Coconut Oil Cocoa Brownies
These coconut oil cocoa brownies are rich and fudgy and will satisfy any dark chocolate craving. And a bonus, they are refined sugar free and made with (mostly) wholesome ingredients.
Happy National Dark Chocolate Day! Are you as happy to have an excuse to celebrate chocolate as I am? I love all chocolate, but I’m definitely more of a dark chocolate girl, so I’m extra happy.
To celebrate, I made some really rich, fudgy brownies made with coconut oil and coconut palm sugar. I actually have nothing against butter. In fact, I’m a big fan of grass-fed butter for everything. But it’s nice to change things up every now and again, for flavor and for a different nutritional profile. And if you are have a dairy problem but need your brownie fix, this is the recipe for you. Super quick to throw together, really tasty, and made with *mostly* wholesome ingredients.
A word about cocoa powder. See, the cacao bean is super acidic on it’s own, which gives it a bitter-tart flavor. So the Dutch chemist Coenraad Johannes van Houten developed a way to alkalize the cacao beans, which gives the cocoa a richer, deeper, darker color and flavor. It’s really a matter of preference which you decide to use, but it’s a little more complicated than just that. Because you’ve changed the chemistry of the product, it changes the chemistry of the baked goods you use it in. Joy the Baker (one of the best food blogs out there, imo) has a great post on the difference between natural and Dutch-processed cocoa powder.
In this particular recipe I don’t use a leavening agent, so the two types of cocoa powder are in fact interchangeable. But I prefer Dutch processed over natural in almost any situation. The resulting flavor is more chocolate-ey, so I recommend it.
Whatever you decide to use, make these brownies. You won’t regret it.
- 1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
- 1.5 cups coconut palm sugar
- 3/4 cup Dutch processed cocoa powder
- 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt, more for sprinkling on top
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 large eggs
- 1/3 C all-purpose flour, preferably organic
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon, optional*
- Preheat the oven to 325°F.
- Cut 2 pieces of parchment paper 8 inches wide and 12-14 inches wide. Fold the parchment paper to fit the bottom of an 8x8 square pan snugly. Place the 2 pieces in the pan perpendicular to each other so that all 4 sides of the pan are covered in the paper when they overlap.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the coconut palm sugar, cocoa powder, and salt. Continue whisking as you pour the oil into the bowl in a steady stream. Whisk in the vanillas. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating vigorously after each addition. Gently fold in the flour with a silicone spatula until no streaks remain. Do not overmix. It will be very thick.
- Carefully spread the batter into the pan, taking care to spread into the corners and getting an even layer throughout. Sprinkle the top evenly with a pinch of fine or coarse sea salt.
- Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes, until slightly firm to the touch and a clean toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean, with a few crumbs attached.
- Let cool before serving. Cut into 16 pieces.
- *I like to add just a tiny bit of cinnamon to any chocolate baked goods. This small amount really enhances the chocolatey-ness of it without tasting cinnamonny. It's optional, but highly recommended.
Calphalon 8×8 square cake pan (I like the crisp corners and edges)