How Long to Let Brownies Cool?

I know, I know. The wait for your brownies to cool just may be the longest wait of your life. Swimming in that rich chocolaty aroma in the air, staring at the thin, perfectly cracked film on your brownie as it teases you with its warmth. I mean, it’s basically asking for it.

Asking to be cut immediately and to melt away in your mouth, that is. But no! Avoid temptation at all costs because the perfect brownie is one that’s been cooled. You should let your brownies cool for a minimum of 30 minutes before cutting into them

I’m Angie, and I am mildly obsessed with brownies. I started a home baking business last year and my brownies have always been a customer’s favorite. I know exactly what it feels like to want to cut your brownies the second they are out of the oven and I have learned through my mistakes to know exactly why I shouldn’t!

In the article, I will share with you the art of cooling brownies. Why we need to, how long we should cool it for, and how to do so quickly. 

I think I deserve brownie points for this. 

Why Cool Brownies?

An atrocious act like this needs some good justification. Why must we wait for brownies to cool?

The biggest reason for this is – to achieve a gooey and fudgy consistency, we as bakers are told to never fully cook through a brownie. To make sure, we take them out when they’re still a little underdone, especially in the center. 

The residual heat from the brownie pan will cook the brownie a little more so no need to worry about your brownies being raw.

But since the brownie hasn’t fully hardened inside, removing it from the tray and cutting through it will result in your brownie falling apart and all you’ll be left with is a sticky mess and chocolate everywhere. To achieve the clean cuts you see on store-bought brownies, you must let it cool. 

On top of the fact that cooled and firm brownies are easier to cut, many say that brownies actually taste even better the next day because the cooling process helps them lock in all the flavors better. 

How Long to Let Brownies Cool?

So how long is this wait? Expect a minimum of 30 minutes and we’ll go from there. 

For a Clean Cut

You will need to let your brownies cool for at least half an hour before you can remove them from the tray. The amount of time may vary depending on the temperature of where you are. Rule of thumb – wait until your brownie is completely cool to the touch to cut into it. 

To get a perfectly clean edge, use a knife that is warmed up in hot water and wipe off any residual on the knife before and after each cut. 

For Icing

If you are planning on putting a layer of icing on your brownies, make sure that your brownies are cooled completely, better yet chilled in the fridge before you start icing them. 

This isn’t a hard rule if you are planning on covering your brownie with ganache, but do expect that it will take longer than usual for your ganache to set. 

If you are using buttercream frosting, the heat from the brownie will lead to your buttercream melting or splitting, hence why a chilled or completely cooled brownie is preferred. 

How to Cool Brownies Fast?

If the 30+ minutes wait is simply too long for you, try this method to cool it down more quickly.

For this, you will need aluminum foil, ice, a bowl, a tray, or a sink big enough to fit your brownie tray. 

  1. Wrap the entire tray of brownies in foil. Double the layer to be extra safe. This is to prevent any water from contact with your brownies. We don’t want soggy brownies. 
  2. Fill your bowl, tray, or sink with ice. Place your foil-wrapped tray in it making sure to cover the sides with ice as well. You can also use ice packs for this. 
  3. Take your tray out after 20-30 minutes.

This method should significantly reduce the amount of time necessary to completely cool down your brownie. 


Still got some questions about cooling brownies? Here I’ll answer them for you. 

Will my brownies harden when they cool?

Your brownies will firm up as they cool but not harden unless you’ve chilled them in the fridge or the freezer. 

The texture of your brownies should be at its best at room temperature – fudgy, firm, and melts in your mouth. The low temperature in the fridge, however, will solidify the butter and chocolate in your brownie, making it hard. 

Can you let brownies cool overnight?

You can let your brownies cool overnight. In fact, your brownies will taste even better the next day when all the flavors have locked in. Just make sure that you wrap them tightly or put them in airtight containers before storing them in the fridge as the fridge tends to dry food out. 

Do you let brownies cool in the pan?

I highly suggest that you cool your brownies in the pan for the first 30 minutes. Any attempt to remove it from the tray or to cut into it before it’s been cooled can lead to your brownie falling apart. 

Can I put brownies in the freezer?

Yes, you can. In fact, freezing brownies is the best way to keep them fresh for a long period of time. You can freeze brownies for up to 3 months. Just make sure that you wrap them airtight n a freezer-safe bag and that they’re cooled completely before you put them in the freezer. 

Final Thoughts

Like I said, cutting into freshly baked brownies is a crime that you will regret (or will you?) 

I hope that all this newly acquired knowledge you have about cooling brownies has helped you gather enough strength and determination to resist the temptation to eat your brownies as soon as they’re done. Patience is always key. 

Are you guilty of cutting into and eating your brownies right away? Do you think it’s worth it? Let us know what you think in the comments below!

About Angie
I am a self-taught baker. I’ve been baking for over 10 years and started my own home baking business as a side hustle. I was born in Hong Kong and spent a pretty big chunk of my life in Canada. If you’re ever looking for me, I am probably there whisking vigorously away in the kitchen.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *