11 Absolute Best Boxed Brownie Mix Brands, Ranked

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Chocolate dreams are probably made of brownies. This dessert can be moist and fudgy, with crisp corners, cakey or chewy; the bottom line is that brownies are delicious no matter how you prefer them. They have an interesting history, as they were created in 1893 at the Palmer House Hotel in Chicago (per Forbes) for the World's Columbian Exposition. Their rich chocolate taste defines them. And they have that characteristic glossy, crackly top.

There is a lot of kitchen science to make the perfect brownie. For the intense chocolate flavor, you should always make your brownies with dark chocolate, melted and combined with cocoa. If you want to have perfectly shiny brownies that come out of the oven looking glossy (and have that decadent interior), beat the eggs with sugar for a long time before adding the other ingredients to the batter. Or you can try these baking hacks to make the perfect brownie. If you like your brownies supple, there's the ultimate fudgy brownie recipe. But you may be in a hurry, tired, or not in the mood to measure and combine ingredients according to strict baking rules. So for all those moments when you crave a brownie but won't be bothered with too much kitchen work, give these boxed brownie mixes a try.

11. Simple Mills

Simple Mills is a company dedicated to crafting recipes that use whole foods and support diet diversity, from catering to gluten-free, dairy-free, or paleo diets. Simple Mills primarily includes almond, coconut, and nut and seed flour in its baking mixes and sources a good percent of its ingredients from USDA organic certification producers. The brownie mix includes almond flour and coconut sugar and is gluten-free, grain-free, soy-free, corn-free, and dairy free. So, if you are craving brownies but want a nutritious choice, this box is for you.

We combined the Simple Mills brownie box with ½ cup of oil, two tablespoons of water, and two eggs, per the box instructions. The brownies took 20 minutes to make and were moderately soft and sweet. You can upgrade the recipe by adding fruit preserves or peanut butter before baking or drizzling melted dark chocolate on top after baking. Compared to other brownies, the Simple Mills ones are less fudgy, and the chocolate flavor is not as strong, but they still make a good dessert that everyone can enjoy. However, out of the brands we tested, we found that these brownies had the driest consistency and the weakest chocolate flavor.

10. Trader Joe's

One of the best-known national chains of grocery stores, Trader Joe's has its own brownie mix variety. The store's policy of offering household products instead of branded items means that its products are developed and tested by the team, and the ingredients are sourced directly from suppliers. According to Trader Joe's, its Brownie Truffle Baking Mix has been a customer favorite for some time, and it's great when combined with tahini and caramel sauce and served with vanilla ice cream.

Trader Joe's Brownie Truffle Baking Mix renders a small batch of brownies. The mix features Dutch-processed cocoa powder and chocolate chips — a combination of ingredients that sounds good in theory. As it's labeled a "baking mix," the product is suited not only for making brownies but for use in different combinations (Trader Joe's website has a few suggestions, such as the tahini brownie or a brownie covered in softened peanut butter cups). We used two large eggs and one stick of melted butter. After baking for 25 minutes, the brownies were done, but without the lustrous surface and the distinct crack. 

Although the mix includes chocolate chips, the brownies didn't come out moist but dry and chewy on the edges. For someone who appreciates dry brownies, they are great. But if you're looking for fudgy brownies that melt in your mouth, Trader Joe's brownie mix is not your best option.

9. Annie's brownie mixes

Annie's Homegrown is a well-known company among organic grocery lines, as it makes a wide array of products, from boxed mac and cheese, baking mixes, canned soups and pasta, kid-friendly snacks, and dressings and condiments. The company also has products for special diets, such as gluten-free and vegan. Annie's was founded in 1989 by Annie Withey, a home chef who developed a recipe for mac and cheese using a type of cheddar powder she had also used for making the Smartfood cheddar popcorn. Over time, the business expanded to what it is today, focusing on organic products.

Annie's brownies come in two varieties, the Cookie Brownie and the Double Chocolate mixes. The first one is a combination of brownie batter and cookie dough spread on top. To make the recipe, we used ¼ cup melted butter, two tablespoons of water, one egg to be mixed with the brownie batter, and ¼ cup softened butter and two tablespoons of water to mix with the cookie dough. The brownie that resulted was moist, with a nice chocolate flavor, and was topped with the most delicious and crisp cookie dough. The Double Chocolate mix recipe calls for two eggs, one tablespoon of water, and 1/3 cup melted butter or vegetable oil. You will get a brownie that resembles cake and has an intense chocolate flavor, perfect as an organic, healthier snack. However, compared to other brands, Annie's brownies lacked the gooey texture we were expecting.

8. Miss Jones brownie mix

Miss Jones Baking Co. was founded by a passionate baker, Sarah Jones, who made it her mission to provide home bakers with mixes and recipes that would make it easier for them to achieve spectacular results in the kitchen. The company uses high-quality ingredients and offers several baking mix categories, such as everyday mixes, organic mixes, and keto and paleo mixes. In addition, each of these offers at least one type of brownie, making it possible for people with various dietary restrictions to enjoy a delicious brownie.

The Everyday Double Chocolate brownie mix contains chocolate chips, whole-grain wheat, and less sugar than other mixes. We used two eggs, two tablespoons of water, ⅓ cup plus one tablespoon of oil to make the recipe. The resulting brownie was soft and lush, with a good chocolate flavor and sweet taste. On the other hand, the Organic Fudgy batch can be prepared both for a vegan and a non-vegan diet. With these brownies, you will get a posh, chocolate-flavored dessert that, believe it or not, is also vegan. Miss Jones also offers a Keto and Paleo Fudgy mix, sweetened with erythritol and monk fruit extract. 

This brownie is perfect for those who enjoy lighter, cake-like brownies with only a hint of sweetness. If you like your brownies moist and dripping with an intense chocolate taste, then you probably won't be very happy with this brand.

7. Kodiak Cakes

Kodiak Cakes is a family-owned company that promotes healthy eating and active living. The company's mixes use the ingredients common to frontier recipes, relying on food that provides rich sources of carbs, protein, and fiber. For this reason, all its mixes are made with whole grains, giving any baked goods a rougher texture. However, the Chocolate Fudge mix from Kodiak cakes remains the go-to option for those who want to indulge in sweet and fudgy brownies but are also looking for a nutritious dessert. The brownies are packed with whole grain flour, whey protein concentrate, and milk protein concentrate.

We made the Kodiak Cakes brownie recipe using two eggs, ½ cup of melted butter, two tablespoons of oil, and two tablespoons of water. The batter was thicker than other brownie mixes because of the whole-grain wheat and oat flour. It also had miniature chocolate chips, which enhanced the chocolate flavor. The texture of the brownies was similar to cake because oat flour tends to absorb more moisture than other flours. 

The recipe on the box suggests substituting part of the butter (or all of it) with applesauce, Greek yogurt, or mashed bananas. Doing this will make your brownies lusher, as these ingredients won't dry up because of the oat flour and will remain plush even when the batter is baked.

6. Jiffy

Jiffy's Fudge Brownie is produced by Chelsea Milling Company, a family-owned business specializing in baking mixes. Most of the 14 baking mixes the company offers are dedicated to muffins, but there are also cake mixes, one brownie mix, pizza and pie crust mixes, and a pancake mix. The Fudge Brownie mix contains real cocoa and is extremely simple to make, so it's easy for kids to participate in the baking process. One Jiffy Brownie box serves two to four people, so if you need a larger batter quantity, it's better to buy more boxes.

The Jiffy brownie recipe specifies adding one egg, one tablespoon of water, and two tablespoons of oil. Optionally, you can add your favorite variety of chopped nuts. We let the brownies bake for 30 minutes, and they came out of the oven with a nice, shiny crust and the characteristic top. 

The Jiffy brownies were moderately rich and had a particular texture that comes with using real cocoa. They are ideal to have on hand when you need to whip up a quick dessert that the kids will love, as they have a mild flavor. They are also effortless to make and are ready in no time. For a finer taste, try to use olive oil, which will enhance the cocoa flavor and add some softness to your brownies. However, the drier texture and the mild chocolate taste meant that these brownies were not our favorites.

5. Duncan Hines

The Duncan Hines company was founded over 50 years ago to develop baking solutions. Since then, it has expanded its product portfolio to include cake and brownie mixes, baking kits, mug cakes, cookie kits, muffin mixes, pie filling, frostings, and frozen sweet treats. The Duncan Hines mix comes in classic and signature varieties and features different flavors and textures, including simple Dark Chocolate Fudge brownies to Triple Chocolate Chunk. However, as a general trait, Duncan Hines mixes tend to produce brownies that are more similar to cake.

The Duncan Hines Chewy Fudge brownie mix is a recipe that has built a considerable fanbase over the years. However, recent changes in the recipe made some fans angry, as the proportions of added ingredients changed. The original recipe called for two eggs, ¼ cup water, and ½ cup oil. The new recipe calls for ⅔ cup of oil, three tablespoons of water, and two eggs. While the original recipe produced moist brownies with a nice chocolate flavor (but not very strong), the new formula renders very soft and somewhat fatty brownies, which some customers find off-putting. The recipes for other brownie styles produced by the brand remained the same, and the brownies preserved the high standard. For instance, the Double Fudge gives the same sumptuous, chocolate-flavored brownie. But, if you like your brownies luscious and very tasty, the Duncan Hines brownies may disappoint you with a mild chocolate flavor.

4. Betty Crocker

A company with a fascinating history and an overwhelming presence, Betty Crocker offers an array of baking pre-mixes and other cooking products. Despite common assumptions, Betty Crocker has never been a real person but rather a group of talented cooks, actors, writers, and resourceful managers working for the same company that managed to develop an unmistakable identity. Betty Crocker's baking and cake mixes are well-known pantry staples for many Americans. So, there's no wonder that the company also offers many brownie types.

As brownies tend to have a deeper flavor and a fudgier texture when using dark chocolate, we chose the Betty Crocker Dark Chocolate brownie, which seemed the most appealing. The box recipe called for two large eggs, ½ cup of oil, and ¼ cup of water. We incorporated the wet ingredients into the dry and baked for 53 minutes. After cooling, the brownies had the typical appearance, with a glossy, crackly exterior. The taste is equally sweet and chocolate-flavored, making the Betty Crocker brownies suitable for the family — but not dedicated to those who love the strong flavor of chocolate.

If you're looking for more forceful flavors, another Betty Crocker mix to check is the Fudge Brownie mix, which results in richer brownies. Other uniquely-flavored Betty Crocker varieties include the S'mores Brownie Cookie Baking Mix, the Salted Caramel box, and the Peanut Butter Cookie Brownie mix. However, if you want plain brownies with a high chocolate profile, we've got further recommendations. 

3. Pillsbury

Pillsbury is a family-friendly baking brand that makes delicious and fun mixes that combine the delightful taste of chocolate with all sorts of fun, kid-friendly decorating options. Pillsbury offers a wide selection of brownie options, from the classic options to premium mixes, Funfetti brownies (brownies with candy pieces), seasonal mixes, or gluten- and sugar-free options. The company prides itself on presenting varieties suitable for the entire family and can please even the pickiest eaters.

To make the Pillsbury Chocolate Fudge mix, we added two eggs, ⅔ cup of oil, and ¼ cup of water in the preparation process. After baking the brownies for 50 minutes, the batter rose in the middle, so we got that nice, distinctive brownie top. The brownies were fluffy and thick and came with a delicious and wonderfully textured fudgy center. Another delicious Pillsbury mix with an interesting flavor twist is the Cheesecake Swirl Premium.

These brownies come with a creamy cheesecake taste that lingers in every bite and a lovely humid texture. We also loved the Funfetti varieties. The classic Funfetti Brownie Mix with Candy Coated Chips comes with large, round-shaped chips colored in shades of red, yellow, and blue. The Funfetti Holiday Brownie Mix with Candy Bits brings a festive spirit with its red, white, and green candy. In contrast, the Funfetti Brownie Mix with Oreo Cookie Pieces combines the soft texture of brownies with some crunchy Oreo bits. Whatever the mix, Pillsbury's signature texture shines.

2. King Arthur Baking Company

King Arthur baking company is one of the oldest flour companies in the U.S., developed by Henry Wood. This business represented the first food company in New England (via King Arthur baking). The company specialized initially in producing flour but expanded over time, adding grain-free flour, organic flour, baking mixes, and dessert cups to its portfolio.

King Arthur's All-American brownie mix uses the brand's signature flour and a blend of cocoas that translates into that rich flavor. We added one tablespoon of cocoa, two eggs, and six tablespoons of melted butter when making the brownie. You can even adapt the recipe to your brownie preferences and combine the ingredients with different quantities of eggs, water, and butter depending on the type of brownies you want: fudgy or cakey. 

King Arthur's brownies result in a rich chocolate flavor and a subtle sweetness which we found fascinating. It probably won't be a children's favorite, but it's a brownie made for dark chocolate fans and offers what it promises. Keeping in line with its tradition and product catalog, King Arthur also provides a Gluten-Free Fudge mix. Aside from using gluten-free flour, the mix has the same deep chocolate flavor and smooth texture. The King Arthur gluten-free brownies are also very easy to make, as the added ingredients are the same as the All-American box.

1. Ghirardelli Chocolate

There must be something special about one of the most important chocolate manufacturers in the world producing boxed brownie mixes. So, it's no wonder that Ghirardelli's brownie mixes rank as the best brand in our preferences. Aside from the sheer incredible number of boxed brownies mix options the brand offers, there is also the use of high-quality chocolate, which gives the brownies a perfect texture, crispy on the outside, and fudgy on the inside. Ghirardelli is a chocolate manufacturer that prides itself on using a particular selection method and chocolate manufacturing process. The result is high-quality that can be eaten plain or used in various recipes.

In today's busy life, the fact that Ghirardelli sells so many boxed batches is purely good news. The selection caters to every taste and need, from the chocolate-laden Double Chocolate or Chocolate Supreme to the sweet and crunchy Caramel Walnut Turtle or the original Hawaiian Butter Mochi. Each benefits from a premium mix, guaranteeing a moist texture and a wonderful chocolate flavor. We made the double chocolate mix using one egg, ¼ cup of water, and ½ cup of oil. 

What resulted is a soft brownie with crisp edges and corners and a crackly top ideal for filling with different sauces or ice cream. If you want to indulge, choose the Chocolate Supreme or the Caramel Walnut Brownie mixes, which come with a pre-packed sauce. Or give the Hawaiian Mochi a try and feel the coconut island vibe.