You are going to want this strawberry swirl brownie recipe in your brownie repertoire! They’re swirled with strawberry balsamic jam and are so rich and dreamy. This recipe also came in first place in a brownie recipe contest, so it is an Award-Winning Recipe!

Moist and enriched with cream cheese, these gooey strawberry brownies will have you coming back for more!

You may also enjoy my cocoa powder brownies recipe. And for ease of browsing, you can check out all my cookie and bar recipes in one place. Enjoy!

A plate of strawberry swrirl brownies on a brown plate.

Watch my strawberry swirl brownie recipe web story here.

What Makes These Strawberry Swirl Brownies So Excellent

If you love fruit and chocolate, the chocolate-strawberry combination is a winner. Already popularized in chocolate-dipped strawberries, this recipe pairs rich, gooey brownie batter with strawberry jam.

The addition of balsamic vinegar in both the batter and the jam sounds odd, but it adds a little zing. Plus the strawberry-balsamic combo is delicious. All three flavors work together beautifully.

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This recipe makes a 9″x9″ pan of thick brownies or a 9″x13″ pan of less-thin brownies. It’s your choice, and it all depends on how thick you like your brownies.

I have made strawberry swirl brownies in both sizes of brownie pans, and I think I prefer thinner ones. Regardless, I would never turn down either version.

There’s also no need to make your own strawberry jam.

Buy a good-quality jam and stir in some good-quality balsamic, and you are in business.

How to Make Them

Brownies are a winning dessert in part because they are easy to make.

These brownies are no exception.

Ingredients and Substitutions

A collage of pictures of ingredients for making strawberry swirl brownies.
  • cake flour: You can also substitute all-purpose flour for a slightly less gooey brownie
  • baking powder: Technically optional, the baking powder provides just a little lift. For something with the texture of a flourless chocolate cake, you can leave out the baking powder. Do not substitute baking soda
  • butter: 3 sticks unsalted. For slightly less gooey brownies, cut back to 2 1/2 sticks. If using salted butter, cut the amount of salt by half
  • cream cheese: Adds a bit more fat, and while technically optional, I like to go all-in!
  • dark chocolate: You can use chopped dark chocolate bars or good-quality dark chocolate chips. Either will work here
  • cocoa powder: American cocoa powder, not Dutch process. You can’t sub Dutch-process here because the brownies won’t set up enough to slice
  • salt: I use fine sea salt. You can sub table salt in the same amount. If using kosher salt, increase the amount to taste
  • sugar: I use regular granulated. For slightly deeper flavor, you can use light or dark brown sugar
  • eggs: I use large eggs in all my recipes. You’ll need 4. You can cut back to 3 for a less rich result
  • balsamic vinegar: Use a good-quality balsamic vinegar or a balsamic glaze. If you have a flavored balsamic, even better. Try chocolate balsamic or strawberry balsamic
  • strawberry jam: Homemade or store-bought. I generally buy Bonne Maman. If you love to make jams and preserves, you could do worse than using some of my strawberry balsamic preserves in this recipe


Here’s how you’ll make these brownies:

  1. Whisk flour and baking powder together and set aside.
  2. Place the chopped chocolate or chocolate chips in a medium-sized bowl.
  3. Melt the butter and cream cheese together, either in the microwave on medium power or on the stovetop over medium heat.
  4. Pour the melted butter/cream cheese over the chocolate and whisk until the chocolate has melted.
  5. Whisk in the cocoa powder and salt
  6. Then whisk in the sugar and balsamic.
  7. Last, whisk the eggs in, one at a time.
  8. Fold in the dry ingredients.

Once you make your batter, make the swirl:

  1. Stir strawberry jam and balsamic together until thoroughly combined. That’s it. One step!

You’ll pour your batter into a 9″x9″ pan or a 9″x13″ pan that you’ve either pan-sprayed or lined with parchment. Top with blobs of the strawberry jam, and then run a knife back and forth through the batter making a zigzag left-right-left.

Then zigzag again at a 90-degree angle, or from top-bottom-top.

Bake at 325F for anywhere from 45 minutes to an hour, depending on the size of the pan.

You’ll know they’re done when they are well-risen mostly around the edges with a nicely set top crust. Err on the side of under-baking, although dryness most likely won’t be an issue!

Short Cuts

You can make a shortcut version of these strawberry balsamic brownies by using your favorite boxed brownie mix.

Substitute melted butter for the oil, and add:

  • 1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon instant coffee

Spread in your pan as directed, and top with strawberry jam-balsamic mixture, pulling your knife through to swirl.

Bake according to the package directions.


An overhead shot of gooey brown bar cookies on a brown plate.

Swirl in your favorite jam, with or without balsamic vinegar.

Consider swirling in some lovely fruit compote rather than jam. This will yield a brownie with a bit more texture because of the chunks of fruit.

Equipment You May Need

Brownies are really easy to make, and I think that’s part of the reason they’re so popular.

Lots of chocolatey goodness for relatively little effort or equipment!

Aside from a good brownie pan (either 9″x9″ pan or 9″x13″ pan), a nice set of glass bowls is useful for mixing, especially if you need more than one bowl.

A whisk is always welcome, although if you don’t have one, you can make this with a sturdy wooden spoon.

Pro Tips for Success

A sqare image of balsamic-infused strawberry swirl brownies on a plate.

When mixing, add everything in the order specified. If you add the eggs to early, the hot butter may start to cook them. Add the eggs after adding the sugar to ensure the mixture is cool enough.

To prevent sticking, bake in non-stick pans, spray your pan with pan spray, or line your pan with parchment paper.

Strawberry Swirl Brownies Q & A

Can I make these gluten-free?

Yes. Substitute a cup of 1:1 gluten-free flour mix for the cake flour. If using the shortcut method, be sure your brownie mix is gluten-free. Try Sandi’s recipe if you’re looking for a good, tried-and-true gluten-free brownie recipe.

How do I store these brownies?

Since they’re so gooey, I store mine in the fridge, well covered with foil.

How long will they last?

You can keep these refrigerated for up to a week. For longer storage, wrap them individually (or whole) in plastic wrap. Put the wrapped brownies in a freezer-safe bag, press out as much air as you can, and freeze for up to 3 months.

What’s the best way to eat these?

I like them gently warmed up in the microwave for a few seconds. But they’re also good straight from the fridge. The texture will be more fudge-like when cold, and either way works!

Serving Suggestions

3/4 shot of a brownie sundae with sliced brownie, cut strawberries, and vanilla ice cream on a white plate
Serving suggestion!

There’s not much better dessert than a gooey brownie.

While pretty perfect on their own, I highly recommend making a brownie sundae.

  1. Cut the brownies fairly large and place them on plates.
  2. Heat for a few seconds in the microwave until very warm.
  3. Scoop on your favorite ice cream (try French vanilla ice cream for true nostalgia)
  4. Top with strawberry sauce (or melted strawberry jam), hot fudge sauce, and some hand-whipped cream.

You can also make a sundae using my soft chocolate cookies as a base.

A Note About Measurements

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03/07/2024 05:03 pm GMT


5 golden stars for rating recipes
A sqare image of balsamic-infused strawberry swirl brownies on a plate.

Strawberry Swirl Brownies

Jennifer Field
Rich and fruity balsamic vinegar brings a delightful brightness to a rich chocolate brownie. Married with a strawberry jam-balsamic swirl, these strawberry brownies are winners.
5 from 4 votes
Tried this recipe?Please give it a star rating!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Course Cookies and Bars
Cuisine American
Servings 16
Calories 357 kcal


For the Brownies

  • 1 ¼ cups sifted cake flour (5 oz)
  • ¾ teaspoon baking powder
  • 12 oz 3 sticks unsalted butter
  • 2 oz 1/4 block cream cheese, softened
  • 4 oz bittersweet chocolate chopped fine (or use chocolate chips)
  • 9 Tablespoons cocoa powder not Dutch process
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 2 ¼ cups granulated sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon good quality balsamic vinegar (if you have a chocolate or strawberry-infused one, by all means use it)
  • 4 large eggs

For the Strawberry Swirl

  • ¾ cup good quality strawberry jam
  • 1 ½ Tablespoons 4 1/2 teaspoons good quality balsamic vinegar (see above)


For the Brownie Batter

  • Prepare a 9×13" pan or a 9×9" pan (depending if you want thinner or thicker brownies) by lining the pan with one long strip of parchment paper or non-stick foil cut to fit the width of the pan. Allow either end of the strip to hang out over the edges. Spray the inside of the pan with pan spray, and set aside.
  • Preheat the oven to 325F and set an oven rack in the center of the oven.
  • Whisk together the flour and baking powder in a large bowl. Set aside.
  • In a saucepan, melt together the butter and cream cheese, whisking well as they melt.
  • Pour the butter over the chopped chocolate and whisk until melted and smooth.
  • Carefully whisk in the cocoa powders and salt.
  • Whisk in the sugar and balsamic. The mixture may look broken, but worry not.
  • Thoroughly whisk in the eggs, one at a time. See now–the batter is looking lovely!
  • Thoroughly fold in the dry ingredients.

For the Strawberry Swirl

  • Whisk together the jam and balsamic until thoroughly combined.

To Bake

  • Spread the batter in the pan.
  • Top with the strawberry balsamic mixture in "blobs."
  • Pull a knife back and forth through the batter, first one way and then the other.
  • Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with moist crumbs, about 50 minutes to an hour for the 9×9" pan and about 35-45 minutes for the 9×13" pan.
  • Cool completely before slicing, or if you want to eat them warm, slice carefully with a serrated knife, dipping the blade in hot water and wiping it off between every slice.

Did You Make Any Changes?


Nutritionals calculated for 16 servings for a 9×9 pan. If you bake in a 9×13 pan, values will differ.
Store these brownies in the fridge. Bring to room temperature or heat in the microwave for a few seconds before serving.


Serving: 1gCalories: 357kcalCarbohydrates: 51gProtein: 5gFat: 15gSaturated Fat: 9gPolyunsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 73mgSodium: 272mgFiber: 2gSugar: 36g
Keyword browine recipe, strawberry balsamic brownies, strawberry swirl brownies
Did you make this recipe?Please tell us what you loved!

As you can tell from the photos, these guys aren’t cakey at all. There’s a bit of crumb around the edges, but the center is like eating pudding you can slice.

If you don’t like gooey brownies, by all means make these anyway and then give them to me!

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  1. I make Alice Medrich’s brownies all the time – several batches alone over the holidays last year. But your brownies at #FWCon were the BEST brownies I have ever had. Hands down. And this post is the funniest post I’ve read in a really long time. I’m in the ‘doesn’t work and play well with others’ camp too when it comes to games, contests, or trying to land a deal. I’m not too hitty, but I’ve got the bitchy thing down real well. I like to win too. It’s why I did well in the business world, but not too well in the dating one for a very long time.

    1. Oh, Susan, you have made me well up! I am so very glad that you enjoyed them; I was thrilled to share them with so many folks I love and admire! I need to channel my hittiness into doing better business-wise I think. =)

  2. 5 stars
    This makes great reading my friend! I know I’m on to something good when I hear the author’s voice. The only thing better than your storytelling and kitchen prowess is your rightfully earned new accolade. Congratulations for winning the featured dessert for Dixie Crystals and the FWC.

  3. 5 stars
    I loved the story of your pictionary fail! I know that feeling all too well! I also absolutely loved these brownies at the #FWCon They were my favorite! I have never succeeded at making good brownies ever! but I will try again with your recipe. If I succeed, I will give you all the credit, if I fail…well, I would like to give you the credit for that too but having tasted them I know that if they don’t come out right, the fault is with the maker not the recipe! Cheers!

    1. Thank you so much, Christina! I didn’t even feel the least bit hitty at the conference, so I guess GameHab is working out for me! These guys are pretty easy to put together. I have faith in you! Enjoy! xoxo

  4. I want to say 2 things now that I’ve tasted these babies. AMAZING!!! Really one of the best brownies I have ever tasted. Chocolatey without being bitter, and barely, perfectly sweetened. And just the perfect balance of brownie and fruit.

    The second thing? I have 6 of these brownies and didn’t even have to make them myself 🙂

  5. “I may have learned to not be hitty” !!!! OMG, priceless Sissy. That made me laugh 🙂
    The brownies are a big, fat bonus to that hilarious story. Coming from someone who is also terribly competitive, I can appreciate the need for a self-imposed exile from playing games with others.
    If I lose at say “Trivial Pursuit” , I get pissed off. It has the name TRIVIAL in the title, this should be a clue that it shouldn’t be taken so seriously, yet… you know how that ends.
    Great post! Best of luck in the contest !

  6. Hello. My name is Marly and I’m a gameaholic. Haha! Your story cracked me up! I could totally visualize this experience. And it reminded me of a family dinner where we played dictionary. My sister had the word Seattle. Seattle!! How friggin’ easy would that be? You would just draw a picture of the US and point to the NW corner! But my sister decided to draw an apple which mean that we all started guessing about apple pie. Then I think she attempted to draw the space needle which we all thought was an apple peeler or whatever. It was hilarious. We give her crap about it every single time we’re together. I know she loves it. Or maybe not but who cares. I’m competitive too. I try not to be, but can’t help it. And now I’m competitive for you. If there were a way I could help you to win I would do it – I wish we could vote for you! OK. Well, all I can do, I guess, is to cross my fingers and wish like crazy!!

    1. I will take what I can get, Marly! Crazy wishing is much appreciated! And I would have totally punched your sister. LOL What does apple have to do with Seattle? I await your response with breathless anticipation… =)

  7. I love that you win no matter what happens with the judging because you get to eat all the brownies, Jenni. I love strawberries with balsamic vinegar so these are right up my alley! And I’m so glad your friend forgave you. That is a VERY funny story!

    1. Oh, it was the worst, Stacy! I felt terrible later, but at the time, that punch was completely justified! I am the worst, hence Gamehab! =) And if you like balsamic and strawberries, try throwing some brownies in the mix. It all goes together beautifully!

  8. Forget the brownies (well, no don’t) that is the funniest fricking blog post I have ever read in my entire life!!! OMG I have tears running down my cheeks!!!

    Anyway *whew* AMAZING brownies! AMAZING and baby YOU win!!!

  9. My sister-in-law has a similar, self-imposed gaming ban. I don’t know if she’s a hitter, but I suspect so. Maybe you two could start a gaming/fight club? With brownies? I think it could be fun…

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