These fudgy, caramelly blonde brownies (blondies) with white chocolate in the batter, bittersweet chocolate chips, and chopped nuts are sheer perfection. Don't miss them.
Why we love this recipe
You guys. Let me start by saying that I'm not an overwhelming fan of white chocolate in most circumstances. However.
In this recipe? It's everything.
- White chocolate plus a surprisingly small amount of brown sugar create the dense, fudgy texture that makes these blondies next-level amazing.
- Big, bittersweet chocolate chips and chopped walnuts keep the bars from being too sweet and provide some textural contrast.
- The brown sugar creates a lovely caramel note that amplifies the vanilla and white chocolate flavors in the best way.
I first published this recipe here way back in 2010, adapted (and if I may say, substantially improved) from The Ghirardelli Chocolate Cookbook. I've since updated the post for clarity, but the recipe remains the same.
What you'll need
Here's a glance at the ingredients you'll need to make this recipe.
- You can use white chocolate chips or baking bars interchangeably in this recipe.
- If possible, use a good cultured butter from grass-fed cows. It sounds fancy but doesn't have to be — Kerrygold is my go-to brand at the supermarket and isn't overly expensive.
- Bittersweet chocolate chips provide just the right contrast in texture and flavor.
- The gentle bitterness and crunch of chopped walnuts make every bite even better. Pecans work well, too.
- Be sure to use a good-quality pure vanilla extract, since vanilla is a prominent flavor in these bars.
How to make it
Here's an overview of what you'll do to make a great batch of blonde brownies. You can see the steps in action in the video that accompanies this post, and get all the details in the recipe card below.
- First you'll grease an 8x8" baking pan and line it with parchment. Then, in the microwave or a double boiler, melt the butter and white chocolate together.
- Beat the eggs, then add the brown sugar and vanilla. Beat in the white chocolate mixture.
- Fold in the flour and salt, followed by the chocolate chips and walnuts.
- Bake in the center of a 350°F oven for about half an hour, until browned on the edges and just barely jiggly in the center. They'll set up a bit as they cool, so less is more where baking time is concerned.
Expert tips and FAQs
Depending on how quickly you work, the batter with be more or less thick when adding it to the pan (since the butter and white chocolate will cool over time). It’s fine either way, just make sure to spread the batter evenly into the pan even if it’s gotten a bit thicker.
Blondies are at their absolute best on the day they're baked. But if you need to get ahead of the game, you've got several options:
Bake them earlier in the day and serve at room temperature or give individual bars a few seconds in the microwave.
Bake, cool completely, and freeze for up to three months, wrapped in plastic wrap, followed by foil, followed by a zip-top freezer bag or reusable airtight container.
Freeze prepared batter right in the baking pan, tightly covered, for up to three months. Defrost in the fridge overnight before baking.
Leftovers keep well in an airtight container at room temperature for two to three days.
More classic cookies and bars
- 8 tablespoons (112 grams) unsalted butter, diced
- 8 ounces (227 grams) white chocolate, broken into small pieces
- 2 large eggs
- ⅓ cup (67 grams) packed brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 ¼ cups (150 grams) all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 cup (170 grams) bittersweet chocolate chips
- 1 cup (120 grams) finely chopped walnuts
- Preheat the oven to 350°F with a rack in the center.
- Spray an 8-inch x 8-inch baking pan with cooking spray and line it with a piece of parchment paper to cover the bottom and come up two opposite sides.
- In the microwave or a double boiler, combine the butter and white chocolate. Heat, stirring occasionally, until just melted and smooth. If melting in the microwave, use half power in 30-second bursts, stopping to stir thoroughly in between.
- In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle, beat the eggs until frothy, about two minutes.
- Add the brown sugar and the vanilla and beat to combine thoroughly.
- Pour in the butter-white chocolate mixture and beat until well combined.
- Add the flour and salt, and mix with a spatula until just combined.
- Add the chocolate chips and walnuts and stir to distribute.
- Scrape the batter into the prepared pan.
- Bake for about 30 minutes, until browned around the edges and just the tiniest bit jiggly in the very center — the blondies will firm up as they cool.
- Cool for at least 30 minutes, then run a knife around the edges.
- If cutting into squares while still warm, cut in the pan. If cooled, you can use the parchment paper "handles" to remove the whole batch from the pan before cutting.
- Cut into squares and serve.
- You can use white chocolate chips or baking bars interchangeably here
- The microwave is a great way to melt the white chocolate and butter for this recipe. Use a 4-cup glass measuring cup or a similar size microwave-safe bowl. White chocolate melts (and burns) at a lower temperature than other chocolate, and butter’s water content can cause little explosions, so put your microwave on 50 to 60 percent power and use short bursts of 30 to 60 seconds, stirring in between and stopping when everything is just melted.
- As always when baking, it’s best to weigh your dry ingredients if you can. If not, make sure to measure your flour using the spoon and level method: give the flour a stir to lighten it up, spoon into your measuring cup, and then level it off with the back of a butter knife.
- Bake these according to your own preferences, but I almost always prefer to risk cookies and bars being slightly less done than slightly overdone. Test them right at 30 minutes or even a couple of minutes before, knowing that they’ll set up a bit as they cool.
- Blondies are great alone and also pair really well with ice cream. Or use as the base of a blondie sundae.
- Blondies are at their absolute best on the day they're baked. But if you need to get ahead of the game, you've got several options: (1) Bake them earlier in the day and serve at room temperature or give individual bars a few seconds in the microwave. (2) Bake, cool completely, and freeze for up to three months, wrapped in plastic wrap, followed by foil, followed by a zip-top freezer bag or reusable airtight container. (3) Freeze prepared batter right in the baking pan, tightly covered, for up to three months. Defrost in the fridge overnight before baking.
- Leftovers keep well in an airtight container at room temperature for two to three days.
Adapted from The Ghirardelli Chocolate Cookbook.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 132Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 39mgSodium: 124mgCarbohydrates: 11gFiber: 1gSugar: 3gProtein: 2g