Butterless Brownies with Zucchini and Quinoa

butterless brownies
I only had this strange oval pan for the brownies pictured. Using a 8x11 is recommended and will give you less-tall brownies
Today was brick oven day at our third Wwoofing farm. Due to energy-saving measures, we only use an oven, fueled by wood, once a week. Apart from the 40-plus loaves of bread we made, we made five "pizzas", green bean casserole, and brownies. Brownies with healthy things in them (gasp!). 

And I’m going to say it: Despite being kind of healthy, these babies are distinctively delicious. You could even get away with calling them decadent. I see you raising that doubtful eyebrow, but stop it, you. Don’t doubt the chowgypsy’s creations. The texture of the quinoa, while not overpowering, really is an interesting touch to this super moist and chocolatey addiction. Don’t think, bake. Now…go.
healthy brownies
Zucchini Quinoa Brownies

  • 1 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder (Dutch-processed is best for baking)
  • 1 cup sugar (or ¾ sugar & ¼ honey)
  • ¼ c EVOO
  • ¼ c yogurt (or an egg)
  • ¼ c unsweetened applesauce/peach jam (if you're out, substitute more EVOO)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp cinnamon, depending on how much you like it
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup cooked quinoa or fine-grain bulgur
  • 1 cup finely grated zucchini
  • 1 cup chocolate chips (I recommend ghiradhelli bitter or semi sweet) 

  • Directions
    First things first, put the shredded zucchini in a colander, mix a teaspoon or so of salt in

    there, weigh it down with something, and let it drain for a good hour.

    Make the quinoa ahead of time. Cook enough for one cup, or go crazy and cook enough for dinner (Eggplant Quinoa Gratin, anyone?), but be sure to set one cup aside.

    Ready? Ready. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

    Combine dry ingredients, except for sugar and chocolate chips. Mix wet ingredients & sugar in a separate bowl and get a good whisk going, let's say for a minute or so. Now throw the wet into the dry, add quinoa and zucchini, stir, then fold in chocolate chips at the end. Try not to over mix.

    Put everything in a greased baking dish…let’s say 8x11?

    Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out just barely clean. Let cool 1-2 hours (this keeps them from falling apart later on).


    Your emotions tell you they're decadent...and yet...they're not so bad for you? Fancy that. And eat that.

    healthy butterless brownies
    Do you know you were born without butter?
    The Savings: Let's be honest, these brownies may be a bit more expensive than others, but that's only because you added health. Might as well add your health expenses into something decadent like this (I'm not sure if that is sound reasoning...). Bulgur would be a cheaper option than quinoa, and it's equally delicious. You can also sub butter for EVOO because it's cheaper, but it sure isn't healthier.

    What's your opinion of these little guys?

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