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Chocolate Hazelnut Brownies

Are you devout to your favourite recipes, or do you prefer to try out variations even if the results aren’t guaranteed to be better?

I, personally, am always trying other recipes just to see the difference. I am so glad I’m not attached-to-the-hip with recipes, because otherwise I wouldn’t find wonderful ones like this! Today I made chocolate hazelnut brownies. And they were ooey-gooey delicious and heaven! But they tasted different than the other ones I’ve made.

Why? They are made with cocoa powder instead of melted chocolate.

So, what’s the difference between brownies made with cocoa powder, and brownies made with melted chocolate?

Firstly, the texture: my melted chocolate brownies are very soft and gooey, whereas these cocoa brownies are slightly chewier. Both are delicious but quite different. It’s all a question of preference!

Secondly, price: cocoa powder is always going to be slightly easier on the wallet than high quality chocolate. Why? Because cocoa powder is simply one element of the cocoa bean, whereas baking chocolate is various elements (such as cocoa butter, sugar, ground cocoa) mixed together.

No matter your preference, it’s safe to say that chocolate is chocolate is chocolate…. and is delicious. Especially with hazelnuts! 🙂

How do you feel about being loyal to recipes? Is there a recipe that you fell in love with and now use regularly? Share in the comments!

 Chocolate Hazelnut Brownies


  • 2/3 cup (140 grams) unsalted butter
  • 1 and 1/4 cups sugar
  • 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs, cold
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup hazelnuts


  1. Position an oven rack in the lower third of your oven and preheat to 325F. Line the bottom and sides of an 8×8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper, leaving an overhang on the sides.
  2. Combine the butter, sugar, cocoa, and salt in a heatproof bowl and microwave on high for 1 minute. Remove to stir, and then microwave again for another 30 seconds to one minute or until the mixture is hot and melted. It will still look fairly gritty.
    Note: you can also do this step on the stove in a double boiler.
  3. Stir in the vanilla with a wooden spoon. Add the eggs one at a time, stirring vigorously after each one. When the batter looks thick, shiny, and well blended, fold in the flour until there are no more floury-streaks, then beat vigorously for 40 strokes with the wooden spoon or a rubber spatula. Stir in the nuts, if using. Spread evenly in the lined pan.
  4. Bake until a toothpick plunged into the center emerges slightly moist with batter, 30 to 35 minutes. Let cool completely on a rack before slicing, about 4 hours.

Makes 16-25 brownies (depending on size).
Recipe adapted from Smitten Kitchen.