Homemade Comfort Brownie Recipe


I found this brownie recipe on the side of a cocoa container when I was in high school. I don’t remember why I needed a brownie recipe. But I know that I was planning to make several pans of brownies to give away to friends. And I wanted to learn how to make them from scratch instead of using a box mix.

I’ve made these brownies for holidays, for potlucks, and for birthday gifts. And there have been many pans of just-because brownies, too.

Homemade Comfort Brownie Recipe

I have a 5-year-old email thread with my sister that we both refer back to for the brownie recipe. I’ve worked out some anxiety to the rhythm of the familiar “dumping in” of ingredients and then washed it down with a glass of milk.

I made a pan a few days ago when I needed to bake some feelings out. I’ve had ALL THE FEELINGS, as I’m sure you have, too, and I wanted to have a little therapy session.

I also wanted to eat some chocolate after my kids went to bed if I’m being honest.

I’ve had major baking feelings these last few weeks and have stocked up on supplies for muffins and baked goods more than, say, rice and beans. I know what grounds me and helps me to feel tethered, and making things with my hands is it. If I’m going to be at home with my young kids for the next while, I’m going to do some baking therapy.

Now there’s a new connection to this brownie recipe, a worldwide pandemic.

When the chaos of the coronavirus is just a memory, and it will be a memory one day, I’ll remember that my trusty, made-from-scratch brownie recipe brought me a little comfort when we didn’t know what the next days would look like.

These brownies lent the flavor of normal to a time where normal does not exist.


1/2 cup (1 stick) butter or margarine

1/2 cup cocoa

1 cup sugar

2 eggs

1 tsp. vanilla

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1/4 tsp. salt


Preheat oven to 350º F.

Grease an 8x8x2 inch pan.

In a medium saucepan, melt butter or margarine. Remove melted butter or margarine from heat, add cocoa, and stir until well blended.

Add sugar and mix well. Add eggs, one at a time, and beat well.

Stir in vanilla, flour, and salt. Don’t overbeat.

Spread in prepared pan and bake 25 to 30 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Originally published March 2020.

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homemade comfort brownie recipe

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