It almost sounds to good to be true but you really can make delicious brownies that are healthy too! I have to admit that I haven’t had a brownie in years – or so that was true until earlier this week. On Tuesday we celebrated our 41st wedding anniversary and I wanted something special for dessert. You know, something festive and celebratory. After all, we are on shelter in place because of the pandemic and we didn’t get to go out of town to celebrate like we had wanted to. We are making do right now and making the best of things. Chocolate Cherry Brownies were my creation this week and I must say they are down right delectable. This is good way to make the best of things!
Back in the day, before I went plant based I used to make some amazing brownies that I would add rolled oats to and people went crazy for those brownies. This of course is a much healthier version but they do remind me of the ones from days gone by. They are fudgy, dark chocolate, not too sweet and exactly what I was hoping for.
I love the pure Madagascar ground vanilla bean from Local Spicery. It is so fragrant and flavorful. When baked in a square brownie pan you can cut them into 16 pieces for snack size treats. They freeze well too! When I do this I add an extra 1/2 cup of oats and it makes them a little bit bigger.
These are no guilt brownies – well unless you eat the whole pan – don’t eat the whole pan even though you are going to want to. They are delcious with or without the optional unsweetened chocolate chips.
You can also use the brownies to make these decadent Chocolate Brownie Parfaits.
Brownies for everyone!
If a picture is worth a thousand words, then what is a video worth?
For our anniversary Tom made Banana Cherry Nice Cream in our Champion Juicer. It took the brownies to a whole new level. He used 6 Tart Frozen Cherries for each Frozen Sweet Banana.
I had an idea for these chocolate cherry brownies after seeing Brittany from Jaroudi Family Blog make a healthy brownie. She inspired me to get in the kitchen and try it out. Edited 12/06/22 to say that it doesn’t look like these exact no sugar added chocolate chips are available anymore. I have been purchasing the Trader Joe’s Cacao chips unsweetened and they are just as good. I also purchased the no sugar added chocolate chips she uses from Santa Barbara Chocolate. They are amazing – dark chocolate – no sweetener at all – the dark chocolate may not be for everyone but I don’t eat much in the way of sweets so I think they are terrific. If you prefer you can use Date Paste in this recipe instead of whole dates – start with 1/4 cup and add more if more sweetness is desired.
Updated 11/24/21 Trader Joe’s now has a sugar free Cacao Chip. Edited 12/06/22 to say that it doesn’t look like the Santa Barbara Chocolate Co. no sugar added chocolate chips are available anymore. I have been purchasing the Trader Joe’s Cacao chips unsweetened and they are just as good.
Chocolate Cherry Brownies
- Food Processor, Oven
- 1 cup Japanese Sweet Potato – oven roasted Use any kind of sweet potato or yam
- 1 cup garbanzo beans
- 2 Tablespoons aquafaba – broth from the beans
- 6 – 8 dates pitted – optional
- 1 ripe banana 3.75 ounces peeled
- ¼ cup cocoa
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon vanilla powder
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ c frozen cherries – slightly thawed
- 1 cup rolled oats
- 1 Tablespoon Cacao nibs optional
- 2 Tablespoons unsweetened chocolate chips optional
- 1 Tablespoon fresh orange juice
- 1 Tablespoon freshly grated orange zest This addition comes from my friend Shayda from Healthy Cooking with Shayda, who made this recipe with the addition of orange juice and orange zest. When I tried it I loved it!
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a 9 inch baking pan – round or square with parchment paper or use a silicone pan.
- In the work bowl of a food processor fitted with the S blade add the Japanese Sweet Potato, garbanzo beans, aquafaba, dates if using, banana, cocoa, cinnamon, vanilla powder, baking powder, baking soda and cherries, process until smooth. Add The rolled oats, orange juice and zest and process using the pulse function until they are well incorporated. Add cacao nibs or unsweetened chocolate chips if desired. They can go in the batter or just on top. They are not necessary – the brownies are delicious without them.Spread batter evenly in prepared pan. Bake for 25 minutes or until done. Don't over bake as we want them to be fudgy! Enjoy warm or cold. Top with Banana Cherry Nice Cream if desired.
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Yumm can’t wait to make these. I have a new lag bag of cacao can u use that in place of the cocoa it calls for in your brownie recipe
Love your utube and blog. Your recipes are my favorites
I used cacao powder in my brownies – I show what I used in the video – any kind of unsweetened powdered chocolate should work well.
Enjoy the brownies.
I will try. I made Brittany’s 5 ingredient recipe but my family
Said they needed something more.
Will try these. The cherry is a nice touch!
I hope you like my brownie recipe. If your family is used to sweeter treats please use 8 dates to make theme sweet. Since we don’t eat sweet treats we enjoy them not being very sweet. Please let me know if you like this recipe.
Love your posts! I’ve been looking for the wonder cocoa because it’s 99.7% caffeine free. However, it appears to be unavailable. Would you kindly let me know where I could find it. I live in Canada. If there are other nearly caffeine free cocoa products that are similar, I’d be interested in those as well. Thank you
So many products are not available right now on line or in stores becuase of the pandemic. I don’t know where you would buy this in Canada. In the US I buy it at Whole Foods Market. You might check with any health food stores where you live. Usually it is available on Amazon but it’s sold out right now. You might try using carob powder instead.
Do you think these would freeze well? Otherwise I may be forced to eat the entire batch!
I haven’t tried freezing these but I think they should freeze just fine!
I made these today (Easter). Very good! Thank you for the recipe.
I am so glad you liked the brownies.
These are delicious! Thank you so much for the recipe! 🙂
I am so glad you liked them!
Due to stay at home rules, I cannot get to a store to buy the sweet potato or the frozen cherries. I have some canned, unseasoned pumpkin. Could I sub that?
For frozen fruit, I have frozen peaches, strawberries and blueberries. None of them are very sweet. Would any of those work?
I look forward to trying many of your recipes as I am gluten free and beginning my WFPB-SOS journey.
Canned pumpkin will not be sweet enough – the sweet potato adds a lot of natural sweetness that the pumpkin can not provide. You could probably substitute another frozen fruit – we are just looking for the sweetness and moisture it provides. Best to wait until you have a sweet potato for this recipe.
OMG these are sooooo good!!! I always make two batches and freeze one tray. They freeze just fine! I have to limit how many times I make them because I end up eating the whole tray in a few days… all by myself. I only add two dates and they are perfect. All the omnivores in my family don’t find my version sweet enough but I don’t care and I’ll just enjoy them all myself. I refuse to add anymore sweetness than I need. If I added more dates as the recipe notes I know my omnivore family would love them too! The never have cherries so I just add more banana
and it’s perfect!!! Thank you so much, Tami!!! I cannot wait for more baked goodies!!! Please make more!!! xxxx Lynne
I am delighted to know you like the brownies! They are a favorite of mine as well. I don’t do much baking anymore – too tempting to eat them. But it is nice to have a treat now and then and the brownie recipe is easy to make. They do freeze quite well which I also like.
Looks wonderful. I have lots of orange sweet potatoes but not the Japanese variety. Would that be a problem?
I would try orange sweet pot because they really sweet usually.
I don’t have cherries at the moment only wegmans wild blueberries. How much should I substitute for the cherries? Really looking forward to making these soon.
I would use the same amount of any fruit you substitute. I have only made the recipe as written so when people start subbing ingredients I can’t tell you how it’s going to work out. But that is the fun of experimenting when we cook!
I made these tonight for the first time. They were very good. I will be making them again. I didnt have cacao nibs so just skipped them. The recipe will go in my WFPB recipe book. Thanks
I am so glad you liked this recipe!
What kind of dates do you use? Deglet noor are much smaller than medjool. Or could you weigh the amount of dates? Weight for 6 and 8 dates would be ideal. Thanks!
Hi Linda I use Medjool dates. 6 medjool dates – pitted weighs approximately 109.7 grams, 8 weigh approximately 147.2 – this will vary depending on the size of the dates which also vary within the different types of dates but it gives you an idea. Enjoy!
Thanks for your response. Another question I have is I can’t find ‘unsweetened chocolate chips’. Where do you find them?
I buy them at Trader Joe’s or Santa Barbara Chocolate https://www.santabarbarachocolate.com/?ref=StoreYa&utm_source=stry&utm_medium=trafb&utm_campaign=storeya2b&utm_term=kwd-394918213187
Memrie B. Kimmel
I just made this brownie recipe, and it is delicious and satisfying to this recovering chocoholic. Living in a small Mississippi town, I used our own sweet potatoes (orange) grown in the sweet potato capitol of the world, Vardaman, Mississippi. They are super sweet and melt-in-your-mouth delicious. I topped the brownie with my chocolate pudding/sauce made from one 16 ounce bag of Great Value dark, sweet, frozen cherries and one cherry-sized piece of over-ripe frozen banana pureed and cooked, Simple Truth Unsweetened Dutched Cocoa Powder and one teaspoon of instant espresso powder stirred in. As soon as I can find it, I want to try the Wondercocoa because the Simple Truth cocoa is not 100% fat free, though close.
As soon as my PB2 Pure is delivered, I want to make your blonde brownie and peanut butter nice cream, topped with my chocolate sauce!
Update: I’ve just “iced” a brownie with my chocolate sauce and warmed it in the microwave. It is better than straight from the oven!
Thanks, Tami and Tom.
Thank you for the gram weight for the dates, but i really need a weight for the yams. They habe such a huge variation in size that I have no idea whether to use 2 small yams or one large one.
HI Sheri I didn’t weigh the yams just use a 1 cup measuring cup and fill it with cooked sweet potato or yam that has had the skin removed. It might be one medium size or 2 small yams or sweet potatoes. Better to bake a big one and have some leftover. Leftover cooked sweet potato or yam can always be frozen for the next batch of brownies. Enjoy!