An easy recipe for coconut flour brownies. These fudgy paleo brownies are made with cocoa powder and sweetened with maple syrup.
This brownie recipe is based on Alton Brown’s wonderful recipe. I adapted it to include coconut flour instead of wheat flour and added maple syrup as a sweetener instead of the sugar in the original recipe.
It took some trial and error, as expected, but I’m happy to say that these gluten-free brownies are wonderful! They are rich, fudgy and very flavorful.
The ingredients you’ll need
You’ll only need a few simple ingredients to make these paleo coconut flour brownies. The exact measurements are included in the recipe card below. Here’s an overview of what you’ll need:
Eggs: I use large eggs in most of my recipes, this one included.
Pure maple syrup: Adds not just sweetness and flavor but also moisture, so you can’t replace it with a granulated sweetener.
Butter: I use unsalted butter, melted. I love using creamy European butter. But any butter will be great.
Vanilla extract: Try to use the real thing – pure vanilla extract – and not the artificially flavored stuff.
Cocoa powder: I use unsweetened cocoa powder. I prefer using Dutch-processed cocoa, which is less acidic than natural cocoa powder.
Coconut flour: Since it’s extremely absorbent, I recommend measuring it by weight rather than by volume, for the most accurate results.
Kosher salt: If using fine salt instead, use just 1/4 teaspoon.
How to make coconut flour brownies
It’s so easy! Scroll down to the recipe card for the detailed instructions. Here are the basic steps:
Lightly whisk together the eggs, maple syrup, melted butter, and vanilla. You don’t want too much air in the batter or it will end up cake-like and not dense and chewy as a brownie should be.
Gradually add the cocoa powder, the coconut flour, and the salt.
Pour the mixture into a buttered square 8-inch pan. Bake at 325°F for 30-40 minutes, depending on your oven. Brownies are ready when a toothpick inserted in the pan’s center comes out not wet, but also not completely dry.
Cool the brownies before cutting and serving.
Substituting coconut flour for wheat flour
Coconut flour is very absorbent and can render baked goods extremely dry. Generally, a recipe needs 1/4 cup of added liquid for each 1/4 cup of coconut flour used.
So the addition of a liquid sweetener – maple syrup in the case of these coconut flour brownies – is important not just as a replacement to white sugar, but also to counteract the drying effects of the coconut flour.
These are not very sweet
These brownies are not very sweet. They will taste great if you like extra dark chocolate such as Lindt 85% or 90% cacao. But if you like your desserts sweeter than this, then it’s possible that this recipe isn’t a good fit for you.
What cocoa to use
I prefer using Dutch-processed cocoa powder. It’s less acidic than natural cocoa powder, and I generally find it tastier. But if all you have on hand is natural cocoa powder, that should work too.
Don’t overbake the brownies
This is an easy recipe that comes together quickly. As always with brownies (or any chocolate baked good, really), make sure you don’t overbake the batter.
It’s better to underbake than to overbake brownies. Slightly underbaked brownies will be wonderfully gooey, even if a bit difficult to cut. Overbaked brownies will be dry and chalky.
How to store coconut flour brownies
Once completely cool, I store them in the fridge, in an airtight container. I find that they keep well for about a week.
Remember to remove them from the fridge an hour before you plan on enjoying them. Or very briefly warm them in the microwave, 10 seconds per square on 50% power.
More baked goods that you might like
These almond butter paleo muffins are wonderful. They taste like fluffy little honey cakes!
And if you’d like to try a low-carb recipe for fudgy brownies, try these keto brownies. They are amazing!
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Coconut Flour Brownies
- 1/2 tablespoon butter for pan
- 4 large eggs
- 1 cup pure maple syrup
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
- 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/2 cup coconut flour
- 1/2 teaspoon Diamond Crystal kosher salt
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Butter the bottom and sides of a square 8-inch Pyrex baking dish.
- Lightly whisk together the eggs, maple syrup, melted butter, and vanilla, just until incorporated. You don’t want too much air in the batter or it will end up cake-like and not dense and chewy as a brownie should be.
- Using a fine-mesh strainer, gradually sift the cocoa powder into the mixture, stopping once in a while to whisk it in.
- Add the coconut flour and the salt, whisking to combine.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan, using a rubber spatula to get it all out of the bowl.
- Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out not wet but not completely dry, with a few moist crumbs. This should take 30-40 minutes, depending on your oven.
- Cool the brownies for 30 minutes, in the pan, before cutting into squares and serving.