Butterscotch Blondies

These homemade blondies are rich, buttery, and chewy. They’re the perfect treat for Game Day, birthday parties, and potlucks — especially if you want a dessert without chocolate.

Side view of blondies stacked on a plate.

Simply Recipes / Annika Panikker

Blondies are often called brownies without chocolate, which I find silly. Blondies are a dessert with their own unique deliciousness and personality.

This is my "go-to" dessert recipe since it only takes about 5 minutes to make and then throw in the oven. I can't count how many times I dashed this together so that last second company could arrive to a freshly baked treat.

What Is a Blondie?

Whereas brownies depend on chocolate for their flavor, for blondies it's all about the brown sugar. This gives the blondies their distinctive molasses flavor.

Since brown sugar is the critical flavor here, I suggest using dark brown sugar. That said, using light brown sugar is also fine

Chewy, rich, and flavorful blondies, when made right, are an indulgent dessert that are hard to resist.

Overhead view of blonde brownies scattered on a counter with a butter knife next to it

Simply Recipes / Annika Panikker

Suggestions and Substitutions for Blondies

Since we first posted this recipe, so many of you have written in with your own suggestions and substitutions. Thank you! Here are a few favorites:

  • Swap the butterscotch chips for chocolate chips, peanut butter chips, or white chocolate chips
  • Add chopped walnuts (traditional) or any other chopped nut
  • Add a tablespoon of orange zest
  • Add some coffee extract or some powdered coffee
  • Add a half teaspoon of cinnamon
  • Add dried fruit, like chopped cherries
  • For softer, more cake-like bars, use cake flour instead of all-purpose flour
  • Top with caramel icing for an extra treat
  • Brown the butter before adding
  • For gluten-free, swap the flour with 1:1 gluten-free all-purpose flour

Whatever add-ins you choose, keep it to at most 1 cup without having to adjust the baking instructions.

Small Batch Is Best!

This recipe only makes a small batch in an 8x8-inch pan, so you don’t have to worry about being tempted by dozens of tasty treats lying in wait for you.

If you'd like to make more blondies, double the recipe and bake in a 9x13-inch pan. Extend the baking time to 25 to 30 minutes.

Close up view of blondies bars with butterscotch chips scattered on top..

Simply Recipes / Annika Panikker

How to Store and Freeze Blondies

Once cool, store blondies in an airtight container at room temperature. They will keep for about a week.

To freeze, wrap the sliced blondies in plastic wrap, then transfer to an airtight container or freezer bag. Freeze for up to three months. Thaw at room temperature.

Try These Other Great Bar Cookies!

Side view of blonde brownies in a stack.

Simply Recipes / Annika Panikker

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Watch This Blondies Recipe

Is Brown Sugar a Must?

In short, yes! What if you can't find any brown sugar in your pantry? Not to fret! You can easily make your own dark brown sugar. All you have to do is combine a cup of regular white granulated sugar with 2 tablespoons of molasses. (To make light brown sugar, just use 1 tablespoon of molasses.) Too easy, right?

By the way, we're talking about brown sugar in America here. Remember that's different from brown sugar in other parts of the world. What is called "brown sugar" in other countries may be just unrefined natural sugar and may not contain molasses.

The Perfect Blondie Texture

The comparison to brownies can be confusing. Blondies are supposed to be dense and chewy, and don't have the same texture as brownies, which are more cakey and fluffy.

You'll see that this blondie recipe only contains 1/2 teaspoon baking powder and 1/8 teaspoon baking soda. They are not meant to rise much at all.

And the brown sugar gives the blondies almost a toffee-like flavor.

For The Best Blondies, Brown Your Butter!

For an especially nutty flavor, brown the butter when you melt it. Here's little primer on how to brown butter.


From the Editors Of Simply Recipes

Butterscotch Blondies

Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 40 mins
Servings 16

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup (112g) butter, melted

  • 1 cup (220g) tightly packed dark brown sugar

  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder

  • 1/8 teaspoon baking soda

  • Pinch salt

  • 1 cup (128g) all-purpose flour

  • 1/3 cup (60g) butterscotch chips (chopped walnuts and chocolate chips are equally tasty)

Method

  1. Preheat oven and prepare baking dish:

    Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Lightly butter and flour an 8x8-inch (20 cm x 20 cm) pan.

  2. Make the batter:

    Whisk together the melted butter and sugar in a bowl. Add the egg and vanilla extract and whisk to combine.

    Add the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt, and mix it all together. Add the butterscotch chips or other mix-ins (up to 1 cup total).

    Whisking ingredients in a bowl to make a blondie recipe.

    Simply Recipes / Annika Panikker

    Whisking ingredients in a bowl to make a blondie recipe.

    Simply Recipes / Annika Panikker

    Whisking ingredients in a bowl to make a blondie recipe.

    Simply Recipes / Annika Panikker

    Mixing dry ingredients to make a blonde brownie recipe.

    Simply Recipes / Annika Panikker

    Mixing dough in a glass bowl to make blonde brownie recipe.

    Simply Recipes / Annika Panikker

    Mixing dough in a glass bowl to make blonde brownie recipe.

    Simply Recipes / Annika Panikker

  3. Bake the blondies:

    Pour into the pan and spread evenly. Bake for 18 to 25 minutes or until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean.

    Scooping blondie batter into a baking dish

    Simply Recipes / Annika Panikker

    Testing blondies to see if they are done.

    Simply Recipes / Annika Panikker

  4. Cool and serve:

    Allow to cool. Cut into squares or rectangles and serve.

    LEFTOVERS! Store blondies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week, or freeze for up to 3 months.

    Overhead view of a pan of blondies cut into squares.

    Simply Recipes / Annika Panikker

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
147 Calories
7g Fat
20g Carbs
1g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 16
Amount per serving
Calories 147
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 7g 9%
Saturated Fat 5g 23%
Cholesterol 27mg 9%
Sodium 89mg 4%
Total Carbohydrate 20g 7%
Dietary Fiber 0g 1%
Total Sugars 13g
Protein 1g
Vitamin C 0mg 0%
Calcium 24mg 2%
Iron 1mg 3%
Potassium 32mg 1%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.