So addictive they need a warning label
Some food speaks to me. Like these little charmers, for instance. When I took my first bite, I heard, “Hello. My name is Chocolate Mascarpone Brownie. Prepare to die.”
OK, maybe not literally. But you’ll wonder if you’re hearing things when you sample these. “Just one more,” they will whisper. “What harm could there be in eating one more little bite?”
And before you know it, you’re under the table, covered in crumbs.
So be warned: Make these only when you have companions to help consume them. Or be prepared for the consequences.
Recipe: Chocolate Mascarpone Brownies
Mrs. Kitchen Riffs adapted this recipe from one she found online (proving once again that the Internet can be a dangerous thing). The original recipe was developed by Peter Thornley, a chef from New Zealand, and apparently was featured on a Radio New Zealand program. For more information, see Chef Thornley’s Recipe.
Mixing time for these brownies is about 20 minutes, baking time maybe 40. So you’ll be done in an hour.
This recipe makes about 24 to 30 brownies, depending on how large you cut them.
Leftovers (ha!) will keep for several days if stored at room temperature in an air-tight container.
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon double-acting baking powder (see Notes)
- 1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter
- 6 large eggs (preferably pasteurized; see Notes)
- 2½ cups granulated sugar
- 8 ounces mascarpone (see Notes)
- 1½ to 1¾ cups unsweetened cocoa
- 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 350° F (375° F if using a metal baking pan). Butter a 9 x 13-inch baking dish and line with parchment paper.
- Whisk flour and baking powder together and set aside.
- Melt butter in the microwave (about 1 minute), preferably in a container with a lid (see Notes). Pour melted butter into the bowl of a stand mixer (or into a large mixing bowl if using a hand mixer). Let the butter cool for a minute or two, then add eggs and beat until combined. Add sugar and mascarpone, blending until smooth. Add cocoa and mix until the batter is glossy (about 5 minutes).
- Add dry ingredients (flour and baking powder) and mix until well combined. Add chocolate chips and blend well.
- Pour batter into the prepared dish and bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until the top begins to crack (see Notes).
- Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack. Cut into pieces of about 2x2 inches.
- If you use a glass baking dish, make sure it’s ovenproof. Bake at 350° F (instead of 375° F) because glass holds heat more efficiently than metal. If you bake at a higher temperature, you risk burning the brownies.
- Almost every baking powder you’ll find on your grocery shelf is “double-acting.”
- Baking powder does become weaker over time (and most baking powder tins have an expiration date). So replace your baking powder when necessary. I usually replace mine once a year, when daylight saving time ends (so I remember to do it).
- It’s a good idea to shake baking powder before using it to make sure all its components are well mixed. Baking powder consists of baking soda, plus an acidic ingredient (which reacts with the baking soda to produce leavening) and a neutral substance (usually corn starch) to provide bulk.
- Why use a lidded container when melting the butter? Because butter can explode in the microwave. Guess how I know this.
- Eggs carry a slight (but real) risk of salmonella. So I suggest using pasteurized eggs for brownies. Although it’s unlikely that the eggs you buy will be infected, why take the risk? Especially since most of us can’t make brownies without tasting the raw batter.
- You can identify pasteurized eggs because they usually have a red “P” stamped on them.
- Mascarpone is a soft Italian cheese (similar to cream cheese) with rich, sweet flavor. It plays a leading role in Tiramisu, that most beloved of Italian desserts.
- I generally use the BelGioioso brand of mascarpone because that’s what is available in my local supermarket. But any decent brand should work in this recipe.
- I like Ghirardelli unsweetened cocoa. But any cocoa of decent quality will work fine.
- Start with 1½ cups of cocoa, then increase to 1¾ cups if you like extreme chocolate (as we do).
- These brownies will puff up a bit in the baking dish, which is what causes the top to crack. That’s OK.
- It can be difficult to tell when brownies are done—and they may come out dry and taste-compromised if you over-bake them. Fortunately, these brownies are more forgiving than most. The mascarpone keeps them light and fluffy even if they stay in the oven just a little too long.
- These brownies seem to hold together best if cut into pieces measuring about 2x2 inches (pieces smaller than that tend to crumble quickly).
- Many recipes warn not to refrigerate brownies. That’s because, unless brownies are well-wrapped, refrigerators can suck the moisture out of them. Again, these brownies give you more leeway since the mascarpone keeps them from drying out easily. But do wrap them well if you decide to refrigerate.
- Most brownie recipes suggest garnishing with confectioner’s sugar. That’s never really appealed to Mrs K R or me. We like the rich, brown chocolate look. But sprinkle some powdered sugar on these if it pleases you.
- Although brownies are delicious eaten all by themselves, they’re great with ice cream or whipped cream (another reason to skip the powdered sugar). A half ounce or so of Homemade Grenadine also makes a tasty sauce. Or garnish with fresh or macerated berries (strawberries and raspberries work particularly well).
Eat at Your Own Risk
“This is my last one, I swear,” I said, helping myself to another brownie.
“Maybe we should forgo the ice cream with these,” said Mrs. Kitchen Riffs.
“Too late now,” I said, glancing at the half-consumed pint.
“So which do you prefer?” asked Mrs K R. “These or the Ultimate Chocolate Brownie, which we posted about last year?”
“Oh, wow, tough choice.” I replied. “The Ultimate Chocolate Brownies have such terrific, deep flavor. But these do too, and they’re somewhat creamier. The other brownies have nuts, of course—always a nice touch. But they’re also the ones that take 5 — F I V E !!! — hours to cool and set up before you can cut them, unless you want crumb city.”
“You’re right,” said Mrs K R. “Hard to choose. If you can wait 5 hours, I think the other ones might have slightly better flavor. Slightly. But you can cut and eat these within a few minutes after you take them out of the oven.”
“Which may or may not be a good thing,” I replied. “Say, did you hear that?”
“What?” asked Mrs K R.
“That little voice telling me to have just one more tiny piece,” I said.
Mrs K R sighed, and passed me the plate of brownies.
You may also enjoy reading about:
Ultimate Chocolate Brownie
Black Walnut Sandies
Microwave Peanut Butter Fudge
Chocolate Fudge with Nutella
Chocolate Drop Cookies
Chocolate Pepper Cookies
Or check out the index for more
Mascarpone, wow how interesting! These sound fabulous, I'm so intrigued!
Oh, and you made Scott and I laugh about your comment about tethering. We were picturing you running up and down those steps, hope your laptop dream happens soon. Of course you could eat a few more brownies if you keep doing it your way! :) That's not such a bad thing .........
Hi Chris, I do get my exercise when I photograph with all those stairs! I should just buy a laptop so I can tether - I know it'd help my photography. These brownies are really worth having - truly delish. Thanks for the comment.
Good morning , My family loves brownies , this is a must try , they looks so yummy and delicious , thanks for sharing :)
A brownie you can't refuse...
Mafia brownies...I love it :)
Hi Nee, you really do have to try this - they're seriously good. Bake these and your family will think you're even more of a hero than you already are! Thanks for the comment.
Hi Lydia, I wish I had thought of the Mafia brownie line! ;-) Good stuff. Thanks for the comment.
These definitely look like 'I'm gonna die Brownies'..Your brownies might just convince me to eat a lot of em'.
This is very different than brownie recipes I have been making - more eggs and the mascarpone addition. Those slices look very rich! Definitely will try.
So far my butter has not exploded in the microwave. But if you want to warm up a cracked open egg in its shell, make sure you are ready to scrub every inch of that microwave!:(
Love the Princess Bride quote! And I think these brownies can most definitely kill me! These look ultra rich and decadent and ice cream? That's a must for me with brownies! Thanks Mrs KR for a fab recipe!
Hi Asha, the brownies will absolutely force you to eat more than you should! ;-) Thanks for the comment.
Hi Ilke, the mascarpone really adds a lot of moisture (plus flavor, of course). It's quite nice. I haven't tried warming an egg - and now I don't think I will! Thanks for the comment.
Hi Nazneen, isn't that such a wonderful movie? Eat too many of these and you'll be a person of unusual size. ;-) Thanks for the comment.
John, I am always on the hunt for a great brownie recipe and yours just took out the ticket for my next brownie baking adventure! Love the dialogue, sounds like my place! : )
I ate whole apple pie during the weekend. I am afreaid that I could eat a whole tray of your brownies as well :D
Bookmarked. I saw the title and all I could think of was bookmarking this. Wow :D
Crackly tops are more than "OK.'' They are mandatory. Well, at least in my book. I live for the crackly tops of brownies. Love the papery crisp contrast to the dense indulgence below it.
Killer Brownies :) I'm so ready to die over these beauties. So when do I come over? :)
Please think over my proposal: Teach me how to take and post-process 'va va voom' food pictures.
Oh WOW these look fantastic John! I never would have thought to put marscapone in brownies. Thanks for another great recipe!
Hi Lizzy, although of course I write those conversations, they're pretty real! They're absolutely things we could say. ;-) This is a great brownie recipe - you won't be sorry. ;-) Thanks for the comment.
Hi Marta, since you ate a whole apple pie, it's only right that you balance your diet by eating a whole batch of these! ;-) Thanks for the comment.
These look amazing and I love how the recipe originated in NZ. They sure have a lot of eggs in them. I will pin these xx
Hi Uru, you'll love this recipe - trust me. It's totally delish. And it's chocolate! Thanks for the comment.
Hi Carolyn, I'm with you on the crackly tops! Such great texture. Thanks for the comment.
Hi Nusrat, come on over any time! The pictures? Practice, practice, practice. And take pictures in good light - that's the main secret. Thanks for the comment.
Hi Christine, I know what you mean about the marscapone - not something that I think of when I think of brownies. But it works incredibly well. Thanks for the comment.
Hi Charlie, this recipe does include a lot of eggs - it's really rich! Thanks for the comment.
There's no way I could wait the 5 hours, so I choose these! Mascarpone in a brownie - I bet that does make these creamy, melt in your mouth brownies. Delicious looking brownies. I knew that baking powder was a mixture, but for some reason, I just never thought to shake it first. Thanks for the tip and for these addicting brownies!
I love these brownies. They look so rich and chocolatey. YUM!!
I am, without a doubt, like totally, prepared to die. How long do these take to make? That's how long I take. Great,totally to die for, post!
I think I've swooned myself silly looking at these things. I wondered how they would compare with the lifetime brownies. (it IS a lifetime waiting 5 hours I found) I'm definitely going to make these. I'll paste a warning at the door.
Hi MJ, Mrs K R and I are conflicted - we've always thought our Ultimate Brownie Recipe was the best, but these are so, so good! Plus there's not that 5 hour thing (and unless you want crumbs when you cut those brownies, you really gotta wait that long). These really might be our new #1. The marscapone really makes a huge difference. Anyway, thanks for the comment.
Hi Dawn, these are totally delish. Truly worth making - you'll enjoy. Thanks for the comment.
I am dying for a bite of something sweet tonight - I want one of these!
Hi Abbe, these are really worth dying for! Well, almost. ;-) Super brownies - you'll like. And they're brown (not white!) so the rabbit catcher can enjoy, too. ;-) Thanks for the comment.
Hi Alyssa, these are totally good. You'd really dig one of these, I think, if you had one. They're kinda brownie to the nth degree. Thanks for the comment.
Hi Maureen, the lifetime brownies are so wonderful! But in our heart of hearts, Mrs K R and I think these might be slightly better. We need to do a taste test! I'm not sure if John would like these (they're sweet and rich) but his dad would go bonkers. Maybe you need to print up that warning. ;-) Thanks for the comment.
These need to be made immediately...only advice I'm not taking from your recipe is inviting others over to join in the fun!
Hahaha.. "prepare to die" and I'm swooning already at the sight of these! My gosh I'd love a few and I'd be happy to spread crumbs everywhere!
Hi shut up& cook, you really do need to make these immediately. ;-) But you're right that inviting others to share might lessen your own fun! Thanks for the comment.
Hi Smidge, swooning is good! You'd love these. So you could just deal with the crumbs I suppose, right? :-) Thanks for your comment.
Looks fabulish! Definitely adding this one to my must-bake list. Thanks for sharing!
I love brownies and I love mascarpone so as soon as I saw the name of your latest recipe, I had to have a look. I would have them with mascarpone in and also with the brownies. They look lovely and moist. I must look up that New Zealand chef.
dreadfully creamy mascarpone which we just scoop up without a wink when we chance over some ...in brownies...............yes it is addictive and seriously needs a big warning label but still we will go on and finish up the whole batch in one go,so lusciously chocolaty dessert....wont even care for some ice-cream....amazing combination :-)
Those look incredibly tempting! I have never made brownies with mascarpone, so I think that I'll try this version soo...
I could easily eat one (or two!) of these right now!
Hi cquek, this really is an almost mandatory bake! It's so good. ;-) Thanks for the comment.
Hi Suzanne, I was wondering whether you'd know about the chef! Anyway these are truly stellar brownies - I inhaled them! Thanks for the comment.
Hi Kumar, these are great all by themselves, heaven with ice cream. ;-) Thanks for the comment.
Hi Rosa, I think you'll like them - I certainly do! One of Mrs K R's better creations. Thanks for the comment.
Hi Caroline, two is the minimum number! And I'll bet you'll be tempted to eat a third. ;-) Thanks for the comment.
I would probably eat way too many of these. But would be so worth it!!!
I myself loving living on the dangerous side, so if I died eating the whole pan it would probably be worth it. I love overkill and chocolate and mascarpone is my kind of overkill. I don't know how you two practiced any restraint with these.
Love the warning: So addictive they need a warning label. I will have to surprise my husband with these, he is crazy for decadent brownies
I love when recipes are so good I just want to keep eating them. That actually doesn't happen very often. I love pasteurized eggs. I use them almost exclusively (except for hard boiled). It's one less thing I don't have to worry about.
Ashley, it's really hard to resist these. But as you say, it's worth indulging! Thanks for the comment.
Hi Gina, I don't know how we practiced restraint either! These are dangerous - we actually gave away many of them so we wouldn't do an injury to ourselves. ;-) Thanks for the comment.
Hi Vicky, these really do need a warning label! And I'll bet your husband will love these - they're wonderful. Thanks for the comment.
Hi Laura, this is one of those rare recipes where you really can't stop eating. Or at least I can't. ;-) Thanks for the comment.
Seriously good and dangerous!
Hi Debra, these are seriously dangerous! Good thing. ;-) Thanks for the comment.
Wow with Mascarpone! These sounds outrageous and look so moist. Great recipe but definitely wouldn't want to make these if I was home alone. That could be deadly. I'll be adding this recipe to my brownie list to try. Thanks for sharing it.
Hi Vicki, this recipe is really a winner. But you definitely don't want to be home alone with a batch of these - that's just asking for trouble! ;-) Thanks for the comment.
Isn't mascarpone a wonder? I find it does so much good in so many of my favorite baked goods. These look perfect. Thank you for sharing yet another delicious and delightful post. I hope you had a wonderful Monday. Here's to an even better week (with lots and lots of brownies!)
I guess this is one of those food that is so good that I would say. . . I'll deal with the consequences later. This looks so good with ice cream the side, it is double the fun. Thanks, John and have a good week. :)
Hi Monet, mascarpone really is a great ingredient - you can use it in so many things! And there are definitely brownies in our future. ;-) Thanks for the comment.
Hi Ray, there are consequences with these brownies, but great idea to deal with them later! ;-) Thanks for the comment.
Hah, i picked a pack of mascarpone over the weekend when it was on sales and I had not figured out what to do with it until just now! Great idea pairing brownies with mascarpone. Thanks for sharing!
These brownies are really to die for!!
Hi Yi, happy to solve your mascarpone problem for you! As if having extra marscarpone around is ever a problem! Thanks for the comment.
Hi easyfoodsmith, they really are! So pace yourself, so you don't keel over. ;-) Thanks for the comment.
Any recipe post that begins with an allusion to "The Princess Bride" is going to be aces in my book, John. Ever since I started making mascarpone, I've used it in my cooking but I've never baked with it. I can't think of a better place to start than with these brownies. They sound terrific and we're in agreement about the powdered sugar. Is's so unnecessary. Just give me a square, a scoop of vanilla, and top 'em off with some strawberries and I'll be in heaven. I'm pinning this one for the next time I make mascarpone. Thanks, John.
Hi John, these brownies are wonderful - I think you'll like them. And it's pretty hard to resist "Princess Bride" allusions when they fit! ;-) Hope you enjoy these, and thanks for the comment.
Mascarpone is something I never tried in brownies yet, but the texture of your brownies is so "lively"...these brownies are screaming "delicious"! I need to try this recipe. Loved the presentation, John. Wonderful post!
Hi Purabi, mascarpone worked incredibly well in these brownies. The more I think about them, the more I think they're my favorite chocolate brownie! You do need to try this recipe. ;-) Thanks for the comment.
John, this brownie with mascarpone sounds amazing...my husband will definitely enjoy this recipe as he is crazy for brownies...I am sure that mascarpone will bring this to a totally different level...
Thanks for the recipe and hope you are enjoying your week :D
Hi Juliana, I hope your husband enjoys this! I certainly do. ;-) Thanks fr the comment.
Ooo, chocolate and cheese, yes please!! ;) Sorry, couldn't help it. Looks delicious, brownies is a classic that never gets old!
Hi Yvonne, it's a nice combo! And I agree I'll never tire of brownies. ;-) Thanks for the comment.
I am blown away at how incredible these brownies look!!
Hi Kristi, aren't they nice? Super flavor. But oh so dangerous! ;-) Thanks for the comment.
These look incredible! I want to reach in and help myself to a few pieces with some milk. YUM! :)
You have 80 comments already on this story and I am not surprised!! These brownies speak to me also... they are saying "prepare to say goodbye to your waist!"
BUT I still will not be able to stop myself from making them!! They look delish!
I best make these with pasturized eggs as waiting until they are fully baked might be too much of a hardship for me. I have made brownie with cream cheese swirls but never with marscapone cheese. I can just imagine how rich and delicious they must be. Great recipe. Take Care, BAM
Hi Anne, they're really good! And they go great with milk. ;-) Thanks for the comment.
Hi Gourmet Getaways, alas, it is goodbye to your waist when you make these. Well, until you stop eating them. ;-) Worth it, though. Thanks for the comment.
Hi Bam, we always stock pasteurized eggs these days because who can resist tasting raw batter? ;-) The mascarpone really is a pleasant addition. Thanks for the comment.
Gorgeous and decadent brownies...I love the picture that shows their reflection!
Hi Denise, these really are decadent! And I like that picture a lot, too. ;-) Thanks for the comment.
How did I missed this deliciousness?!
Wow! You've combined some of my favorite ingredients into one! YUM!
Hi Kiran, this is one recipe you really don't want to miss! It's totally delish. And addictive. ;-) Thanks for the comment.
Hi John, this look like to live for and to die for dessert. Love the brownies, very chocolatey and moist. With a scoop of ice cream it sure taste heavenly.
Hi Amelia, these really are great brownies! And the ice cream just makes them even better. ;-) Thanks for the comment.
Oh my goodness. I have to be honest, I'm not a huge chocolate person but these brownies are calling to me!
Hi Katherine, this are really an excellent brownie. And they'll probably make a chocolate convert out of you! ;-) Thanks for the comment.
Cripes if I'm going to go this is the way to do it. Death by chocolate at its finest. Great recipe John, and as usual your photos are stunning. Have a great weekend my friend.
Hi Kim, it's deadly but delicious! My way to go, too. ;-) Thanks for the comment.
I have eleven million brownie recipes, yet your description has me pinning this one right away to make tomorrow! Today, I have to finish the chocolate baileys ice cream I made yesterday...ja!
Hi Paula, your ice cream sounds wonderful! And this brownie recipe is really worth making - one of the best, if not the best, I've ever had. Thanks for the comment.
Thats the most perfect pair every, a moist brownie and vanilla ice cream. This makes me really drool!
Hi Raymund, don't brownies and ice cream go so well together? I love them! Thanks for the comment.
I've been in a brownie mood lately and hope to have a recipe on SBD soon. Your recipe looks fantastic! Great post!
Hi Bill, I look forward to reading your brownie recipe! This one is quite good. But then I don't think I've ever had a brownie I didn't like. ;-) Thanks for the comment.
just the thought of chocolate and mascarpone together makes me happy: the flavors always mesh so well. I love the notes on this post, especially the one regarding butter explosions. :)
Hi Shannon, yeah, those butter explosions are very real and very messy. ;-) And I agree chocolate and mascarpone are great generators of happiness! Thanks for the comment.
Oh my gosh, John......how did I miss these incredible luscious things? And you are right...somehow....you just keep picking at them....just one more bite...before you know it....the pan is gone! That's why I'd just cut the pan into quarters and call it a day! These would not last a second in my house! : )
Hi Anne, love your idea of cutting the pan into quarters and calling it a day! ;-) Thanks for the comment.
Just saw Choc Chip Uru's version of your luscious brownies and... wow, they're out of this world. I love mascarpone but I've never used it directly in a brownie mixture. I need to change that, super fast! Thanks John!
Hi Laura, Uru did a great job, didn't she? These really are wonderful brownies - might be the best I've ever tasted. Thanks for the comment.
I was wondering what size egg do you use?
Hi Anonymous, good catch! I'll add that info to the ingredient list. We use large eggs. Actually, most pasteurized eggs that we've seen are sold in large size only, but I should specify the size in the recipe. Thanks so much for your comment.
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