Soft and Chewy Brownie Cookies

These cookies have been on my bucket list for years.

I only wish I had checked them off my list sooner because I loved every fudgy center and chewy-edged bite.

Soft and Chewy Brownie Cookies (from scratch, no mix)

They’re one hundred percent from scratch, no cake mix, no brownie mix, no shortcuts. The recipe is adapted from Donna Hay, who’s been called the Australian Martha Stewart. After converting grams of butter to tablespoons, and using regular granulated sugar in place of superfine caster sugar, I thought I was in for smooth sailing. Wrong.

I’ve seen versions of this recipe using melted chocolate chips for the 12 ounces of dark chocolate that Donna calls for. I wanted that to work because a standard bag of chocolate chips is 12 ounces and that would have been convenient. But when I melted the chocolate chips with butter as directed, the mixture seized horribly.


Soft and Chewy Brownie Cookies (from scratch, no mix)

I should have known better because chocolate chips have stabilizers in them that prevent them from melting easily. This is great when used in chocolate chips cookies so they retain their chip-like shape in a 350F oven. Not great when you want them to melt into sauce with butter. The water that’s released from the melting butter turned the mixture turn into seized-up sludge. So I started over. I hate wasting butter and chocolate, but salvaged the clumpy mess and was used it as Smores chocolate.

I tried again with a 54% Dark Chocolate Pound Plus bar from Trader Joe’s, not to be confused with their 72% bar. Because there’s only 2/3 cup of sugar in the entire batch of cookies, I didn’t want to use chocolate that was too dark for fear the cookies would be bitter. I like my brownies and chocolate cookies on the less sweet side, but had read reports of others trying 72% chocolate and the cookies were bitter.


To make the cookies, combine 7 ounces of chopped chocolate from a bar (not chocolate chips as I learned) with 3 tablespoons of butter and heat to melt, about 45 seconds in the micro, and set it aside to cool.

In a mixing bowl, beat together 2 eggs, sugar, and vanilla. Donna suggests beating for 15 minutes, or until pale and creamy. That seemed ridiculously long, but I kept my stand mixer running for over 13 minutes. The mixture didn’t change in appearance after the first five minutes of beating, and I believe 5 to 8 minutes of beating is adequate. The mixture thickens up and become slightly frothy, but earth-shattering changes didn’t happen after the 5-minute mark.

Soft and Chewy Brownie Cookies (from scratch, no mix)

All at once, add the melted chocolate-butter mixture, the remaining 5 ounces of chopped chocolate, 1/4 cup flour, baking powder, and beat it together, about 1 minute on medium low speed.

If you’re visualizing two eggs, 10 ounces of a melted chocolate-butter mixture, and only 1/4-cup flour and the contents of the mixing bowl looking like liquid chocolate sauce, you’re visualizing correctly. I was freaking out thinking, no, please not another chocolate fail in a recipe that hasn’t even been baked! The mixture was so sloppy, soupy, and wasn’t anywhere near cookie ‘dough’. Chocolate smoothie was more like it.

Soft and Chewy Brownie Cookies (from scratch, no mix)

Donna’s recipe instructs to set the bowl aside for 10 minutes so the mixture can firm up before baking. After 10 minutes, there was no way it was firm enough to do anything with other than maybe insert a straw and drink the chocolate. So I covered the mixing bowl with plasticwrap, said a prayer, and left it on the counter for 1 hour.

In that hour, it had firmed up enough that I was able to use my medium 2-inch cookie scoop and scooped out 17 mounds onto Silpat-lined baking trays. In reality, it felt like I was scooping out severely melted ice cream that had been sitting out of the freezer for a few hours.

There was no way I was going to bake that ‘dough’ and allowed it to remain uncovered on baking sheets at room temperature for another hour to continue to solidify before I was brave enough to bake them.

Soft and Chewy Brownie Cookies (from scratch, no mix)

So that’s setting the bowl aside for 1 hour, then scooping out into mounds, and letting the mounds sit on cookie sheets for another hour before baking. Two hours of solidification. The 10 minutes suggested by the author would have never worked for me.

I was bracing for chocolate puddles to emerge from the oven, but much to my shock and amazement, the cookies pread much less than I expected.

I ran out of cool baking trays and clean Silpats and baked the last two cookies on unlined baking trays and they spread so much more and baked so thin and turned crispy and crumbly. The difference between baking with and without Silpat Non-Stick Baking Mats was night and day. Silpats are tacky and give cookies traction and something to grab onto so they don’t slip and slide around on a hot baking sheet, spreading and turning into cookie puddles.

Soft and Chewy Brownie Cookies (from scratch, no mix)

These cookies are worth everything they put me through and are the lightest, fudgiest, moistest, best brownie cookies I’ve ever tried. You’d think they’d be thick and as heavy as bricks, but they’re not since they’re nearly flourless. And they’re not cakey in the least. I don’t want cake in my brownies, cookies, or brownie-cookies.

The chocolate intensity and sweetness level of the cookies from the Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate bar (54% chocolate) turned out to be spot-on perfect. Sweet enough, but not too sweet; nor bitter.

The 5 ounces of chopped chocolate that’s added to the batter are unexpected nuggets of bliss. It adds so much intensity and also texture. The cookies are so dark and you can’t see the chocolate, so the chunks really are heavenly surprise bites. The chocolate chunks make the cookies so rich. Like having a mini chocolate candy bar baked into every cookie.

Soft and Chewy Brownie Cookies (from scratch, no mix)

It’s worth mentioning that this recipe may not be for everyone. If you are typically prone to cookies that spread and have never mastered the art of anything close to a puffy cookie, this probably isn’t the recipe for you. And now is a great time to spend that $20 bucks on a Silpat because without one, I didn’t have success. Finally, you’ll need a cookie scoop or small ice cream scoop because there’s no way to get the ‘dough’ out of the mixing bowl and onto baking trays in a shape that’s domed enough to hold up to baking.

But they’re so worth it. They really do taste like a brownie, in cookie form. So fudgy, rich, intense, and decadent.

Now I can have my brownies and cookies in one.

Soft and Chewy Brownie Cookies (from scratch, no mix)

Soft and Chewy Brownie Cookies (from scratch, not mix) - Cookies that taste like rich, fudgy brownies! Chewy edges & soft in the middle. Easy recipe at

Soft and Chewy Brownie Cookies

These cookies have the taste and texture of perfect brownies. They’re rich, dark, and smooth. They’re soft and tender in the interior with chewy edges. They’re fudgy, dense, and not at all cakey. Chunks of chocolate are present in every bite and make these cookies an indulgent, rich treat. They’re lighter in weight and heft, thanks to being almost flourless. It’s important to bake these cookies on Silpats or silicone mats and to use a cookie scoop to dollop out the dough, and to give the dough ample time to firm up at room temperature before baking so they cookies don’t spread. These are the best brownie cookies I’ve ever tried and would also make great sandwich cookies with frosting or ice cream filling.


12 ounces dark chocolate from a bar, chopped and divided into 7 ounces and 5 ounces (I used a Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate Pound Plus Bar 54%; do not use chocolate chips)
3 tablespoons butter (I used unsalted)
2 large eggs
2/3 cup granulated sugar (or superfine sugar if available)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup all-purpose flour, sifted
1/4 teaspoon baking powder, sifted


  1. In a medium microwave-safe bowl, combine 7 ounces of chocolate, butter, and heat to melt, about 1 minute on high power. Stop to stir. Heat in 10-second bursts until mixture can be stirred smooth; set aside to cool briefly.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or use an electric mixer), add the eggs, sugar, vanilla and beat for 5 to 8 minutes on medium speed, or until pale and creamy. (Donna Hay recommends beating for 15 minutes, but I saw no changes in the mixture after about 5 minutes and believe 8 minutes is ample).
  3. Add the flour, baking powder, melted chocolate-butter mixture, and remaining 5 ounces chopped chocolate and mix to combine, about 1 minute on medium-low speed (the machine will make lots of noise and shake from the chopped chocolate). Remove the paddle, cover bowl with plasticwrap, and allow to stand at room temperature for about 1 hour in order for batter to firm up (Hay suggests 10 minutes but my batter was like chocolate sauce and it needed 1 hour).
  4. Using a medium 2-inch cookie scoop or small ice cream scoop, scoop out mounds of dough onto Silpat-lined baking trays, placing 8 mounds per tray. Do not crowd them in case your cookies spread a fair amount (mine didn’t but I can foresee it). Allow mounds to remain on trays, uncovered, for about 1 hour before baking to help batter set up more.
  5. Preheat oven to 350F. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until puffed and cracked (I baked for 9 minutes). Allow cookies to cool completely on trays. Cookies will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days.

Recipe adapted from Donna Hay

Only Eats

Related Recipes:

Quintuple Chocolate Fudgy Brownie Cookies – For the ultimate chocolate lover. Chocolate is used five times: Cocoa powder, melted bittersweet baking chocolate, semi-sweet chocolate chips, diced chocolate and caramel-filled truffles (or use your fave diced candy bar) and chocolate-filled Oreos

Mounds Bar Chocolate Coconut Cake Mix Cookies – Brownie-like in their fudginess and extremely easy and fast to make. The coconut candy bars are a great pairing with the chocolate

Thick and Soft Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies (gluten-free) – If your idea of dark chocolate must involve peanut butter, these are the cookies for you. NO Butter, NO Flour, and NO White Sugar used

The Ultimate Fudgy Caramel Brownies – My new favorite brownie recipe. Made in one bowl with a whisk and ready in 30 minutes. The brownies are dense, fudgy, rich, supremely moist, and not at all cakey

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Have you ever made brownie cookies?

Any recent recipe fails or almost fails? Did you save it?

Any bucket list recipes you want to make or have checked off your list?

Thanks for the Deluxe Bulk Foods Sampler Pack Giveaway entries

149 comments on “Soft and Chewy Brownie Cookies”

  1. I’ve made brownie cookies from a mix, but I’m dying to try this from scratch version!!

  2. Glad you salvaged the first batch of chocolate and butter! I’ve never made brownie cookies before…As for bucket list recipes, I need to make a killer chocolate cake with chocolate and peanut butter ganache layers…I haven’t seen the exact recipe for this yet but I think I could cobble together a few different ones to make it work.
    And also, I need to make Bernaise sauce sometime soon, especially with spring veggies like artichokes and asparagus to eat it with!

  3. I love love love your story for this–basically every single panicked day of my life in the kitchen. I have an extremely temper(ature)mental oven that loves to dry out my goods even when I turn down the heat 50 degrees–thankfully, my friends know me as the ganache and frosting guru, so I always manage to reconstitute things by poking a bunch of holes in cakes or bars and drenching them in some sort of icing. :)

    • It was a COMEDY of errors this recipe – I wanted to chuck it out the window 10 times but so glad I just had patience and adapted on the fly. Sounds like you’re familiar with that as well! love your story too!

  4. Oooh yum! I love brownies and cookies, so these have got to be just perfect! Need to make these, they look so fudgey :)

  5. I can literally see how brownie-like they truly are Averie. And I never, ever have luck with melting chocolate chips and butter together. Some people do, but I am not one of them. I stick to chocolate made for melting like TJs pound plus or Bakers chocolate in a regular grocery store. That being said, with 7 oz of the stuff in the dough/brownie cookie batter, I can only imagine how fudgy these are. They look like brownies! It’s wonderful that you pointed out that these cookies are not for everyone. I couldn’t make any cookie without my beloved silpat and when I have readers write to me about cookies spreading, I ask them if they own one and immediately suggest they buy one. Ahh I want one of these cookies right now with my coffee!

    • You know I decided rather than try to ‘convince’ everyone to make these, I am pointing out front and center that they are a fussy cookie (well honestly, after my tutorial on them and my own trials and tribulations, I feel like I took the fussy out, in large part – but as the recipe is written, it wasn’t exactly easy but is way better now!) but anyway just like not everyone will be a sub 7 minute mile runner, not everyone should be baking every cookie :) Silpats. Couldn’t imagine life without them! And so glad to hear it’s not just me with the choc chips/butter. I swear to god I felt like…well am I doing something wrong? But I really do believe it’s a chemical reaction b/c it happens EVERY time for me.

  6. Pingback: Chocolate Recipes

  7. Chocolate smoothies sound good to me! Glad to see you were able to get the fussy cookie baked…I’m not sure I would have had the patience to wait out 2 hours before baking them. I would have probably poured it into a baking dish and said a prayer!!!

    • Normally a 2 hour chill time for dough is nothing; I factor that in and then some. But for these, I was truly not expecting it or the liquid soup I got in my bowl!
      ” I would have probably poured it into a baking dish and said a prayer!!!” <-- in retrospect, that sounds like a great idea! I am glad I made them as cookies but in the heat of the moment if that had come to mind, I would have b/c I was fed up with them!

  8. sounds like you’re getting alot of your bucket list recipes accomplished this week! I’ve got yeast bread on my bucket list. Don’t have a stand mixer, but its not the kneading that puts me off. Its the waiting around for the rising!

  9. These look absolutely delicious! So decadent looking… I LOVE that. Brownies + cookies in one = perfect!

  10. Oh my goodness those look amazing, and seem easy enough. Saving this for sure :) And I’m glad you went through all the trial and error and hopefully I can learn from those before I attempt :)

  11. OHHH, those look really good! Brownies are a favorite at our house so I just HAVE to make these! Thanks for yet another great recipe!

  12. Yum! These cookies are gorgeous! You have to love TJ’s Pounder Bars! They are the best chocolate! Beautiful recipe!

  13. These look great! I’ve never made brownie cookies, but am tempted to try a raw vegan version now!

  14. These look so good! And I agree, as much as I love cake, I don’t like cakey brownies. Fudgy is best, and these look really fudgy!

  15. Glad these were worth all the hard work and paid off. I love Donna Hay – her magazines are works of art!

  16. These sound like the brownie cookies that almost weren’t…but you hung it here and made it work! The texture looks incredible–very brownie like! Good to know that a silpat is a must for these. I always think of them as an easy to clean surface, but I can see how the tackiness would help prevent too much spreading. I’ve also had bad luck melting chips and butter (but coconut oil seems to work ok)…so for those who can pull it off, I wonder what their secret is?!?! Do you think this dough could be refrigerated briefly to help it set up without adversely changing the texture? I’d LOVE to try these.

    • I think a silpat is a must for ALL cookies and these it’s just a “don’t even attempt it without one” situation.

      Butter and the water in it, reacts with the stabilizers in the chips. When I use certain brands of butter with certain brands of chips, the problem seems to be worse and more magnified but it’s one of those molecular problems and a fact of the science so to continue to try to fix it and experiment seems futile!

      Do you think this dough could be refrigerated briefly to help it set up without adversely changing the texture? <--- I wasn't sure and my short answer is that I wanted to try to stay as close to the orig recipe as I could and to refrig the dough would instantly cause all that melted choc to solidify fully and I didnt want that variable involved so I kept it at room temp to solidify. If you try the fridge LMK! I have a feeling it would be fine, in retrospect, but I had already gone thru enough that I wasn't going to do anything else!

  17. Yummm. I have made a gluten-free version of brownie cookies but I really should make a regular kind soon, preferably these ;-)

  18. I appreciate you pointing out that these cookies have a tendency to spread without using a Silpat and also that they are not for people who can’t make “puffy” cookies. I always end up with cookies that spread, which I think is due to a)I tend to veganize cookie recipes and b)no Silpat.

    I do love brownies, especially the edge pieces with the chewy crust. These cookies look like they would all taste like edge pieces.

    • No egg to bind/veganized cookies AND no Silpat..yes would be a recipe for a disaster here! But I am not here to convince anyone anymore. I’d rather be upfront and tell people what’s what than have them write to me all mad and frustrated on the back end when they have a fail or dont get the results they wanted. Not everything is ‘fast and easy’ and this is that recipe :)

  19. My mouth is watering, these cookies are perfection! You had me at fudgy center and chewy edge ;) can’t wait to try this one

  20. MMM…brownies + cookies + dark chocolate = my favorite!

  21. I love that the ingredient list is so simple — that really tells me how positively fudgy and indulgent these brownie cookies must be!

  22. The measly 1/4 cup flour speaks to how fudgy these brownie cookies are and this recipe is the exact excuse I needed to run out and get myself a slip mat!

  23. I think I need a half dozen of these right now, for taste-testing purposes :).

  24. 1. Totally agree about baking puffy cookies with Silpat. 2. Now I know why my brownie cookies were flat and crispy! :) 3. I will take a dozen of these, pretty please. :) Pinning!

    • If you’re not using a Silpat for things like this and you have even moderately decent results, you will look like a superstar if you try them with a Silpat, Anna. Seriously you will just loooooove the results 100x more! Thanks for the pin!

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