratch can feel like a pain, mostly because of all the dishes. But what if there were no dishes? These brownies are mixed in one saucepan, so not only are they delicious, but there are no bowls to wash.
Brownies by Darina Allen and Rosemary Kearny
For those living a gluten-free life, the loss of brownies might feel like a tragedy. If you or someone you love is mourning no-more-brownies then this recipe, which uses almond flour instead of wheat flour, might be the best news of the year.
Coffee Brownies by Sara Foster
For their intense coffee flavor, these brownies call on both instant espresso powder and Kahlua.
Congo Brownies by Flo Braker
Some brownie lovers are actually blondie lovers—and if you’re not sure which one you are then these brownies, which have a layer of each, are a must-try.