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How to Make Perfect Brownies and Bars

Created January 10, 2017
Plan ahead - bake a batch of brownies. Then freeze for up to two months. You'll be ready for any party!
Brownies and Bars

Mix and bake easy brownies and bars while making dinner for warm-from-the-oven weeknight treats. Dress them up for favorite pack-and-go potluck treats or sweets to share. Whatever you choose, discover these tips and techniques for brownies baked just right. 


Pan Prep Pointers 

  • Use the pan size and baking time called for in the bar or brownie recipe for best results. 
  • Corner brownie fans and chewy edge lovers rejoice! Now there are pans just for you. The Betty Crocker® Store is where to go. Search ‘brownies’, narrow your search to ‘bakeware’ to find these newer highly rated specialty pans. 
  • Check brownie mix box for times and temperature using smaller pan sizes. If the pan is smaller, baking time is longer and sometimes temperature is reduced to 325°F so that the center bakes and edges don’t get hard. 
  • Use shortening or cooking spray to grease baking pans, but only when the recipe says it’s needed. Butter, margarine, and vegetable oil aren’t recommended—they can burn and stick to metal surfaces, making clean-up difficult. 
  • Line your pan with heavy-duty foil when making several batches of bars or brownies. Grease only bottom of the foil. Brownies are easy to lift from the pan and cut on the foil when cool. And, your pan is ready to line and bake the next batch! 

Baked Just Right 

  • Follow your bar or brownie recipe’s doneness test. When making brownies, check with toothpick inserted two inches from the side of the pan. When it comes out clean or almost clean, brownies are ready. 
  • For easier cutting, cool brownies and bars completely and use a plastic knife. Or, look for nonstick knives that make cutting a cinch. 
  • Lemon bars can be made a day ahead and refrigerated before cutting (moistening the knife keeps bars from tearing during cutting). 

So Many Flavors 

  • For time-saving, delicious results, try any of the ten Betty Crocker® Supreme Brownie mixes or the Betty Crocker Sunkist® Lemon Bar mix. 
  • Discover our tried-and-true scratch recipe: The Ultimate Brownie or search for their equally appealing cousins called blondies. 
  • Think of favorite flavors or use up on-hand items you have; then ‘search’ those words. We’ve enough recipes for you to try from now until next year! Enjoy.