Small Batch Boudin Brownie Recipe Copy Cat

Boudin Bakery is California based, but years ago they had a store in Chicago’s 900 North Michigan, a mall not too far from my apartment. If it was cold outside (and it usually was), I’d spend a few hours wandering around the mall window shopping. Occasionally I’d buy something at Bloomingdale’s, but for the most part the mall was too expensive and the only thing I could afford was a brownie from The Boudin Bakery.

boudinbrowniecut

A few months ago the LA Times printed a scaled down, home-kitchen version of the Boudin Brownie recipe. Seeing the recipe brought back memories, but I didn’t get around to baking the brownies until yesterday.

The LA Times/Boudin recipe was for a 13×9 inch pan, so I halved it and baked the brownies in an 8 inch metal pan. Boudin bakes their brownies at 350 in a glass pan and since the rule is to lower heat 25 degrees when using glass over metal, I raised the heat 25 degrees since I was using metal instead of glass. 375 F seemed like a high heat for baking brownies, but I’d made other high-heat baked brownies and the result had been a thick crust and fudgy center. And that’s exactly what I got. These are fabulous, as far as texture goes. They have a really thick, flakey crust and a middle that’s soft and fudgy — pretty much the epitome of the “in-between” brownie.

One final note. I thought I’d over-baked the brownies, so I quick-cooled them in a water bath. I’d definitely use that same method again.

waterbath

Cut.

cutbrownies

Small Batch Boudin Brownie Recipe Copy Cat
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Brownies that are neither cakey nor too fudge-like
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 9
Ingredients
  • 1 stick unsalted butter (4 oz) plus extra for greasing
  • 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate
  • 2 1/2 large eggs – (to halve an egg, crack 1 and use 2 tablespoons)
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tablespoon vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cups (3.19 ounces) flour
  • 1 cup toasted, chopped pecans or walnuts
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line an 8 inch square metal pan with foil and butter the foil.
  2. Melt the butter in a heavy saucepan over medium heat. Add chocolate, turn off heat, and stir until melted from the residual heat. Let it cool for about 5 minutes.
  3. Beat the eggs and sugar until light and fluffy, 5 to 7 minutes. You can do this in a stand mixer or with a hand-held, but I used a stand mixer since the beating time is so long. Beat in the melted chocolate (which should be slightly warm, but not piping hot at this point), vanilla and the salt. By hand stir in the flour until it is almost combined, then add the nuts and continue stirring gently until all flour disappears. I do this with a heavy scraper.
  4. Pour the batter into the prepared pan, smooth to the edges, and bake in the center of the oven until puffed and almost set, about 38 to 40 minutes. I baked mine for 40 minutes. Worried that I overcooked them, I quick cooled them in a water bath to make double sure they wouldn’t continue cooking internally after I’d removed them from the oven. Results were great and I'd probably do this again (40 minute bake time and water-bath quick cool).
  5. Remove from ice water after about 30 minutes. Let cool completely. Lift from pan and cut into squares.
  6. Cut the brownies into 9 big squares or however many you feel like.

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Comments

  1. says

    Ooh, those do look good with the crispy tops and fudgy middles! I saw someone else make those a few weeks ago. Another thing I’d like to try!

  2. says

    always some new way of someone’s secret recipe. ice? never heard of that one.
    i haven’t made those levain cookies in ages….it’s time

  3. says

    You scared me for a minute — in Louisiana boudin is a type of Cajun sausage — but this looks yummy! I like my brownies on the cakey side, but DH likes his “fudgey”. I will have to try this recipe to see if we can find common ground.

  4. krista says

    i made these a while back – i really loved the flavour of the brownies but found that the top was way too crusty for my liking. do you have any suggestions for creating these same brownies without getting that thick crust?

  5. says

    Stephanie, I wouldn’t be surprised if someone did make Cajun sausage brownies. But yes, it would scare me too.

    Krista, I actually liked the crust a lot. I think all the beating plus baking the brownies at a higher heat (or in a glass pan) is what makes these kind of crusty. If you just mixed the ingredients gently and baked at 350 or even 325, you’d probably get the same flavor and less crust.

  6. jasmine says

    I made these tonight and will give them to my brother tomorrow (if they make it until then) They are great! I love the flaky top and chewy center!

  7. Steph McCord says

    Anna – Thanks for the wonderful recipe. I can’t wait to try – I’ve never baked “scratch” brownies before. Do you have any suggestions for a good chocolate to use? We have a local international market that sells everything (from any country) under the sun – so it’s always overwhelming trying to decide which one to use.

    Thanks again, I love your site!

  8. Elena says

    I think I might try these this weekend when the weather turns frightful. I’ve read, long ago, that putting your brownies in a water bath or right in the fridge will produce a crispier crust and a more dense texture. It always works for me!

  9. says

    I’m going to make these tonight; I love the look of the crust! I don’t have ice for the water bath, do you think putting them in the fridge would work?

  10. says

    Jennifer, I think it would work. The original recipe didn’t call for an ice bath but I used one because I was worried I’d overcooked the brownies a bit. So yes, give it a try! But I’d take the brownies out at 35-37 minutes rather than 40. That is, if they look done.

  11. says

    Anna,
    Thanks! I did make these last night and, unfortunately, I started doing homework and sort of forgot about them. When I finally remembered and ran in the kitchen the timer was going off, but I have no idea for how long it had been dinging! Anyway, mine were a little overbaked, but not inedible. I just topped each with vanilla ice cream and some caramel sauce and we had them warm (I was afraid they might be a bit dry when fully cooled off.) I’ll have to try again this weekend!
    Jennifer

  12. says

    Hey Anna,

    I don’t comment much, but I read your blog all the time =) I have a pretty long waiting list of recipes to add to my blog….but applying to professional school has a way of screwing up all your other plans…

    However, tonight I will be (a) making my waiting list longer and (b) ignoring homework in order to make THESE brownies– with Intense Orange Lindt Dark Chocolate and maybe substituting banana for some of the butter! I’ll let you know how the fruity version turns out!

  13. says

    Haha…well, unfortunately I didn’t work at all…I just ended up with sticky brownie shards…

    I did use powdered egg substitute as well as 1/2 stick light butter and 4 Tbsp mashed banana. I’m thinking that was a few too many subs, but alas, the threat of snow kept me home…

    I’m still determined to make these though, using an interesting flavor of chocolate…

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