Forget butternut squash risotto, and bring on butternut squash brownies with cacao! Super healthy, full of antioxidants, rich and chocolatey and deliciously moist. A tasty way to get butternut squash into your diet and a great one for kids who don’t eat enough veg. These healthy dairy free chocolate brownies have shocked many of my personal tasters (friends) who otherwise really dislike butternut squash.
An anti-ageing brownie anyone? These chocolate brownies provide a super high dose of vitamin C and beta carotene (which gives butternut squash its distinctive yellow / orange colour), providing your cells with healthy antioxidants. Cacao also contains powerful antioxidants called flavanoids. Combine all these antioxidants with the protein and healthy fats in the almond flour and eggs, and you have a very healthy chocolate brownie.
Ingredients (serves 9):
- 400g butternut squash
- 100g cacao powder
- 50g (5 tbsp.) wholegrain spelt flour
- 50g (5 tbsp.) ground almonds
- 100g coconut sugar
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 100g (4 tbsp.) coconut oil
- 4 eggs
1. Preheat the oven to 160 deg C. I recommend using this temperature, as almonds are not heat stable above 180 deg C, so the healthy omega-3 and omega-6 fats can be ruined if heated too high.
2. Line a square or rectangle cake tin (approx 21cm / 8 inch length and width) with baking paper, (or 1 tsp. coconut oil alternatively)
3. Chop the butternut squash into approx. 2cm cubes. Steam for 25 minutes, or until soft. If you do not have a steaming pan, you can boil, however more nutrients are kept with steaming. The skins can be left on, or removed if you wish.
4. In a large bowl, mix together the cacao powder, spelt flour, ground almonds, coconut sugar and baking powder, making sure the baking powder is evenly spread. Sieve the baking powder before mixing if it has clumped.
5. Melt the coconut oil in a pan on a low heat for a few minutes, until liquid.
6. While the coconut oil is melting, add the butternut squash and eggs to a food processor.
7. Pour the melted coconut oil into the food processor (with the butternut squash and eggs) and blend until you have a smooth consistency.
8. Add the blended wet mixture to the bowl containing the dry ingredients, and stir until fully mixed together.
9. Pour the cake mixture into the baking tray and bake at 160 deg C for 30 minutes.
10. Leave the brownies to set in the cake tin for at least 15 minutes before removing. These brownies are delicate and can break when warm, so only take them out to leave on a wire rack after this time.
10. Once the brownies are completely cooled, use a sharp knife to cut into 9 sections.
Enjoy your antioxidant filled healthy chocolate brownies. A real treat for anyone who likes indulgent rich moist chocolate treats!