My husband was craving something sweet last night, so I whipped up these brownies….they are very easy to make…and they did the trick. NO PROCESSED SUGAR, NO FLOUR, NO GUILT! Now, if you are a fan of a more "cake-y" textured brownie, you might want to try another recipe, because these are the fudgy, moist and chewy type. But by adding another egg you could probably get a more cake-like texture. For me, the chewier the better.
It's funny, because while these were in the oven I remembered I still had my old box of "Ghirardelli Triple Chocolate Brownie Mix" from Costco in my pantry from the days when the kids weren't off at college yet. I hauled it out to inspect the label of ingredients. Here's what I found...
This first ingredients are SUGAR and FLOUR. If those are listed first, it's mostly that. It had a long list of other things including canola/soybean oil, dairy and "artificial flavor". NO THANK YOU.
Here's the ingredients you will need for these Paleo-friendly brownies...
- 1 cup 'Grade B' maple syrup
- 3/4 cup raw unsweetened cacao powder or natural cocoa powder (I found the one pictured at Sprouts in the "raw" food section)
- 1 cup unsweetened unsalted almond butter
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup carob chips or dark chocolate chips (any other chocolate chip of your choice…they have some grain-free, dairy-free chips available. At Whole Foods they carry chocolate chips sweetened with stevia… they're GOOD!)
Preheat oven to 325 F. In a pan on the stove, heat the maple syrup on low heat, stir in the cacao powder and stir until smooth. (It won't mix until the syrup is warm.) It will look like this...
Once it gets warm, it will melt in like this…just stir until smooth. (Cacao and cocoa can burn easily, so keep stirring!)
Remove from heat and add the rest of the ingredients and mix thoroughly. Your arm will get a little bit of a workout by the end…you'll have to stir harder to get that almond butter mixed in good! Pour the mix into an 8" x 8" pan greased with coconut oil or olive oil.
Bake for 40-50 minutes. It won't really look totally done when it comes out. They will set up as they cool. I put the pan on a wire rack to cool.
My husband wasn't patient enough to enjoy a piece at it's full potential… it wasn't set up yet, too gooey...but I let him have some anyway! Seriously, these need to cool for about 5 hours for them to be the right consistency. I tried one this morning :) and it was SOOOO good. VERY chocolatey, chewy and fudgy. Cut them into small squares, a little goes a long way…they are rich!
If you like nuts, add some! I might even try a little coconut next time! Enjoy!! After this success, I feel confident throwing away my "box mix" now… I had three teenage boys here today and they were "teenager approved"!! Mmmmmmmm.