Tasting is Believing Whole-Grain Brownies

star rating (73) rate this recipe »
whole grain, quick-n-easy
Recipe photo
Hands-on time:
Baking time:
Total time:
Yield: 2 dozen 2" brownies

Recipe photo

These whole-wheat brownies are the treat we serve when we're trying to convince folks that baking with whole grains doesn't have to be an exercise in deprivation! Moist, rich, and deeply, darkly chocolate, these brownies are the ones to go through life with. We discovered something interesting when sampling these. Their texture is greatly improved if you wait 24 hours before cutting them. Why? The wait gives the wheat bran a chance to soften and "disappear," texture-wise. You can see a video of these brownies being made, start to finish, at how2heroes.com .

Tasting is Believing Whole-Grain Brownies

star rating (73) rate this recipe »
whole grain, quick-n-easy
Hands-on time:
Baking time:
Total time: Overnight,
Yield: 2 dozen 2" brownies
Published: 01/01/2010


Tips from our bakers

  • You can add 1 cup of nuts, or try other flavor combinations that appeal to you: toffee chips, or white chocolate, peanut butter, cappuccino, or mint chips. The total volume of mix-ins shouldn't exceed 3 cups, and may increase baking time by 3 to 5 minutes.
  • If you want to cut shapes out of the brownies, line the baking pan with a sheet of parchment paper. Use a paper or metal spring clip to secure the parchment to the edge of the pan so it doesn't flop down on the batter as it bakes. After the brownies are cool, you can use the parchment to lift the slab of brownies out of the pan, making them easier to frost or glaze, and cut.


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1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 9" x 13" pan; line the pan with parchment paper if desired.

2. In a medium-sized microwave-safe bowl, or in a saucepan set over low heat, melt the butter, then add the sugar and stir to combine.

3. Return the mixture to the heat (or microwave) briefly just till it's hot (about 110°F to 120°F) but not bubbling. Don't worry if it separates; just stir it briefly to recombine a bit. Heating this mixture a second time will dissolve more of the sugar, which will yield a shiny top crust on your brownies.

4. Transfer the mixture to a bowl, and stir in the cocoa, salt, baking powder, espresso powder if using, and vanilla.

5. Add the eggs, stirring till smooth.

6. Then add the flour and chips, again stirring till smooth. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan.

7. Bake the brownies for 30 minutes, until a cake tester or sharp knife poked into the center reveals wet crumbs, but not raw batter. The brownies should feel set on the edges and in the center. Remove them from the oven, and cool completely on a rack.

8. Cover and let sit overnight before cutting and serving; this gives the bran a chance to soften and become "invisible" in your mouth.

Yield: 2 dozen 2" brownies.

Nutrition information

Serving Size: 60g Servings Per Batch: 24 Amount Per Serving: Calories: 247 Calories from Fat: 120 Total Fat: 14g Saturated Fat: 8g Trans Fat: 0g Cholesterol: 56mg Sodium: 134mg Total Carbohydrate: 32g Dietary Fiber: 2g Sugars: 25g Protein: 3g

* The nutrition information provided for this recipe is determined by the ESHA Genesis R&D software program. Substituting any ingredients may change the posted nutrition information.


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  • star rating 04/30/2015
  • Sarah from Florence, AL
  • I followed the recipe exactly, including waiting overnight before cutting. They are so, so good!
  • star rating 04/04/2015
  • Jennifer from San Mateo, CA
  • Wow, these brownies are delicious and I could not detect the whole wheat flour even without waiting the 24 hours (I couldn't resist tasting once the brownies were cool). I am planning to taste again after waiting a day to see if there is difference. Like some other posters, I normally use unsweetened chocolate when making brownies. Following this recipe, I used Bensdorp Dutch-process cocoa, semi-sweet chips and decaf instant coffee powder (what I had in my cupboard) and the texture of the end product is just about perfect (if I do say so myself). Shiny, crackly top, crisp edges, chewy & fudgy center but not dense. With results like this, this recipe really gives non-whole grain recipes a run for their money.
  • star rating 03/30/2015
  • Sarah from Florence, AL
  • I've never made brownies with cocoa before (just melted chocolate), let alone whole wheat. These are so good they could have been made with sawdust and I would have loved them. No one will know unless you tell them that they are sort of good for you.
  • star rating 03/02/2015
  • Lady of Shallots from KAF Community
  • Definitely moist with a texture for everyone (crispy on the edges, fudgier in the middle without falling into the dense trap). The whole wheat vanished into the moisture of the brownie. Rich chocolate flavor, but I found it almost harsh, which is why I'm not giving them 5 stars.
    We're big-time chocolate lovers here at King Arthur, but we understand that this can be a bit over-powering for some people's taste buds. To tone down the intensity without losing any of the moistness that makes these brownies so enticing, try using 1 cup of white chocolate chips in place of 1 cup of the semi-sweet chocolate chips called for in the recipe. Give it a whirl and see if this brings the recipe to the chocolate-level you're looking for. Good luck and happy baking to you! --Kye@KAF
  • star rating 02/06/2015
  • Gail from Winterville, NC
  • My hubby who says he really doesn't like wheat bread loved these brownies and I need to make another pan of them. They are very good!
  • star rating 08/19/2014
  • Shar from MN
  • The brownies are very dry. I followed the recipe and also made sure I mixed the flour when I measured it. I was looking for a more chewy,tender brownie.

    Hi Shar- I apologize for your disappointment with this recipe. In addition to fluffing your flour, be sure you are sprinkling it into the cup lightly as well before leveling it off. I would also wonder if they may have just been a bit over-baked, so maybe try pulling them from the oven a bit earlier next time to see if that helps as well. If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact our baker's hotline at 1-855-371-2253. Happy baking! Jocelyn@KAF

  • star rating 03/17/2014
  • Jessica S from Fitchburg, WI
  • This is my new go-to brownie recipe, SO delicious and chocolatey! Next time I might try replacing some of the melted butter for applesauce.
  • star rating 02/03/2014
  • Neomi from KAF Community
  • I made this many times, making it a bit healthier each time. Today I reduced the sugar so much that I wasn't sure if it will still taste good, but I was very glad about the results. I used only 6 ounces sugar instead of the 15 oz the recipe calls for. Following your lower fat version in the whole grain baking book, I used only half of the butter, and added the apple sauce. I mixed in a drop of almond essence, and used almonds instead of third of the chocolate. I baked it only 25 minutes, and it was really good, my kids loved it.
  • star rating 10/05/2013
  • Bev from Riverton; Wy.
  • OOhhh mamma! easy to make and heaven in your mouth. who would have thought whole wheat and cocoa made this.
  • star rating 10/01/2013
  • Cindy from NY
  • These were great. They cut well right away and did not crumble. Didn't notice the whole wheat flour in the taste or texture even immediately out of the oven.
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