Brownie cupcakes require no more baking time or effort than regular brownies, but you can serve them in individual portions without getting a knife dirty. If you prefer the edges of brownies to the middle, you will enjoy their crustier consistency. They are also tidier than their non-cupcake counterparts if you bake them in paper muffin liners. Top off brownie cupcakes with peanut butter, white chocolate or cream cheese frosting, or eat them plain with a glass of milk for a chocolaty mood enhancer.

Things You'll Need

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line muffin pan with cupcake liners.

Melt chocolate and butter in small heavy saucepan on medium-low heat, stirring frequently. Stir in sugar until fully dissolved. In large bowl, whisk in eggs one at a time and stir in vanilla extract.

Mix flour, cocoa powder and salt in medium bowl. Pour flour mixture into chocolate mixture and stir until just blended, adding pecans or walnuts if desired.

Pour equal amounts of batter into each cupcake liner. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Cool in pan for five to eight minutes before removing. Serve warm or cool.