Overhead view of a dozen vanilla brownies topped with butter cream and sprinkles. One bite is missing from the bottom left brownie.
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Vanilla Brownies with Buttercream Frosting

Cheryl Malik
June 14, 2023
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Chewy, vanilla brownie bars with rich blondie flavor, plus optional white chocolate chips and a quick buttercream frosting. Easy to make and perfect whenever you need a sweet fix!

Overhead view of a dozen vanilla brownies topped with butter cream and sprinkles. One bite is missing from the bottom left brownie.

🧁 What Makes This Recipe So Good

  • These vanilla brownies are absolutely delicious! Thick, chewy, rich, and full of the perfect vanilla blondie flavor. They’re sure to be a crowd-pleaser, and such a great addition to your dessert rotation.
  • They’re super easy to make! You can use a stand mixer if you have one handy, but if not, a hand mixer works just fine. There’s nothing complicated in this delicious recipe, and I bet you probably already have all of the ingredients in your pantry! Simple, easy, and delicious- what could be better?!
  • Vanilla brownies are the perfect blank canvas for any party or entertaining needs! Whip up your frosting and top with themed sprinkles to fit the occasion. Craving some chocolate? Switch out white chocolate chips for semisweet chocolate chips or chunks. Fresh fruit would pair beautifully with these brownies as well. The possibilities are endless!

👩🏼‍🍳 Chef’s Tips

  • Make sure you whip the eggs and sugar until the color lightens. The mixture will become fluffy and a little sticky.
  • Test if your brownies are done by inserting a toothpick into the center of the brownie. If they’re done, you’ll have just a few moist crumbs on your toothpick after pulling it out. If wet batter or too many crumbs are on the toothpick, bake them for just a bit longer. You definitely don’t want to over-bake them, so err on the side of caution if you’re unsure. They’ll continue baking just a little as they rest in the baking pan.
  • You can totally make the buttercream fit your liking! It’s super versatile and easy to make. Huge vanilla fan? Use 2 teaspoons of vanilla instead of 1. Want it to be a thinner consistency? Add just a bit more heavy cream. Too sweet? Add a little more salt!
Three vanilla brownies topped with white buttercream and rainbow sprinkles stacked on top of each other.

🍰 More Delicious Desserts You’ll Love

Three vanilla brownies topped with white buttercream and rainbow sprinkles stacked on top of each other.

Vanilla Brownies with Buttercream Frosting

Rich and chewy vanilla brownies (packed with white chocolate chips if you want, and topped with vanilla buttercream) are great for any time you need to satisfy a sweet craving or gift a baked treat.
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Cool: 15 minutes
Total: 1 hour
Recipe Makes: 12 brownies
Approximate Cost: $7.22 ($0.60 per brownie)

Equipment

  • oven
  • 9×13 baking pan (metal preferred)
  • parchment paper
  • small microwave-safe bowl (optional, skip if large bowl is microwave-safe)
  • large mixing bowl
  • flour sifter (optional)
  • whisk (or hand mixer with whisk attachment)
  • silicone spatula
  • toothpicks (or butter knife)
  • large mixing bowl (or stand mixer bowl)
  • hand mixer (or stand mixer)
  • long, sharp chef's knife

Ingredients

For the Vanilla Brownies

  • ¾ cup unsalted butter (at room temperature)
  • ¾ cup white granulated sugar
  • ¾ packed cup light brown sugar
  • 3 large eggs (at room temperature)
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 ¾ level cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons fresh baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups white chocolate chips (optional)

For the Buttercream Frosting

  • 1 cup unsalted butter (at room temperature)
  • 3 cups confectioners sugar
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • salt (to taste)

Suggested Toppings (All Optional)

  • rainbow sprinkles
  • additional white chocolate chips (or white chocolate shavings)

Instructions
 

For the Vanilla Brownies

  • Preheat oven to 350° Fahrenheit. Line pan with sheet of parchment paper, leaving some excess parchment paper hanging over sides of pan to easily remove brownies later. Set pan aside.
  • Place ¾ cup unsalted butter in small microwave-safe bowl (or in large mixing bowl if microwave-safe). Microwave butter in 30-second increments, stirring after each burst, until butter is melted but not bubbling. If using small bowl, transfer melted butter to large bowl.
  • Sift ¾ cup white granulated sugar and ¾ packed cup light brown sugar into large bowl with melted butter. Whisk ingredients vigorously 2 to 3 minutes or until ingredients are combined and begin to form thick paste-like consistency.
  • Once mixture thickens, crack 3 large eggs directly into bowl, then add ½ teaspoon vanilla extract. Whisk until eggs and vanilla are fully incorporated into sugar mixture.
  • Sift 1 ¾ level cups all-purpose flour into bowl, then add 2 teaspoons fresh baking powder and ¼ teaspoon salt. Mix all ingredients together until just combined, being careful not to over-mix.
  • Gently fold 2 cups white chocolate chips into brownie batter if desired, folding only until chocolate chips are just distributed.
  • Transfer brownie batter to prepared baking pan and spread batter out into one even layer, making sure batter reaches all sides and corners of pan.
  • Place pan in preheated oven and bake brownies 25 minutes, then begin checking doneness. Insert toothpick or butter knife into center of brownies and immediately remove. Continue baking brownies, checking doneness every 2 to 3 minutes, until toothpick or knife comes out of brownies covered in no or very few crumbs.
  • Once brownies are baked as desired, remove pan from oven and set aside. Let brownies rest in pan until completely cooled.

For the Buttercream Frosting

  • Once brownies are completely cool, add 1 cup unsalted butter to large mixing bowl, then sift 3 cups confectioners sugar into bowl. Use hand mixer or stand mixer on medium speed to cream butter and sugar together 1 to 2 minutes, or until mixture is light and fluffy, and pale yellow in color.
  • When ingredients are creamed, add ¼ cup heavy cream, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, and salt to bowl. Continue mixing 2 to 3 minutes more, until ingredients are fully combined and form fluffy, thick buttercream frosting.

To Frost and Serve Brownies

  • Transfer prepared buttercream onto top of cooled brownies, still in baking pan. Spread buttercream frosting out to cover brownies evenly, making sure to reach edges and corners of pan.
  • Once brownies are completely frosted, top frosting with rainbow sprinkles or additional white chocolate chips if desired.
  • Optional: To help ensure clean edges, refrigerate frosted brownies in baking pan 15 minutes. Remove brownies from fridge once buttercream has just set.
  • Use excess parchment paper on sides of pan to carefully lift sheet of brownies out of pan and set on flat surface. Cut sheet of brownies into 12 squares, then serve as desired.

Notes

  • Bake times will vary depending on a number of factors including oven type, oven age, kitchen altitude, type of baking pan, age of baking pan, etc. Check doneness often to avoid overbaking the brownies.
  • Flour Sifter: If you don’t have a sifter, just use a fork or your hands to make sure the sugars and flour are free of any lumps or clumps that may not combine with the wet ingredients completely.
  • To Cut Brownies Cleanly: Use a long, sharp straight-edge knife. Run the knife under hot water until the blade is warm, then dry the blade completely and make a cut in the brownies. Use an up-and-down motion rather than a back-and-forth sawing motion so you don’t drag the knife through the brownies and frosting. After each cut, wipe the blade clean, then warm it and dry it again before making another cut.

Recipe costs provided are approximate. Actual cost per recipe & serving will vary by location, store, brand, etc. Approximate cost shown does not include costs for any optional ingredients.

Nutrition

Serving: 1brownie with frosting (without chocolate chips) | Calories: 375kcal | Protein: 2g | Fat: 30g | Saturated Fat: 19g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 123mg | Sodium: 146mg | Potassium: 49mg | Total Carbs: 58g | Fiber: 0.01g | Sugar: 26g | Net Carbs: 58g | Vitamin C: 0.03mg | Calcium: 69mg

Nutrition Disclaimer

Number of total servings shown is approximate. Actual number of servings will depend on your preferred portion sizes. Nutritional values shown are general guidelines and reflect information for 1 serving using the ingredients listed, not including any optional ingredients. Actual macros may vary slightly depending on specific brands and types of ingredients used. To determine the weight of one serving, prepare the recipe as instructed. Weigh the finished recipe, then divide the weight of the finished recipe (not including the weight of the container the food is in) by the desired number of servings. Result will be the weight of one serving.

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Recipe by Cheryl Malik

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