Levana’s Kosher for Passover Brownies

Today’s recipe exchange is kind of an unusual one for me. Typically, I share one of my personal favorite recipes, but today I have the honor of sharing a Passover recipe from the well-known Jewish cookbook author, restaurateur, and kosher food blogger, Lévana Kirschenbaum.

Chocolate Walnut Brownies

The Passover version of this timeless classic is virtually identical to the year-round one: Osem Matzah cake meal is that good!

The secret of delicious brownies, beside of course delicious chocolate: Do not be tempted to bake a minute more or they will harden.


  • 8 ounces best-quality dark chocolate, chopped, or 2 cups best-quality semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 cup margarine (try your best for a good natural brand)
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup Osem Matzah Cake Meal
  • ¾ cup chopped toasted walnuts or pecans (12 to 15 minutes in a preheated 325 degree oven)


1. Preheat oven to 375°F.

2. Melt the chocolate and margarine in a small saucepan over very low heat or in a microwave for 1 to 2 minutes.

3. In a food processor or with an electric mixer, beat the eggs and sugar until light and fluffy.

4. Add the chocolate mixture and mix.

5. Add the Matzah Cake meal and vanilla and mix, pulsing until just combined. Fold in the nuts with a spoon.

6. Pour the batter into a greased 12-inch square pan (or any pan of a comparable size) and bake for 35 minutes until the top is barely firm. It will set completely with the residual heat sticking to the pan. C

7. Chill before cutting, so you can cut them neatly. Store refrigerated in a sealed container. Makes about 3 dozen.

For nearly thirty years Lévana Kirschenbaum has owned and operated a catering business, a bakery and a successful Manhattan restaurant — all while raising a family. She understands that even gourmet chefs don’t want to spend all day in the kitchen. With this in mind, she keeps the recipes simple, insisting that using fresh, natural ingredients will yield fantastic results without a lot of fuss.

I can’t wait to hear about all of your favorite Pesach desserts. And somebody better leave the recipe for “Passover crack” that so many of you talked about on the Osem Giveaway.

You know the drill: Leave your recipe in the comments sections or if you have blogged about it, please link up using the Mr. Linky.

By the way if you are dying to know what my standard dessert fare is for Pesach seder, it’s this amazing mock chestnut torte plus chocolate covered strawberries.


  1. This sounds great. I have a question, though, about “best quality” Pareve dark/bittersweet chocolate. The closest I find is Scharffen Berger which is still made on dairy equipment (and not the baking chunks, only the bar) and not labelled Pareve. Any recs?

    • Hi Judith,

      No need to buy the most expensive brands, the important thing is to buy REAL chocolate. Lots of good brands you can pick from on Passover: Schmerling, Poulain, Noblesse. Beleive it or not you even even price clubs and Shop Rite stores have REAL chocolate chips that really do a great job, Passover and year-round!

      • Thanks so much for dropping in Levana – and for your helpful comments! I’m looking forward to your brownies this year!

  2. I found a blondie recipe last year that was amazing! And non-gebroks, too.
    Here’s the link: http://illcallbaila.blogspot.com/2010/03/heres-yummy-easy-one-bowl-passover.html

  3. We add crushed pineapple to our and love it! Even my non passover following friends ask for it.

  4. here is smitten kitchen’s recipe for matzoh crack.
    I didn’t top with sliced almonds, and I do use the parve k for p chocolate chips. and I don’t see why you couldn’t use margarine if it had to be parve.
    my friends (non jewish) are already asking me to make this.
    it is really that good

    • I made smitten kitchen’s matzah crack recipe last year, it was incredible. I highly recommend it.

      I also made these “Toasty Coconut Macaroons” from Alton Brown. They were suprisingly easy and we really liked them (and a lot cheaper than the ones from a can).

      Toasty Coconut Macaroons (Alton Brown)
      4 large egg whites
      pinch of salt
      1/2 cup sugar
      1 8oz pkg sweetened coconut, lightly toasted

      Preheat oven to 350. In a mixer fitted with whip attachement, whip egg whites and salt until they become white and begin to stiffen. Add sugar in 3 parts. Continue to wip until the egg whites are very stiff. Using a rubber spatula fold in toasted coconut. (I just toasted it lightly on cookie sheets in the oven at 350)

      On parchment lined cookie sheets, drop a teaspoon of the mixture leaving 1 to 2 inches around each cookie. Place into the oven and bake 15-20 minutes. The outside should be golden brown but the insides should still be moist.

  5. I happened upon this website a few week ago in the course of doing my job for a jewish gift website. I have fallen in love with this blog. I love frugal Ima too. I have passed it on to members of my family. I hope to be a contributing member of this little community. This recipe for “matzah crack” looks amazing! I’m going to share it with others!

  6. *is* there a natural brand of KFP margarine? All I can find is hydrogenated cottonseed oil, which i will not buy.

  7. Jerri’s brownies (recipe from my friend’s mom… with a couple adaptations by me)

    2 eggs, well beaten
    1 Cup sugar
    1/4 Cup oil
    ¼ cup cocoa
    1/2 Cup cake meal
    1 Cup chocolate chips
    1/2 Cup chopped nuts (optional…i’ve never used them)
    chocolate syrup (my addition)

    Preheat oven to 325. Beat eggs and sugar together until light and lemon colored. Blend in cocoa and oil. Gradually mix in cake meal, chocolate chips and nuts. Add the syrup, pouring for about 20 seconds. (It makes the batter so moist!) Pour in greased 9×9 pan and bake for 20-25 minutes. If you double the recipe, use the recipe and use a 9×13 pan.

    • Love the chocolate syrup addition – that’s one of our Pesach indulgences, so we happen to have it on hand!

  8. My husband begs me to make the three-layer cake (nut-meringue, chocolate, whipped cream) I linked above all year long, but I save it for Pesach. It’s dairy so it makes its appearance after the seder and is our treat to munch on all week long.

  9. Hmm, Good and delicious problem 🙂

  10. Levana, Is this recipe gluten free? Thanks for the recipe, it looks delicious!

  11. This recipe is very easily adaptable to GF: simply substitute potato starch for the matzah cake meal, in identical proportions, and proceed just as above!

  12. This looks wonderful. I’m looking for ways to expand my cooking repertoire this year, and this looks like just the thing. I make a very simple Pesach chocolate cake that uses oil instead of margarine. (http://www.koshercookingforordinarypeople.com/2011/04/pesach-chocolate-cake.html) A friend recommended replacing half the oil in my recipe with mashed bananas. She tried it and said it was WONDERFUL. I’ll be trying it tonight and will be sure to report back!

    • Rivki – I want to try with the bananas… how’d it work for you? I’ll go it a go and see what happens!

  13. Those brownies look really good! I’m Jewish, but I was raised in a family that barely practiced. I just like to bake cookies lol. But I will make this recipe next Pesach.

  14. These can be made w/spectrum unrefined coconut oil instead of passover margarine. it’s a lot healthier and gives them a faint coconut flavor. it’s kfp with just a regular OU for passover 2012/

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