Katharine Hepburn’s Brownies

A long time ago, I read an article in a magazine about one of my heroines, Katharine Hepburn.  Who didn’t admire her patrician good looks, her outspokenness, and her practical and adventurous spirit?  The article ran with a series of great pictures of Ms. Hepburn through the years, culminating in a few great shots of her—well into her eighties—striding on the beach with her signature turtleneck sweater, a pair of jeans and sneakers.  She looked old and beautiful—a combination that I am appreciating more and more.  And the biggest bonus of all was the inclusion of her recipe for her favorite brownies—the brownies that she said all of the Hepburns loved and that she herself made often.  Well who wouldn’t give those a try?  And I did and they were good and I have made them ever since.  If you didn’t see that article and clip that recipe too…here it is for you.

Katharine Hepburn’s Brownies

1 stick butter
2 squares unsweetened chocolate
1-cup sugar
2 eggs
½ teaspoon vanilla
¼ cup all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon salt.
1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.  Butter and flour an 8-inch square baking pan.

In a medium saucepan, melt together the butter and the chocolate.  Remove from the heat and stir to combine.  Add the sugar, the eggs and the vanilla and stir vigorously until well combined.  Stir in the flour and the salt and the nuts (if using).  Pour the batter into the pan and bake for 35 to 40 minutes.  Cool and cut into squares.

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10 Responses to Katharine Hepburn’s Brownies

  1. These are my favorite go-to brownies. As easy as using a mix and much, much better.

  2. Susan says:

    Mine too Karen. And I also confess that since my kids have grown and their appetites with them, I now have to double the recipe and bake them in a 9 x 13 pan–which by the way–works well.

  3. Marian Tatu says:

    HUGE mistake to read this delightful blog at 11pm! Everything sounds mouth watering and I’m perishing to try…and maybe exchange a recipe or two. Love your comments and the pictures are exquisite. Thanks for letting me in Sue.


  4. Susan says:

    Marian, I hope, I hope, I hope that you’ll share some of your wonderful recipes–Robin too–I always remember your amazing mushroom crepes…and Robin once made me linguini with clam sauce that I recall to this day–thanks for joining in.

  5. Marian Tatu says:

    You have an amazing memory. Maybe great food stays in memory! I recall a Wonderful pork roast with a great rub (I didn’t even know about rubs then) I had at your house in Fl!

  6. Susan says:

    Food memory…I definitely think we all have this. Maybe that’s why some crazy family recipes are so “good” and sometimes when we share them–people look at us like we’re nuts. Our family used to love this signature sandwich–toasted bread, layered with peanut butter, bacon, ketchup, tomatoes, purple onion and cheddar cheese–run under the broiler until the cheese melted. We all loved it–but maybe just because we had a good time together when we were eating it.

  7. Bree says:

    Yum, they look delicious! I don’t have unsweetened chocolate squares, but there’s a substitution:

    6 tablespoons cocoa powder + 2 tablespoons butter (or vegetable oil) = 2 squares unsweetened chocolate

    I’m going to make these brownies tomorrow – a perfect weekend dessert! Thanks for sharing the recipe!


  8. Susan says:


    Thank you for the substitution idea–that’s a handy tip that will save a trip to the store one of these days…

  9. Bree says:

    You’re welcome, Susan. I made the brownies today and they’re so moist and chewy. They really are the best I’ve ever eaten! Thanks again!

  10. Mary says:

    I made these brownies and they are amazing. Simply unforgettable!!! Check them out! http://mary-making.blogspot.com/2011/08/katharine-hepburns-brownie-recipe.html

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