Foolproof Crinkly Fudgy Brownies

Rich fudgy brownies with the perfect shiny, crinkly top. This glossy brownie recipe can be made and baked in under an hour. They can be made in a either a 9x13 or 9x9 baking dish and I promise shiny, crinkly-top brownies every time. You won't be able to stop eating these!
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These are my absolute FAVORITE Foolproof Crinkly Fudgy Brownies (with a shiny top!)!

This brownie recipe is mixed and baked in under an hour and will without fail give you that beautiful, glossy, paper-thin top. The texture of the edge brownie pieces is more chewy and they get more fudge-like the closer you get to the center — so good.

These will absolutely become your new favorite, no fuss, beautiful fudgy brownie recipe.

If you’re like more brownie recipes, I have some in my cookbook, The Cookie Book, and also here!

You can see all of the Brownie & Bar Cookie Recipes or here are some of my favorites: Peppermint Brownies Recipe, Ultimate Skillet Brookies (brownies + chocolate chip cookie’s baby), Vegan Peppermint Brownies, Chewy S’mores Cookie Bars, Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars, Chocolate Hazelnut Brownies and White Chocolate Fudge Brownies.

The Baker’s Guide to Measuring Flour

One of the biggest (and most common) mistakes in baking is how we measure flour. If you find yourself without a scale, see my top tips on how to properly measure flour for the perfect amount every time!

All of the ingredients that go into the brownie recipe

Key Delicious, Shiny Brownie Ingredients

Ten ingredients is all you need to make these gorgeous brownies! Let’s run down some of the ingredients that make these truly magical:

Dark Chocolate

Use a nice dark chocolate that’s made for melting. Chocolate chips will work in a pinch but they resist melting because of their ingredients (they’re meant to hold their shape!). If you have options, pick bars of chocolate, callets or discs as they’ll melt the easiest.

 I’m loving these baking chips and these are my most favorite Callebaut callets; I used the Callebaut when testing this recipe (delicious chocolate, melts beautifully — LOVE).

Whatever chocolate you use, make sure it’s good quality and can handle melting.

Dutch-Process Cocoa Powder

Double chocolate (both chips and unsweetened cocoa powder) mean these brownies have mega flavor. I love this Hershey’s Dark as it’s easy to find and yields beautiful flavor + color; you can however use any unsweetened cocoa powder you have on hand.

When recipe testing this crinkly brownie recipe I used this King Arthur Flour unsweetened cocoa powder which is a gorgeous color and flavor (and definitely a splurge!).

Brownies still in the pan cooling


Use large, room temperature eggs as they will let you whip heaps of air into them. I often place cold eggs in some warm water to quickly bring them to room temperature.


The first time I paired espresso with chocolate was when baking Ina Garten’s Beatty’s Chocolate Cake year’s ago and I fell in love! Adding espresso to chocolate baked goods really amps up the chocolate flavor and doesn’t necessarily produce an ‘espresso’ flavor.

You can use a tablespoon of fresh-brewed espresso or strong coffee *or* you can use espresso powder, this one is my favorite. If you use the latter, feel free to add additional espresso powder if you want to taste more of a coffee flavor (I wouldn’t do more than 2 teaspoons).

Vanilla Extract

You can either make your own vanilla extract (see here!) or get some really good quality vanilla extract — I don’t recommend imitation vanilla extract as I don’t love the flavor.

The brownie batter being stirred
The mixed brownie batter

Why This Shiny Brownie Recipe Works

For the fudgy brownie recipe in The Cookie Book, I melted the sugar and butter together which also yields a shiny top. However, not with the consistency (or drama!) I desired.

Back in 2018 I created a crème fraîche chocolate chip cookie recipe which also melts the sugar to get a shiny top…but the recipe *also* has you really whip up the eggs. This chocolate chip cookie recipe consistently yields a shiny top.

While working on this brownie recipe, that particular cookie recipe led me to test omitting the sugar melting step and just focus on really whipping up the eggs. I found that whipping your eggs into a frothy frenzy is what creates a consistent, shiny top EVERY SINGLE TIME!

These shiny, crinkly brownies are so satisfying to bake!

A stack of three brownies

Making Crinkly Brownies Q&A

What is the perfect brownie pan?

I absolutely love the 9×13 NordicWare baking pan for baking brownies. This larger pan will yield a chewier brownie around the edges of the pan with the middle brownies having a more fudge-like consistency, so everyone is happy.

If you want to make them in a 9×9 pan, this is my go-to…it is also NordicWare.

This recipe was tested in both size pans. The 9×9 brownies need to be baked a bit longer (as noted in the recipe) and will yield an overall fudgier, thicker brownie experience.

Do I have to use a mixer to get my eggs perfectly frothed?

Nope! You can use a whisk (this one is my favorite!). You will really need to whip the mixture until it is lighter in color, increased in volume and thickened (see the video and the photo above for a visual).

I tested these using both my KitchenAid stand mixer and my Breville handheld — both worked beautifully…although I wouldn’t mind the arm workout!

Can I omit the espresso in the brownies?

Yes, absolutely! No need to substitute.

a batch of brownies all cut up looking shaggy

How to Cut Perfect Shiny Brownies Every Time

The first rule for cutting perfect brownies is the hardest: let the brownies cool completely!

If you want super clean cuts, chill your brownies for several hours before cutting them.

Lastly, use a very sharp knife and clean + dry the knife in between cuts.

I tend to be impatient so my brownies are never perfectly cut, such is life.

A close up shot of crinkly brownies

Favorite Crinkly Brownie Equipment

9×9-inch (23×23-cm) pan for thicker, fudgier brownies

9×13-inch (23×33-cm) pan for chewier brownies around the edges of the pan and more fudge-like ones in the center

Electric Stand Mixer (I prefer the Artisan to the Professional)

Breville Handheld Mixer, this one has a bunch of speeds, dough hooks, whisks. I was never a fan of handhelds until I got this one!

Whisk, I love this whisk so much! The angles at the base really help you get into the corners when whisking

Bowls, these bowls are awesome for mixing, setting atop simmering water when melting chocolate and for weighing out ingredients before starting (if you’re so inclined!)

Spatula, in the video I use the confetti spatula from this set — it’s too cute!

Knife, love this chef’s knife with the white handle…you can also see it in the brownie video

A  close up of one brownie square with sea salt flakes on top yum

More Delicious Bar Cookie Recipes

If Brownies and Chocolate Chip Cookies had a baby, you’d get these Ultimate Skillet Brookies. Sometimes I like vegan treats, so I created these Peppermint Vegan Brownies….you can omit the peppermint and make them more of a classic brownie experience. Chocolate Hazelnut Brownies with Coffee Ganache for when you’re feeling all in. S’more Cookie Bars because they’re fabulous

Crinkly, Fudge Brownie Cookies…not a bar cookie, but SO GOOD or these Double Chocolate Chip Cookies and Brownie Cookies with Peanut Butter Frosting (YUM).

*ALSO* if you’re interested in making Brownies with Sourdough Discard, Emilie from The Clever Carrot uses my recipe as the inspiration for her recipe — so go check them out!

Click here to see all of the brownie + bar cookies recipes on DisplacedHousewife!

Overhead shot of brownie squares

A quick note on brownie safety! Most people desire a fudge-like consistency with their brownies. To ensure their safety, make sure they’re baked to at least 160°F (71°C) when tested with an instant-read thermometer. Enjoy your shiny, crinkly brownies!

Rebecca Firth

Foolproof Crinkly Fudgy Brownies

Rich fudgy brownies with the perfect shiny, crinkly top. This glossy brownie recipe can be made and baked in under an hour. They can be made in a either a 9×13 or 9×9 baking dish and I promise shiny, crinkly-top brownies every time. You won't be able to stop eating these!
4.91 from 20 reviews
Print Save Rate
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Brownies, Bar Cookiees
Keyword: Brownies, Shiny, Crinkly, Fudgy, Bar Cookies, Dessert
Servings: 20 Servings


  • 1 1⁄2 cups (255 g) dark chocolate, ( finely chopped)
  • 12 tablespoons (170 g) unsalted butter, (cut into 12 pieces)
  • 1 cup (85 g) unsweetened dark (Dutch process) cocoa powder
  • 4 large eggs, (room temperature)
  • 1 cup (200 g) granulated sugar
  • 3⁄4 cup (165 g) light brown sugar, (packed)
  • 1 tablespoon (13 g) freshly brewed espresso, ( or strong coffee (or 1 teaspoon espresso powder))
  • 1 tablespoon (13 g) real vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 cup (135 g) all-purpose flour (how to measure flour)
  • 2 teaspoons (10 g) sea salt flakes, (optional)


  • Preheat the oven to 350°F (177°C). Grease an 9 x 13–inch (23 x 33–cm) baking dish and line with parchment paper, letting the excess fall over the sides. (see note below regarding pan size)
  • In a medium, heat-safe bowl add the chocolate, butter and cocoa powder and set over a medium saucepan of simmering water. Do not let the bowl touch the water or let the water come to a boil. Stir frequently until melted and smooth and set aside.
  • In an electric stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, add the eggs, sugar, brown sugar, espresso, vanilla and salt and whisk on medium-high for about 5 to 7 minutes or until thick and light in color. Add in the melted chocolate (no need to let it cool) and run the mixer for 30 seconds on low to combine. Take the bowl out of the mixer and fold in the flour until just combined (make sure there aren't any flour pockets). Pour the batter into the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle with the sea salt flakes, if using.
  • Bake on the middle of the oven for 25 to 27 minutes. When done, the tops will be shiny and if you test with a toothpick some crumbs will cling to it. Note: the crinkly top won't show up until you pull them out of the pan and cut them. Let them cool in the pan for several hours and if you want super, uber fudgy brownies shove them in the fridge for several hours before serving.
  • When it’s time to cut the brownies, use a very sharp knife and use a wet paper towel to clean off the knife in between cuts. Enjoy!



You can also use a 9×9 (23×23-cm) square baking pan. Bake the brownies in the center of the oven for about 35 minutes (depending on how fudgy you want your brownies to be). I did find in testing this recipe that the larger 9×13 (23×33-cm) yielded brownies that had a bit more crinkle.
Thanks for baking with me! Please rate + comment this recipe and tag me on social @displacedhousewife #displacedhousewife so I can see your beautiful treats! xo

A bunch of brownie squares


Leave a Comment & Rate this Recipe

I love your comments, reviews and questions! If you love this recipe, please rate it when you leave a comment. Star ratings 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 help people discover my recipes. Your support means a lot, I look forward to chatting with you!

Rebecca xox

Recipe Rating


  • Shanee Garner January 30, 2024 at 6:20 PM

    5 stars
    I was skeptical because I’d been looking for a brownie with the papery and shiny top for so long–these did not disappoint. I’m making my second batch in two days!

    • Rebecca Firth January 31, 2024 at 9:22 AM

      Hi Shanee!
      That makes me SO HAPPY to hear!!! I love these so much!! Cheers! xo

  • Ray January 19, 2024 at 10:31 AM

    5 stars
    Skip to the end for tips and tricks otherwise, read the review for my fails and wins.

    I made this recipe twice, first with consentrated instant coffee mix and mixing the egg mixture by hand. It did not turn out as I had wanted. I had mixed it for 5 minutes with occasional breaks in between but there was no crinkle top and the brownies turned out cake-like. I’d also heated the chocolate up to avoid extra dishes as well as I did not have a double boiler set up.

    The second time around I bit the bullet and pulled out my stand mixture. This time around I mixed it for 7-10 minutes in medium high speed like the original recipe. I also tried my best at a double boil set up and succeeded in melting the chocolate after 5 minutes of constant stirring. Already I can see a difference after baking the brownies the second time around. The air that was made by beating the egg mixture overtime really helped create a light and airy batter.


    1) If you don’t have a hand mixer and you’re going to mix it by hand you need to beat it for at least 10 minutes (not including those breaks to rest your hand/arm). Anything under won’t give you the airy batter that you need and you won’t have the signature crinkle top.

    2) Add the coco powder in AFTER the chocolate and butter is melted. It takes longer when you add the coco in at the same time and you’ll be standing there mixing a mixture that’s either not melting or extremely clumpy.

    3) add a few tablespoons of milk or water into the chocolate mixture especially if you at the coco in at the same time as the chocolate. This’ll help it melt better. DONT be afraid to keep adding if it’s not melting properly, I added around five tablespoons even after the mixture was melted. It’ll also help to keep your brownies from tasting powder-y.

    4) This goes to the 3 tip but if you add more chocolate, add more butter/water or milk to compensate. The mixture may be too thick if you dont.

    5) Underbake as to not overbake. The first go around I baked it for 25 minutes in a 9×13 pan but it ended up dry-er than expected on top of the cake-like texture. I did the recipe exactly like the original one but it still ended up overcooking, this goes to show that not all pans and ovens are the same. My oven may be hotter than others or my pan may be a bit larger than others which causes it to spread more. There is an infinite amount of possibilities as to why mine overbooked when I followed the recipe recipe to the T. Judge the cook time based on your experiences as well as the recommended estimated time.

    • Rebecca Firth January 19, 2024 at 2:34 PM

      Hey Ray,
      Thanks so much for sharing your notes!

      I highly recommend adding the cocoa powder with the melted chocolate and butter…the heat helps bloom the cocoa powder.

      I’ve never needed to add water/milk to the brownie batter, so I can’t speak to that. If you’re using chocolate chips, they can be harder to melt as they’re designed to hold their shape.

      Definitely take into consideration if your oven runs hot/cool (as with all baking recipes). Happy baking!

  • Gemma November 30, 2023 at 4:35 PM

    5 stars
    These are AMAZING!! I was baby wearing while making them so instead of double boiling (to avoid the open flame of my gas stove) I did the cocoa/butter/chocolate step in the microwave, 40-50 second increments on half power and stirring in between. They came out beautifully, I’ve never made crinkle top brownies before but this recipe is a new favourite!

    • Rebecca Firth December 1, 2023 at 1:28 PM

      Hi Gemma!
      I’m so glad you liked these brownies!! And thank you so much for the microwave tips, I’m sure they’ll help other bakers. Enjoy your brownies! xo

  • Atiqa July 25, 2023 at 9:51 PM

    I halved the recipe and baked using 7 inches pan at 150c for 35 minutes and it turns out so beautiful. Perfect shiny crust and the texture is fudgy just like I want.

    • Rebecca Firth July 26, 2023 at 7:58 PM

      I’m so happy you loved them! Thank you for sharing your notes on halving the recipe!! Enjoy your brownies! xox

  • Hannah June 7, 2023 at 9:24 PM

    Hi, just wondering if surrounding temperature plays a role, I live in Southeast Asia and the weather here is often hot and very humid. I find that when I bake sometimes my dough or batter becomes runnier than some other days and it affects the baking time and texture. I haven’t tried out this recipe with the current weather here just yet but will definitely let you know how it turned out soon!

    • Rebecca Firth June 8, 2023 at 1:19 PM

      Hi Hannah! Ambient temp and humidity play a huge role in baking. I’m sure that’s why your baked treats might be runnier or spread more while baking. These should be fine in the humidity, however. And I actually think my Shiny, Crinkly Brownie Cookies would benefit from your warm, humid weather. Let me know how it goes (and have fun!)! xoxo

  • cynthia Linnehan January 24, 2023 at 1:07 PM

    5 stars
    ok ‘ive been baking for like 50 years now…I have been searching for half a century for this recipe !I legit have tried EVERY alleged crinkle topped brownie on the internet and in books . this is it ! the holy grail. I finally found it! thank you .just bought your cake book next on my list is the thick mint cake .I envision people fighting over it , thank you

    • Rebecca Firth January 24, 2023 at 1:58 PM

      Hi Cynthia!!!
      Your comment makes me so happy!!! I worked really hard so these brownies would be bullet-proof. Love love love that you loved them.

      Let me know what you think about that cake — WE ARE OBSESSED!!!!! xo

  • amy January 15, 2023 at 10:03 AM

    5 stars
    i omitted the coffee only because i did not have any. other than cutting the recipe in half (as a test), followed exactly. theycame out fudgy, chocolatey, and crinkly! this will replace my other brownie recipe!

    • Rebecca Firth January 17, 2023 at 2:26 PM

      Aw thanks Amy! I’m so happy to hear that! Enjoy!! xo

  • Susan H. November 12, 2022 at 8:56 PM

    5 stars
    I made these this afternoon and they are so good. My kids and I almost ate the entire tray!

    • Rebecca Firth November 13, 2022 at 5:23 AM

      Thanks Susan! I’m so glad you loved them!! xox

    • Rebecca Firth November 14, 2022 at 10:48 AM

      They are wickedly addictive!!!

  • Paula Emery September 19, 2022 at 12:53 PM

    Can I make half a recipe? It’s just my Husband and I and we don’t need that much, plus I only have and 8×8 square glass pan. They sound so good!

    • Rebecca Firth October 18, 2022 at 2:36 PM

      Hi Paula! I haven’t tested the recipe in an 8×8. I did test it in a 9×9 and it worked (there we’re fewer crinkles). The brownies would be thicker (and need longer to bake). If you do half the recipe and use the 8×8 will you let us know how it goes? You could also make them in muffin tins…that would be super cute! A bake-time estimate would be 15-18 minutes. Have fun! xo

  • Caroline August 10, 2022 at 5:37 AM

    Hi! These looks great! I’m not a fan of dark chocolate, would switching it up to milk chocolate make it too sweet?

    • Rebecca Firth September 12, 2022 at 5:57 PM

      It would definitely be sweeter, but still delish. Maybe consider semi-sweet which would be in between the two? xo

  • Maha August 2, 2022 at 7:52 AM

    5 stars
    Oh this is awesome but what measurement should I follow for 12*12 inch pan.. and at what temperature and timings should i bake this brownies to get a crinkly top Iike this

    • Rebecca Firth October 18, 2022 at 2:40 PM

      Hi Maha! I only tested these in a 9×12 and a 9×9…I don’t have the timing for a 12×12. If you bake them in that please let me know how it goes.

      For the pretty, crinkly top the 9×13 pan gave the best results. Good luck!!

  • Sonia Yohannes August 2, 2022 at 2:40 AM

    For the first time, I was able to bake fudgy brownies with crinkly top. Thank you for a great recipe with clear instructions. This will be my go-to ROM now on.

    • Rebecca Firth October 18, 2022 at 2:44 PM

      LIVING FOR THIS COMMENT!!! Thank you!!!!! xoxo

  • Lillian July 30, 2022 at 7:15 PM

    5 stars
    A M A Z I N G!!!! These are positively the best brownies I have ever eaten and made. The instructions were very clear, and I loved the special method to get a shiny top. So quick, everyone I delivered them to loved them. Adding to the list of my go-to recipes! :D

    • Rebecca Firth August 1, 2022 at 7:07 AM

      Thank you Lilian!! I’m so happy you loved them!!! xox

  • Madeleine July 27, 2022 at 8:10 PM

    3 stars
    I’m about to try making these, but I’m honestly a bit surprised with how much chocolate is in this recipe. Don’t get me wrong; I love chocolate as much as the next person but the amount of cocoa powder is insane. My mom had recently commented that these brownies sound expensive with the amount of chocolate is in this recipe. Does the recipe really call for one cup of cocoa powder or is that a fluke? I’m just curious but mostly concerned.

    • Rebecca Firth July 29, 2022 at 7:07 PM

      Hi Madeleine!
      The amount is correct and they turn out delicious, I promise!

  • Elizabeth Adarlo July 26, 2022 at 6:34 PM

    Thank you for sharing your super perfect yummy recipe of brownies.hope you teach me more so I can add for my starting small business..hope can help me.thanknyoubso much

  • DessertForTwo July 25, 2022 at 9:27 AM

    5 stars
    Absolutely LOVED these. Not too sweet. Perfect, shiny, crackled crust. Thank you for becoming my new go-to large batch brownie recipe!

    • Rebecca Firth July 26, 2022 at 11:49 AM

      Literally made my day! Thanks for the sweet review!
      R xo

  • Gloria July 24, 2022 at 5:05 PM

    5 stars
    THE BEST!! They are everything I love in a brownie: chocolatey, fudgy (even the corner pieces), and straightforward. I like my brownies without any add-ins. These brownies more than deliver. They’re definitely MUST-MAKE. Also, I didn’t have espresso so- I mixed 1 tablespoon *instant* coffee with 2 tablespoons vanilla extra. YUM!!

    • Rebecca Firth July 26, 2022 at 11:47 AM

      Hi Gloria!!! You have no idea how happy this makes me — I love that you love them as much as I do! Thanks for baking them! xoxo

  • Brown knee July 22, 2022 at 4:33 AM

    5 stars
    The secret to “brownie skin” is simply powdered sugar. Or dissolving your sugar into your batter.

    Watch Adam Ragusea on YouTube where he painstakingly did an experiment on how to replicate this

    • Rebecca Firth July 22, 2022 at 8:04 AM

      Your name lol.

      I promise, zero need for powdered sugar (or sweetened condensed milk or molasses) and you’ll get that glossy, crinkly top (and really delicious brownies) every time!
      R xx

  • Allison July 21, 2022 at 1:36 PM

    5 stars
    Amazing crinkly top! I can’t wait to make these, I love brownies that look and taste good I just checked some of the links because of the other comments and they seem to be working now! Love the bowls.

    • Rebecca Firth July 21, 2022 at 9:10 PM

      Hi Allison!
      Thanks for checking!! I hope you love them (I’m craving them right now!).

      Have a great evening!

  • Elizabeth W. July 21, 2022 at 9:11 AM

    These look amazing! Thanks for sharing, Rebecca. I’m definitely making them for a work treat. Having the same problem as Kim P. though: all the Amazon links are going to the hand mixer (trying to find the bowls!)…

    • Rebecca Firth July 21, 2022 at 10:24 AM

      Hi Elizabeth!
      I hope you love these brownies!

      I just fixed the links…the bowls and the spatula (I believe) were the ones that needed fixing…please let me know if I missed any other links.

      The GIR confetti spatula is actually called Barcelona; I couldn’t link directly to that style.

      Please reach out with any other questions/notes. Thank you!

  • Kim P. July 20, 2022 at 3:50 PM

    5 stars
    Oh my, YES INDEED!!! So glad that I have everything on hand to make these beauties because it’s too hot to shop…but the heat won’t stop me from baking. Isn’t that what A/C is for??? Thanks mucho, Rebecca ;-) [quick note: several of the equipment / tools links go to the hand mixer page, at least for me from iPhone]

    • Rebecca Firth July 20, 2022 at 5:51 PM

      Hi Kim! I can’t wait for you to make these! I just checked and they worked for me…I will test them on some other devices to make sure they’re working; thank you for the note!

      If you need a link to anything just let me know and I can post in comments or via email. Have fun!!

    • Rebecca Firth July 21, 2022 at 10:24 AM

      Hi Kim!
      I found the ones that weren’t working and they should be fixed now. Thank you!!

  • Sally July 20, 2022 at 12:17 PM

    5 stars
    Brownies are my absolute favorite. These look very doable! Lots of great tips.

    • Rebecca Firth July 20, 2022 at 1:29 PM

      They’re my favorite too — I hope you love them! xo