December 12, 2012

Chocolate Chunk Blondies

Can I be really really REALLY honest with you? When I do Christmas shopping for other people I slyly throw in a few *little* presents for myself. I KNOW!! I KNOW!! It feels equally wrong as it feels right. Let me also say that holiday baking is no different. I usually make what I’m craving and I hope/pray people will like what I’ve made. I do have some good cravings…

I had really dense/chewy chocolate chip cookies in my mind the other day so I turned my craving into a gift for friends. That’s not so bad, right? I totally shared!

Remember how I gave you cookbook ideas for gifting? Let’s add another one to the list!

Barefoot Contessa Foolproof: Recipes You Can Trust is Ina Garten’s latest cookbook. It definitely belongs on my cookbooks to gift this Christmas. My copy has a sticky on almost every single page for the recipes I want to make. GOOD SIGN. Totally. Like major good sign.

Ina’s Chocolate Chunk Blondies are unreal. They’re buttery, dense, chewy, slightly salty, studded with melted chocolate and enhanced by walnuts. Casey and I LOVED the walnuts. I might be guilty of only giving half of this batch away. It was those dang walnuts! I plan on making  at least three more batches this Christmas. Don’t look at me like that!

And we’re off!

Ingredients. How easy is that? (channeling Ina)

Cream the butter with the sugars.

Add in the eggs one at a time. Mix and add in the vanilla.

I normally don’t like the concept of food porn…but this egg shot? Yeah…

Whisk the flour with the baking soda & salt.

Dry meets wet.

Fold in the walnuts.

Fold in the chocolate chips. Ina uses chocolate chunks in her original recipe. I didn’t have any on hand!

Spread the batter in a prepared baking pan.

Recipe says to grease & flour the pan. I sprayed with cooking spray & put a layer of parchment down so I could easily pick up the bars when they were cooled.

BAKE. DONE. Irresistible!  You should totally eat one warm….with ice cream on top.

Have mercy. Look at those walnuts poking out!

I got my wrap on! I folded parchment around and sealed the seams with washi tape.

Then I put a label on top to personalize it. They’re from Martha!

Look at that stack!

I’m thinking of doing a batch with smoked almonds in the mix. What do you think about that??

Chocolate Chunk Blondies

makes 12 bars

recipe slightly adapted Barefoot Contessa Foolproof: Recipes You Can Trust

  • 1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped walnuts
  • 12 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour an 8 x 12 x 2 inch baking pan.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar on high speed for 3 minutes, until light and fluffy. With the mixer on low, add the vanilla, then the eggs, one at a time, and mix well, scraping down the bowl. In a small bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda and salt and with the mixer still on low, slowly add flour mixture to the butter mixture. Fold the walnuts and chocolate chips in with a rubber spatula.

Spread the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top. Bake for 30 minutes exactly. Don’t overbake! A toothpick may not come out clean. Cool completely in the pan and cut into bars.

  • neha gattani

    Its past midnight and I think it wasn’t a good idea to stop by your website. I have my exams and these blondies have totally distracted me. I am so going to make it for the holidays. Thanks for sharing the recipe.

  • Elala

    Can I make this manually without mixer? It looks so good and I want to try it but I don’t have mixer at home….

  • Kay

    I love your description of these and I seriously want to eat one right now. No fair. And the wrapping is just too cute! Can I be your friend? I’ll send you my address asap and in return I’ll totally send you some of the caramels I’ll soon be making 😉

  • Sini

    Wow looks delish! Need to try these babies soon!

  • Averie @ Averie Cooks

    I am a huge blondie fan and actually just made some today that I’ll blog about next week. Love the looks of yours – cannot go wrong, ever, with an Ina recipe!

  • Blog is the New Black

    I adore blondies- more so than brownies- YUM!

  • Abby @ The Frosted Vegan

    Oh I AM looking at you like that, get on with the get down and these brownie cookies girl!

  • jenny

    ok, blondies are like my favorite thing EVER. and now I’m wishing I hadn’t just made six different kinds of christmas cookies with a friend (for giving away, of course…mostly 😉 ) so I could make these today. maybe this weekend. 🙂 your photos are awesome, btw.

  • Emily D.

    Since it’s finals/papers week, I’ve been eating like an animal anyway. So I am going to make these (and probably eat half to all of them) with no shame.

  • Ashley

    Oh oh oh! The texture of these is killing me. I haven’t had anything like this since in far too long. Adorable packaging!

  • Victoria

    I have heard of Ina before, but never realized what kind of cooking she did! Thanks for sharing, I really do need to check her out.

  • Beth

    I’m not sure if you know this, but your all photos ARE food porn! 🙂 I’m not the biggest fan of the term either but lady you have skills and some very lucky friends!

  • Elizabeth @ Confessions of a Baking Queen

    These look amazing. I absolutely love blondies. They look really dense and chewy, and I love the wrapping so freaking cute!!

  • Theresa

    Yum! I love the wrapping with the wash tape!


  • Lucy

    There is a recipe for tomato soup in Foolproof that is delish! It asks for saffron, which adds a subtle taste that is so good.

  • kim@hungryhealthygirl

    Wow! Those look beyond delicious!!

  • Jenny

    I have not seen a blondie recipe that didn’t involve melted butter. These look really good! Must make and very cute packaging. What brand of parchment paper do you use? The Reynolds kind that I buy is white but brown looks nicer.

  • Christine

    This book jus came in my mail (as a gift to myself!) and I earmarked this recipe for Xmas gifts! So glad it’s good!!

  • Christine

    This book jus came in my mail (as a gift to myself!) and I earmarked this recipe for Xmas gifts! So glad it’s good!!

  • Kris

    You’re totally amazing. That’s all I wanted to say.

  • Pathom

    I love Ina’s books – her recipes are the most reliable I’ve found – they ALWAYS work! These look fantastic and I will be making a batch soon.

  • the 3volution of j3nn

    I typically don’t care for nuts in cookies or bars, but something about these makes me want to get my chocolate chip and walnut on!

  • Katie @ Blonde Ambition

    Love the wrapping! And good lord these do sound delicious warm with ice cream on top!

  • Jane M


  • Sarah

    This packaging looks absolutely fantastic. Makes me want to marry someone named Jeffrey and move to the hamptons.

  • tracy {pale yellow}

    I’ve never found a blondie recipe I love, hopefully this will be the one, Ina’s recipes are usually awesome!

  • Jayne

    Smoked almonds? That is one fabulous flavour combination. A little sprinkle of sea salt will bring it over the top. This is like a slab of chewy chocolate chip cookie. I need to make this. I really really do.

  • Clara

    I always think if I wrap baked goods they’ll come out looking awful, but this approach seems pretty simple! Note to self- buy more parchment paper and washi tape :).

  • Kim

    These look fantastic! I met Joy this past weekend in Boston and she had mentioned that you made these glorious-looking blondies. If you haven’t already, I highly recommend trying Ina’s Outrageous Brownies, too – they are RIDICULOUS!

  • Kimberly A

    Wow, you are on a ROLL! These are definitely on the to-make list. My only problem is that my pan is 9×13. Do you think that’s close enough to the 8×12 that I should still bake for 30 min exactly, or should I trim my time a bit to keep from overbaking them?

  • leah

    Yum!!! These look totally delightful!! So far I’ve made biscotti and blueberry banana bread, which just isn’t sinful enough for Christmas… I think this will be added to my Christmas baking list ;)!!

  • cindy

    I do the same thing with Christmas shopping…especially if adding those extra items to my cart means free shipping. Everyone wins!

    I’ll take a chocolate chip cookie in a blondie outfit any day! I love walnuts, I love that they were your fave part!

  • Meghan

    I lovex4 your packaging! So cute!

  • Carly

    I’m making these for our office party tomorrow and to give to our elderly neighbour who needs soft treats! (No nuts in his, unfortunatly.)

  • Iris

    Ohhhh man. I’m also one of those people who like blondies more than brownies and having these in the house is BAD NEWS. But I’m gonna make them anyway 😛

    Love the packaging! Simple and elegant.

  • Leslie

    Oh Ina! She never fails me! These photos are a dream. I wish I was one of your lucky friends getting these cutely-packaged gems!

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  • Denisse

    these look irresistible! I love Ina and have a couple of her cookbooks, I’ll have to add this one to my collection as well…and p.s. I also manage to sneak in treats for myself when Christmas shopping…who doesn’t?!

  • Mah

    Not only do they look delicious but you have made them so beautiful with the wrapping too! I love your info, photos and extra touches!

  • Rebecca

    Oh Tracy…. You’re totally taking me through this festive season! I’ve been daydreaming about making these blondies since I saw them on the blog last week, and finally today it’s TIME!!
    I may also be drinking your candy cane vodka whist baking the blondies as well… I’m having such a freakin’ fun time 🙂
    Happy Festive Season to you and your beautiful family!! x

  • Kate

    My grandma was known for her chocolate chip bars and these remind me a lot of those. Thanks for bringing back some good memories!

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  • Christina C

    Just pulled these our of the oven a few hours ago and I could easily eat the whole pan, so delicious and addicting! Thank you I now have a great reason to get my butt in gear to start running again 😉

  • Kristyna

    I made these today and they are absolutely delicious!!!
    Great recipe, I will definitely make them again 🙂

  • Leah

    About good butter:
    I want to buy some “good” butter, not that crap in my local grocery store. I can get Plugra at Meijer, but I want to hear other’s opinions about what is good, what they use, where they get it, etc…. Thanks!

  • MJ

    Thank you for the recipe! I made these for a dinner party and chose the recipe because of its easiness to make. I have a very small oven so I will reduce the cooking time to 20-25 minutes next time as they were a little overdone. Can’t wait to try them again!

    • Tracy

      Oh no! Sorry to hear that they were over-baked. But it sounds like you know what’s up with your oven.

  • Aimee Mulligan

    Oh gosh I had forgotten about these! My fave!!

  • Monica Rae

    I LOVE these blondies and bake them ALL the time! My tips, if you can improve on a good thing, a 9×13 works just as well, try a mix of semi-sweet and milk choc chips and use pecans instead of walnuts!

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  • Megan

    Just made a batch of these and the house smells heavenly. The funny part of baking these was trying to explain blondies to my husband – he’s never seen them before. “It’s like a brownie, but not chocolate. They are sort of like chocolate chip cookies but in bar form… here,just eat this.”

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  • Marie

    These are very dangerous!! I could seriously eat the whole entire pan. They are so good. Thanx for sharing.

  • Shana

    I made these on the weekend for a dinner party – I used 70% dark chocolate, threw in some dried sour cherries and cooked them in a 12 inch cash iron skillet. I served the skillet at the table warm and topped it with ice cream – people LOVED it! So buttery. These are the blondies dreams are made of.

  • Lane

    Hi Tracy! Could I use 3 large eggs in lieu of the 2 extra large eggs? Thank you. That is one tricky part about Ina’s baking– she always uses extra large eggs.

  • Laura

    Good grief these were great! I wasn’t paying attention and accidentally baked them in an 8×8 pan — don’t hate how thick it makes them! Thanks for another great recipe!

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