Boxed confections are truly a blessing for dessert lovers. They are easy, quick, and are more than capable of satisfying your sweet tooth. But sometimes it is natural to want a bit more, to have boxed mixes taste a little more homemade and delicious. So, how can you make Betty Crocker’s fudge brownies better?
To make Betty Crocker fudge brownies taste better, you can add an extra egg yolk, substitute water with milk or heavy cream, add a touch of vanilla and salt, etc. Additionally, you can infuse espresso powder to highlight the chocolate flavor. You can also add some crunch by mixing cereal or nuts.
Betty Crocker’s fudge brownies are an appetizing dessert that saves you a lot of time and hassle. But with just a few tricks, you can improve the overall taste of the brownies tenfold. And in this article, we are going to be discussing those tips in further detail. We will look at the original recipe and explore the possible areas for improvement.
How To Improve Betty Crocker Fudge Brownies?
Of all the boxed brownies out there in the market, Betty Crocker’s fudge brownies are easily one of the better choices. They possess a heavy chocolate flavor and a rich texture.
But if you are searching for something more, to have it taste a bit more homemade, then you can alter the original recipe with some nifty little tricks and get remarkable results. So, let’s break down how to make these fudge brownies better.
Enhance the Chocolatiness Further with a Touch of Espresso
Here is a simple trick that you can use to amplify the chocolate flavor in any dish. All you require for this is a tablespoon of espresso powder. Alternatively, you can use fine coffee granules to achieve the same effect.
Coffee and chocolate just go superbly as a combination. And adding a tablespoon of espresso or coffee, will not make your brownies taste like bitter coffee. Instead, it will complement the cocoa powder and highlight the chocolate flavor.
Use an Extra Egg Yolk For a Fudgier Brownie
In the back of the box, the instruction specifies the use of two eggs. But you do not necessarily have to use the entire egg. This depends on the consistency and texture you are trying to achieve.
The egg yolk acts as an emulsifier to hold fat and water in the mixture together. This makes the baked good taste richer and heavier. While the egg white acts as a leavening agent to make the confection lighter. This is especially true if you whisk in the egg whites separately.
So, if you are looking for a lighter, cakier brownie batch, you should use the whole eggs. You can even do what the box recommends and put one extra egg in the batter.
But if you want the brownies to be heavier and fudgier, you can use just the egg yolk.
Substitute Water with Milk or Heavy Cream
Water is the first ingredient in the recipe. And this is the first item we are going to change for better brownies. Simple water is not going to ruin your brownies. It provides the batter moisture so that it does not dry up. But it does not offer anything beyond that as water possesses a neutral flavor.
Milk, on the other hand, is a natural source of fat. And the more fat in your brownies and cakes, the richer and creamier they will feel. So, by substituting water with the same amount of milk or heavy cream, you can get that gooey, thick fudge brownie experience. It will also make your brownies taste more homemade even though it is not.
The choice between cream or milk depends on how much fat you want in the brownies. Regular milk contains no more than 3.25% milkfat, which is obviously higher than plain water. But the USDA defines heavy cream as having at least 36% fat. So, the difference is pretty drastic and so will be the result.
You can also replace half the water with milk and the other half with cream.
Pour Hot Brewed Coffee to the Mix
So, this next brownie hack is sort of a combination of two earlier ones. Coffee can greatly increase the chocolate taste in brownies. So, instead of plain water, you can pour hot coffee. This will provide moisture and will complement the flavor profile nicely.
Splash Some Vanilla Extract
While the chocolate flavor predominates in a Betty Crocker brownie, the taste is more bittersweet than just sugar. So, the more rounded sweetness of vanilla extract goes surprisingly well with the heavy chocolate.
Use 1 or 2 tablespoons of pure vanilla extract. They are readily available in most grocery stores so it should not be too hard to find them. And just a couple of spoons can make a world of difference.
Melted Butter for Creamier Brownies
The instruction on the box specifies to use ½ cup of vegetable oil. The oil provides moisture in the brownies. But similar to water, vegetable oils like canola or sunflower have a neutral taste.
Melted butter, on the other hand, will keep the brownies moist as well as make them richer. It will give the brownies a chunky, chewy texture. So, use the same amount of unsalted melted butter in the batter.
You can make melted butter easily with the help of a microwave oven. Or you can melt it in a saucepan. Remember to use butter at room temperature. Meaning after you melted it, give it time to cool down.
Of course, too much fat is going to take a toll on your body. So, if you are particularly health-conscious, you might want to avoid this trick.
But if your top priority is taste, then swapping the vegetable oil with melted butter will absolutely be worth it.
Drizzle Some Ganache
Another delicious way of putting more chocolate in your brownies is by topping them off with ganache. You can also dip the brownies in the ganache if you feel like it. Alternatively, if you are short on time, you can use chocolate syrup on top of the brownies.
Add a Pinch of Sea Salt
You have probably heard that sea salt goes really well with caramel. Well, we are here to tell you that the same applies to chocolate desserts. Betty Crocker’s fudge brownies have high sugar content. In fact, in a 26-gram serving, 15 grams is straight-up sugar. Then you also have to account for the sweetness from the chocolate and vanilla extract.
Well, the salt is there to balance out all the sweetness in the brownies. This will result in much more balanced and overall better brownies.
Use Chocolate Chips or Chunks
Want to make your brownies more chocolaty? Well, simply add more chocolate! And a good way of doing that would be to use chocolate chips or chunks. You can buy a pack of chips from the store and use the whole thing for one batch of brownies.
And there are a couple of ways you can do this. You can add the chips or chunks to the batter right before putting them in the oven. Or you can put some at the end to the top of the brownies. If you feel like it, you can do both together.
Go Nuts with Nuts
If you want to add some crunch to your fudge, adding nuts to the mix is a terrific option. Roasted almonds or walnuts are the best choices for this purpose.
You can put them on top of the batter just before baking them in the oven. And you can save some extra nuts to put them at the end.
Another way of adding some crunch would be to use crushed hard candies, peanut butter chips, or peanut brittles. You really are just limited by your imagination when it comes to add-ins. You can mix and match your favorite ingredients and add them to the brownies to elevate them further.
Not everybody likes coconut with chocolate. But there are more than a fair share who do. So, for those people that love the taste of coconut in baked goods, try adding some shredded coconut in the mix.
First, toast the shreds in a pan. Be careful not to burn it as burnt coconut can ruin the entire thing. Then add the coconuts to the wet batter. You can even save some of the shreds and use them as garnish later on
What Makes Brownies Fudgy?
The thing that makes brownies fudgy is fat. To be more precise, the fat to flour ratio in brownies will determine how fudgy they are going to turn out. And it is the difference in this ratio that results in different kinds of brownies.
Fat makes your confection taste richer, creamier, and heavier. All of these are good qualities in a fudge brownie. With brownies, you are not looking for a light and airy mixture. You want to make your brownies as devilishly rich as possible.
In comparison, cakes have a higher amount of flour. So, the end product is lighter and a bit drier. But that is acceptable for a cake as good cakes have a soft and fluffy consistency. But for most people, fudge brownies have to be thick and decadent.
Of course, there are other factors involved in making a brownie soft yet thick. You need to cook at the right temperature. you should not overmix the batter. but ultimately it is going to come down to how much fat there is in the brownies.
The fat in brownies can come from multiple sources. There is fat in the egg yolk, cocoa powder, and vegetable oils. Additionally, you can incorporate more fat in the batter by using butter over oil, replacing the water with milk or cream, or by adding an extra egg yolk.
The result will be a rich, dense, thick, creamy, brownie that will earn its name of “fudge brownies”.
To conclude, Betty Crocker’s fudge brownies are a devilishly delicious treat. And by applying some of these baking hacks, you can elevate them to the next level. You may even fool unsuspecting people into thinking these are totally homemade treats instead of boxed ones!