Fudgy Vegan Avocado Brownies

Senior year of high school is just around the corner… College apps, late nights studying, and significant decisions about my future are all becoming a reality, and I can’t help but feel a mix of emotions as my last week of summer passes. I can’t lie, last year, as a junior, I hardly slept–there were multiple nights where I pulled all-nighters studying for tests and finishing projects and I was under a lot of stress. This summer, cooking with Mark has been an amazing way for me to regain a creative outlet, and it has been especially comforting because it involves plant-based foods, a diet (though so much more than that to me) that I am extremely passionate about embracing and sharing. (We recently got home for a vacation in the mountains with Mark’s family and had a great time–there was lots of time spent in the water, enjoying good food, and playing cards!)

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I have been doing a lot of thinking, particularly about how I want to better my lifestyle in the coming year. First of all, getting more sleep is necessary. I don’t plan on being up past 12, at latest, this year, though we will see how long that lasts. Most importantly, however, I want to continue bettering my eating habits. I do a lot of reading about vegan eating and nutrition and what is best for my health. For a long time, I have been very confused about how much fat I should be consuming, because there is a lot of mixed beliefs held by veggie doctors, nutritionists, and bloggers. I have come to realize that as I get older, I can worry about fat more, but as a teenage girl, eating some extra fat is not the worst thing I can do for my health. Though some studies suggest there are heart benefits with extremely low fat diets, it would be silly for me to think that I wouldn’t be missing out on some amazing benefits for my heart, brain, and body by eliminating healthy fats from nuts, seeds, and my favorite… AVOCADO.

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This past week, I have been trying out all sorts of back-to-school recipes: crackers, chickpea chicken nuggets, and these delectable, fudgy brownies.


The steps are so simple for these brownies that they will only take about 10 minutes to prepare. Simply use a food processor to blend avocado, 2 “flax eggs” and coco powder.

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Then, combine this with some additional ingredients to add taste and texture and spoon out into a brownie pan. (Look at this awesome pan, it allows all of the brownies to have crusted edges!)

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Place the brownies in the oven for about 20 minutes, and when they’re cooled off, they’re ready to eat! These guys are best a few minutes out of the oven, where you’ll find that they have maximum fudgy-ness. Seriously, look at that inside!

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These brownies are totally guilt-free and delicious. I can’t wait to make another batch of these for my first week of senior year. Nothing says “You will get through this school year” like a homemade vegan treat!

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Fudgy Vegan Avocado Brownies


Ingredients:

  • 1 avocado
  • 2 tablespoons flaxseed meal + 6 tablespoons water
  • 1/2 cup coco powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 1/3 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F and prepare brownie pan with baking spray
  2. Blend avocado, coco powder, and “flax eggs” in a food processor or blender, until creamy. Add more water if necessary
  3. In a bowl, add baking powder, all purpose flour, sugar, and salt
  4. Add avocado and chocolate puree to the dry ingredients. Then, add water and vanilla extract into the bowl and stir all the ingredients together until smooth
  5. Add brownie batter into brownie pan and place into the oven for 20-25 minutes or until cooked all the way through. After baking, remove from oven and let chill for about 5-10 minutes before serving

Rich and Tasty Avocado Hummus with Baked Tortilla Chips

We may have a slight problem. Mark loves hummus — on veggies, with crackers, on sandwiches, he can’t get enough. Jenna, on the other hand, just discovered her love for avocado, a food that she had been too scared to try up until a few weeks ago, when she fell in love with it. Our love for these plant-based foods sparked a mission to create a spread that was sharp and smooth like hummus but also creamy and decadent like avocado. Thus, we set out to make avocado hummus.

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Not only is this hummus extremely easy to make (it won’t take longer than 10 minutes!), it is packed with amazing nutrients — the fat in avocados is largely monosaturated and is touted for its ability to lower LDL. Avocados are also filled with phytochemicals, which are believed to be cancer-fighting in the body. Best of all, they are creamy and light and make for a perfect flavor and consistency in a hummus spread!

Traditional homemade hummus calls for tahini (a sesame seed paste) and olive oil, making the mixture somewhat fatty. Because we already included avocados, however, we felt that excluding these oils would be okay — we were right! It still tasted amazing and was perfectly creamy and satisfying.

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To go with our hummus, we also cut up some corn tortillas and baked them in the oven. As a small experiment we added olive oil on some of the triangles and left some without the oil. Though those with oil ended up browning nicely, we thought they tasted virtually the same, so if you are trying to cut back on oil, rest assured, these chips do not need them!

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If you are ever craving a yummy little snack, don’t resist trying it out! We have recently gotten back into running about 3 miles a day and coming home to a treat like this is simply amazing! It’s so simple and quick to make that it will be well worth the effort!


Rich and Tasty Avocado Hummus with Baked Tortilla Chips (Serves 2-3)

(Vegan, Soy Free, Oil Free, Nut Free)


Ingredients: 

Hummus:

  • 1 can of chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 ripe avocado, cut into 2 parts
  • 1-2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 3 tablespoons of water or vegetable broth

Tortilla Chips:

  • 5 corn tortillas

Directions:

Hummus:

  1. Add the chickpeas, avocado, garlic, and liquid into a blender. Blend together until smooth. Add liquid as needed until consistency is as desired

Tortilla Chips

  1. Set oven to 475°F
  2. Cut corn tortillas into triangles or desired shape and lay out pieces over a pan that has been covered in aluminum foil
  3. Place in oven for about 6 minutes or until cooked as desired

Tips:

  • If you would like to bring out more of a “hummus-y” flavor, a small drop of sesame oil would also work nicely to bring out a familiar fragrance
  • For a less prominent “guacamole” taste, try adding another half or full can of chickpeas into the mixture
  • We made this hummus in a Magic Bullet blender and the blender was filled to the top, so it was quite difficult to blend some of the chickpeas. For this particular recipe, a Vitamix may work better if available
  • Try this dip with veggies or crackers! Yummmm!
  • This recipe was adapted from the Engine 2 hummus recipe, check out their base and try out all of the different variations that they recommend, or make your own! They will all turn out lovely, guaranteed