These brownies are amazing. Rich but not overly sweet… In a word, they’re the perfect “healthy brownie!” And there aren’t many people who can object to the ingredient list… They are date sweetened so they’re free of refined sugars. They are also free of grains + gluten + dairy + soy… They’re even VEGAN! I hope you enjoy them as much as my family and I did.

Even non-grain-free eaters loved ’em!

Vegan Chocolate Fudge Brownies

inspired by Simply Sugar and Gluten Free

  • 1 cup pitted Medjool dates, chopped (i.e. chop up enough dates to equal 1 cup)
  • 3/4 cup hot water
  • 1 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp finely ground coffee or espresso
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 3/4 cup blanched almond flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp kosher flake salt

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 F/175 C. Line an 8×8 baking pan with parchment paper (or grease generously… But I recommend parchment).

Combine dates, hot water, coconut oil, vanilla, and finely ground coffee in heatproof bowl. Let dates soak while preparing remaining ingredients.

Add dry ingredients (cocoa powder through salt) to bowl and whisk until well combined and no lumps are present.

Now choose your own adventure!

If you have a large food processor: Add date/water mixture to bowl of processor and blend on high until smooth, scraping the bowl as needed. Add dry ingredients and process until smooth. The batter will be thick.

If you don’t have a large food processor but you have a blender or “Magic Bullet”: Add date/water mixture to blender or “Magic Bullet” and blend on high until smooth, scraping sides as needed. Pour blended wet ingredients into bowl of dry ingredients (you’ll have to use a spatula to get all of the date puree off the sides and the blades of your blender or “Bullet”). Mix until completely combined. You can use a hand mixer, or do it the old fashioned way and mix by hand. You’ll have to put some elbow grease into it — the batter will be thick.

date puree in “magic bullet” + dry ingredients in bowl

The final step:

Turn batter into prepared pan, using a spatula to get ALL of the batter into the pan. Spread batter evenly and smooth the top with your spatula.

Bake in preheated oven for 15-20 minutes, until brownies are set. Cool on wire rack for 20-30 minutes, then chill (in fridge — or even the freezer) before cutting into squares.

I made these brownies as the grain-free option for my son’s birthday party. My son requested “dirt cake” cupcakes, which I made gluten and dairy free (but not grain free… And I didn’t skimp on the sugar!). He loved them.

Interested in making gluten and dairy free “dirt” cupcakes? Here’s what I did:

  • I used gluten free chocolate cake mix as directed, although I subbed vegetable oil for butter.
  • I baked the cake batter in gluten free ice cream cones.
  • I combined powdered sugar, organic palm shortening, cocoa powder, and a splash of almond milk to make chocolate frosting.
  • After frosting each cupcake (or “cone cake”), I sprinkled crushed Kinnikinnik (brand) Chocolate Sandwich Creme Cookies for the “dirt,” and looped a gummy worm on top of each cupcake/cake cone.

They were a hit!

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