What this Nutella brownies recipe has to do with the musical Wicked
I came up with this Nutella brownie recipe in honor of World Nutella Day, February 5th. It’s a day for worldwide consumption and appreciation of the nutty, chocolate delight. After a little experimenting, I found a way to ensure the ultimate super-fudgy brownie. Do check out Fluffy Nutella Mousse, too!
Very popular brownies
Back in my musical theatre days performing Wicked in Chicago, our sound engineer, let’s call him Mike, baked legendary brownies. LEGENDARY. He served them up during intermission on Saturday nights, and the full-size sheet pan of fudgy, gooey chocolate disappeared in a matter of minutes. You’d never know there was a rule about not eating in very expensive costumes.
And Mike is as good at keeping recipe secrets as he is at baking said recipes. Trust me when I say I tried to get it out of him. Repeatedly. Even one baker to another, he never succumbed to my pleading.
Baking through life, using my foil
So since Mike keeps his secrets, I kept my focus. And as usual, baked and baked and baked. The trick to super moist, nutty AND fudgey Nutella brownies? Covering the pan with foil about halfway through baking.
In doing this, you allow the baking process to unfold, but then prevent a crust from forming. That handy foil keeps the moisture in the batter from escaping, which would lead to the development of a crust and not an intense fudgy texture.
Perhaps I knew it all along
In retrospect, Mike’s brownies always arrived covered in foil – as opposed to say, plastic wrap, which is another option for protecting food that travels.
If I was a betting baker, I’d say that was his secret trick. Mike is cool. And SCIENCE IS SUPER COOL (mic drop).
Yours in chocolate,Print
Some of the fudgiest brownies you’ll ever eat! If you like more of a crust on your brownies, feel free to omit the step about covering with foil.
- 4.5 ounces unsweetened baking chocolate
- 10 tablespoons butter, unsalted
- 3 large eggs
- 2 ¼ cups granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 ⅓ cups all-purpose flour, sifted
- ¼ cup Nutella or other chocolate hazelnut spread
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- Preheat oven to 350° F. Grease 13x9x2-inch pan with shortening or non-stick vegetable spray.
- In a medium saucepan melt the butter and chocolate over low heat, stirring occasionally. Add sugar, stir to combine, and cool for about 5 minutes.
- Whisk the eggs and vanilla extract in a small bowl. Pour chocolate mixture into a large bowl, and whisk in egg mixture. Whisk in Nutella.
- Combine flour and salt and stir to combine, then stir into chocolate mixture in several small batches until all of the flour is incorporated. It will be thick and gooey.
- Spread into pan, and bake for 25 minutes.
- For fudge-style brownies, cover the pan with foil before, or even halfway through baking, to prevent a top crust from forming.
- A toothpick should come out mostly clean.
- Let cool completely in pan on a rack. Store in an air-tight container for up to three days.
If hazelnuts are not your thing, and you’re looking for a less sweet brownie, you can replace the Nutella with any nut or seed butter. Peanut butter would of course be divine, but if there is an allergy in your circle of people, try sunflower seed butter. It will cut down on the sugar crazies if you’re letting kids partake, and add some great omega-3s to otherwise nutritionally-void treats.