These are the fudgiest, most decadent, sugar-free date brownies – made with Medjool dates, peanut butter, and cocoa powder.
Sugar-free brownies are a concept I’ve been exploring for the past couple of months, thanks to Rene (the Boyfriend). Rene used to be a sugar addict. As in, must-eat-every-cookie-in-this-box addicted. As in, walk to the vending machine at 3pm every day like a zombie to buy a Snickers and scarf in down mindlessly in a single breath. This was the norm for most of his life – until he realized his chronic headaches and the addiction might be connected.
So, it’s been over a year since he had even a bite of anything with refined sugar. Like breaking any addiction, the beginning was rough, but I’m enormously proud of him for sticking with it. (And yes, the headaches did decrease significantly!)
The man still loves chocolate, though, and I wanted him to have something a liiittle more special for his 30th birthday than energy balls. Enter these sugar-free date brownies. When I first saw this technique on Detoxinista, I was skeptical. No added sugar, flourless, gluten-free, and vegan? Seemed too good to be true. But lo and behold, these brownies are shockingly amazing.
Why You’re Gonna Love These Date Brownies
Since discovering the technique, these date brownies have become my go-to for chocolate cravings…
- So rich. They’ve got an addictively fudgy texture and decadent chocolatey flavor.
- No flour or refined sweeteners. This is as healthy as dessert gets, ya’ll.
- Minimal ingredients. All you need are Medjool dates, nut butter, cocoa powder, vanilla, baking powder, and flaxseed meal.
Sugar-Free Date Brownies Step-by-Step
Puree the Dates: Combine pitted dates with a bit of water in a food processor and puree into a chunky paste. Blending the dates alone first will help them incorporate evenly with the rest of the ingredients. (My food processor gets jumpy during this part; if yours does too, just hold it in place with your hands.)
Add Everything Else: Add the remaining ingredients and puree into a thick batter.
Portion: Grease a muffin tin with a bit of oil and portion out the batter. Dip your finger in some water and smooth out the tops. (At this point, I recommend sprinkling them with coarse sea salt if you have it.)
Bake and Cool: Bake until the tops look a bit dry, ~12 to 14 minutes. Then remove from the oven and cool completely. The brownies are pretty fragile when hot so don’t try to eat them straight out of the oven.
How to Make These Brownies Without a Muffin Tin
If you don’t have a muffin pan, you can bake date brownies on a standard baking sheet. Cover it with parchment paper first (no need to grease it) and portion out the dough, spacing the brownies 1 to 2 inches apart. Flatten them with a wet finger and shape into circle-ish shapes, then bake as directed. (P.S. I actually prefer this method!)
How Long Do Vegan Date Brownies Last
Date brownies will last for about a week in an airtight container in the fridge. You can also freeze them for up to 3 months.
Ingredient Notes + Substitutions
- Dates: Medjool dates can be pricey in regular supermarkets. Look for them in bulk stores and middle eastern markets.
- Peanut Butter: It’s important to use natural peanut butter here (the only ingredient should be peanuts) since it’s naturally gooey and responsible for these brownies’ richness. Oil separation is normal – do not drain it off. Be sure to give the butter a good stir before using. (Feel free to use almond, cashew, or macadamia butter in place of peanut.) In case of a nut allergy, substitute with sunflower seed butter or tahini.
- Flaxseed Meal: Helps to bind the dough.
- Arrowroot Starch (or Cornstarch): Absorbs excess moisture in the brownies, giving them a bit more structure. You can skip it though – the brownies will just be a bit more gooey.
- Salt: Don’t forget to add salt to balance out the sweetness. I also recommend sprinkling the tops with coarse sea salt.
More vegan desserts…
- Vegan Coconut Oil Banana Bread
- Vegan Blueberry-Lemon Muffins
- Chickpea Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Vegan Tahini Brownies
Let me know if you try this recipe! Give it a rating below and leave a comment, and don’t forget to tag your creation with @thenewbaguette on Instagram.Print
These are the fudgiest, most decadent, sugar-free date brownies – you won’t believe they’re vegan. (Adapted from Detoxinista).
- 6 ounces Medjool dates, pitted (about 9 dates)
- 1/3 cup warm water
- 1/2 cup well-stirred natural peanut butter* (see note below)
- 5 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 tablespoon flaxseed meal
- 1 tablespoon arrowroot starch or cornstarch* (optional)
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
- A bit of canola, coconut, or avocado oil, for greasing the muffin tin
- Coarse sea salt, for sprinkling (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 350ºF.
- Combine the dates and water in a food processor, and puree into a chunky paste.
- Add the remaining ingredients and puree until a thick, sticky dough forms.
- Lightly grease 10 of the 12 cups of a muffin tin with a bit of oil. Using an ice cream scoop or tablespoon, divide the dough among the greased cups. Press on the dough with a wet finger to smooth the tops. Sprinkle with coarse sea salt, if you have it.
- Bake until the tops look dry, 12 to 14 minutes.
- Cool completely, about 30 minutes, before removing brownies from the pan. To remove, run a butter knife around each brownie to loosen it. (Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week.)
- You can use almond, cashew, or macadamia butter in place of peanut. In case of a nut allergy, sub with sunflower seed butter or tahini.
- The starch absorbs excess moisture in the brownies, giving them a bit more structure. If you skip it, the brownies will just be a bit more gooey.
- Serving Size: 1 brownie
- Calories: 148
- Carbohydrates: 19.2 g
- Fiber: 4.3 g
- Protein: 6 g
Keywords: brownies, dates, sugar free, peanut butter, vegan