Healthy Brownies

healthy brownies

These healthy brownies taste great even though they’re full of nutritious ingredients.

I had a group of third grade boys over the other day, and I decided to feed them these. I love the satisfaction of hearing them ask for another brownie. If I had told them the list of ingredients included dates, bananas, and coconut oil, I’m guessing they wouldn’t have responded so well.

I must admit that my daughter, who has a very discerning palate, looked at me suspiciously as soon as she took a bite. “Is there avocado in this?” she asked accusingly. I said no, and she pointed at the tiniest speck of a date and said, “Then what’s this?” I told her that was some of the sweetener.  She went on to eat the whole thing, and she asked for another one later.

Healthy Brownies
  • 1¼ cups gluten-free flour or white whole wheat flour
  • ¼ cup cocoa powder
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 6 ounces unsweetened chocolate (single ingredient: chocolate)
  • ⅔ cup coconut oil
  • 3 Medjool dates
  • ½ ripe banana
  • 1 cup maple syrup
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and grease a 9 x 13 inch pan.
  2. In a small bowl, combine the flour, cocoa powder, and salt. Set aside.
  3. Melt the chocolate and the coconut oil. Cool slightly.
  4. Boil 2 cups of water in a small saucepan. Simmer the dates for about 3 minutes to soften them.
  5. In a food processor or blender, puree the dates, the banana, and 2 tablespoons of the date water.
  6. In a large bowl, combine the maple syrup, eggs, and vanilla. Add the dates, bananas, melted chocolate and coconut oil. Stir to combine well.
  7. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix well. Transfer the batter to the baking pan.
  8. Bake for 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out almost clean. Don’t overcook them or they will be dry.

Healthy Brownies Price Breakdown

This batch costs $5.81 to make with gluten-free flour, or $.39 per brownie.  Healthy brownies are a delicious treat to serve any crowd, especially a group of hungry children after a long day at school.

Note: I get a lot of questions about substituting whole wheat flour for gluten-free flour, or vice versa.  In most of my recipes, you can interchange white whole wheat flour with gluten-free flour and the results will be equally delicious. Whole wheat flour tends to be a bit thirstier, so you may want to add an extra tablespoon of liquid if you’re going from a gluten-free recipe to a whole wheat version.


  1. says

    I use soy flour in addition to the same GF flour that you have used but adding bananas seem interesting. I recently started using coconut oil but have not tried anything sweet.

  2. says

    LOL, your daughter sounds like my kids: “are there any vegetables in this smoothie”?

    Though to their developing discerning palates, my son did tell me that some spaghetti sauce I made ‘needed roasted eggplant’.

    Thanks for a healthy tasty dessert recipe!

    • Annemarie says

      Wow, that’s impressive. I would throw a big party if one of my children told me my sauce needed roasted eggplant.

  3. says

    Wow, seriously easy and seriously yummy!! Got this on my to make list!
    Thanks for linking up at our Gluten Free Fridays party! I have tweeted and pinned your entry to our Gluten Free Fridays board on Pinterest! :)

    Thanks for linking back to the Gluten Free Fridays post!

    We had a ton of great looking entries for our Namaste sponsored party last week! Stop by this week to check out the winner that was randomly selected!

    Cindy from

  4. Jill B says

    I can’t find any chocolate that just says “chocolate”..! Super frustrating. Any substitutions? Thanks.!

    • Annemarie says

      Have you seen Baker’s unsweetened chocolate? It’s in the baking aisle at most grocery stores. If you can’t find it, just get the darkest chocolate you can find.

        • Annemarie says

          That’s up to you, Jill. It’s always best to buy the highest quality ingredients you can afford. The Baker’s brand chocolate squares that I buy aren’t organic, but I do buy organic chocolate if I see it on sale for a good price.

  5. Anonymous says

    You use dates in a lot of your recipes. I’ve bought them for recipes in the past, but overall it ends up being far too many for me to consume in too short of a time. Have you had any success freezing dates, and if so, in what form do you recommend?

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