Gluten-free vegan fudgy eggplant brownies!
I know it sounds crazy. But to me, it’s the good kind of crazy. Especially when crazy tastes fudgy and chocolatey, just like a brownie should. At first eggplant might seem like an unusual ingredient in sweet treats, but when the eggplant is cooked soft and pureed with warm dark chocolate, it feels like a natural addition to the brownie batter.
Vegetables in sweet treats
I love sneaking vegetables into baked goods. This time though it’s not just to make brownies “healthier”, it is actually more about the texture the eggplant gives to the brownies. These brownies are soft, a little moist and the chocolate flavor is very intense. I’m thrilled about the sweetener too: it’s just dates (and the sugar in the dark chocolate)! So when I’m eating these brownies, I’m actually eating vegetables and fruits 🙂
Eggplants are not the only vegetables to use in brownies. I think sweet potatoes might be the most common vegetable used. Its naturally sweet flavor and smooth texture (when cooked) is perfect in baked goods. Zucchini and cauliflower work too, although I find the flavor of cauliflower hard to cover sometimes.
I made a fun experiment by adding all sorts of veggies – not just eggplants – into my brownie batter and the result was yummy! You can find the crazy delicious veggie brownie recipe here.
Silky smooth peanut butter frosting
To add even more deliciousness to these brownies, I whisked a silky smooth peanut butter frosting and smeared it on top of each lovely brownie bite. Although these bites are very tasty without frosting, I must admit adding the peanut butter frosting makes these addictive!
These fudgy eggplant brownies with peanut butter frosting have been featured in:
refinery29.com Ten Desserts That Totally Tricked Us
trendhunter.com This Unusual Eggplant Recipe Creates a Peanut Buttery Dessert
- Wet ingredients
- 10,5 oz / 300 g organic eggplant (about 1 cup cooked eggplant)
- ~3,2 oz / 90 g vegan dark chocolate (I used 80% chocolate for a rich chocolate taste)
- 2 tbsp coconut oil (room temperature)
- 8 pitted dates (soak in water if needed). Note: I used medium sized dates. If you have large ones (e.g.medjool), 6 should be enough.
- Dry ingredients
- ¼ cup rice flour *SEE NOTES*
- ¼ cup oat flour *SEE NOTES*
- 1,5 tbsp cocoa powder
- 1 tsp baking powder
- ¼ tsp baking soda
- ¼ tsp good quality salt (e.g.Himalayan)
- Peanut butter frosting
- 4 tbsp unsalted, organic peanut butter
- 3 tbsp coconut cream
- ½ tsp agave nectar (or other sweetener of choice)
- pinch of salt
- Cooking the eggplant: Preheat oven 200C/390F.
- Prick the eggplant with a fork all around and cook it in the oven for ~50 min (turn every 10-15 minutes) until eggplant feels soft. *SEE NOTES* Let eggplant cool.
- Lower the heat to 180C/360F after cooking the eggplant.
- Eggplant brownies: Melt chocolate in a double boiler. Add coconut oil and mix well.
- When the eggplant has cooled for ~15 min cut it in half and scrape the insides. Squeeze out all the extra water. You should have a little bit less than 1 cup (when water squeezed out) of cooked soft eggplant.
- Purée eggplant well in a blender/food processor together with melted chocolate, coconut oil and dates until a chocolate mousse like (not as smooth but close) consistency reached.
- Mix all dry ingredients together.
- Combine dry ingredients to wet ingredients little by little mixing gently.
- Line a small baking tin (mine was appr. 9 x 6 inch) with parchment paper, and pour the batter in tin.
- Bake brownie for 20 minutes. Test with a tooth pick and bake for another 5 min if tooth pick doesn't come out clean. 25 minutes should be enough (otherwise brownies might become too dry)
- After baking keep the brownies in the baking tin for another 15 minutes before removing.
- Let cool for ~30 minutes before putting the frosting.
- Frosting: blend all frosting ingredients well together in a food processor to achieve a silky smooth consistency. Cut brownies into small pieces and spread the frosting over each bite.
- Store brownie in the fridge up to one week.
The eggplant should be thoroughly cooked to achieve the best tasting result so make sure to adjust eggplant cooking time if it isn't soft in 50 minutes.
ps. These brownies turn into a scrumptious chocolate cake too 🙂