If you’re a fan of fudgy chocolate brownies, you will love this recipe for Instant Pot Chocolate Brownies! I bake a boxed brownie-mix in my pressure cooker, and that makes them moist, chewy and super fudgy on the inside! These are the easiest and the BEST brownies ever! The texture is as if Chocolate Brownies and Molten Lava Cake had a baby 🙂
At my house, we all love brownies! We can have them in any season, anytime of the day (ok, I ‘generally’ don’t allow them for breakfast), with vanilla or mint-chocolate chip ice-cream, drizzled with caramel or chocolate sauce, or, my favorite way, as-is.
But there is one thing all four of us are particular about, they have to be FUDGY brownies! I’ve been making fudge brownies in the oven for over a decade now. But recently, after several delicious batches of Chocolate Lava cake in the Instant Pot, I decided to give Instant Pot chocolate brownies a shot.
For the purpose of this experiment, I used our favorite brownie-mix from Trader Joe’s, and now, I am excited to try our zillion variation of brownies from scratch. Next on my list is my kids’ recipe for 4-ingredient Nutella Brownies! Can’t wait!
Fudgy Brownies versus Cakey Brownies
I must confess, there was a time when I used to think all brownies are the same, till I got a Brownies 101 from my husband, the ‘Chocolate Aficionado’ in our family.
So, there are two kinds of textures in brownies, Cakey or Fudgy. Regular or Cakey brownies are delicious too, the texture is more ‘cake-like’ though . That’s because, the ratio of flour to fat is higher. So, you would add more all-purpose flour for the same amount of butter and chocolate for a regular brownie. Some recipes also call for a little baking powder, for a more ‘airy’ brownie.
Then, there are fudgy brownies, which require much less flour and more butter and chocolate. No baking soda in these. And the result is a more dense chocolate and chewy-gooey interior. It’s also flatter as compared to its counterpart.
So, by the end of it, it’s a personal preference. Make whatever makes you happy! Now that you have graduated from the Brownies 101 course, let’s move on to this super-easy recipe:)
Why make Chocolate Brownies in the Instant Pot Pressure Cooker?
Confession time! Till a month ago, I couldn’t understand why you would want to bake brownies in a pressure cooker. I personally like the crisp chocolate exterior that contrasts so well with the gooey interior in oven baked brownies, . But believe me, my thoughts changed in a flash when I tasted these brownies.
See, unlike other cakes, you don’t want your brownies to rise, you want them to be dense to achieve that fudgy and chewy texture. At the same time, you don’t want them to dry out too. In an Instant Pot, these brownies steam cook in a water bath , just like a cheesecake, which helps them get that moist and gooey texture.
The only thing an Instant Pot cannot do is the crisp exterior that you get in the oven. In the end, I don’t think one method replaces the other in this case. Personally, I feel like I now have two delicious ways of making fudgy brownies 🙂 . On days when the outside temperature is soaring, I don’t have to turn on the oven to make brownies anymore 🙂
Super Easy Recipe for Instant Pot Chocolate Brownies
Frankly, making homemade brownies doesn’t get any easier than this. I am sure all of us have our favorite recipes for making brownies from scratch, but, we also have a favorite store-bought brownie-mix. Why? Because brownie cravings and kids playdates can happen anytime of the day… or night… and one has to be prepared 😉
So, after trying out our fair share of brownie-mixes, we love the Brownie Truffle Baking Mix from Trader Joe’s. I used that for this post and we tested 3 batches to get to our final recipe. I wanted to test different timing, but in the end, the 40 minutes preset on the CAKE setting in Instant Pot Ultra, worked out perfect for us.
If you have a DUO , you can press Manual/Pressure Cook for 40 minutes (high Pressure). Remember to seal that vent 🙂
Cook Times for Different Store-Bought Brownie Mixes
If you’re using a store-bought brownie mix, or using one of your go-to brownie recipes, how do you adjust cook time? Well, there are two big differences in cooking conditions between Oven-Brownies and Instant Pot Brownies.
First, bake time stated on your box-mix is probably for a different size pan. Even if you’re using your own recipe, chances are, you’ve been making it in an 8″ X 8″ pan, or a, 9″ X 13″ pan. If you’re like me and own a 6-qt Instant Pot, your pan size and shape is different. The cake pan you are using is probably smaller, which means more batter-to-pan ratio. So, you have to increase the cooking time for the batter to cook through.
For example, I use a brownie-mix from Trader Joe’s, that suggests a bake time of 30 minutes for a 8″ X 8″ pan. For this recipe, I used a 7-inch Springform pan, which is smaller, So, I need to add about 5 minutes to the suggested 30 minutes.
Second, oven uses dry heat to bake brownies, whereas, Instant Pot uses ‘steam’. That adds more moisture to the texture of the batter. When I bake in my Instant Pot, I find that my cakes and breads turn out too moist if I stick to the standard baking time. Adding another 5 minutes of pressure cooking time corrects the texture for my taste.
My Time Calculation Formula
So, overall, this is how I reached the 40 minute cook time for these brownies: Suggested bake time (30 mins) + 5 mins for pan size adjustment + 5 mins for moisture adjustment. As you can tell, one size doesn’t fill all here 🙂 There is a little bit of customization required for different types of cakes.
If you find that your brownie batter doesn’t look cooked at the end of 40 mins, seal it, and put it back for another 5 mins or so, depending on the quantity and how underdone it looks.
Putting This Chocolate Brownie Recipe Together is a 4-Step Process:
1: Melt Butter
2: Mix in Eggs
3: Mix Brownie Mix
4: Pour in a greased pan and cook
If you love chocolate as much as we do, try these:
15-Minute Chocolate Lava Cake (Instant Pot or Oven)
Salted Caramel Lava Cake (Instant Pot or Oven)
★ Have you tried this recipe? Click on the stars ★ in the recipe card to let us know your feedback!
Instant Pot Fudgy Brownies
- In a large microwave-safe mixing bowl, melt butter in the microwave in 20 second increments. That helps it melt uniformly, without get hot.
- Add 2 large eggs and blend well, using a whisk.
- Add the brownie mix and mix it in using a spatula. Don't over-mix it. Keep folding in the batter until it is mixed well.
- Grease an oven safe baking pan. Line it with a parchment base (optional), and pour the batter in. In this recipe, I used a 7-inch springform pan for a 6 quart Instant Pot. Cover the pan loosely with some foil or parchment paper.
- Once cook time is over, wait 10 minutes and then release pressure (NPR 10). Using silicone mitts, remove the cake pan and remove the foil. Using a plastic knife, go around the edges of the brownie. Release the spring and remove the ring. Let the brownie cool 10 minutes before cutting.