Loved catching up on Wednesday! Thank you for the wonderful conversation in the comment section. I’m beyond thankful to not only have a platform that invites conversation on both joyous and difficult topics, but a community of readers gracious enough to share personal stories.
As we head into the weekend, I’m supplying you with a very simple, yet mega satisfying dessert recipe. I know I say this a lot but I am OBSESSED WITH THESE and after only 1 bite, you’ll understand why.
These innocent little squares boast huge flavor and texture. Super dense, chewy, filled with brown sugar, topped with sea salt, and the two words to end all other words: brown butter. Not to mention they’re loaded with butterscotch, the best and most underrated morsel in the baking aisle!!!! There’s also no mixer or fancy kitchenware required, so not only do they taste unbelievable– they’re insanely easy to make. Win win win and… win.
If you gush over sweet & salty desserts, this one has your name written all over it.
Behind the Recipe
This blondie recipe is my go-to blondie base. I shared the recipe a few years ago when I added coconut and dark chocolate. In that recipe, I spread the blondies into a large 9×13 inch pan. Here I squeezed them in a 9-inch square baking pan. The blondies are thicker and much more dense. Just the way I love ’em!
The best blondies are buttery, soft, and chewy with tight dense crumbs. Think more of a brown sugar brownie and less of a thin piece of cake. To help us achieve the special blondie texture, the recipe begins with melted butter. Not softened butter. Since we’re not creaming butter and sugar together, there’s no need to break out the mixer. A simple whisk and rubber spatula will do the trick.
Though regular melted butter is fine, I highly recommend browning the butter. Brown butter, pictured above and below, adds a new layer of flavor. We’ve discussed brown butter many times before, so I’ll keep this short. All you’re really doing is melting butter on the stovetop and gently cooking the butter until it develops a nutty flavor and aroma. It’s a basic technique that considerably changes the flavor of anything it touches: shortbread crust, pound cake, chocolate chip cookies, cream cheese frosting, sugar cookies. As the butter browns, you’ll notice there are bits at the bottom of the pan. These are good bits! They are actually milk solids that have cooked faster and will give even more flavor to your recipe. Don’t leave the bits behind!
I recommend using a light colored skillet so you can see when the butter has browned. There’s only a few seconds between brown butter and burnt butter.
Another ingredient that will help us achieve a dense and chewy blondie is an egg yolk. You’ll use 1 whole egg in this blondie recipe plus an additional egg yolk. Remember my chewy chocolate chunk cookies? Just like that. You can freeze the extra egg white for up to 1 month or add it to your morning omelet. 🙂
Other than that it’s just flour, brown sugar, vanilla, salt, a little baking powder for lift, and some optional walnuts. Blondies are very low key. They’re also unexpected and underrated, which is why I love making them. Everyone forgets how good they are!!!!
Blondies are better than brownies. YUP I SAID THAT.
Will you just look at that golden perfection? With the brown butter, sea salt, butterscotch, and brown sugar– I can’t think of a more perfect square. Or a more perfect way to kick off the weekend!
Dense and chewy, made with brown butter, sea salt, and butterscotch morsels, these sweet and salty bars hit the spot when you need a simple yet satisfying dessert!
- 2 cups (250g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup (230g) unsalted butter (browned or melted, see note)
- 1 and 3/4 cup (350g) packed light or dark brown sugar
- 1 large egg + 1 egg yolk
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 and 1/2 cups (270g) butterscotch morsels
- optional: 3/4 cup (95g) chopped walnuts
- coarse/flaky sea salt for sprinkling on top
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (177°C) and grease a 9-inch square pan* or line with aluminum foil or parchment paper, leaving an overhang on the sides to lift the finished blondies out (makes cutting easier!). Set aside.
- Whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt together in a medium bowl.
- In another medium bowl, whisk the browned or melted butter and brown sugar together. Once completely combined, whisk in the whole egg, egg yolk, and vanilla extract until combined. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and gently whisk until combined. Fold in the butterscotch morsels and walnuts, if using. The batter is very thick.
- Evenly spread batter into prepared pan. Sprinkle with sea salt. Bake for about 35-38 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out *mostly* clean. Remove from the oven and allow the blondies to cool completely in the pan set on a wire rack before cutting.
- Cover and store leftover blondies at room temperature or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
- Make Ahead Instructions: Blondies freeze well up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator then bring to room temperature before serving.
- Special Tools: Glass Mixing Bowls | Measuring Cups | Heart Spatula | Whisk | 9-inch Square Baking Pan
- Butter: Butter should either be melted or browned before using in this recipe. Melt on the stove or in the microwave. For enhanced butterscotch and nutty flavors, I prefer using browned butter in these blondies. To brown the butter: slice the butter into pieces and place in a light-colored skillet. (Light colored helps you determine when the butter begins browning.) Melt the butter over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Once melted, the butter will begin to foam. Keep stirring occasionally. After 5-8 minutes, the butter will begin browning– you’ll notice lightly browned specks begin to form at the bottom of the pan and it will have a nutty aroma. Once browned, immediately remove from heat, and pour into a heat-proof bowl. Allow to cool for 5 minutes before using in step 3.
- What Pan to Use: 8-inch square pan is a little too small. Blondies may not cook evenly. You can spread the batter into a 9×13-inch pan for thinner blondies. Do your best to spread the batter to each edge of the pan. Bake time will be around 30 minutes, same oven temperature.