Maureen’s Old Fashioned Chocolate Brownies – Low FODMAP, Gluten Free & Dairy Free

Old Fashioned Chocolate Brownies - low FODMAP, gluten free, dairy free

When I was younger, a friend of Mum and Dad’s always made a plate of her amazing chocolate brownies on special occasions. At Christmas and on birthdays, Sharon would turn up with an ice cream container filled with chocolatey goodness – and Dad would then say that they weren’t made for the kids. He was terrible at hiding them, though, so it all worked out in the end. The second drawer in the garage filing cabinet wasn’t such a clever place, after all.

For years, I’ve been trying to work up the courage to try out brownies. It’s not that they’re an exact science, or really fiddly, like pastry but they weren’t ever made in my house, so I didn’t have any tried and true recipes to go from/convert to be gluten free and FODMAP friendly…

… Which is why I snagged someone else’s (not so) secret family recipe and FODMAPified that, instead. Apparently it’s at least 75 years old! I’ve been following Maureen, the Orgasmic Chef, for a few years now and am continuously wowed by what she creates – and her pace of blogging. Fair warning, it’s not a blog for those with food intolerances, so you’ll have to put on your thinking caps and tweak the recipes yourself but, really, I like that, as it allows me to give my own flare to meals at the same time.

After my first attempt, I was a little disheartened, as my brownies hadn’t developed the crispy/flaky crust that I love so much. After a bit of searching, I discovered that the more you beat your eggs, the more pronounced this crust will be, as it’s actually a thin layer of meringue. Well, I decided to go all out and whip the egg whites and sugar together before adding them to the mixture and voila! Batch number two had a perfect layer of brownie crispiness on top.

These little beauties take almost no time at all to whip up and you’ll end up with cake-like brownies; just chocolatey and sweet enough to satisfy a mid-afternoon or late night craving without making you feel sick and guilty. Perf. Maureen very kindly allowed me to share my altered version with you guys here, so thank her!

FODMAP Notes

  1. Unsweetened dairy free dark chocolate is low FODMAP in the amounts called for in this recipe.
  2. Coconut oil is FODMAP friendly (it’s 100% fat, no carbs) but it can be replaced with butter if you can tolerate dairy. PS. Butter is low in lactose, just not lactose free.
  3. I’ve reduced the sugar called for in Maureen’s original recipe, both to suit my tastes and to reduce the overall fructose load of the brownies. Feel free to up it back to 2 cups if you want and you know you can tolerate it.
  4. Almonds and walnuts are low FODMAP in the amounts called for in this recipe.
  5. I use milk in this recipe (even though the original doesn’t call for any), as gluten free baked goods are notoriously dry and need a little extra moisture to keep them soft. Use coconut/almond/rice milk etc if dairy free is required, or lactose free dairy milk if not.
  6. The chocolate chips are optional, just, as above, use chocolate that follows your dietary requirements.

Maureen’s Old Fashioned Brownies

Makes approximately 32.

  • 120 g unsweetened dark chocolate
  • 4 tbsp. coconut oil or butter
  • 1 cup castor sugar
  • 3 eggs, separated
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 cup gluten free flour, sifted
  • 1/2 cup almond meal
  • 1/2 tsp. xanthan gum
  • 1 heaped tbsp. cacao powder
  • 1 pinch kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup low FODMAP milk of your choice
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips (optional)

Preheat your oven to 180 C/350 F and grease and line a 9×13″ baking tray – or two 9×9″ cake tins (or there abouts), if you’re like me and don’t have the full sized pan.

Melt the chocolate and coconut oil together over a very low heat (so as not to burn the chocolate). Mix thoroughly and set aside.

In a large bowl, beat the egg whites until fluffy and soft peaks form, then add in the castor sugar beat for another minute. Pour in the melted chocolate mixture, along with the egg yolks and vanilla, and mix until combined.

Add in the flours, cacao powder and xanthan gum and stir through, before adding in the milk. Finally, thoroughly stir through the chopped nuts and the optional chocolate chips, before pouring the mixture into the prepared baking tins and baking for 20-25 minutes, or until they just test clean with a skewer.

Let them cool to room temperature before slicing and serving, or they might crumble while you cut them. Enjoy them with some fresh strawberries and tea or coffee. Yum.

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And a behind the scenes shot… it’s almost warm enough for the poor, shaggy creature to get a hair cut.

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Double Chocolate Muffins – Fructose Friendly & Gluten Free

Double Chocolate Muffins - Fructose Friendly & Gluten Free

These chocolate chip muffins were an experiment for Evgeny – one which thankfully proved successful! After I made a batch of banana nut muffins, he was eating them and adding in chocolate chips separately; two per mouthful. I asked him what he was doing and I was told that all muffins should have chocolate chips, no exceptions.

You know the saying, “Happy wife, happy life?” The same holds true for husbands (or any partner), minus the catchphrase. Well, this is my answer to that. He won’t need to add any extra chocolate to these! And keeping with that theme, these would go down a treat on Valentine’s Day and earn you some serious brownie points… chocolate brownie points… Mmmmm, brownies.

Notes:

  1. Monash released an update a few months ago that states that 3 tsp. (1 tbsp.) of cocoa powder are low FODMAP. If you put in the full 6 tbsp. of cocoa powder, then you only get 1/4 tbsp. of cocoa powder per muffin. You’re sweet!
  2. Buttermilk isn’t lactose free but you can replace it with LF milk with a dash of lemon juice added – alternatively, just use a dairy free milk of your choice.
  3. I used dark chocolate chips in these muffins but you can use any type you like that you can tolerate.
  4. Almonds are listed as low FODMAP in servings of 10 nuts or less – the 1/2 cup spread over 24 muffins is well within this.
  5. I am loving how well virgin coconut oil creams with sugar – so much better than normal butter – but of course, either works well in this recipe.

Double Chocolate Muffins

Makes 24 muffins.

  • 3 cups GF plain flour
  • 1/2 cup almond meal
  • 3-6 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. xanthan gum
  • 1 cup virgin coconut oil/softened unsalted butter
  • 1 cup castor sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 2 tsp. white wine vinegar
  • 1 to 1 1/2 cups chocolate chips (white, milk, dark or a mixture – whatever you tolerate)

Preheat the oven to 180 C/350 F and line two 12 hole muffin trays with patty pans.

In a large bowl, sift the plain flour, almond meal, cocoa powder, salt, baking powder and xanthan gum and set it aside.

In the bowl of your stand mixer, cream the coconut oil (or butter) and sugar for 2-3 minutes on a medium speed. Add in the eggs and continue to beat on medium for another 203 minutes, until the mixture is completely smooth. Next, add in the vanilla and beat until combined.

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Now add the white wine vinegar to the buttermilk and add the buttermilk mixture in while continuing to beat on low, alternating with the dry ingredients – 1/4 of each at a time. When all the ingredients are in the stand mixer’s bowl, beat on medium until they are thoroughly combined and then switch to a low speed before adding in the chocolate chips and beating for another minute.

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Place a lightly heaped 1/4 cup of the batter in each and bake for 20 minutes – rotating the trays from top to bottom halfway through to ensure even cooking – if you have a fan forced oven you will not need to do this… lucky you!

Let them sit for 15 minutes before placing the muffins on a cooling rack to come to room temperature.

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To serve, either dust them with icing sugar or make a chocolate ganache icing for an extra rich chocolate hit.

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