Mocha and cream cheese brownie

Photographer: Adam
Serves 6-8

Much to the delight of the blog team we have a new member, Genevieve. Genevieve has just started in product development for cooking products as a product evaluator. She hails from Samoa where her mother owns her own catering business and with a food science background we’re expecting big things! Anyway over to Genevieve and her heirloom recipe:

“There is something about brownies that makes me go gaga over them and lose all my willpower. The perfect brownies for me would be a fudgy version with nothing else but the taste of rich dark chocolate with luxuriant cream cheese swirled in the middle.  This combination of flavours is one of the reasons why I chose this recipe to kick start my journey as one of the bloggers on this awesome blog site.

Throughout the years I have come across different chocolate brownie recipes but always with the uncertainty of how well they would turn out. Luckily I stumbled across a book called “The Best Recipe” written by the editors of Cook’s Illustrated magazine and based on chef’s trialling the many different versions of certain recipes out there to find “the absolute best version”. This is exactly what I was after, recipes that had been trialled by bakers and chefs and given the thumbs up!

Alas I found two “absolute best” brownie recipes in my opinion and upon noticing they had a cream cheese version I knew this was the one! Now equipped with this awesome recipe I set about making it my own.

To suit my taste preferences, I used Whittaker’s Mocha chocolate with 70% cocoa as I wanted to use this opportunity to incorporate a coffee flavour into my brownies —but you’re welcome to use any chocolate flavour you prefer. This also worked well in my favour as we have a bunch of coffee connoisseurs in the office and I was hoping to appeal to their coffee-loving palates. I also added some lemon juice and rind to the cream cheese mixture as I find the acidity from the lemon balances out the sweetness of the sugar in the cream cheese, giving that subtle sweet and tart combination. The lemon juice also aids in softening the cream cheese, giving it a smooth texture which makes it easy to pour onto the brownie base. I found baking these brownies a bit daunting at first as I didn’t want them to dry out or develop a cakey texture.

I hope you all enjoy these cream cheese brownies as much as the blog team and guys in the office have. I am certainly looking forward to posting more awesome recipes.”



150g butter (salted)
200g Whittaker’s Mocha Chocolate (70% cocoa)
1 cup sugar
1 ½ tsp vanilla essence
4 large eggs
¼ cup flour
½ tsp baking powder

200g cream cheese, room temperature
1 egg yolk
¼ cup sugar
1 – 2 Tbsp lemon juice [see note]
Rind of ½ lemon
½ tsp vanilla essence


1. Pre heat oven to 165 degrees Celsius on bake
2. Grease a 32.5cm x 23cm baking pan and line with baking paper.
3. Melt butter & chocolate in a heatproof bowl over simmering hot water, stirring occasionally until mixture is smooth.
4. Remove mixture from heat & beat in sugar and vanilla extract; allow to cool slightly before adding eggs in.
5. Beat in 4 eggs, one at a time, fully mixing each egg before adding the next.
6. In a separate bowl sift together in a separate bowl flour and baking powder and add this to the chocolate mix, mixing until just combined.
7. In another separate bowl, add cream cheese, egg yolk, sugar, vanilla essence, squeezed lemon juice and lemon rind and beat with hand mixer until it forms a smooth consistency.
8. Taste, and adjust to your liking, if too sweet add some more lemon, if not sweet enough add more sugar.
9. Pour half the brownie batter into the baking pan first.
10. Dollop on top half of the cream cheese batter.
11. Repeat this layering until both batters are finished.
12. Using the blade of a table knife, gently create swirls in your brownie; this also allows the cream cheese to blend in with the brownie batter giving it a marbled effect.
13. Bake for about 50 – 60 minutes or until edges of brownie have puffed slightly, middle feels not quite firm when touched lightly.*
14. Allow brownie to cool in baking pan for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to completely cool to room temperature.
15. Once brownie is cooled completely, you can cut them up into slices or store it whole in an airtight container – this stops the brownie from drying out.

*When checking for doneness, insert a toothpick into the middle of the pan and when it comes out with fudgy crumbs, remove the pan immediately, if the toothpick comes out clean, the brownie is overcooked