The best brownie I’ve had in years is made without gluten, flour, dairy or refined sugar. Believe it. It is truly amazing how delicious, moist and fudgy these turned out. I had a client over the day and he mentioned that he was a “brownie guy”- he had been raised on his mother’s famously indulgent brownies and he was having trouble giving them up. I had him try one of mine and he stopped in awe mid-bite.
These delightful treats are a perfect example of baking with alternative sweeteners, such as coconut nectar, coconut oil and raw cacao powder—and an affirmation that you don’t need refined sugars to make baked goods taste fabulous. These brownies are also full of antioxidant-rich and blood sugar-regulating almond butter, which adds a little protein to keep you from feeling like eating the whole pan. This is indeed a brownie home!
Grease a 9×12 baking pan.
Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
In a large bowl, mix the cacao powder, coconut nectar, almond buter, coconut oil, vanilla, baking soda and sea salt. Mix well making sure coconut oil is well incorporated. Set aside.
In a small pot over medium-low heat, carefully melt the 4 ounces of dark chocolate just until barely melted. Remove from heat as soon as it’s creamy.
Combine the melted chocolate and mixed ingredients.
If you’re adding the optional chips, coconut, nuts or fruit, mix in now.
Pour into baking dish and bake for 30-40 minutes. I suggest baking for 20, turning pan 180 degrees, and continue baking. Baking times vary heavily, so check them after 30 minutes. They are done when the edges are browned and firm but not too dark.
Let cool completely.
Holistic Nutritionist & Lifestyle Cleanse Expert, Los Angeles
After being diagnosed with cancer when she was 32, Elissa Goodman explored holistic alternatives and combined them with traditional treatments and was able to beat the disease. Her husband wasn’t as fortunate; he succumbed to Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma when he was only 45 after a regimen of doctor-prescribed chemotherapy and two bone marrow transplants. Her personal experience led her to realize the many ways in which nutrition and lifestyle affect our ability to deal with health challenges.