Since I’m sugar-free this month, a lot of my friends have been asking me if I had any dessert recipes lined up for this month. “Sure, sure,” I waved them off. “I’m sure I’ll find a nice sugar-free dessert or something.” Well, it’s day 10 into sugar-free month and nearly half way through February, and all I have to show are savory treats on my blog.


Until now. Folks, meet my first sugar-free dessert of the month — flourless mocha brownies!


Is it possible to make a dessert without any sugar? Yes, but it’s pretty damn difficult. Before I started this sugar-free challenge, I foolishly thought it would easy to find a somewhat appealing sugar-free dessert. Boy was I wrong. You know how diets come and go? It was Atkins in the late 90s, the Zone after that, and so on… well, it turns out sugar-free itself is a fad diet that’s come and gone. No one has sugar-free recipes anymore! At least, not any good looking ones. Now a days, the craze is all about being gluten-free or paleo. And maybe I should milk it? Perhaps this is where I’ll find my unicorn: a good dessert that happens to be sugar-free.



And so I was right.
Behold my brownies. They are pretty on-trend: gluten-free, flourless, no refined sugar added, and paleo. They’ve been adapted from Practical Paleo, a cookbook that I’ve had on my bookshelf for a while and dutifully ignored while baking the delicious, sugar- and white flour-filled treats you see on this blog. These brownies are basically the polar opposite of what I’ve made in the past, filled with natural sweeteners like maple syrup and coconut oil. Although these brownies might be one of the healthiest things on my blog, they taste almost exactly like flour-and-sugar filled brownies — dense, chewy, and chocolatey. Perfect with a scoop of ice cream or a glass of milk. 
Ah, sugar-free February. Trust me to pick a diet that’s several years behind the trend. Oh well. I’m just another analog watch in a digital world? Or something. Eitherway, I can’t wait until this month is over. Seriously.


Get the Recipe: Flourless Mocha Brownies

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  • 4 oz. dark chocolate*, melted and cooled (*I used unsweetened chocolate, but if you don’t have any sugar restrictions, I highly suggest using a chocolate that’s 55% cocoa)
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil, melted into liquid form and cooled
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • 3 eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons strong coffee, at room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon espresso powder


  • Preheat the oven to 375 (F).
  • In a medium bowl, combine 4 oz. dark chocolate, 1/2 cup coconut oil, 1/2 cup maple syrup, and 3 eggs until well incorporated.
  • Slowly sift 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons cocoa powder over the wet ingredients (from the second step), whisking it evenly until combined. Add 2 tablespoons strong coffee and 1 tablespoon espresso powder, using a rubber spatula to stir until well combined.
  • Line your baking pan with parchment paper and spray with cooking spray. Fill the pan with the brownie batter (from the third step). Bake for 30 minutes, or until a toothpick in the center comes out completely clean. Let rest on a cooling rack for 10 minutes, before cutting into squares for serving.


(Adapted from Practical Paleo)
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