Old Fashioned Brownie with frosting

Old Fashioned Brownies with frosting -- A Pinch of Joy

Old Fashioned Brownies with frosting -- A Pinch of Joy

A good brownie recipe means different things to different folks. This recipe isn’t strong on the chocolate, not too sweet and is more on the cake side of the equation.   I chose it first for the lower amount of sugar and make it occasionally for that reason.    Ya know – healthy brownies.

However, every time Bytes will say “this needs frosting!”   So much for reducing carbs and calories with less sugar!  Last time he even compared it to the brownie in a certain frozen dinner, which he also thinks needs frosting.  How would he know about frozen dinners in this household?  Oh yeah—those long days of painting over the past year plus.   At any rate frosting it is.  For his half of the brownies.  Not sure how he ends up with half a pan while Wheels and I get to share the remaining half.  Something about metabolism I think.  🙂  I will admit the chocolatey-ness and creaminess of the frosting add to the yummy factor, though.

Yes, this recipe calls for baking powder though most brownie recipes do not. Maybe because it is an old recipe.  I was a little anxious the first time I whisked the cocoa into the butter, but if you use a good wire whisk it only takes a moment to make it smooth like – well, like melted chocolate.   Brownie batter is very thick so you will need to spread it into the greased pan.   Let the baked brownie cool before frosting and you will save your sanity and extra cleaning.  Any and all brownies may be good right out of the oven, but they are even better if you can contain yourself so the chocolate flavors can develop while cooling.

You might also want to check out  Classic Naked Brownies (that post explains how this short series started) Chewy Chocolate Brownie   or  Cheesecake Topped Fudgy Brownies

Old Fashioned Brownie with frosting
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
A cake like brownie, easy on the chocolate and sweetness, with a rich chocolate butter frosting!
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Serves: 24 bars
  • 1 cup plus 3 tablespoons butter
  • ¾ cup cocoa powder
  • 4 large eggs OR 5 medium eggs
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 6 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 2⅔ cups confectioners sugar
  • ½ cup cocoa powder
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup milk
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease 9x13 inch baking pan with butter or cooking spray.
  2. Melt butter in microwave and pour into large mixing bowl.
  3. Whisk in cocoa powder until smooth and then stir in vanilla and sugar.
  4. Add eggs until just well mixed.
  5. Add flour, baking powder and salt; again, until just mixed.
  6. Spread into prepared pan and bake at 350 for 25-28 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Test early and do not overbake.
  7. Cool on wire rack.
  1. Set out butter to soften before you begin making the brownies or soften in microwave for about 10 seconds.
  2. Mix cocoa powder and confectioner’s sugar together in medium bowl and cream with softened butter.
  3. Add milk and vanilla and stir until thoroughly mixed and fluffy.
  4. Spread over cooled brownies and slice into 24 2”x2” bars.
  5. Note: Frosting recipe will cut in half easily and turn out as nicely as a full batch.

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Red Velvet Cookies with white chocolate and walnuts

Red Velvet Cookies with white chocolate and walnuts -- A Pinch of Joy

Red Velvet Cookies with white chocolate and walnuts -- A Pinch of Joy

Crispy on the side exposed to heat, soft and tender on the inside, a bit of chocolate to sweeten things up and a go nuts attitude. Red velvet cookies may be the perfect recipe for cookies – and for coping with life. They are quick and easy to make, not too sweet and just the right amount of chocolate. If you want the show stopping white chocolate chips to show – add them to the top just before you pop the cookie sheet in the oven. “You can make these again any time” , Bytes always says. ‘Nuff said.

Red Velvet Cookies with white chocolate and walnuts
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 2 dozen
  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 egg
  • 2 teaspoons liquid food coloring
  • 1 ¾ cup biscuit mix
  • ¼ cu unsweetened baking cocoa
  • 1 cup white chocolate chips
  • ½ cup walnut pieces
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In large bowl, beat butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy.
  3. Add vanilla, egg and food color, mix well.
  4. Add biscuit mix and cocoa at low speed and mix until combined
  5. Stir in nuts and white chocolate chips
  6. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper and drop cookie dough by tablespoonful about 2 inches apart.
  7. Bake for 10 minutes.
  8. Let cool for 3-5 minutes on cookie sheet before removing to cooling rack.

A dozen great cookie recipes —
1.  Fruitcake cookies  
2.  Almond Coconut Crunch Cookies
3.  Pineapple Walnut Cookies
4.  Maple Caramel Swirl Cookies
5.  Peppermint Chocolate Thumbprints
6. Cherry Almond Chews
7.  Polka Dot Macaroons
8.  Red Velvet Cookies with white chocolate and walnuts
9.  Butterscotch Pecan Softies – no bake
10.  Toffee Crisps 
11.  Crescent Mini Chip Cookies
12.  Minty Christmas Cookies

And, of course for the holidays,  Elegant Eggnog

Super Delicious Big Batch Cookies   A unique, crispy shortbread type cookie textured with oatmeal, coconut and chocolate chips.
Macaroons and Chocolate — Chewy Coconut macaroons dipped in smooth chocolate 
THE Best Easy Gift Fudge —  It only takes 5 minutes to stir and slice this creamy rich fudge (plus a couple hours in the fridge)
No Bake Chocolate Gems – a chocolatey, chewy sweet treat that is so easy to make anytime
Peanut Butter Chocolate Bars —  tastes just like the peanut butter cups in the bright orange wrapper

 For more sweet recipes check the A Pinch of Joy Desserts and Sweets gallery.

I’m so glad you stopped by today!   Be sure to follow A Pinch of Joy so you don’t miss a thing!  I’d love to have your company on this venture!!

Subscribe:  email  on the sidebar  or follow on Facebook RSS feed  / bloglovin’ /   twitter  and check out my  pinterest boards.   Share: if you found this helpful or inspiring please click one of the buttons below!  Your support of A Pinch of Joy is appreciated!


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Macaroons dipped in chocolate

Macaroons and Chocolate -- A Pinch of Joy

Macaroons and Chocolate -- A Pinch of Joy

I love coconut.  And chocolate.  Put the two together – heavenly!  Coconut Macaroons with Chocolate would be a perfect Valentine gift.  Or an any time treat! 

My brother Jaycee was also a big coconut fan and between the two of us we could consume a bag of coconut in an afternoon.  Much to Mom’s consternation.  And to the younger kids loss.  Because no matter where Mom hid the coconut for her planned culinary endeavors, Jaycee and I would find it.  Eventually she quit buying it.  The four other siblings missed the clandestine consumption of coconut!   They had to wait until later to find the joy!   I’ve learned to discipline myself and leave the bag unopened until time to use it.  This recipe is great because it uses the entire bag because opened bags with “leftover” coconut – gone!  

The coconut macaroon recipe is quite straightforward and very easy to make. Parchment paper can be used to line the baking sheet instead of spraying with baking spray.  Use a slightly heaping tablespoon of coconut mixture for each cookie and place them about an inch and a half to two inches apart on the cookie sheet. Use the spoon (and fingers if necessary) to shape the cookie.  If cookie is mounded, gently press the center down so the cookie is slightly flat.  Note the oven temperature of 325 F and do not skimp on the baking time allotted unless the bottom begins to darken from golden brown.  This allows the coconut egg mixture to develop maximum flavor and chewiness.  Let set for a few minutes to cool before trying to remove the cookies from the pan.

Chocolate covered Macaroon hearts -- A Pinch of Joy

Normally this recipe yields 3 dozen small/medium macaroons.   For Valentine’s Day I used a silicon heart shaped baking mold.  The hearts are 2 ½ inches across at the widest point.  I patted the macaroon mixture into the mold being careful to keep it uniform and about ½ inch thick.  I baked it for the same amount of time and gently lifted one to see if bottom had begun to turn golden before setting the pan to cool.  Six hearts used about half of the mixture and allowed me to make about a dozen large  macaroons as well.

 After they were cooled,   I melted chocolate candy coating in a small dish in the microwave, following directions and then dipped the hearts into the melted chocolate topside down and covering the sides.  I did not try to cover the bottom, but lifted the heart out of the chocolate and let it drip for a few seconds before putting it on a rack and smoothing out the sides with a small spatula.  For the regular macaroons, I spooned the chocolate over one half the cookie, letting the excess drip off.  You could also dip the cookie and cover both sides of the chocolated half.  (Chocolated – totally a word!  You knew what I meant,  didn’t you?)
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