One Bowl Espresso Brownies

One Bowl Espresso Brownies

Rich and delicious, One Bowl Espresso Brownies are the answer when you need a quick dessert that tastes like a million bucks. These one bowl brownies are rich, fudgy, chewy chocolate heaven!

I found this recipe in my mother’s recipe box, without the added espresso, about 30 years ago and as a result, I have no idea where the recipe came from originally. I have tried at least 25 different one bowl brownie recipes and I always come back to this one because it tastes great and it never fails.

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5 One Bowl Brownies with powdered sugar

7 ingredients for easy One Bowl Espresso Brownies

I usually have what I need on hand for these brownies, and you probably do too! These rich and delicious brownies can be made in one bowl if you have a microwave. If you prefer you can melt the chocolate and butter over a double boiler. I like to use my own Homemade Vanilla Extract, as well.

  • Dark Chocolate, unsweetened
  • Butter, use unsalted if possible
  • Brewed Espresso or Espresso Powder
  • Vanilla Extract
  • Sugar
  • Eggs
  • All-purpose Flour
Melting chocolate
Melted Dark Chocolate

Substitutions and Additions:

  • You can omit the espresso if you don’t want the added caffeine or are making brownies for the kiddos. However, I think the coffee really deepens the flavor and you do not get an overwhelming coffee flavor with the finished product.
  • Use brewed liquid espresso or powdered espresso (see equivalency notes in recipe card).
  • My mom made them with Irish Cream liqueur instead of espresso and they were absolutely amazing! Try our Homemade Irish Cream recipe for that version. Better yet, top with an Irish Cream frosting!
  • I recommend using unsweetened chocolate, but in a pinch, I have used dark chocolate or semi-sweet chocolate squares. You’ll find the brownies will be a bit sweeter with semi-sweet chocolate.
  • If you want to add nuts you’ll need about 3/4 cup of roughly chopped pecans or walnuts mixed in at the end.
  • Sprinkle the top of the brownie batter with chocolate chips just before baking for an added chocolate blast!

Substituting cocoa powder for solid chocolate squares:

You can substitute cocoa powder if you don’t have chocolate squares. In order to sub in cocoa powder, you must use a ratio of:

  • 3 tablespoons cocoa powder plus one tablespoon vegetable oil = 1 ounce square of unsweetened chocolate
5 Brownies with a cup of Espresso

Best baking pan – metal or glass?

I like baking brownies in a glass baking pan because glass cooks more evenly, without hot spots, and I prefer soft brownies. However, if you like crunchy edges use a light-colored metal pan. The darker edges of a metal pan will give the crunchy edge brownie lovers lots of crunchy edges!

How do I know if my brownies are done?

These One Bowl Espresso Brownies will keep cooking after you remove them from the oven. To ensure you don’t overcook the middle of the brownies should be slightly undercooked. You don’t want the middle to be raw but it should still be soft.

Start testing the brownies with a toothpick or wooden skewer a minute or so before you think they’re done. Take them out of the oven when there are still some crumbs on the toothpick.

Tips to quickly cut brownies:

  • Make sure brownies are completely cooled before cutting. It’s hard to resist the urge to cut them right out of the oven because they smell soooooo good! But try to wait for about 30-minutes.
  • Line your pan with parchment paper and it will be easy to remove the whole pan without cutting
  • Always oil your pan with non-stick spray or vegetable oil
  • Cut your brownies with an oiled serrated knife or a serrated plastic knife for clean cuts

Serving ideas:

Salted Caramel Sauce
Salted Caramel Sauce

Looking for more dessert ideas?

One Bowl Brownies
One Bowl Brownies
Brownies stack with Espresso
Print Recipe
5 from 5 votes

Espresso Brownies

Rich and delicious, these one bowl espresso brownies are the answer when you need a quick dessert that tastes like a million bucks.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time35 mins
Course: Dessert, Snack, snacks, Sweets
Cuisine: American
Servings: 20 Brownies
Calories: 175kcal
Author: Cyndy Ufkes – The Art of Food and Wine


  • 4 oz dark chocolate, unsweetened
  • 12 Tbsp butter, unsalted
  • 3 Tbsp brewed espresso, or 2 tsp espresso powder
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1⅛ cup all-purpose flour


  • Preheat oven to 350°F
  • Grease or line with parchment a 13" x 9" baking pan. Alternately use an 8.5" x 11" pan.
  • Prepare espresso and let cool to room temperature.
  • In a large microwave-safe bowl heat butter and chocolate about 2 minutes or until completely melted, stirring halfway through.
  • Add espresso and vanilla and stir until smooth. Add sugar and mix. Add eggs one at a time and combine completely.
  • Add flour and stir to combine, but do not over mix. If desired, add nuts.
  • Pour batter into prepared pan.
  • Cook for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. If using an 8.5" x 11" pan cook about 40-minutes.
    Cool completely before cutting. Store at room temperature in a sealed container.
Brownies stacked up

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