Gluten free and dairy free, fudgy olive oil chocolate brownies are a healthier twist on one of the most classic treats! Made with a base of almond meal, cacao and coconut sugar, with dark chocolate chunks studded in for extra indulgence.
Maybe it’s not the first food combination you think of, but olive oil and chocolate are just meant to be together. They have a certain silky smoothness in common, and then a contrast of bitter and sweet that just WORKS when they join up. That’s why these olive oil chocolate brownies are so damn tasty!
Since coming back to Australia last year I’ve been lucky to have a partnership with Red Island Extra Virgin Olive Oil, who regularly send me oodles of their oil to use in my cooking*. Out of all the healthy fats in my kitchen, extra virgin olive oil is probably the one I feel most confident in, in terms of the evidence we have to back up the claims. Olive oil is rich in monounsaturated fatty acids (particularly oleic acid). The fatty acid profile has been associated with positive health benefits, particularly for our cardiovascular system, but also for our mood, memory and more.
I’ve also read it’s best to use a locally-made olive oil as it is likely to be fresher and retain more nutrients, which are gradually depleted by long storage times. So, if you can, try to source an extra virgin olive oil made from olives grown close to home (well, as close as possible).
Now that you’re all clued up on olive oil, lets just confirm why you need to get into the kitchen and bake these gorgeous bites.
These olive oil chocolate brownies are:
- super chocolatey – the cacao and dark chocolate combine to give you a really rich chocolate flavour, which is sure to satisfy any choccy craving;
- basically a one bowl recipe, nothing tricky (okay you need a second bowl to whisk the eggs, but in a rush I’ve just cracked the eggs into the dry ingredients and made it all in one bowl);
- full of the goodness of extra virgin olive oil, which also keeps the brownies moist and adds a slight bitterness that complements the chocolate and sweetness so well; and
- sweet, but not too sweet. I find coconut sugar has a gentle, kind of caramel element to it that gives the brownies depth but doesn’t make them sickeningly sugary tasting.
All in all, these olive oil chocolate brownies are basically the bomb, and I’m glad I made three test batches in one weekend because now I have a freezer full of them 🙂 I hope you love them too!
Olive Oil Chocolate Brownies
- 75 grams almond meal/flour - 3/4 cup
- 60 grams cacao powder - 1/2 cup
- 14 grams tapioca flour - 2 tbsp
- 100 grams coconut sugar - approximately 3/4 cup gently scooped, not packed
- 1/4 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 2 eggs
- 120 mL extra virgin olive oil - 6 tbsp
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 50 grams dark chocolate (I recommend 70% cocoa dark chocolate minimum)
- 60-70 grams walnuts - 1/2 cup, plus extra to decorate top if desired
- extra salt flakes - OPTIONAL, for sprinkling on top
- Preheat oven to 180C and line a small square baking tin or similar with baking paper. (My baking tin for the brownies pictured is about 22cm square.)
- Chop the dark chocolate into small pieces. Roughly chop the walnuts into smaller pieces as well. Set aside.
- Combine almond meal, cacao powder, tapioca flour, coconut sugar, baking powder and salt in a mixing bowl.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs and the vanilla. Pour into the dry ingredients, followed by the extra virgin olive oil. Stir everything together to form a smooth shiny batter.
- Fold in the chocolate and the walnuts. Scoop the batter into the lined baking tray and smooth down evenly. Sprinkle over additional chopped walnuts and a pinch of salt, if desired.
- Bake the brownies for 20-25 minutes, or until the top is cooked all the way across and slightly cracking. The centre of the brownies will still feel just slightly squishy but will firm up on cooling.
- Allow the brownies to cool to room temperature before slicing. Store brownies in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days, or freeze for a longer life.
- you can substitute unsweetened cocoa for the cacao powder;
- swap the walnuts to macadamia nuts, pistachios and/or pecans (all yum);
- if you can't get coconut sugar I think you could try making these with rapadura sugar but I haven't tried this option myself.
*I receive free olive oil from Red Island but this post is not specifically required/requested by Red Island, and I have not been financially compensated besides receiving olive oil. All opinions/thoughts expressed are my own.
So do you think coconut flour instead of tapioca could work? Cheers
Hi Jess, I wouldn’t recommend substituting coconut flour as it acts very differently in baking to tapioca flour. I would probably only swap the tapioca for cassava, arrowroot or corn flour. 🙂
This looks fantastic. I cannot eat almonds or almond meal. Are there any other gluten free suggestions to replace the almond meal?
Hi Anita, as the almond meal makes up the bulk of the dry ingredients in this recipe, it may be difficult to replace. Are you able to eat any nuts? The easiest substitute would be to use an alternative nut meal. However if that’s not possible, you could perhaps try teff flour – you may have to adjust the liquid ratio a little bit and add some milk as it will be a more dry consistency. I haven’t tried it in this recipe but teff flour does make a great brownie 🙂
These look delicious! Two quick questions, as I’d love to try them. Is there a replacement for tapioca flour? And what size baking tray please? x
Hi Hannah! I used a 22cm square baking tin to make these 🙂 With the tapioca flour you can substitute rice flour, arrowroot flour, buckwheat flour or alternatively just use a little extra cacao (the brownies become a little more bitter dark chocolate in taste but should still work!)
These look so delicious!! I love using olive oil in baked goodies as it makes them so much lighter and this is absolutely yumm.
Glad to hear you’re a fan of baking with olive oil too Molly! I am loving trying it out in different cakes and muffins at the moment. 🙂
Hi Monique, I am new to your site but have made your GF vegan buckwheat bread and am loving it!! I have recently discovered I need to be Egg free as well so can I make these brownies with a chia egg or flax egg? Am also wondering about the olive oil…..was my understanding that when using high temps avocado oil was a better choice. Any thoughts on this? Thank you so much for your creativity and for sharing your recipes that I know will help so many people. I now make the BW bread once a week and it is my everyday bread. Thank you so very much!!!!
Hi Shannon, thank you for your lovely message! If you want to replace the egg in the brownies I would try a flax egg. I find they work better in baking than a chia egg in most things. Regarding the olive oil, it’s actually a myth that it has such a low smoke point, olive oil can easily be used up to around 200 degrees Celsius. 🙂
I am so glad I found these olive oil brownies before Passover! What a perfect dessert to make for my family – dairy-free and grain-free. Thank you so much!!
Thanks so much Meredith! I really love these brownies and hope your family does too 🙂
YUM ! love love love chocolate. These look so moist and delicious. Love it !
Thank you so much ChihYu 🙂 I am also a huge chocolate fan and love baking my own treats to satisfy my cravings!
Carrie | Clean Eating Kitchen
These brownies look so rich and tasty! I love the addition of the olive oil, going to try these out for sure!
Thanks so much Carrie! Let me know if you try them 🙂
Grain free brownies with walnuts! I could eat these right now! I like that you include both units of your measurements. I’m guessing you use metric weights in Australia? Although, we’re officially metric in Canada, most of us use the American measurements for baking.
Thanks so much Cathy! 🙂 With regards to weights, yes we use the metric system here in Australia. For recipes I find it’s kinda 50/50 in terms of the measurements – a lot of people just use cups, teaspoons etc. but I find that method a bit inaccurate for baking. I like to weigh my baking ingredients… for other recipes I’m a bit less worried!
Those are some gorgeous brownies! I love the sneaking in of olive oil. Good job! 🙂
Thank you so much Raia! I love a little sneaky healthy fats where ever I can squeeze them in 🙂
Why haven’t I used olive oil in baking before?!? These look so rich and ahhhhhhmazing!!
Aw thanks so much Christina! I tend to forget about olive oil for baking too, but it really produces some lovely results. Need to keep experimenting with it!
I have really grown to love how olive oil taste over the years! I am super curious if the olive oil’s lovely flavour will come through in these brownies? Your baking always look super delish!
I think there is a slight hint of the olive oil flavour in these brownies; it brings out the bitter element of the dark chocolate and cacao. But not too much that it takes away from the sweet element – that’s what a brownie is all about right!
I bet that olive oil makes these brownies so moist and soft! Just how I like them! They look great! Thanks for the recipe!
It totally does! Keeps the brownies so nice and fudgy 🙂 Thanks so much Renee!
These look absolutely amazing and I love that they are grain free! I haven’t made brownies in forever and this might be my next one.
Thanks so much Jean! It had been far too long in between brownies for me too, but luckily now I have lots and lots of these stocked in my freezer 🙂
I totally agree with you about olive oil and chocolate making a great match! These brownies look so good!
Yay glad to hear there’s another chocolate and olive oil fan out there 🙂 Thanks so much Joni!
Those look positively decadent!
Thank you so much Linda!
These look dreamy! I love using olive oil in baked goods…haven’t tried in a chocolate version of anything yet though!
Thank you Tessa! You’ll have to try olive oil + chocolate together…honestly DREAMY. Just so good!
These…are…amazing! So good. I substituted the dark chocolate for a bit under half a cup of cacao nibs and omg. How do I stop eating them??
Hello Min, thank you SO much for this really sweet, lovely comment! Yum they would be so good with cacao nibs in them too, I am going to try that myself 🙂 Also thinking a nut butter swirl on top would be amazing!
These look so good…It’s been way too long since I’ve had a gooey and fudgy brownie. 🙂
Thanks so much Katie! I had so much fun testing these brownies out and am very happy to now have lots stocked up 🙂