I am a self-proclaimed chocoholic. I will routinely purchase the over-priced pieces of dark chocolate at the checkout line because because I have always been a sucker for those little indulgent splurges. And it is a splurge paying $1 for a quarter-ounce (??) piece of chocolate but since their sign actually says $0.99, clearly it’s high quality and must be a bargain. At least that’s my thought process. But really, (dark) chocolate in any form is a vice of mine.
But please, someone tell me why chocolate and peanut butter pair so well together? It might be one of those things lost to history but whoever came up with the combination is pure genius. Which brings us to brownies. Of course (regular) brownies are not the healthiest treat, but you can feel better about these brownies since they’re free of butter, refined sugar and gluten (if you’re into that). These brownies are made with pure maple syrup, coconut oil, coconut flour and the highest quality chocolate you can find. I promise the coconut flavor is barely detectable. Add a hefty amount of dark chocolate chips for gooey-ness and then melty (honey) peanut butter is swirled on top for a little extra decadence. Finally, sprinkle a bit of flaked salt on top because, why not? Try not eating the whole pan by yourself.
dark chocolate brownies with a peanut butter swirl
I recommend an 8-inch pan (instead of a 9-inch pan) because the brownies are thicker, which really helps the overall texture. If stored in the refrigerator, they become more dense and chewy. If stored on the counter, they’re a bit more airy but obviously don’t last as long.
- 1/2 cup cocoa powder
- 1/2 cup coconut flour
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1 cup pure maple syrup
- 1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
- 4 eggs, room temperature
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup chopped dark chocolate (or chocolate chips)
- 2-3 tbs peanut butter, melted
- I used Justin’s honey peanut butter, which made these divine! However, regular peanut butter or any other nut butter will surely work.
Preheat oven to 350° and line an 8-inch baking dish with parchment paper. Spray the dish and parchment paper with cooking spray.
In a large bowl, whisk together the cocoa powder, coconut flour and sea salt, making sure to break up any clumps. Add in the maple syrup, coconut oil, eggs and vanilla extract. Stir with a wooden spoon until everything is combined. Do not over mix. Add chopped chocolate and stir until evenly distributed throughout the batter.
Pour batter into prepared baking dish and even out with the tip of a knife. Drizzle melted peanut butter over the top of the batter. Swirl the peanut butter around the top of the batter with the same knife until its evenly distributed.
Bake for 30-35 minutes until the center is firm. Cool completely before removing from pan as they are much more fragile when warm. Store in an airtight container to prevent them from drying out. They should stay good on the counter for about a week- if they last that long! You can also store in the freezer for more dense and chewy brownies, however I don’t know how long they’ll keep since they didn’t last long in our house.
(adapted from Detoxinista)