Pan-Banging Salted Fudge Brownies
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These are the best salted fudge brownies ever! The trick to making fudge brownies that are dense and chocolatey is the technique. They’re called pan-banging fudge brownies because banging the pan knocks the air out of them and makes them incredibly fudgy!
SALTED FUDGE BROWNIES.
It’s finally happened. I’ve finally made the perfect salted fudge brownies. And you know what? It’s all in the technique.
I’ve made these brownies countless times over the last few months, testing and retesting the recipe until they were as fudgy and gooey as can be. So far, everyone I’ve shared them with has unanimously agreed that these are some of the best fudge brownies EVER.
They’re straightforward to make, require the same ingredients as most from-scratch fudge brownie recipes, but as I said, the technique is what makes all the difference. Don’t worry; you don’t need any unique ingredients or anything like that.
I’ll be the first one to admit that I’ve shared another fudge brownie recipe on the blog that I admittedly thought was the best before I developed this one. I’ve also made espresso brownies, so if you like a little caffeine in your brownies, you’ll heart those. Can you tell we like our chocolate fudge brownies around here?
Not to get too scientific on you here, but I’d like to take a second to tell you what happens when we play around with the ingredients that we use to make fudgy brownies.
HOW INGREDIENTS CHANGE THE OVERALL TEXTURE OF BROWNIES:
When you make a ‘cakey’ brownie recipe, you want to ensure that the recipe has a lot more flour and less butter and chocolate. You may notice that cake-like brownie recipes often contain more leavening agents (baking powder or soda) and less fat (butter or oil) than brownie that are denser. You’ll also notice that cake-like brownie recipes often call for cocoa powder rather than melted chocolate.
When we’re making fudgy brownies, it’s essential to not only increase the amount of butter or oil in the recipe but also the melted chocolate. You’ll find that my pan-banging salted fudge brownie recipe contains more real chocolate rather than cocoa powder. This is because melted chocolate contains cocoa butter, which gives you that melt-in-your-mouth chocolatey taste we all love from an excellent fudge brownie recipe. Fudge brownies are also notorious for containing a lower flour ratio than cakey brownies.
WHAT DO YOU NEED TO MAKE THE BEST SALTED FUDGE BROWNIES:
- Chopped bittersweet chocolate
- Salted butter
- All-purpose flour
- Granulated sugar
- Sea salt
- Vanilla extract
- Cocoa powder
- Sea salt
HOW TO MAKE SALTED FUDGE BROWNIES:
- Preheat your oven and spray and line an 8×8 metal baking pan with cooking spray and parchment paper.
- Melt the butter and chocolate together.
- Beat the eggs and the sugar. No, really. Beat it together until it’s light and airy, precisely 5 minutes. The color should also change and lighten significantly, like a pale yellow.
- Pour the melted chocolate and butter mixture into the bowl with the mixer running on low.
- Sift the all-purpose flour, cocoa powder, and salt into the mixture and fold using a rubber spatula. Do not overmix the batter; you don’t want to knock all the air out of the mix just yet! If you want to add extra chocolate chips or chopped pecans, now would be the time to do so.
- Bake the brownies for 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and bang the brownie pan on the counter a couple of times, with care, so the brownies don’t come flying out! Place the brownies back in the oven and continue to bake for 10-12 minutes or until the brownies are cooked through on top. Now remove the pan from the oven and bang it a second time, nice and hard but don’t let them fly out of the pan. Allow the brownies to cool completely before you cut them. See the post on tips on how to cut the brownies into perfect pieces!
CAN I USE SEMI-SWEET CHOCOLATE INSTEAD OF BITTERSWEET?
You can if you’d like but we found that using semi-sweet chocolate made these brownies way too sweet for our taste. I tested the recipe again, this time cutting the sugar back to 1 cup and using semi-sweet but again, the brownies ended up being a tad bit too sweet. So my suggestion is if you prefer desserts on the sweeter side, then yes, you can use semi-sweet chocolate but I highly recommend cutting the sugar back to 1 cup. For those that prefer richer and more intense chocolate flavor with less sweetness, bittersweet chocolate is the way for you my friend.
WHY DO YOU RECOMMEND A METAL BAKING PAN FOR THESE SALTED FUDGE BROWNIES?
I suggest using a metal baking pan because we’re banging the pan several times. I’ve tried making the recipe with a metal baking sheet (the first few times I made them), and then this last time (pictured) I made them in a glass baking dish. Though a glass baking dish does work, I find it’s much easier to bang the pan with confidence when you don’t have to worry about breaking the dish!
WHY DO YOU BEAT THE EGGS AND SUGAR TOGETHER FOR SO LONG WHEN WE MAKE PAN BANGING SALTED FUDGE BROWNIES?
You’ll notice that our list of ingredients doesn’t contain any leavening agents. Leavening agents help create height and air in a baked product. Since we aren’t using baking soda or powder, whipping together the eggs and sugar for longer incorporates more air into the final product that we’ll knock out later.
WHY DO YOU BANG THE PAN FOR THESE SALTED FUDGE BROWNIES?
Remember all that air we built into our brownies? Well, when you bang the pan, halfway through the baking process gets rid of air bubbles and distributes the batter evenly. Knocking the air out will cause the batter to deflate a bit and will result in a deeply fudgy brownie. But, simply put, it makes a fudgier brownie.
The entire dish of these salted fudge brownies disappeared in less 48 hours here. I’m not kidding when I say this is the only fudge brownie recipe you’ll need from here on out!
BANG THOSE PANS.
It’s the right way to make brownies!
- 7 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
- 1/2 cup EACH: salted butter AND all-purpose flour
- 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup cocoa powder (dutch process)
- Sea salt
- PREP: Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line an 8x8 baking pan (preferably metal, see notes) with parchment paper and spray with cooking spray; set aside.
- CHOCOLATE: Melt the butter in a 2 cup measuring cup. Add the chocolate and stir and allow it to melt completely. Let sit for 5 minutes, if it doesn’t melt all the way, you can zap it in the microwave in 30-second increments until the chocolate melts completely. Pour in the vanilla and set aside.
- WHIP: Add the sugar to a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer. Add one egg and using the mixer on the low setting, and using your whisk attachment incorporate the egg completely. Then, add the remaining two eggs, one at a time, and continue whipping the mixture until it’s light and airy; exactly 5 minutes. The color should also change and lighten significantly, like a pale yellow. Then, slowly pour the melted chocolate and butter mixture into the bowl with the mixer running on low. Stop the mixer, scrape down the sides. Sift the all-purpose flour, cocoa powder, and salt into the mixture and fold using a rubber spatula. Do not overmix the batter, you don’t want to knock all the air out of the mixture just yet! If you want to add extra chocolate chips or chopped pecans, now would be the time to do so.
- BAKE: Pour the mixture into the prepared pan and smooth out the top. Sprinkle with a big pinch of Maldon salt and bake the brownies for 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and bang the brownie pan on the counter a couple of times, with care so the brownies don’t come flying out! Place the brownies back in the oven and continue to bake for 10-12 minutes or until the brownies are cooked through on top. Remove the pan from the oven and bang again on the counter a couple of times so it starts to deflate. Allow them to cool completely before you cut them.
- if you don't have salted butter, you can use unsalted, just increase the sea salt to 1/2 teaspoon in the brownie batter.
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