Some people like brownies without nuts. Others prefer brownies with nuts. Fortunately for me, I happen to like both brownie styles and indulge myself whenever I can. When it comes to brownies, there is no wrong answer and you always have the freedom to opt for nuts or no-nuts when you bake brownies at home. One question I get asked on a regular basis is this: If using nuts, what type of nut should be used in brownies?
The short answer is that you can use any kind of nuts in your brownies – and you can even use more than one type of nut in the same batch! Nuts add both flavor and texture to brownies. They bring a nice crunch into very fudgy brownies, breaking up all that rich chocolate with a nutty flavor that helps clear your palate for another bite. Walnuts, almonds, pistachios, macadamia nuts, pecans and even peanuts can all be used. Regardless of which nut(s) you choose, I recommend toasting them before use to intensify their natural flavors and to enhance their texture. If you want to bring in even more flavor, use roasted and salted nuts or opt for candied nuts. The extra layers of flavor on the nuts will translate to an extra layer of flavor in your brownies.
Pictured at the top of this post are my Fudgy One-Bowl Brownies, which are studded with toasted walnut pieces. The walnuts can be substituted for other toasted nuts or chocolate chips – or they can simply be omitted, if you’re looking for a plainer brownie. The bottom picture shows my Double Chocolate Pistachio Brownies, which are denser than the chewy one-bowl brownies and use a lot more chocolate. Not only do the pistachios go well with the brownie, they give the bars a beautiful pop of color.