Lockdown Fudgy Cocoa Brownies

Lockdown Fudgy Cocoa Brownies

This delicious recipe produces brownies with a crunchy top and soft fudgy centre. Why 'lockdown'? They are made entirely from store cupboard ingredients (as long as your store cupboard has an ancient tin of cocoa powder lurking in the back...), and at just over 100kcal per small brownie, they are both tasty and healthy. Healthy for a brownie, of course.


110g butter (unsalted if you have it, don't worry if not)
1 tablespoon cooking oil (I used sunflower, but any is fine)
250 caster sugar (or granulated if in lockdown, works fine)
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
60g plain flour
50g cocoa powder (unsweetened)
¼ teaspoon salt

Serves: 16 brownies

Source: Mark McKergow - originally at Café Delites
and found via this Guardian article on lockdown baking.


Preheat oven to 175C ( 160 fan ).
Lightly grease an 8-inch square baking tin, line with greaseproof paper, set aside.
Melt the butter and oil until they are HOT, then beat into the sugar in a bowl using an electric mixer. Whisk well for about a minute. (This is important!)
Add the eggs and vanilla essence, then beat again for at least another minute until light in colour and creamy. (This is also important! It gives the crunchy top.)
Sift in the flour, cocoa powder and salt and fold in gently using a metal spoon. Do NOT beat the mixture at this stage, you want to retain the air for texture.
Pour the batter into your lined baking tin and bake for 20-25 minutes until not jiggly on top and just set to the touch.
Remove and leave to cool in the tin before cutting into 20 small brownies.

You can add in almost anything at the folding-in stage: nuts, chocolate chips, dried fruit etc.