Fudgy, triple chunk and cosmic are just a few of the words that describe one mouthwatering dessert: brownies. Thanks to the food tab of Instagram’s discovery page, I’ve gone beyond cookies and taken a deep dive into the decadent brownie niche.
As Forrest Gump said, “Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re gonna get.” Given current circumstances, he’s right, especially when you throw some flour into the mix and end up with stuffed brownies.
It’s no doubt that brownies are a classic American dessert. Think of the lava cakes that Dominos sells with their pizza — that’s their take on a brownie. Just like the way corporations get creative with brownies, so do Instagram accounts. In fact, I got the chance to speak to two of them.
West Coast Confection
West Coast Confection serves both blondies and brownies, with a fun play on names in their descriptions. If you’re trying to watch your diet but still want some sweets, the company offers bite-sized treats. But don’t worry because the bakers promised “they are just as wonderful” as regular-sized brownies. They are “1 pound brownies cut into 4 equal squares,” so you’re still getting the real deal.
West Coast Confection takes customized brownie orders as well, and they aren’t afraid to go big.
When asked what their craziest custom order was, they said it was a “cookie dough base, stuffed with full size buttermilk donuts, snicker bars topped with full-size cinnamon rolls, more snickers and a cream cheese drizzle.” Talk about a challenge. But at least you know your wildest brownie dreams can come true.
If you’re really a dessert connoisseur, they even have a membership option. It’s no doubt they think of their loyal customers, as they “thought it would be a much easier and convenient system to reward customers with perks.” Like, hello? Sign me up!
New on the baking block is Buckeye Brownies. Well, not technically new, since the brand was previously the Cleveland Brownie Company. But with the new name, they are a new company. They currently offer four half-pound brownie flavors, and I reached out to the owner and CEO, Zachary Buckeye, to find out more.
When asked about more flavors, Zachary said he can “see the company producing many crazy flavors moving forward, especially during the holidays.” Think of gift ideas for those family gatherings, or you could just order a brownie cake.
Buckeye Brownies even offers the whole batch to you. Although, as Zachary explains, the idea came about by coincidence: “I was testing out new flavors one day and I didn’t like how the topping of one of the batches looked.” His friend offered to buy the entire batch off of him, and “then the light bulb lit up once I put the entire cake in a box.”
Now, I wouldn’t judge if you kept a batch all to yourself. You can also go with Zachary’s suggestion: The MVP. As he describes it, “It’s one of the four flagship flavors and it combines the best of both worlds, a chocolate chip cookie and a brownie all infused with Oreos and chocolate chips!”
The History of Brownies
But before I get too ahead, perhaps knowing the history of brownies will make you appreciate the little (or not so little) chocolate square you’re currently dreaming of.
Obviously, chocolate plays a big part in a brownie, whether it’s a blondie or a chocolate base — dark or milk. People are always fighting over a middle or an edge piece because, let’s be honest, there are few things better in life than chocolate.
If you didn’t know, chocolate comes from cocoa beans, which originally grew in Central and South America. It was primarily cultivated by the Mayan Indians. Now, if you paid any attention in history class, you’d know that the Spanish, not necessarily the Mayans, crossed over to the Americas to make their conquests. In short, that is how we have chocolate.
Honestly, the whole history of chocolate is complicated, just like the history of brownies is complicated. It’s said that experimentation in baking was encouraged during the 19th century.
During this time, chocolate factories were being established, and even though it’s not exactly known who baked the first brownies, many sources point to a chef at Chicago’s Palmer House Hotel, who was requested to make Bertha Palmer a special dessert.
The special dessert was made specifically to be eaten out of a boxed lunch for the World Fair in 1893. Does that answer your lifelong question of why brownies are square?
Also, many sources point out that the first brownie recipe was actually for blondies, not the chocolate goo we love — talk about a chef breaking the rules; rules are meant to be broken, however.
These Instagram brownie pages believe in breaking rules too. Whether it be their take on a slutty brownie, classic or cake, these bakers know how to bake.
Assail Brownie Company
Over 75 pounds of brownie? Say no more. Each order from Assail Brownie Company comes with four insane brownies. The company offers an array of brownies and blondies, so you can get the best of both worlds. Not only are there crazy toppings and add-ins, Assail also offers protein brownies, so if you’re working on gains, you can work on them the right way. And if there’s more than one flavor you’re craving, you can also mix and match.
This brand continues to come up whenever I search “brownie” on Instagram, although I had never heard of the account until I dug deeper. Killer Brownie actually resulted from the CEO of Dorothy Lane Market baking in his kitchen in Dayton, Ohio.
Now, these brownies aren’t massive like other Instagram brownies, but they can be found online, and the array of options do look pretty killer.
Known for insanely stuffed cookies, LetzDoughIt also dabbles in the realm of insanely stuffed brownies. Their brownie creations are based on their cookie creations. They also offer cookie bars, which are what brownies used to be in the past, before they had a classification.
The menu that LetzDoughIt offers varies per launch, but if you get a chance, you can customize your order to your sweetest desires.
San Antonio Brownie Company
What’s better than Southern comfort food? Brownies made in the South. It’s no doubt that the San Antonio Brownie Company can deliver that to you, with an assortment of classic flavors, like Pecan Pie and Strawberry Shortcake. They do say everything is better in Texas, so order a brownie and find out for yourself.
There are many more brownie companies not mentioned here, such as Jacked_Up_Brownies and Monsta Brownie Co. And all these companies offer shipping options, so you’ll have plenty to eat while you binge that Netflix series.