Every once and a while I get the urge to play with gluten-free recipes. I don’t actually have any major issues with gluten, but I’ve found that when I over indulge my body makes sure to let me know.
Generally speaking most of the foods I eat throughout the day are naturally gluten-free, but when it comes to baked goods, its often a hit or miss. One of the reasons is I tend to avoid gluten-free baking is the additives and extensive list of ingredients. Personally I don’t like to use xanthan gum in recipes, so gluten-free recipes without eggs usually require a little more
work effort. I’ve been playing with recipes for protein brownies over the past couple weeks, the majority included black beans, no sugar, minimal oil, protein powder, and no flour. Needless to say, this isn’t one of those recipes… After weeks of healthy brownies I needed the good stuff!
These don’t pretend to be low-fat, or sugar free. Although you may be able to substitute some if not all the sugar for stevia, I was ok with the sugar seeing as these are a treat and not a staple in my everyday diet. Coconut sugar or evaporated cane juice would also make good sugar substitutes, but if you don’t have either on hand just use regular granulated sugar or brown sugar. Healthy baking is great, but once and a while, you just want the good stuff… Well consider these my compromise, still full of better for you ingredients, but without sacrificing any of the indulgence.
I opted for coconut butter, instead of just plain coconut oil in this recipe for a couple of reasons. the first being I had some leftover in the fridge from a batch I made a while back. The second, is that coconut butter is higher in fiber and protein as it makes use of the coconut flesh as well. The resulting brownies are dense, moist, and extremely fudge-y and rich. I served them for dessert and no one would have guessed they were vegan, even less, gluten-free. Mine were a little pale in color due to my choice of cocoa powder, make sure to use a dark chocolate cocoa powder for a deep brown-almost black brownie.
- ¾ cup coconut butter, melted and cooled
- ¾ cup unsweetened almond milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons dark chocolate cocoa powder
- 2 tablespoons tapioca flour
- ¾ cup + 2 tablespoons brown rice flour
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (read the labels to make sure they are dairy and gluten-free)
- ½ cup chopped walnuts
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a metal 9 x 9-inch brownie pan with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the coconut butter, almond milk, and vanilla until smooth. Add the sugar and cocoa powder, whisking until combined. The mixture will thicken slightly.
- Switching to a wooden spoon or spatula, add the brown rice flour, tapioca flour, baking soda, and salt. Mix until completely incorporated and no lumps remain. Fold in the chocolate chips and chopped walnuts.
- Spread the mixture into the prepared pan, using the back of the spatula to spread the batter into the corners and smooth the top.
- Bake for 22-25 minutes, until the edges have begun pulling away from the sides and the center no longer jiggles. Transfer the pan to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Cut into 16 squares and serve at room temperature or chilled. Brownies can be kept refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 4 days.
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