Brownie Points

Way to steal my thunder, Trader Joe. After all of these years, countless visits, and quite a few generous “donations,” I thought you were my friend. Why did you have to deprive me the glory of unleashing brownie crisps upon the hungry, sweet-toothed masses? Granted, I’m far from the first person to invent the concept of thin, crunchy planks of brownie goodness, but earlier offerings were hardly widespread, and far from affordable. You just had to make them so easily available, effortlessly satisfying chocolate cravings across the country, no hunting or penny pinching required. Oh Joe, I’m happy for your success, but I can’t help but feel at least slightly robbed here.

That said, store-bought cookies will never live up to anything homemade, if you ask me. Even if these heavenly morsels of shatteringly crisp cocoa wafers become the next speculoos spread, they will still taste much better coming out of one’s own oven. No matter how low Joe pushes that price point, the cost of mere flour, sugar, and cocoa will always be a better deal, too. You may have beaten me to the punch, Joe, but I’m sure not down for the count!

For anyone who’s fought to get the corner piece from a pan of fudgy brownies or relished the distinctive crackled top, these crisps have your name written all over them. Deceptively light, it’s disturbingly easy to munch straight through half a batch without even pausing to take a breath. Whether or not they start a new craze is yet to be seen, but based on the reception they’ve received from diverse crowds of dessert-lovers, they do seem to have universal appeal.

Brownie Crisps

1/3 Cup Aquafaba (Liquid from a Can of Chickpeas)
1/2 Cup Granulated Sugar
1/2 Cup All-Purpose Flour
2 Tablespoon Dutch Cocoa Powder
1 Tablespoon Pure, Unflavored Pea Protein
1/4 Teaspoon Instant Coffee Granules
1/4 Teaspoon Salt
1/4 Teaspoon Baking Powder
1/4 Cup Olive Oil
1/2 Cup (3 Ounces) Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips, Divided
3 Tablespoons Chopped Walnuts, Divided

Preheat your oven to 300 degrees and line a baking sheet with a piece of parchment paper or a silpat.

In the bowl of your stand mixer (or a large bowl with a hand mixer,) combine the aquafaba and sugar and beat until foamy. You’re not looking to whip it into a firm meringue here, but a loose froth with the sugar fully dissolved. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa, pea protein, instant coffee, salt, and baking powder, stirring to ensure that all of the ingredients are equally distributed throughout the mixture.

Slowly add in the dry ingredients while the mixer runs, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Immediately follow with the oil and stir just until the batter comes together smoothly. Fold in the half of the chocolate chips and walnuts by hand.

Transfer the batter to your prepared baking sheet and use an offset spatula to spread it out as thinly as humanly possible. The batter should just about cover the whole sheet. Sprinkle the remaining chocolate chips and walnuts evenly over the top.

Bake on the center rack in the oven for 20 minutes, rotate the pan, and continue baking for 10 more minutes. Pull the sheet out and use a pizza cutter to slice the square or rectangular shapes you desire, but don’t separate them yet. Return the cookies to the oven and bake for a final 10 – 14 minutes. They may still feel slightly soft in the center, but they’ll continue to crisp as they cool.

Let the crisps cool completely on the baking sheet before breaking the cookies apart. Store in an airtight container for up to a week, if you can manage to keep them around that long.

Makes 2 – 2 1/2 Dozen Brownie Crisps

Printable Recipe

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18 thoughts on “Brownie Points

  1. “Here HERE!” That’s from the wings where Trader Joe’s is not an option and where we still have to bake most of what we want if we want it :)

  2. Um, yes! Is there anything better than a brownie? Brownie chips sound like a dream come true. I would love to see these with a sprinkle of salt on top to get that real salty sweet bite. Though I’m afraid if they had that I would not be able to keep myself from eating the whole batch! You could also make a salted caramel dip for a chips and dip dessert. Though again, that would not help the whole abstaining from eating the whole batch.

  3. Wow..i always love the top parts of the brownie.. the brownie chip sounds up my alley. No need to fight over crispy top bits anymore!

    I read the recipe for it. Never knew you could use the liquid in the can of chickpeas that way. Interesting! I’m always learning something new from you!

  4. Ooooh! These sound and look perfect. Although, being the horrible baker that I am, I will admit that I’m thinking about walking the 5 blocks to TJ’s instead of making them… even though yours are certainly better!

  5. Oh wow! These brownie crisps are completely new to me and gotta say…I MUST TRY THEM! They look so tempting and delicious.
    Love the pictures too, they really show how amazing this dessert is.

    xoxo

  6. Where did you ever come up with the idea of using the liquid from a can of chickpeas and does it really have a name or did you make it up? These sound divine.

    janet

    1. Ha, I only wish I could take credit for this egg-replacing innovation! I had been playing with aquafaba for a while, but it really exploded into the semi-mainstream when it was discovered that it was capable of making vegan meringue. Before that, I didn’t even know it had a proper name, either!

  7. Brownie crisps! How brilliant! Can I sub the pea protein and coffee granules with something else as I don’t drink coffee:)

    1. You don’t actually taste any coffee in the end; it just adds a greater complexity to the chocolate flavor. That said, you could omit it if you wanted. The protein on the other hand is essential for the structure, and I haven’t tested out any other alternatives. Another plain, completely pure protein powder (no sugars, vitamins, or other additives) might suffice, but I can’t confirm that theory yet.

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