A brownie by any other name…

Love brownies. Love their shiny, flaky top that shatters into micro-thin shards that shower onto your fingers as you eat. Love their dark, gooey center. Their “chocolate nirvana” flavor.

Sometimes can’t deal with the bake, wait to cool, cutting into squares messiness and fuss of brownies. Want something I can enjoy within 5 minutes of its exit from the oven. Something I can put on a plate and take with me – fast. Want Fudge Drops.

Every time I make these cookies (which, truth be told, is quite often), I think of a former colleague, Ana, who left King Arthur last year in order to be a full-time mom to her 2-year-old twins. Ana was our resident chocolate “apprecianado.” She could smell a brownie baking from three offices away; if something made with chocolate appeared in the taste-test area, Ana was invariably the first to know, to taste, to comment, and to come back for more.

The test kitchen bakers loved Ana. She was absolutely reliable in her reaction to anything chocolate: rolling eyes, a happy sigh, a comment to the effect that it was probably the BEST thing she’d ever tasted—just the over-the-top reaction a test baker loves.

Ana still visits occasionally, 2-year-olds in tow.


And when she does, she’ll invariably nose out any chocolate, and treat us to her classic reaction: “Perfect! LOVE it!” Thanks, Ana.

These cookies are basically brownies: flat, round, 2 ½” brownies. So if you enjoy sinfully, dark & fudgy brownies, you’ll love Fudge Drops.

First task: Combine the chocolate and butter. Since these cookies are heavily reliant on chocolate for their flavor, I like to use a good quality dark chocolate: Merckens.

Melt in the microwave till softened…

…then stir till smooth.

Stir the chocolate into eggs and sugar, which you’ve beaten together.

Add the remaining ingredients–including chocolate chips, for an over-the-top chocolate experience. You’ll have a very soft batter, too liquid to scoop into cookies.

Refrigerate the batter for an hour; it’ll stiffen up nicely.

Use a tablespoon cookie scoop, dipped in cold water between scoops, to plop dough onto a parchment-lined baking sheet.

Bake the cookies for 11 to 12 minutes; notice they’re starting to crack across the top surface here. That means they’re almost done.

And there you have it: fudge drops without chocolate chips. Note how beautiful and smooth they look.

Here they are with chips, which add a certain lumpy quality to the cookies’ appearance. But if you value substance over style, go for it!

Note the interior texture: the cookies should be baked all the way through, but very moist. The pockets of melted chocolate you see here are chips.

Serve warm (not hot; they’re too delicate). Or at room temperature. Ana approves of them either way.

Hey, take a look at these neat Christmas Fudge Drops. Just roll balls of unbaked (chilled) dough in Swedish Pearl Sugar, bake, and use mini cutters to cut out the centers. Festive, huh?


Read, rate, and review (please!)  our recipe for Fudge Drops.

Buy vs. Bake

BUY: Supermarket bakery 6-pack double chocolate chip cookies, 10 ounces: $4.29 for six 1 5/8-ounce cookies: 43¢/ounce

BAKE: Homemade Fudge Drops with chocolate chips (ingredients cost): $4.97 for thirty 1-ounce cookies: 17¢/ounce

PJ Hamel

PJ Hamel grew up in New England, graduated from Brown University, and was a Maine journalist before joining King Arthur Flour in 1990. PJ bakes and writes from her home on Cape Cod, where she enjoys beach-walking, her husband, two dogs, and really good food!


  1. Sahar

    Hi every body
    Thanks for the reciepe
    I made it but not in beautiful shape like yours.
    It tastes so nice ,how ever!
    Now my question is, may i bake the batter without refrigeating , like a cake batter in a big mold?
    Or in other words, may i bake it like a simple brownie?
    (Excuse me for bad English writing)

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi Sahar. It’s worth a shot baking this recipe as brownies. The baking time will be longer than for the cookies, closer to 30 minutes. Happy baking! Annabelle@KAF

  2. annwexler

    I made my first pan on my convection setting at 300. They never spread out nor cracked; were very puffy and stayed that way. Tasted good, though. Second pan, switched to regular setting and 325 degrees. Spread a little more, but not much. Any thoughts? I used all the KAF ingredients — the white whole wheat flour, even ordered the bittersweet chocolate, espresso powder, chilled dough 4+ hours (very firm), greased pan, small cookie scoop. . .

    Not really complaining (they’re delicious) but was looking forward to the appearance and wondered what I could try. Thanks!

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi Ann- Check how you measured your flour. Too little and they will spread; too much and they will remain in lumps. Happy baking! Laurie@KAF

    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Not at all – they’d look different and taste different with different texture from the nuts, but in my book, that’s not “messing” them up – it’s just a different version. Enjoy! PJH

  3. plvannest

    For the people who are having trouble getting the cracked, shiny tops: Be sure you don’t get any water on the top of the cookie. If you are using a scoop that has recently been dipped into water to keep the dough from sticking, make sure the cookie is “wet side” down on the cookie sheet. Be very careful touching the cookies with wet fingers, too. I ran an experiment where I baked a “wet side up” cookie, a cookie I had moved around with wet fingers, and one that I had used a wet spoon to mash down a bit. (I also baked a control cookie that hadn’t touched any water.) The wet side up cookie had no cracks or shine. The cookie I had moved around with wet fingers showed places (about the size of my fingers) where there were no cracks or shine. The wet spoon cookie was all shiny and crackled–except for where the wet spoon touched. And the control cookie? It was beautifully crackled and shiny.

    Hope this helps.

  4. Brittany Ruby Ann

    so what are the ingredients for these cookies, I don’t bake a lot. Do you use brownie mix and the melted chocolate & butter in the brownie mix along with the chocolate chips? how many eggs? how much butter?
    Hi Brittany,
    You’ll find the link to the Fudge Drops recipe at the very top of the blog, over the main photo, and also again at the very end of the blog. Happy baking! ~ MaryJane


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