Kahlua Fudge Brownies

Today’s recipe is from Steven, who got it from a trusted source (his godmother) but couldn’t make it work. The brownies tasted good, but were goopy and seemed underdone even though they appeared fully baked. My mission was to troubleshoot.

Kahlua Brownies

Not wanting to waste precious chocolate and Kahlua on goopy brownies, the first thing I did was search the Internet to see if the recipe existed elsewhere. Naturally, it did. I found it on Cooks.com and Recipesource and the versions were almost identical, except for pan size and flour discrepancies. Those sources called for 1 1/4 cups, while this recipe called for 1 ½ sifted cups. The varying amounts of flour and the fact that one of the recipes called for sifted were signals Steven’s problems probably came from not using enough flour. If we all baked with scales, this wouldn’t be an issue, but 1 ½ cups sifted flour can be anywhere 6 oz to 7 or even 8 depending on how heavy a hand is used to scoop and how well the flour is sifted and (possibly) humidity.

So long story short, I made the brownies using a guestimated 6.5 oz of flour and they were great. They’re dense, thick, and on the sweet side, but the generous amount of toasted walnuts helps temper the sweetness so if you use this recipe, don’t leave them out.


Kahlua Fudge Brownies
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Fudge brownies with a hint of Kahlua
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Serves: 16
  • Kahlua Fudge Brownies
  • 1 1/2 c. sifted flour (determined that 6.5 oz weight worked)
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 11 tablespoons butter (I used unsalted)
  • 3 oz. unsweetened chocolate
  • 3 eggs (large)
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 5 T Kahlua plus a little extra for top
  • 3/4 cup TOASTED chopped walnuts
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Line a 9" square metal pan with foil, grease well or line with
  3. non-stick
  4. foil (recommended).
  5. Mix the flour with baking powder and salt. Melt butter with chocolate (did this in the microwave). Beat eggs with sugar until light. Add chocolate mixture and kahlua. Stir in flour mixture and nuts. Blend well.
  6. Pour into prepared pan and bake 30 minutes (35 minutes) or until the top springs back in the center and edges begin to pull away from the pan.
  7. Remove from oven and cool thoroughly in pan. Brush top with 1 T Kahlua.
  8. When cool, lift from pan and cut into 16 thick brownies.

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  1. Steven says

    Well, they look great. I’m looking forward to making them this weekend. I have plenty of Kahlua and some pecans (no walnuts, though) and the Nestle pre-melted baking chocolate. I will be very popular at the party.

  2. says

    The scale is my favorite thing when baking. I always measure flour 120 grams per cup (Not sure what that is in ounces, I thought it was 7.) But there sure is a difference when I just try to measure cups–that way is always a lot more heavy handed than we think. I always measure at least flour and both kinds of sugar.

  3. Bethany says

    About the sifted flour- does that mean to sift some flour first and then measure out 1.5 cups of that? Or to measure 1.5 cups of flour and THEN sift and use that? These sound way too good to waste on goop! And I don’t have a scale, though this could be the recipe that could push me to get one. Thanks for any sifting advice you have!

  4. says

    Good job helping your friend troubleshoot. The brownies look fantastic! I haven’t used the pre-melted chocolate that Steven mentioned. If he uses that does he need to make adjustments to the recipe? Since it’s more liquid, I’m thinking the answer is yes. Maybe it has guidelines on the pkg. for making substitutions for un-melted chocolate?

  5. says

    These look delicious! How can Kaluha and chocolate be anything but? I’m with Sue on the liquid chocolate. I don’t think it can be substituted for regular unsweetened chocolate without altering the texture. It’s like using oil vs butter. Your finished product will be different if you don’t change anything else in the recipe. That’s my unsolicited 2 cents!

  6. pumpkinpie says

    Another great part of baking is playing scientist. This week I made a molten chocolate cake recipe, but instead of melted butter I used coconut milk. It worked beautifully! I was trying to replicate a dessert served at my favorite Thai restaurant.

  7. says

    Bethany, I’ve always read “sifted flour” to mean flour that’s been measured after sifting. If a recipe says “1 cup flour, sifted”, then I take that to mean it’s a standard cup of flour that you sift after measuring.

    Since you don’t have a scale, just fluff up the flour really well then spoon and sweep.

  8. says

    The Kahula certainly makes this recipe very interesting! Hmm, I wondering what tweaks we could do to make it a little bit healthier, any ideas?

  9. says

    @Anna – That’s my understanding of “sifted flour” as well. Myself, I use 130g as a standard cup, but it has always been my opinion that we need someone other than the flour companies to come up with standard measurements (they don’t seem to understand the problem). And hey, if someone wants to pay me to start retesting all existing recipes with the new measurements, I can start tomorrow :).

  10. Gina says

    But what’s your taste and texture review, Anna? I always enjoy hearing how a new recipe compares to favorites. 🙂 Also, I’m in need of an updated new puppy photo.

  11. says

    The texture was perfect — dense and thick but not cakey. They were sweet the first day, but the sweetness mellowed by Day 2.

    One thought about Steven’s goopiness: he mentioned he’d been using pre-melted chocolate packets. If he used pre-melted chocolate in this recipe, it’s possible it caused the goopiness, though I can’t say for sure.

  12. Steven says

    Actually, I’ve never used them before, but I was going to use them this time. I would be surprised if it made a big difference. Last time, though, I skipped the nuts and I didn’t weigh the flour. I will be more careful this time.

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