Who loves brownies? Me, me!!!! These healthy fudgy brownies truly are the BEST dessert I have ever made. Plus they contain less than 10 ingredients and no guilt.
I love that these brownies are: low fat, gluten-free and low in sugar but are still decadent, chocolatey and ooey, gooey. Nobody will believe they are a healthy dessert!
A brownie recipe that is healthy and easy to make? YIPPEE! Also, super fudgy and just melt in your mouth the moment you take a bite.
What makes these brownies healthy?
- No refined flour
- No refined sugar
- Made from real, whole ingredients
- Full of healthy fat, fiber, and protein
- Naturally sweetened
Ingredients needed to make this healthy fudgy brownie recipe
How to make healthy brownies
This brownie recipe is super healthy thanks to a few substitutions I made to remove the gluten, bad-fat, cholesterol and refined sugar.
To make these gluten-free: I used unsweetened dark cocoa powder and almond flour in place of plain white flour. Which also intensified the chocolatey flavor, which is incredible! If you don’t like your brownies decadent and chocolatey, then these may not be your jam but give them a try because when it comes to healthy brownies, these are pretty awesome!
To add more healthy fats and remove the bad-fat: I swapped the butter with peanut butter. You could also use coconut oil or almond butter in place of the peanut butter if you have a peanut allergy. This may alter the taste a bit but they will still come out delicious!
In an effort to reduce the refined sugar: I substituted the traditional white sugar with a combo of coconut sugar and maple syrup.
Super simple substitutions that make these brownies both healthy and so good!
How to make these healthy fudgy brownies
- Mix up the peanut butter, coconut sugar, maple syrup, and vanilla extract until fully combined.
- Then add in the applesauce and mix.
3. Add the eggs and mix to combine into a slightly chunky looking, wet batter.
4. Mix up the dry ingredients – cocoa powder, almond flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
5. Combine the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients, stir to combine it all together and fold in the chocolate chips.
6. Pour the batter into an 8×8 baking dish lined with parchment paper, top with more chocolate chips (not required but necessary in my world).
7. Bake at 350F degrees for 30-35 minutes. See baking time recommendations based on desired results (cakey vs, fudgy) below.
Remove, let cool and enjoy!!!
I added a scoop of Halo vanilla ice cream and it was literally the greatest dessert EVER!!!! They are great just on their own as well.
How do you substitute eggs in brownies?
Can you substitute butter for oil in brownies?
Absolutely! In this recipe, I left out the butter and canola oil and used peanut butter. You could also use almond butter.
How long do you bake brownies?
Any brownie recipe will include a recommended bake time like this one that bakes in about 30-35 minutes. Since ovens vary it is a good practice to use the “toothpick” or “butter knife” test.
To use the “toothpick/butterknife test”, simply insert a toothpick or butter knife into the center of the brownies about 5 minutes before they are supposed to be done (according to whatever recipe you are following). Pull it out quickly and if you have some wet crumbs than you will get a nice cakey, semi-fudgy brownie. If you have some semi-baked batter on the toothpick or knife then you will get a more fudgy, less-cakey brownie.
Keep in mind that the brownies will continue to cook a little after you remove them from the oven. You definitely do not want the toothpick or knife to come out clean since that is an indication that you over-baked your brownies which will yield a drier, non-cakey, non-fudgy brownie.
How do you store brownies?
The method for storing brownies depends on how long you wish to store them.
To store brownies for up to a week: Pack them in layers with wax paper/parchment in-between each layer in an airtight container. The brownies should stay fresh for a few days or up to a week depending on the recipe recommendations.
Freezing brownies is the best way to keep them fresher longer: To freeze brownies it’s a little bit more work but very much worth the effort.
How to freeze brownies
Wrap each brownie individually in plastic wrap to prevent freezer burn.
Place the individually wrapped brownies into a freezer-friendly storage bag that tightly seals shut.
Label and date the brownies. They should be good for a few weeks or even up to a month. When ready to eat, simply thaw them on the counter or warm in the microwave in 30-second increments until thawed.
Check out some of my other Healthy Dessert Recipes!
Healthy Fudgy Brownies – Gluten-Free
- Mixing bowls
- Hand mixer
- 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- 4 tbsp packed light coconut sugar or light brown sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup applesauce unsweetened
- 1 large egg
- 1/4 cup almond flour or oat flour
- 1/4 cup cocoa powder unsweetened
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips plus more for topping
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F, and line an 8 x 8 baking pan with parchment paper.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine and beat the peanut butter, sugar, maple syrup, and vanilla extract. Beat in the applesauce until fully mixed in, then beat in the egg until a smooth mixture forms.
- In a separate bowl, fully combine the cocoa powder, almond flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix to combine into a dark, smooth brownie batter. Finally, fold in the chocolate chips.
- Transfer the brownie batter to the lined 8 x 8 baking dish and smooth it out evenly. Top with more chocolate chips if desired.
- Bake for 30-35 minutes until the brownies are puffed up and fluffy. If you like fudgier brownies then take them out around the 30-minute mark. For cakier brownies cook them for the full 35 minutes.
- Remove, let cool for at least 30 minutes, slice and serve.
- Use the “toothpick/butterknife test,” insert a toothpick or butter knife into the center of the brownies about 5 minutes before they are supposed to be done (according to whatever recipe you are following) for this recipe it would be around that 35-minute mark.
- Pull it out quickly and if you have some wet crumbs than you will get a sweet cakey, semi-fudgy brownie.
- If you want a fudgy, less-cakey brownie then do the toothpick test around the 30 minute mark. If the toothpick comes out with a semi-baked batter on it, then you will get a more fudgy result.
- To store brownies for up to a week: Pack them in layers with wax paper/parchment in-between each layer in an airtight container. The brownies should stay fresh for a few days or up to a week.
- Wrap each brownie individually in plastic wrap.Place the individually wrapped brownies into a freezer-friendly plastic bag and tightly seal it.
- Label and date the bag and store it in the freezer for up to a month.
When ready to eat: Remove from the freezer and thaw on the counter or unwrap and place on a safe microwave plate and warm in the microwave in 30-second intervals until fully thawed