Updated: Dec 5, 2022
December 8, 2022
History of National Brownie Day
Brownies: that rich, decadent, purely hedonistic blend of cake and cookie that feels amazing in the mouth and leaves the taste buds craving more.
While the classic brownie still reigns supreme, now there are what seems like a million different derivations of how to make these delicious treats. In fact, brownies are so popular that they can be found served as the foundation for sundaes, chopped up in milkshakes, or even made into a version of breakfast cereal.
Legend has it that the creation of brownies hales from the Palmer House Hotel in 1893. Bertha Palmer, a prominent Chicago socialite whose husband owed the hotel, asked a pastry chef for a dessert suitable for ladies attending the Chicago World’s Columbian Exposition. She requested a cake-like delicacy small enough to be included in boxed lunches. The result was the Palmer House Brownie with walnuts and an apricot glaze. The modern Palmer House Hotel serves a dessert to patrons made from the same recipe. The name was given to the dessert sometime after 1893, but was not used by cook books or journals at the time.
By 1907 the brownie was well established in a recognizable form, appearing in Lowney’s Cook Book by Maria Willet Howard as an adaptation of the Boston Cooking School recipe for a “Bangor Brownie”. It added an extra egg and an additional square of chocolate, creating a richer dessert. The name “Bangor Brownie” derives from the town of Bangor, Maine, which legend states was the hometown of a housewife who created the original brownie recipe. Maine food educator and columnist Mildred Brown Schrumpf was the predominant proponent of the theory that brownies were invented in Bangor. While “The Oxford Companion to American Food and Drink” refuted Schrumpf’s premise that “Bangor housewives” created the brownie, “The Oxford Encyclopedia of Food and Drink in America” said it had discovered evidence to support Schrumpf’s claim, in the form of several 1904 cookbooks that included a recipe for “Bangor Brownies.”
National Brownie Day Stats
2 billion brownies
Are we surprised? Definitely not. Brownies can be consumed on any occasion, and making these bad boys at home is only part of the fun. 1988 knew what they were doing when they gobbled down 2 billion of these tasty treats, and with so many ways to customize and create your “perfect brownie”, there’s endless ways to enjoy it without getting tired of the chocolatey goodness!
60% of people go nutless
Whether it be a nut allergy, an aversion to nuts, or simply being a brownie purest, 60% of brownie lovers prefer their brownies nut free. The magical thing about brownies is no matter how you eat them, they’re always delicious. So if you like it purely gooey and chewy, or if you prefer a little crunch in your munch, you’re doing the right thing already just by eating a brownie. The only way you can be wrong is by not liking brownies at all! But those people don’t exist…right?
36% of love those corners
A little resistance in your brownie doesn’t hurt, and what better way to get that magical texture than by biting into a deliciously baked end piece? Of course, we don’t want the entire brownie to have that texture, there is such thing as too much of a good thing. But saving that small bit of something special for the end of your brownie consumption is definitely the way to go!
How to Celebrate National Brownie Day
It doesn’t certainly require a lot of work to find ways to celebrate and enjoy National Brownie Day! Eating brownies, baking brownies and sharing brownies with others can all be incorporated into honoring and paying heed to this day. Try out some of these ideas to get started:
Easy Brownie Recipe
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar*
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
2/3 cup cocoa powder, sifted if lumpy
1/2 cup powdered sugar, sifted if lumpy
1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
3/4 teaspoons sea salt
2 large eggs
1/2 cup canola oil or extra-virgin olive oil**
2 tablespoons water
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Preheat the oven to 325°F. Lightly spray an 8x8 baking dish (not a 9x9 dish or your brownies will overcook) with cooking spray and line it with parchment paper. Spray the parchment paper.
In a medium bowl, combine the sugar, flour, cocoa powder, powdered sugar, chocolate chips, and salt.
In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, olive oil, water, and vanilla.
Sprinkle the dry mix over the wet mix and stir until just combined.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan (it'll be thick - that's ok) and use a spatula to smooth the top. Bake for 40 to 48 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out with only a few crumbs attached (note: it's better to pull the brownies out early than to leave them in too long). Cool completely before slicing.*** Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days. These also freeze well!