I found this recipe about a week ago when searching from a healthy chocolate recipe. The more I searched for chocolate recipes that contained zucchini, the more I discovered that a lot of people have made this recipe and blogged about it. I noticed that in some pictures, the brownies were more of a golden brown color instead of the rich, chocolate brown in the original picture. For a second I thought about adding some cocoa into the batter thinking it may not be chocolaty enough, but decided against it to try how I liked the original recipe as is first and I'm glad I did. I did add 2 tablespoons of mini chocolate chip on the top of the brownies since it was all that was leftover from another recipe.
The chocolate chips give these brownies a rich, smooth chocolate taste that pairs well with the light sweetness from the raw honey, and hint cinnamon gives the brownies extra depth. Unlike some recipes with almond butter, these brownies don't have a grainy texture; they actually are incredibly moist from the zucchini and hard to believe they have no type of flour as a binder. So even if you don't have to follow any special dietary restrictions this recipe is a good and healthy change from other desserts.
Healthy Zucchini Brownies (Paleo)
1 cup almond butter
1 1/2 cup zucchini (1 2/3 small zucchini), cleaned & grated
1/3 cup raw honey
1 egg (or a "flax egg")
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg *
1 cup dark chocolate chips
2 tbsp mini chocolate chips for topping, optional
*If you have ground nutmeg then the recipes says to use 1/2 tsp. We only keep whole nutmeg that we grate when needed (the flavor lasts longer and is fresher) which like most spices are stronger when fresh so I just grated a little bit of fresh nutmeg in the batter without measuring.
>Small specks of green from the zucchini skins are visible so If you want to be sneaky and not let anyone know there is zucchini, you can peel before grating.
>The chocolate chips will sink to the bottom (some people hate when this happens- I really didn't mind since there were mini chocolate chips on top) so you could toss 1 tbsp of gluten free (or regular if not gluten intolerant) all purpose flour in a separate bowl with the 1 cup of chocolate chips before adding it into the batter. This will help keep the most of the chocolate suspended in the batter while cooking.
>> I also try to have the ingredients for a recipe on hand, but sometimes have to sub in other ingredients. I strongly advise to always try a recipe as written first to know how it's suppose to taste and then go from there if you want to change things. Some people (comments I read) almost completely changed the recipe by using peanut butter, agave nectar, reduced the cinnamon, left out the nutmeg, and/or used cocoa powder instead of chocolate chips instead of the original ingredients.
2. In a medium bowl, combine the almond butter, honey, egg, vanilla, baking soda, cinnamon, and nutmeg using an electric beater until blended (the batter will be thick, don't worry).
3. Stir in the zucchini and 1 cup of chocolate chips until incorporated -the batter will loosen up since the zucchini contains a lot of moisture.
4. Pour batter into prepared pan, sprinkle with the mini chocolate chips, and bake for 35-45 minutes.
5.Let the pan cool for about 20 minutes on a wire rack before grabbing the parchment paper and lifting it brownies out of the pan to finish cooling on the rack.
These are good at room tempature or zapped in the microwave for a few seconds.