Crunchy Delights: How to Make Crispy Brownies

Published Categorized as Baking

In the world of brownies, the words “perfect brownie” often means the traditional chewy or fudgy textures. But if you’re like me, you’ll yearn for the type that has a snap. Prepare to discover the wonder of  brownies that crackle with every bite. Redefine your baking experience with me and let’s make a batch of this crispy sensation!

Crunchy Delights: How To Make Crispy Brownies

Table of Contents

The Science of Crispy Brownies

Crispiness might require some trial and error to master, but the sublime texture makes it well worth the effort. Let’s break down what gives brownies their toothsome crunch.

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Ingredient Ratios

While the foundation of brownies lies in chocolate, sugar, eggs (though you can make eggless brownies, too!), and butter, tweaking these building blocks is key for texture. Using granulated white sugar instead of brown sugar yields superior crispiness since the molasses in brown sugar attracts moisture. And since fat lubricates gluten development, using oil instead of butter creates less chew.

To take it up a notch, substitute up to half the granulated sugar with powdered sugar. Its ultra-fine texture incorporates more tiny air pockets that expand when baked, leading to a delicate, crispy top.

Baking Temperatures for Crispiness

Baking brownies at a slightly higher temperature like 350°F instead of 325°F enhances crispiness in two ways. First, the batter sets and firms up faster at higher temperatures before moisture can be released. Second, the quicker bake prevents too much evaporative cooling inside the oven, allowing the top surface to get hotter and crisp up beautifully.

But don’t crank your oven too high to avoid overbaking. At extremely high temperatures, brownies can form a thick outer “shell” while the interior remains underbaked and dense.

The Hows of a Perfect Crispy Top

Greasing and lining your pan well allows the bubbly, crackly top crust to release easily after baking without deflating. After mixing your batter, avoid overbeating it to prevent too much air incorporation and gluten development, which can make brownies more cakey or bready.

For ulta-crisp edges and corners, underfill your pan slightly so the batter doesn’t touch the sides of the pan. The exposed edges will bake to an ultra crispy crunch.

Finally, refrain from opening the oven while baking. The rush of cool air lowers the temperature and causes moisture to condense on your brownies’ surface, deteriorating crispiness.

Optimal Ingredients for Crispiness

When seeking crunchy brownie bliss, not all ingredients are created equal. Let’s explore how to choose elements like flour, sugar, fat, and leaveners to create brownies with a shatteringly crispy top.

Low-Moisture Flours Are Key

All-purpose flour contains around 14% moisture by weight, resulting in chewy baked goods. But substituting a portion with lower moisture flours like almond or coconut flour is the crispy brownie jackpot.

Almond flour contains just 5% moisture and loads of oil, yielding ultra crisp texture. But use it sparingly as almond flour also absorbs more liquid. Replacing 25% of all-purpose flour with almond flour strikes the right balance for crunchy brownies with some chew.

Granulated Sugar Outperforms Brown Sugar

While brown sugar adds lovely flavor and moisture to many bakes, granulated white sugar is the crispy texture MVP. Made purely from crystallized sucrose, it contains minimal moisture so more of the water in the batter gets absorbed by the dry ingredients rather than evaporating.

This allows the starch granules to fully gelatinize for a crispier end result. For prime crispness, use all granulated sugar or just sub in 20% light brown sugar for caramel notes while maintaining crispness.

Slash the Butter, Up the Oil

Butter contains 15-20% water so it lubricates more gluten development compared to oil. And more gluten equals more chew.

Using a neutral oil like canola or vegetable oil instead of some or all the butter slashes moisture content. And oil’s pure fat content crisps up beautifully during baking.

For crispy brownies, substitute 1/3 to 1/2 of the butter for oil to reduce chewiness. You still get buttery flavor while the oil ensures supreme crunch.

Chemical Leaveners Boost Crispiness

While eggs help lift brownie batter, adding a small amount of baking powder or soda gives even more rise for a crisper finish. These chemical leaveners produce air bubbles through acid-base reactions, leading to an airier, crisper texture.

Use just 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder or 1/4 tsp baking soda per batch. Too much causes an over-inflated, dry or cakier texture. The subtle lift is just enough to crispen brownies beautifully.

Crunchy Additives

And of course, adding crunchy elements, such as sliced almonds, doesn’t hurt either!

Crunchy Delights: How To Make Crispy Brownies

Recipe: Ultra Crispy Brownies

We’ve uncovered all the secrets to creating brownies with a shatteringly crisp texture. Now it’s time to bake it up. I hope these crackly brownies satisfy your crunchy, chocolatey dessert craving.

Enjoy!

Ingredients

Makes one 8-inch square pan.

  • 3⁄4 cup cocoa powder
  • 3⁄4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1⁄2 cup neutral oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1⁄2 cup almond flour
  • 1⁄4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1⁄2 tsp baking powder
  • 1⁄2 cup sliced almonds

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Line pan with parchment, letting it overhang 2 sides.
  2. Whisk cocoa powder and sugar together. Whisk in oil, eggs, vanilla, and almond flour until smooth.
  3. In another bowl, combine all-purpose flour and baking powder. Fold into wet ingredients just until blended.
  4. Pour batter into prepared pan, using an offset spatula to spread into corners thinly and evenly. Scatter almonds evenly over top.
  5. Bake 16-18 minutes until set. Bake more if too wet.
  6. Cool completely before using parchment handles to lift out brownie sheet. Cut into squares and enjoy the crisp!

For ultra-crispiness, slice almonds thinly to toast while baking instead of softening. Spread batter as thinly as possible without burning – aim for 1⁄4 inch or less.

Crunchy Delights: How To Make Crispy Brownies

Avoiding Common Mistakes

Now that we’ve covered all the secrets to crafting sublimely brittle brownies, let’s make sure simple errors don’t sabotage your efforts. Avoid these common pitfalls for brownie success every time.

Don’t Overmix

Vigorously beating or over-mixing brownie batter may seem helpful to fully incorporate ingredients. But it actually develops too much gluten, making brownies bready rather than tender and crisp.

Mix just until your batter comes together, then stop. There should still be small streaks of flour visible rather than a uniform mass. This light mixing leaves structure intact for a delicate, crispy texture.

Measure Precisely

Seemingly small measurement errors can have surprisingly big texture impacts. Using too much or too little of key ingredients throws off the delicate balance.

Weigh or measure amounts carefully and precisely for best results. Digital scales provide exact measurement for the most accurate, consistent outcomes every time.

And resist loosely adding “extras” without adjusting other elements. Sticking to tested recipes ensures ideal texture.

Mind Your Bake Times

While baking times can vary slightly by oven, carefully following recipe guidelines is key. Underbaked centers won’t set up fully crisp. But overbaking yields dry, crunchy edges with sunken, dense middles.

Set timers and watch carefully. Check for visual doneness cues like puffed, cracked tops or when edges pull away from the sides ever so slightly. Ideal crumbly brownies bake fully but briefly for uniformly crisp texture.

Let Brownies Cool Completely

It’s tempting to dive into fudgy brownies straight from the oven. But allowing bars to cool completely lets moisture redistribute evenly for consistent crispness throughout.

The same goes or crunchy brownies.

Premature cutting releases steam that turns formerly crisp sections soggy. Cooling firms structure too. So show some patience! Crispy brownie bliss awaits those who resist cutting too soon.

Tips for Crunchy Outcome

 To get the perfect shatteringly crisp brownies, check out these tips:

Pre-Bake Exposed Edges

Want ultra crisp edges throughout? Pre-bake the exposed edges and corners before adding the rest of the batter.

Grease and line your pan as usual, then dollop a thin layer of batter into just the edges and corners. Bake at 375°F for 5 minutes to set.

Next, fill the center with the remaining batter and resume baking at 350°F just until fully set. The brief head start crisps the edges nicely without overbaking the rest. Let cool completely for uniform crispness.

Optimize Heat Distribution

Using a pizza stone helps distribute heat evenly for uniform crispness top and bottom.

Place your cold, lined brownie pan directly onto a preheated pizza stone on the center rack. The stone crisps the bottom beautifully while the top air fries to crunchy perfection.

Crunchy Delights: How To Make Crispy Brownies

Flavor Variations for Crispy Brownies

From mix-ins to glazes and more, put your unique spin on these brownies while keeping that shatter factor front and center. Just stick to dry, low moisture add-ins to avoid diminishing beloved crunch.

Citrus Crispy Brownies

Bright citrus zest adds a burst of fresh flavor that pairs divinely with dark chocolate. For lemon or orange crisp brownies, simply add 2 teaspoons freshly grated lemon, lime, or orange zest when mixing your batter.

You’ll be amazed how the fruit essence enhances chocolate’s flavor while complementing the intense crunch. A squeeze of citrus juice or swirl of marmalade in the just-baked brownies takes it up another notch too.

Cinnamon Crispy Brownies

Warm cinnamon spice blends lusciously with chocolate while providing the perfect autumnal flair. Add 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon along with a pinch of nutmeg and cayenne pepper to the dry ingredients.

Crispy edges studded with chopped nuts or cinnamon chips make these brownies irresistible. Frost while warm with cream cheese frosting spiked with more cinnamon for over-the-top decadence.

Mocha Crispy Brownies

For an intense flavor and texture contrast, substitute 1⁄4 cup hot espresso for 1⁄4 cup milk or water in your crisp brownie batter. The mocha notes pair sublimely with the bittersweet chocolate while lending moisture for an incredible crumb.

Top these crisp coffee brownies with sweetened whipped cream or coffee frosting. Or sprinkle sea salt flakes and crushed chocolate covered espresso beans over the top before baking. Divine!

Crunchy Delights: How To Make Crispy Brownies

Serving Suggestions for Crispy Brownies

Your brownies make a showstopping dessert on their own. But of course we can make them more decadent in the way we serve them.

Pair with Whipped Cream

Cloud-like whipped cream provides the perfect contrasting creaminess against crackling crisp brownies. Top each square with a dollop of freshly whipped sweetened cream. Or for a twist, whip coconut cream for richer flavor.

For added decadence, mix whipped cream with mascarpone cheese before topping. The subtle tang pairs divinely with ultra-dark chocolate brownies in an elegant dessert pairing.

Serve with Fruit Compotes

The natural sweet-tartness of berries, stone fruits, and citrus beautifully balances intensly rich brownies.

Try topping crisp squares with vivid summer berry or stone fruit compotes. In winter, use tart cranberry or pomegranate seeds and sauce over the top for festive flair.

Even a simple garnish of orange suprêmes or fresh raspberries adds a refreshing finish, letting the brownies’ complex chocolate notes shine through.

Crème Anglaise Dipping Sauce

For a gourmet upgrade, serve biscuit-like brownies with a decadent crème anglaise sauce for dunking. The rich, velvety vanilla custard plays perfectly against the brownies’ crisp texture for a luxe flavor and textural interplay.

Drizzle the sauce artfully over the plated brownies. Or serve mini pitchers for individual dipping accompaniment to delight guests.

Storing for Maximum Crispiness

We’ve achieved crispy brownie perfection fresh from the oven. But let’s ensure sublime crunch lasts by using the right storage methods to lock in beloved crispness for days.

Allow to Cool Completely

Before Storage, let brownies cool fully in the pan overnight. This allows moisture to redistribute evenly so every bite crisps up. Cutting too soon causes steam that softens crisp sections. Patience pays off in uniform crunch!

Freeze For Long-Term Crispness

For enjoying your brownies over weeks instead of days, pop baked and completely cooled squares into freezer bags. Squeeze out excess air before sealing to prevent moisture and freezer burn.

Frozen storage stops moisture migration that would soften crispness over time. Thaw overnight in the fridge before enjoying for just-baked texture and taste.

Use Desiccants and Sealed Containers

To maximize crispness for up to a week stored at room temperature, borrow tricks from food manufacturing.

After browies cool completely, place squares in an airtight rigid container along with desiccant packs to soak up ambient moisture. Change desiccants once they feel damp.

The sealed container prevents moisture intrusion from the environment. Coupled with desiccants actively removing existing moisture, this keeps beloved crunch shatteringly crisp.

Revive Texture With Short Rebake

If unstored brownies lose that satisfying crunch after a few days, revive crispness with a quick redo. Bake cooled squares on a lined sheet at 300°F just until fragrant, 2-4 minutes.

This drives off excess moisture absorbed over time without overcooking. Cool completely again before serving for restored crackly joy worth the short extra effort!

Crisp, Crunch, Delight!

Now that you can achieve beloved crunch factor at home, it’s time to innovate! You can use this recipe as a springboard to develop your own trademark style of thin, crispy brownies. Swap in your favorite flavors and textures. Share the results with pride!

Be sure to pause and enjoy the fruits of your baking labor! Sink your teeth into your brownie and let those crisp, chocolatey layers melt on your tongue.

FAQs

Are brownies supposed to be crunchy?

Absolutely, brownies can indeed be crunchy if that’s your preference! Moving beyond the common expectation of soft, chewy textures, there’s a delightful world of crispy, thin brownies waiting to be explored. With the right ingredients and baking techniques, you can create brownies that offer a satisfying crunch in every bite, proving that the perfect brownie texture is truly in the taste buds of the beholder.

Why are my brownies not crispy?

Some reasons: overly moist batter, insufficient baking time, or incorrect oven temperature. Moisture-rich ingredients or too much fat can lead to a softer texture. Ensuring a thinner batter spread, increasing the oven heat slightly, or extending the baking duration can help achieve that desired crispiness. Also, using a shallow pan to encourage heat distribution can transform your brownies from soft to wonderfully crisp.

Print

Crispy Brownies Recipe

I hope these crackly brownies satisfy your crunchy, chocolatey dessert craving.

Enjoy!

  • Author: Anna
  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 18 mins
  • Total Time: 33 mins
  • Yield: 1 8-in pan 1x
  • Category: dessert

Ingredients

Scale
  • 3⁄4 cup cocoa powder
  • 3⁄4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1⁄2 cup neutral oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1⁄2 cup almond flour
  • 1⁄4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1⁄2 tsp baking powder
  • 1⁄2 cup sliced almonds

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Line pan with parchment, letting it overhang 2 sides.
  2. Whisk cocoa powder and sugar together. Whisk in oil, eggs, vanilla, and almond flour until smooth.
  3. In another bowl, combine all-purpose flour and baking powder. Fold into wet ingredients just until blended.
  4. Pour batter into prepared pan, using an offset spatula to spread into corners thinly and evenly. Scatter almonds evenly over top.
  5. Bake 16-18 minutes until set. Bake more if too wet.
  6. Cool completely before using parchment handles to lift out brownie sheet. Cut into squares and enjoy the crisp!

Notes

  • For ultra-crispiness, slice almonds thinly to toast while baking instead of softening. Spread batter as thinly as possible without burning – aim for 1⁄4 inch or less.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 piece
  • Calories: 170 kcal
  • Sugar: 11 g
  • Sodium: 20 mg
  • Fat: 12 g
  • Saturated Fat: 2 g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 10 g
  • Carbohydrates: 17 g
  • Fiber: 3 g
  • Protein: 3g
  • Cholesterol: 25 mg

Keywords: crispy crunchy brownies

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Published
Categorized as Baking

By Anna

Anna Brooks, the voice behind CooksDream.com, is a seasoned writer and editor with an insatiable love for food. While not a professional chef, her culinary adventures and unique insights have captivated readers for years. Anna believes in the transformative power of food, stating it "feeds the soul." Dive into her writings for a mix of inspiration, entertainment, and culinary wisdom. Author Pinterest Facebook Twitter Instagram YouTube Tumblr Reddit Quora

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