Flourless vegan brownies

Flourless vegan brownies

flourless vegan brownies

If you follow us on Instagram, you might know already that this past Wednesday night we were invited to the Bristol premiere of a new BBC nature documentary series called Seven Worlds One Planet narrated by England’s beloved storyteller David Attenborough. We watched an episode entitled ‘Antarctica’ followed by a live interview with some of the makers, including David Attenborough himself.

The film was breathtakingly beautiful and utterly awe inspiring yet also profoundly sad at the same time. We both left in tears! For the first time ever, a BBC documentary of this sort chose to draw people’s attention to the undeniable effect that our collective actions have on the planet and millions of species of animals that we all think we love and treasure. It’s about time given that climate change science has been capable of making accurate predictions (which are sadly coming true today!) since the 1980s.

The film offers some hope by illustrating, for example, how a near extinct whale population (killed by our demand for whale blubber margarine and soap!!) regenerated itself after all but three countries (Japan, Norway and Iceland) worldwide committed to a complete whaling ban in 1986, but unless we stop inflicting any further damage, things will go from bad to worse very soon as the rate of destruction is accelerating more rapidly than originally predicted.

Things look so dire right now that scientists estimate that 150-200 species of plant, insect, bird and mammal become extinct every 24 hours!! It’s insane! And apart from some occasional lip service, we do very little. Plus to make matters worse, there are no shortage of people, lead by those who profit from the main culprit industries (fossil fuels, meat and dairy, automobile, transportation, to name the key players), who insist that climate change is a hoax, diluting the urgency of the message and making people shrug their shoulders and carry on as they were. It’s infuriating how unchecked self-interested greed tramples over everything else.

While it is sometimes very lonely being vegan (when pretty much everyone you know makes fun of you behind your back and ostracises you for your choice to minimise harm) I was never as convinced about my and Duncan’s decision to leave meat, dairy and eggs off our plate as I am now. As things are at a tipping point, I really feel the sense of mission with this blog. I am not the kind of person to go on animal vigils or to try to make people on the street go vegan, but I feel like I am doing my bit by showing up here, cooking delicious plant-based food and showing people that being vegan isn’t about deprivation or elitism, it’s about doing your bit for the environment, for the animals and for your own health too, while enjoying food as much (if not more) as you used to. There is no better time to go vegan than now!

Speaking of not depriving yourself of the food you enjoy, today’s recipe is a tray of super indulgent vegan brownies cos like I say, veganism ISN’T a diet. It drives me bonkers when, in a bid to discredit it, the media equates it with weight loss. These brownies are super dense, rich and delectably fudgy. I’ve tested them over and over again and this is my most favourite version thus far. I find it even nicer when it’s been sitting in the fridge overnight, the fudginess cranks up a notch – heavenly.

These flourless vegan brownies are really simple to make too. While I do use aquafaba to replace eggs, in this recipe you do not need to whip it until you reach stiff, or even soft, peaks. Simply whip it until white and foamy, 2 minutes tops, and then stir all the other ingredients through it, it’s really easy and delish! That’s a promise! Oh and as an added bonus, they happen to be naturally gluten-free also! x

flourless vegan brownies mixture

flourless vegan brownies cut

flourless vegan brownies hand

flourless vegan brownies macro

flourless vegan brownies cross section

makes
9-12 pieces
PREP
15 min
COOKING
25 min
makes
9-12 pieces
PREPARATION
15 min
COOKING
25 min
INGREDIENTS
  • 150 g / 5.30 oz vegan 70% cocoa dark chocolate
  • 120 ml / ½ cup aquafaba (chickpea brine), from a tin or from homecooked chickpeas
  • 200 g / 1 cup sugar (caster sugar gives you the crispiest outer shell, but coconut sugar works well too!)
  • 180 g / ¾ cup 100% natural nut or seed butter of choice (I used this almond butter)
  • 2 tbsp water or plant milk (I used almond milk)
  • 150 g / 1½ cups finely ground almonds / almond flour
  • 70 g / ¾ cup cocoa powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda (GF certified if needed)
  • chopped nuts (I used hazelnuts), for decoration (optional)
METHOD
  1. Melt the chocolate very slowly over a bain marie / water bath. Make sure the bowl with chocolate does not touch the water underneath.
  2. Preheat the oven to 175° C / 345° F. Line a 20 cm x 20 cm  / 8 inch x 8 inch baking tin with baking parchment. Make the baking parchment stick out of the tin so that you’re able to remove the brownies from the tin a little easier.
  3. Whip aquafaba with an electric whisk until foamy (no need to achieve stiff peaks for this recipe).
  4. Gradually add sugar to the aquafaba, whisking well after each addition.
  5. Using a spatula, fold melted, lukewarm but not hot, chocolate into the aquafaba and sugar mixture.
  6. Fold in almond butter and 2 tbsp of water or plant milk.
  7. Add in all the dry ingredients in batches, mixing well until no cocoa or almond meal pockets remain. The batter should be very thick.
  8. Transfer the batter into the prepared baking tin and spread it into the sides and corners with a spatula. Sprinkle with chopped nuts if using.
  9. Bake on the middle shelf for about 25 minutes (depending on how fudgy you like your brownies and on your oven). Allow the brownies to cool down completely (!) before cutting with a sharp knife.
SHARE
NUTRITIONAL INFO
calories
330
16%
sugars
21 g
23%
fats
24 g
35%
saturates
12 g
58%
proteins
6 g
12%
carbs
27 g
10%
*per serving
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5.0
11 reviews, 27 comments
REVIEWS & QUESTIONS
teresa annibale:
Making these for Superbowl this weekend. They look amazing😋, I'll share how they turn out.
    Ania
    Ania:
    Thanks, Teresa! I hope you'll enjoy them! x Ania
Lisa Bennett:
Wonderful! Just wonderful! Dense, fudgy, and not too sweet.
As a Georgian (The state of Georgia, USA), I made mine with pecan butter and topped with our local pecans. I baked mine in a 7 inch square pan (I don’t have an 8). Next time, I’d add some chopped nuts to the batter itself, but I’m a texture fiend.
Thank you!
    Ania
    Ania:
    Thanks so much, Lisa! I'm delighted to hear that you enjoyed these so much and pecans make a great addition! Ania
Philippa:
Hi
I just came across your blog and this recipes is AMAZING!!! Can’t wait to try out some more! Me and my husband made the switch to a plant based diet last year and haven’t looked back! Totally feel the same with the comments from friends but cooked them a totally vegan meal when they were all last round and one of them didn’t even realise!!!
Thanks for joining in the good fight to help save our planet
Philippa
    Ania
    Ania:
    Hi Philippa,
    I am delighted to hear that you enjoy my recipe and thank you for your kind words about them. Big congrats on going vegan and for staying vegan! For me, personally, it's one of the best decisions I made in my life. x Ania
Geeta:
Hi
I am not completely vegan. Can I use 2 eggs as a replacement for the brine?
    Ania
    Ania:
    As I am vegan myself, I do not bake with eggs and have not done so in years so I am not 100% sure. I *think* it should work out.
Suzanne Park-Davies:
Oh My I’ve just made this and it is utterly delightful! The kids don’t even know it’s Vegan. On a horrible rainy day it’s a must Feel good go to recipe . Thankyou so much for your amazing recipe ❤️
    Ania
    Ania:
    Thanks, Suzanne! I am delighted to hear that these went down so well with you and your family. x Ania
Sara:
Hi Ania , your recipies are awesome. Do you think I can substitute the aquafaba with a chia egg , my chickpeas never have brine .
Thank you and well done 😊
    Ania
    Ania:
    Thanks Sara,
    I think so but I would suggest using 2 and adding enough water so that you have roughly 1/2 cup of it once thickened. Full disclaimer, I have not tried it in this recipe yet, but I am pretty sure it would work - it is only list of things to test but I have not managed it yet. Ania
Melissa:
Thanks so much for this recipe! I Do you have any suggestions/recipe alterations for baking at high altitude (6,000ft)? Can’t wait to try!
    Ania
    Ania:
    I do hope they come out well. I am sorry but I don't really have any experience with high altitude baking. Ania
Yvonne:
Hi, can I replace the aqua faba with a direct substitute for eggs in the same proportion?
    Ania
    Ania:
    Hi Yvonne,
    I guess so but as I am vegan I never use eggs so I cannot be sure how this would work out. Cheers! Ania
Adie:
I made these on Christmas Eve and they are incredible! I’ve generally found egg free brownies to end up more cake-like, but these are really fudgey and dense. So delicious, just have to stop myself from eating them all now!
    Ania
    Ania:
    Thank you for your kind words, Adie! I am delighted to hear that you enjoyed them so much! Thank you!! x Ania
Gill Kedgley:
Wow Thankyou....... so delicious and healthy too. Thank you Thank you Thank you 🌞
    Ania
    Ania:
    My pleasure :) x Ania
Eva:
I love all of the nature documentaries and have been excitedly watching the new BBC series. You're right, it's egregious what we've done to Mother Earth. I wish everyone would get on board, or even half of the meat eaters. Progress is being made in small increments...I just hope it's not too late.
I haven't actually made these brownies yet but have been eyeballing them! I will make them soon!
I made quite a few of your recipes at Christmas last year and they were AMAZING!
Keep up the good work!
    Ania
    Ania:
    I'm totally with you re: hope that it's not too late. I must admit, I do get demoralised some days when I feel like I am swimming against a very strong current, but words of encouragement and understanding from like-minded individuals, like yourself, always give me some hope back! Thank you for your kind words about my recipes, I am super glad to hear that! x Ania
Verena:
Hi! This looks so good!!
You said "Bake ... for about 25 minutes (depending on how fudgy you like your brownies and on your oven)" . Does this min 25minutes minimum and more if you don't want it to be too fudgy or should I aim for less than 25 minutes for fudgy brownies?
    Ania
    Ania:
    Hi Verena,
    It really depends on your oven so it's hard to give a super precise time, but I baked mine for 25 minutes and you can see a cross section photo for an idea of how fudgy they turned out. They were perfect for me, but if you want them even more fudgy, bake for a couple of minutes less. Hope that helps! Ania
Joshua Howard:
I love your site and your perfect recipes! This one is awesome! Thank you for the share!
    Ania
    Ania:
    Thanks Joshua! I am glad you enjoyed it! Ania
Raquel:
You are amazing and congratulations on your blog and recipes! I am brand new in this vegan journey and I’m really happy to find such tasty recipes! Thank you Ania!
    Ania
    Ania:
    Aw, thanks so much, Raquel! I am delighted to hear that you are enjoying my recipes and that you've decided to go vegan!! Hope you'll love how it makes you feel as well as all other positives it carries. xx Ania
Chocoviv:
These brownies are absolutely mouth watering...
    Ania
    Ania:
    Thanks, I am glad you think so! Ania
Yujing Wang:
Dear Ania, thank you for sharing your thoughts on the BBC documentary. You are definitely doing your part in changing the world. I have some friends interesred in going plant bansed but have no idea what to make... I send them your recipes.
Hugs, I know it can feel lonely. I recently statted compost at my daughter's daycare and at my church for refreshment service. We are in this together!!!!
    Ania
    Ania:
    Aw, thanks so much, Yujing! And sorry for the moan - that screening really got me down and the state of things and prevalent ambivalence in the society, but I do know that there are people who understand and care. Thank you for caring and for your thoughtful comment. x Ania
Wendy Gerster:
It`s also important to think of the cocoa farmers who are exploited and find a good source of chocolate!
    Ania
    Ania:
    Totally agree, minimise the harm as much as possible. I do use ethically sourced chocolate and cocoa powder. Thanks Wendy! Ania
Chris:
Could I sub all purpose flour for almond 1:1? These sound amazing!
Thanks
    Ania
    Ania:
    Hi Chris,
    I am not 100% sure as I haven't tried that - my intention was to create flourless brownies from the outset so that they are gluten-free out of the box. You may need to make some alterations to the quantity, for example, but worth giving it a shot. Ania
Pernille:
Hello,
First of all, I just want to say thank you for sharing such wonderful recipes - every single recipe I’ve used from your blog has worked so well and been a great hit with both friends and family.
And now to my question: I was wondering if it would be possible to substitute the almond flour with regular flour? If not, can you think of another option?
Many thanks,
Pernille
    Ania
    Ania:
    Hi Pernille,
    Thank you for your kind words, they really mean a lot!
    As for your question, the honest answer is that I am not sure as my intention was to create flourless brownies from the outset so that they are gluten-free out of the box. I think it is giving them a try, but you may need to make some alterations (my instinct is to use less) to the quantity, for example, and if using wheat (gluten-containing) flour, be very careful not to overmix. The batter is supposed to very thick so if you overwork it you may end up with bread-like brownies :( Good luck! Ania
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