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Pinot Noir Chocolate Brownies

A brownie rests on a white plate with a gold rim. The brownie is filled with nuts and topped with a shiny glaze. An elegant fork rests next to it on the plate, and a napkin is hazy in the background.
Barb Kiebel

Red wine and brownies: two of life’s purest forms of indulgence. And while you can always enjoy a plate of brownies with a glass of wine, this decadent recipe easily combines the two, with rich, dark chocolate from Ghirardelli accented by pinot noir.

There’s an old adage that says you only want to cook with wine that you would want to drink; that remains true with this recipe, as even the small amount of pinot noir used in the brownies will come through. Perhaps even more relevant, though, is the fact that only using two tablespoons of wine means you’re more than likely still looking at a pretty full bottle, unless you’re using it for another dish. That means you’ve got some wine to drink with your brownies (or while you’re making them), so you’ll want to select something good. Burgundy is, of course, always a remarkably good choice, but Oregon’s famed Willamette Valley and California’s Sonoma Coast and Andersen Valley offer a robust selection of elegant pinot as well.

Despite the wine, this is not an alcoholic brownie by any means. The pinot merely adds some nuance to the flavors, so feel free to serve this at your next dinner party for an exciting dessert. And, of course, you can always serve it with some boozy ice cream.


  • 2 whole eggs
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoon pinot noir wine
  • 3/4 cup Ghirardelli sweet ground cocoa
  • 2/3 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped
  • 6 ounces chocolate glaze*


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

  2. In a mixing bowl, combine the eggs with the sugar and vanilla, then add the butter and wine.

  3. In a separate mixing bowl, stir the cocoa with the flour, baking powder and salt.

  4. Combine the two mixtures together, and add the walnuts.

  5. Spread onto a greased 8-inch-by-8-inch pan.

  6. Bake 25 to 30 minutes.

*Chocolate glaze: Melt 4 tablespoons unsalted butter over medium heat. Reduce heat to low, and add 1 ounce unsweetened chocolate, 4 1/2 tablespoon granulated sugar and 3 tablespoon pinot noir wine. Keep low heat, stirring often, until mixture is smooth (don’t let it boil). Spoon the hot glaze over the brownies, and let stand for at least 1 hour; 12 hours is best.