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Every time I made brownies from a box and followed the directions to the letter, I wondered if there was some way to improve upon the recipe. The brownie had a pleasant flavor, but it wasn’t quite right.
Unfortunately, it couldn’t compare to either a homemade brownie or a brownie from a bakery. When you use these 10 tricks to improve boxed brownie mixes, even the store-bought variety will taste like it was baked in a world-class bakery.
The Top 10 Secrets to Making the Best Boxed Brownies!
Some of my favorite ways to spice up a box of brownie mix are detailed here. Rankings are based on how much of an improvement they make to the flavor of brownie mix from a box. I recommend trying out a few of these brownie mix hacks until you find the one that works best for you.
1. Begin with A High-Quality Brownie Mix.
This first piece of advice may seem obvious, but I’ve made the mistake of buying the wrong brownie mix on more than one occasion, and the results have been a bitter disappointment.
One of my go-to brownie mixes is the Ghirardelli chocolate supreme, but I also like their double and triple chocolate varieties.
If you start with a high-quality brownie mix, your finished brownies will taste even better once you add all of your extra ingredients.
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2. Use Butter Instead of Oil
The more butter, the better. One of my all-time favorite things to bake.
Despite the fact that oil is recommended on most boxes of brownie mix, using melted butter will give your brownies a deeper flavor.
If it’s high-quality butter, that’s an added bonus.
3. Replace the Whole Eggs with Egg Whites.
You should know that 2 egg yolks equal 1 whole egg as a general rule. I find that by substituting 2 egg yolks for 1 whole egg in my favorite boxed brownie recipe, I am able to retain the brownies much fudgier and with a higher fat level.
A small switch like this can have spectacular outcomes. Making meringue cookies out of an abundance of egg whites is a great idea.
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4. Substitute Milk or Heavy Cream for The Water.
To achieve a fudgy texture in your brownies, you’ll want to boost the fat in the brownie mixture by using either milk or heavy cream.
Adding water to a brownie mix is boring if you really think about it. Instead of milk or heavy cream, which give depth, richness, and extra fat for the perfect ooey gooey brownie slice, this ingredient contributes nothing.
5. Swap out The Water for Hot Brewed Coffee
I’ll tell you what’s a match made in heaven: Beverages and sweets! In order to achieve that rich chocolate flavor, many chocolate cake recipes call for adding hot brewed coffee to the cake mix.
Similar to how the rich chocolate flavor of brownies made from a mix is enhanced when coffee is used in place of water, so too will these brownies taste even better when made with coffee.
WANT BETTER BOXED BROWNIES? READ ON FOR MORE IMPROVEMENTS!
6. Add Some Vanilla Extract, Number
Because we’re talking about chocolate brownies, the addition of vanilla could be seen as strange. But believe me when I say that the vanilla essence will accentuate the other flavors in the brownie, especially the chocolate.
Seventh, sprinkle a little salt into the brownie batter in the box and then sprinkle some more on top.
If you’ve ever baked with me, you know that the secret to perfectly balanced baked products is a pinch of salt.
These pre-packaged brownies are the same way. To achieve a rich, chocolate taste without making the batter excessively sweet, try adding a little of salt to the mixture.
If you’re in a very refined mood, you can even sprinkle some sea salt on top.
7. Either Use Espresso Powder or Instant Coffee as The Ninth Ingredient.
The method of using hot coffee in place of water in brownie mixes is remarkably similar to this one. This one is my favorite because you can use coffee to achieve a more complex flavor, and milk as the liquid to make your boxed brownies richer and fudgier.
If you want to amp up the chocolatey flavor in your brownies, try adding 1-2 teaspoons of espresso powder or instant coffee to the mixture.
8. Don’t Overmix the Batter for The Boxed Brownie Mix.
This is a baking rule of thumb I never deviate from, and it works just as well with brownies as it does with cakes and cookies.
If you want fudgy brownies, don’t overmix the batter; instead, stir just until the dry ingredients are incorporated, then pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake immediately away.
9. Spread Some Jam on Top of Your Brownies. Exactly how Could You Top Peanut Butter Brownies?
Bars made with peanut butter and jam. Obviously, not everyone like this particular flavor combo. If you’re not a fan of the flavor combination of fruit and chocolate, you should probably stay away from this.
Aside from that complication, though, the procedure is straightforward. On make a marbled effect in your brownies, simply add a few dollops of jam to the top with the peanut butter. The vivid peanut butter and jelly filling the pockets is tantalizing.
10. Alter The Low And Slow Baking Instructions.
Many brands of prepackaged brownie mix have various preparation and baking requirements.
My go-to method for baking brownies from a box is to reduce the temperature to 325 degrees Fahrenheit and bake the brownies for 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted an inch from the edge comes out clean or with a few dry crumbs.
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