These plant-based Gluten-Free Vegan Flourless Zucchini Brownies are a healthy brownie makeover recipe made with clean, real food ingredients. You'll love how easy it is to make them and that they contain no white flour, white sugar, eggs, butter or oil!
You won't believe these rich, fudgy and ultra-chocolate vegan flourless brownies are made without traditional baking ingredients.
Vegan Flourless Zucchini Brownies
How are "zucchini brownies" different from "regular brownies"?
Other than being a healthy, flourless brownie, these moist brownies are packed with melted chocolate chips and a secret ingredient.
What might that secret ingredient be?
I know...it sounds pretty weird, but I've actually made some wonderful recipes with zucchini.
I've even made a cheesecake with zucchini like this Chocolate Marbled Cheesecake and you'd never even know.
Are These Vegan Flourless Zucchini Brownies Healthy?
In my opinion, yes!
They are made with clean, real food ingredients like almond butter, cacao powder and naturally sweetened with maple syrup.
In comparison, here are some typical ingredients in a traditional brownie recipe and a store-bought boxed version:
S.A.D. (Standard American Diet) Traditional Homemade Brownie Ingredients: Ingredients: 3/4 cups cocoa, 2/3 cup butter, 2 cups white sugar, 2 eggs, 1 1/3 cup flour, 12 oz pkg chocolate chips, 1/4 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp baking soda, 1 tsp vanilla extract
S.A.D. (Standard American Diet) Pillsbury Brownie Classics Traditional Fudge Brownie Mix: Ingredients: Sugar, Flour Enriched Bleached (Wheat Flour, Niacin Vitamin B3, Iron, Thiamine Mononitrate Vitamin B1, Riboflavin B2, Folic Acid Vitamix B9), Soybeans Oil Partially Hydrogenated, Cottonseed Oil Partially Hydrogenated, Cocoa, Corn Starch, Salt, Flavors Natural and Artificial Baking Soda, Milk Non-Fat, Soy Lecithin
The store-bought version contains bleached flour, refined white sugar and salt and GMO's (dairy, soybeans, and cornstarch).
And, the homemade recipes aren't much better...made with dairy, white flour, white sugar, and salt - and they're not vegan or gluten-free.
This healthier plant-based version is vegan, gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free, egg-free, paleo-friendly, and contains no refined sugars.
How To Make Vegan Flourless Zucchini Brownies: Step-by-Step Instructions
Before beginning, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
After that, prepare an 8 x 8 baking dish lined with parchment paper and set it aside.
Step 1: Prepare the Zucchini
Firstly, you'll need to prepare the zucchini with two options:
- Grater - Peel and grate the zucchini with a grater. It should look like finely shredded coconut.
- Food Processor - Peel the zucchini and add to a food processor. Process until it is shredded but taking care to not overprocess.
Important: Above all, make sure to squeeze as much liquid as possible from the shredded zucchini with a nut milk bag. If there's too much liquid in the zucchini, the brownies will be "soggy" and won't bake properly.
Step 2: Prepare the Flax Egg
Secondly, add the ingredients for the flax egg to a small bowl, whisk them together, and set aside.
Step 3: Prepare the Brownies
Thirdly, measure out and add all the ingredients for the brownies to a medium-sized mixing bowl.
Re-whisk the flax egg and add it into the mixing bowl.
Stir all the ingredients together until well combined.
Step 4: Add the Add-In
Fourthly, add the chocolate chip add-in and stir until evenly distributed.
Step 5: Bake the Brownies
Lastly, transfer the brownie mixture to the prepared baking dish and spread it evenly.
Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Allow the brownies to cool before slicing and serving.
Store in an air-tight BPA-free container.
Expert Tips + Ingredient Substitutions for Vegan Flourless Zucchini Brownies
Zucchini. The zucchini can be prepared in two ways:
- Grater - Use a handheld grater to finely grate the zucchini. For example, it should have the texture of shredded coconut.
- Food Processor - Peel the zucchini then add to a food processor. Process until it is finely shredded.
However, whichever method you use, make sure to squeeze as much liquid from the zucchini as possible using a nut milk bag. Too much liquid in the zucchini will cause the brownies to be "soggy" and not bake properly. See "Notes" in the recipe section for more detail.
Flax Egg. This can be substituted with 1/3 cup of organic applesauce.
Almond Butter. Organic peanut butter is a good substitute - but is not paleo. In addition, I haven't tested it but you can also try organic sunflower butter.
Cacao Powder. Can be substituted with regular cocoa powder.
Vanilla Extract. You can use either organic pure vanilla extract or 100% organic vanilla bean powder, in the same amount.
Chocolate Chips. I prefer to use semi-sweet mini chocolate chips, but regular-size chocolate chips would work as well.
Want More Healthy Plant-Based Vegan and Gluten-Free Desserts?
Check out these:
- Matcha Green Tea Chocolate Chip Brownies
- Gluten-Free Vegan Walnut and Oat Brownies
- Raw Vegan Cinnamon Brownies
- or my CLEAN DESSERTS Cookbook with 72 plant-based vegan + gluten-free no-bake dessert recipes made with clean, real food ingredients just like this one that you will love!
Gluten-Free Vegan Flourless Zucchini Brownies
For the zucchini:
- 1 1/2 cup organic zucchini (peeled and finely grated)
For the flax egg:
- 1 tablespoon organic ground flax seeds
- 2 tablespoons filtered/purified water
For the brownies:
- 1 cup organic almond butter
- 1/3 cup organic maple syrup
- 1/3 cup organic cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon organic pure vanilla extract*
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
For the add-in:
- 1 cup Enjoy Life semi-sweet mini chocolate chips**
Prepare the zucchini:
- Peel the zucchini then finely grate it or process it through a food processor.
- You will need to measure 1 1/2 cups of finely grated zucchini for the recipe.
- Take a handful of the grated zucchini at a time and squeeze it tightly to release as much water as possible. This is very important and will keep the brownies from getting soggy.
Prepare the flax egg:
- Add the ingredients for the flax egg to a small bowl and whisk together. Set aside.
Prepare the brownies:
- Add all the ingredients for the brownies (including the grated zucchini + flax egg to a medium-sized bowl and stir until well combined.
Add the add-in:
- Add the chocolate chip add-in to the brownie mixture and stir until they are evenly distributed.
Bake the brownies:
- Pour the mixture into the prepared baking dish and spread evenly.
- Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick or fork comes out clean.
- Allow the brownies to cool before slicing and serving.
- Store in an air-tight BPA-free container.
Hi, I'm Karielyn! I'm the published cookbook author of CLEAN DESSERTS and content creator of The Healthy Family and Home website since 2012. I specialize in creating easy, healthy plant-based recipes that are gluten-free + vegan and made with clean, real food ingredients that you can feel good about eating.