I personally don’t have a sweet tooth but every now and then a little craving for something sweeter than usual sets in. I prefer avoiding sugar so I usually turn to fruits for my sweet fix.
If I have a good vegan dark chocolate at hand or even better, some raw cacao, things definitely get more interesting than fruit salad. Fruit, dark chocolate and cacao is truly a winning combination!
These days, delicious vegan brownies are popping up everywhere and everyone seems to have their favorite go-to recipe. If this applies to you, I urge you to try this recipe as I’m pretty sure it will become your new favorite.
If you aren’t vegan or vegetarian, don’t go away! That “label” sometimes has a strange effect on non-vegans and vegetarians, but it really shouldn’t! If you like sweets, dairy, sugar and eggs aren’t necessary to achieve that result. And why wouldn’t you want to create a delicious sweet treat that is actually jam packed with goodness?!
Without delving into the animal related exclusions, just consider how bad sugar is for your body and mind, and ask yourself if you want to be eating it yourself, much less serving it to your family or friends.
Refined sugar has absolutely zero nutrients, and in fact it depletes the nutrients that you are putting into your body, and is a cause – directly and indirectly – of many illnesses and diseases. Do a bit of research if you have some time, it’s quite an eye-opener.
Using natural sugars from dates instead of refined sugar adds the sweet touch that you’re looking for, as well as minerals, antioxidants and fiber. Raw cacao powder will turn your cravings for ordinary chocolate into super-nutrition with its healing properties (it has magnesium, antioxidants and anti-depressant properties), and you can finally say that chocolate is good for you!
For the dark chocolate try to stick with the highest cocoa percentage that you can find.
Oat flour can even be easily made at home from rolled oats – all it takes is a good blender or even a coffee grinder. I added oats because I wanted to enrich these raw brownies with extra fiber to improve digestion and nutrient absorption.
Oats are very good for your heart health among other nutritious properties, and they are a good source of B vitamins, magnesium and zinc. Flax seed also helps to keep your heart healthy with its omega-3 fatty acids, and making ground flax at home is just as easy as making oatmeal. That’s the beauty of not using highly processed ingredients!
- 1 cup toasted almonds
- 2 cups dried prunes, pitted and chopped (or pitted dates)
- 1 tbsp oats
- 1 tbsp raw cacao powder
- 7 oz quality dark chocolate, melted (aim for at least 75% cacao)
- 2 tbsp coconut oil, melted
- 1 tbsp almond butter
- 1 cup fresh strawberries, cut into quarters
- Pinch sea salt
- To garnish: chopped almonds, unsweetened desiccated coconut, chopped dark chocolate
- Add the toasted almonds and oatsinto the food processor and blitz to obtain a rough flour.
- Add the oatmeal, prunes, cacao, 2 oz melted dark chocolate, almond butter, salt and coconut oil and pulse to obtain a sticky mixture.
- Line a brownie tin with parchment paper, transfer the mixture into the tin and press to obtain an even layer.
- Pour the rest of the melted chocolate on top and spread evenly.
- Garnish with coconut flakes, chopped almonds and dark chocolate, and freeze for at least 5 hours.
- Remove from the freezer and cut into little squares.
- Top with fresh strawberries and serve.