Espresso Brownies by Giada de Laurentiis

Once again, I look to Giada when I want to impress my guests. This was the dessert I served with the dinner I have been featuring, in the previous two posts. Because pesto is a strong flavor, the dessert needs to be equally if not more strong to overcome the taste of pesto. Espresso brownies are rich in flavor and do the trick in flooding every last taste bud in your mouth, I think, at least. These brownies are a fan favorite, but its all Giada. I can’t take credit for it. They appeal to coffee drinkers and non-coffee drinkers alike.  People have told me that they dream about these brownies, and others become restless and chatty because of the espresso kick. You will have to tell me what you think one day. But to me, it is the perfect brownie taken after dinner with a cappuccino. These brownies are very rich, and in fact, I cut the squares too large. They are best enjoyed in small squares, maybe two or three bites with a coffee or large glass of milk nearby. Giada does not mess around with her chocolate. 

I love this recipe because it is not that difficult. It is not completely homemade because a store-bought brownie mix (Duncun Hines) is used. To the prepared brownie mix, you simply add chocolate chips, vanilla, espresso, and the other ingredients needed to make the brownie mix. Then, you make a simple frosting, which includes more espresso to frost the brownies. The icing on the brownie just about melts in your mouth. Here is Giada’s recipe below. I retrieved it from the Food Network website. The link is below the recipe, if you would like to see pictures or check out more of Giada’s recipes. Enjoy! 
Espresso Brownies

  • Cook Time

    35 min

  • Level


  • Yield

    36 bite-size brownies


  • Nonstick vegetable oil cooking spray
  • 1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons water
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons espressopowder
  • 1 (19.8-ounce) box brownie mix (recommended: Duncan Hines)
  • 3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, room temperature


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Spray a 9 by 13-inch baking pan with nonstick spray. Whisk 1/3 cup of water, oil, eggs, and 2 tablespoons espresso powder in a large bowl to blend. Add the brownie mix. Stir until well blended. Stir in the chocolate chips. Transfer the batter to the prepared baking pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of the brownies comes out with a few moist crumbs attached, about 35 minutes. Cool completely.

Meanwhile, dissolve the remaining 2 teaspoons of espresso powder in the remaining 2 tablespoons of water in a medium bowl. Whisk in the vanilla. Add the powdered sugar and butter and whisk until smooth. Pour the glaze over the brownies. Refrigerate until the glaze is set. Cut into bite-size pieces. Arrange the brownies on a platter and serve.

Retrieved from:

The baked brownies, sitting to cool:

After the brownies have cooled completely, finish with icing and wait until it sets or hardens:

After the icing has set, carefully cut with serrated (steak knife) or sharp knife. Wipe knife off in between cutting to make clean cuts. Cut the brownies smaller than I did because they are very rich. You should get about 36 brownies:


*The pictures in this post are taken by myself, not Giada.

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