There is something about baking brownies that brings me great joy. Standing in a kitchen filled with the enchanting aroma of cocoa, I am reminded of childhood afternoons spent clutching at a wooden spoon with guilty traces of batter smudged at the corners of my smile. The flavors, the textures, the aromas, the memories...food can be so much more than fuel. Rather than eliminate treasured comfort foods completely, sometimes all we need to do is to creatively change around a few ingredients and we can enjoy some delicious treats that also nourish the body. Indulge in this simple recipe for fudgy grain-free brownies and taste a bit of pleasant nostalgia.
A lot of times when you go to make a gluten-free spin on a beloved classic recipe, you want to know the real story about how it will taste. I've tried my fair share of recipes that were hailed as "delicious and nutritious," which really just felt like a crumbly old piece of cardboard in my mouth. And what's more, with all of the different gums, binders and flours used in gluten-free baking, these ingredients can get pricey! So, in the spirit of honest real food appreciation, here are some of the qualities to consider about this recipe:
What I like about this recipe:
-Free of addictive, destructive refined sugars
-Absolutely no preservatives, artificial colorings or flavorings
-Made with all sustainable, whole food ingredients
-Rich with craving-satisfying and nourishing fatty acids, proteins and indigestible fibers
-Contains blood sugar stabilizing coconut flour, making it sweet without leaving behind a sugar "buzz"
-Can be made gluten, dairy, nut, and refined-sugar free to fit your unique dietary needs
-Easy to create with just six simple ingredients
-Rich, delicious flavor that just tastes good!
Some other things to consider:
-Contains cocoa, which can be addictive and a gastric irritant to some
-Coconut flour yields a dense, cake-like texture that some people dislike
Fudgy Grain-Free Cocoa Brownies
For this recipe, try mixing the ingredients at room temperature for best results. This will allow them to blend more easily. This recipe is adapted from the innovative book Cooking with Coconut Flour by Bruce Fife, a great source for coconut flour recipes!
1/2 cup organic coconut flour, sifted
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
4 eggs (preferably pastured- learn more about how to choose the best eggs here)
1/2 cup maple syrup or raw honey
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup soaked and sprouted nuts, chopped (optional)
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
2. Sift or blend together organic coconut flour and cocoa powder until well combined
3. In a separate bowl, whisk together wet ingredients: eggs, liquid sweetener, vanilla extract and your choice of oil
4. Slowly add flour mixture to wet ingredients, mixing well. Continue to blend until no lumps remain (an electric mixer can be helpful here, although it is not required). Batter will be dense and a little bit sticky
5. Line an 8x8 or smaller baking pan with parchment paper. Using a spatula, scoop batter into a pan and spread evenly, smoothing over the surface
5. Bake for about 20 minutes or until a fork can be inserted in the center and come out clean. Allow to cool, cut into squares and enjoy!