A 'better for you' brownie for National Brownie Day

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FARGO — Christmas is still a couple of weeks away but fear not, another very important holiday is knocking at your doorstep.

Dec. 8 is "National Brownie Day." (Cue the trumpets heralding the arrival of chocolatey fudgy yumminess!) Like many of these weird holidays, we're not sure who started it, but aren't we so glad they did? It gives us an excuse to indulge and look back on how this glorious treat was created.

According to the National Culinary Review, the brownie is believed to have been born during the Columbian Exposition held in Chicago in 1893 when Bertha Potter Palmer asked the chef at her family's hotel to create a portable dessert that could be put inside a box lunch. The result was the Palmer House Brownie, a super rich, fudgy chocolate confection still sold today as "Bertha's Brownie."

Because of my attempts to eat low carb during the holidays, I'm opting for a brownie recipe that is a little better for me than most, but still tastes great! (What good is a bad brownie, am I right?) Replacing the traditional butter, all-purpose flour and white sugar with avocado, coconut flour and Stevia makes the version more heart-healthy, higher in protein and fiber and with fewer carbs. It's still not a health food, but certainly eases the guilt a bit.

When I brought these brownies to the office, most of my co-workers said they couldn't tell the difference from regular brownies. That might be, in part, because I thought they looked a little bare without frosting so I topped them with store-bought chocolate frosting I had in my pantry. (Let's be serious, you could put chocolate frosting on shoe leather, and it might taste good.) Even so, the brownies tasted great even without the frosting. I think I'll do this again. Brownies, whether your run-of-the-mill recipe or one that seeks to be a little better for you, are too good to pass up, especially on this very important holiday.

Better For You Avocado Brownies

Serves: 12

Ingredients:

2 avocados

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

4 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder

¼ cup Stevia powder

3 tablespoons coconut oil

2 eggs

Dry ingredients:

¾ cup almond flour

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

Frosting:

Top with dark chocolate chips or frosting of your choice 

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Peel the avocados and place in a food processor. Process until smooth. Place mixture in bowl and add vanilla, cocoa powder, Stevia, oil and eggs until combined. Add dry ingredients. Still until mixed.

Spread in an 8- by 8-inch greased square baking pan. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes. Take out of the oven, let cool and slice into 12 pieces. 

Recipe inspired by Keto Avocado Brownies from My PCOS Kitchen.