These paleo and keto brownies are extra fudgy, super easy, just 5 ingredients and 1g net carb a pop! Now that’s what we call the ideal low carb chocolate dessert! The recipe was first published on January 8th ’18, and has been updated to provide more info on various sweeteners.
The Ultimate Paleo & Keto Brownies 🍫
Ridiculously decadent, suuuper fudgy and intensely chocolatey, these keto brownies are one indulgent low carb chocolate treat. Plus, they’re suuuper easy and with staple (grain-free) pantry ingredients.
And guess what? Just 1g net carb per brownie. (Drumroll please!) 🥁
p.s. these are very chocolatey, as in proper chocolate! So ideal for you dark-chocolate-lovers out there.
Oh, and if you’re into brownies and cheesecake (who isn’t?!), do check out our keto cheesecake brownies based off these guys.
This recipe happens to be a keto adaptation based off Alice Medrich’s famous cocoa brownies, incidentally one of the most popular brownie recipes on the web. And the keto result varies little from the original, albeit perhaps a little less chewy and more melt-in-your-mouth sorta thing (courtesy of the lack of gluten).
Fun fact: Medrich’s original recipe called for beating vigorously with 40 strokes (exactly!) to incorporate the batter. Now that’s what we call precision.
A Couple (Very Simple!) Rules
We’ll start with the most important one: do not over-bake the brownies! Timing might just be the most important rule when making any type of brownie, so you don’t end up with a dry and crumbly mess. Keep an eye out for them, and take them out once the center is set and a toothpick inserted comes out moist (but not drenching).
We even prefer to slightly undercook them and chill them in the fridge before cutting. That’s the secret for extra fudgy brownies.
I’ve also noticed that when using powdered erythritol rather than xylitol (my favorite), you also need to decrease the baking time by about 5 minutes as they cook faster.
You’ll also want to use eggs at room temp. Reason being that if your cocoa/butter mixture is not hot enough (and your eggs are very cold), they’ll solidify the butter and your batter will be too thick (doesn’t affect the end results, just annoying to spoon rather than pour!).
And if possible, refrigerate the batter overnight. This is an old Medrich rule, but it does work a charm to get a richer texture (as the flavors have had a chance to mingle). Though if not possible, honestly don’t sweat it– we’ve done them either way multiple times. Just keep in mind that your batter will solidify in the fridge (as the butter sets), totally normal and just pop the baking dish in the oven as is.
Cocoa brownies are generally regarded as second best to their ‘molten chocolate bar’ counterparts, given that they’re generally more cake-like than fudgy. But that’s most definitely not the case here, as these are some of the fudgiest brownies you’ll ever make.
Albeit ‘healthier‘, as you can control the chocolate and fat input completely, so no added refined sugars, preservatives etc. And of course, cocoa powder is much less expensive than chocolate bars (particularly keto ones!). So think of these keto brownies as wallet-friendly too.
Cocoa or cacao? Both work great, just know that quality really matters here. Our favorite will forever be the Dutch-processed alkaline cocoa Valrhona, known to be one of (if not the) best cocoas in the world. But feel free to use a raw cacao powder (arguably more nutritional perks here), though keep in mind that your brownies will be lighter in color and more reddish in hue. Both are well and good, as long as they’re unsweetened.
p.s. a lightly sprinkle of flakey sea salt works wonders to cut through the chocolate in these guys! And Maldon flakes are the undisputed best, by a mile.
This recipe uses almond flour only (💥💃🎆!!). Yup, that’s it! Having said that, you can always sub half of the almond for hazelnut flour (think Nutella), if you wanna spiff things up a notch or give them a little twist.
In terms of brands, for the almond either Anthony’s or WellBees work great. Both are super fine grinds.
You’ve got a couple options here. Xylitol and allulose (use the higher amount as its less sweet1) have become my top choice (no aftertaste, best and chewier texture), Lakanto (barely any aftertaste, and many of you also love the Golden version), and powdered Swerve (some cooling sensation, but still great). Xylitol takes (much) longer to dry out though so your brownies will be extra delicate (think gooey) right after baking.
If using erythritol in any form, because it needs a little extra help to dissolve than xylitol (and they vary so much from brand to brand because of different fillers and so on!), you’ll want to be sure to use a powdered form. If you only have granular on hand, don’t sweat it, and simply blend it in your (very dry!) bullet or blender until powdered. Easy-peasy!
And one more thing to keep in mind, is that a few of you who have used erythritol (Swerve in particular) report back periodically that your batter ends up thick. This seems to be improved by microwaving rather than using a water bath, and using powdered rather than regular. Though there seems to be no hard rule here. Doesn’t seem to affect much the taste in the end, so just spread the batter rather than pour it in. But if you’re finding your brownies feel too thick, simply add in an extra egg (just don’t over-whisk or they could become more cakey).
Fun fact: it might also be my taste buds here, but I’ve noticed that stevia-based sweeteners (such as Pyure) don’t work so great when chocolate is involved as the aftertaste is accentuated. So I cannot recommend enough that you don’t use stevia-based sweeteners here.
Oh, and if just paleo or gluten free (or not restricted by sugars), simply sub 1-to-1 with coconut or regular sugar.
And if using xylitol, make sure to be careful if you have a pup (or kitty!) around the house, as it’s highly toxic to the little guys! 🐕
And… the video story!
(1g net carb!) Suuuper Fudgy Keto Brownies
- 130 g unsalted grass-fed butter or 8 TBS coconut oil + 1 TBS coconut cream if paleo
- 140-200 g xylitol allulose (use higher amount), powdered erythritol or coconut sugar if paleo*
- 80 g cocoa powder **
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 eggs at room temperature***
- 70 g almond flour
- flakey sea salt optional (but highly suggested!)
- unsweetened macadamia milk nice 'n cold!
- See recipe video for guidance!
- Position a rack in the lower third of your oven and preheat to 350°F/180°C. Line with parchment paper the bottom and sides of a 8x8-inch baking pan. Set aside.
- Add butter, sweetener, cocoa powder and salt to a medium heatproof bowl. Melt over a water bath whisking constantly (or use the microwave, in small increments). You'll want to heat it up until most of the sweetener has melted and the mixture is well incorporated (note that erythritol, unlike xylitol, won't dissolve much at this point). Remove from heat and allow the mixture to cool slightly.
- Add one egg at a time, whisking well after each one until completely incorporated. The texture should appear smooth, with all the sweetener dissolving into the mixture. And if using erythritol, and your batter ends up too thick, you may want to add an extra egg. Just be sure not to over-whisk, or your brownies could end up more cakey rather than fudgy.
- Add the almond flour, whisking vigorously until fully blended (about a minute).
- Bake for 15-25 minutes (we do about 23 with xylitol and 17 with erythritol), or until the center is just set and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out moist. This really does vary (a lot!!) from oven to oven (think convection etc), so give them a check from minute 15 the first time around, and remember that you'll brownies will continue to cook while they cool.
- Sprinkle with flakey sea salt (optional) and allow to cool completely on a rack. Lift brownies using the edges of the parchment paper and cut into desired size (we do 16!). To get extra clean edges, place in the freezer for 10 minutes prior to cutting.
Bonjour! Tout à l’air délicieux!!! J’aime votre site.
Merci beaucoup!! 🙂
Best brownies ever! I’ve honestly never really liked brownies, they were always dry and I felt like a double chocolate chip muffin was equivalent but actually moist, or even better molten chocolate cake! The only brownies I would like are the ones with chocolate chips that made it gooey. I made these and can’t get enough! Seriously, these are so moist, and as a dark chocolate lover these scratch the spot a little too well. I definitely have to be careful about not eating too many! The recipe is so simple too, followed all the tips except letting the batter sit overnight and they came out perfect! I can’t wait to make these again!
Thank you for your recipe! Do you have a recommendation to use as an egg substitute? Could I use flax eggs?
We were at a breaking point in our Keto and your brownies saved us!
Best keto recipe without any keto aftertaste hahaha
Glad you enjoyed Roy!! 🙂
Can I substitute honey for the sweeteners in this recipe? I’m on the sibo diet and can only have honey or stevia.
If using Powdered Erythritol how much should you use 140g or 200g?
Thanks in advance
This tasted soo great! I used coconut sugar as sweetener. However though, mine doesn’t seem to have such nice crackle on top despite following the recipe to a T. I’ve made regular brownies with perfect crackled top and applied the same techniques on this but… it just doesn’t work. Any ideas why so?
Mine had a bubbly layer of liquid (oil?) on top, I used coconut oil, not butter and powdered swerve. After adding the eggs (they were room temp) it’s seemed ike everything separated and it was a big clumpy mess. I tried baking It anyways and it never really rose, it’s just bumpy looking with oil on top, What happened?
Can’t wait to try these, Paula. Thank you so much. Have been a Lymey for 50 years. Sugar and carbs activate any hitchhikers we might have from yeasties to bacteria and in between. I am 82 and 98 pounds. Keto works well for me so i will visit you often!
I don’t usually comment on posts…but I just had to this time.
I have first lost weight on Keto about 7 years ago then was on and off when I needed it..now I need it again..post lockdown :((
I try eating as clean as possible and also I have never been keen on making alternative dessert that would be low carb, but yesterday I made these brownies! I had some xylitol around, less then the recipe said but I found it sweet enough for me, amazingly chocolatey, I am not sure if it turned out as it was suppose to but it was so aaaaamaaazing!!!!!!! It completely satisfied my chocolate craving and it’s so healthy that I want to have this for lunch and filling! 😀
Thanks! I will try some more of your recipes.
Super awesome these guys worked out for you Alice!! Hope you enjoy more recipes 😉
I’ve tried this twice and follow the exact instructions and even put the batter over night before cooking. The brownies still cakey and I even count 40 strokes for it but still cakey. I wanted the brownies to be fudgy. Any suggestions? Thank you
My raw “batter” came out a bit more dense than expected, so I added another egg. In hindsight I may have also loosened it up a bit more with coconut milk. I didn’t use the exact brands you did but did use the sweetener. Glad I did as I hate the aftertaste with most sweeteners. You’d think the boffins could fix that ongoing issue by now!!??
Overall lovely treat if new to keto, just limit the intake to OCCASIONAL, if not keto adapted! Thank you for the recipe.
Can you use swerve instead of Xlylitol
Can I use almond milk or other kind of milk to replace macadamia milk?
yes, the milk is just to drink with the brownies. it doesn’t go into the brownie.
Don’t forget dogs should not get chocolate to eat, either. Xylitol is very dangerous for them but please don’t forget so is chocolate.
I’ve been using this recipe for well over a year now. I use almond meal rather than flour (cheaper) and it’s just as good.
I double the recipe sometimes. It’s very foolproof. Thank you!
How different do the brownies taste with coconut oil instead of butter? I’m trying to stay off diary, but if they’re considerably nicer with the butter I could be tempted.
Hi! Im using erythritol and my batter is thick. Can i add 1 egg yolk instead of 1 whole egg? Thanks!
Might I ask a question re the suuuper Fudgy brownie. I am on strict Keto and I do not wish to make a mistake. The nutrition info says 3g carb/1g net per serving, yet there is almond flour and a good amount of xylitol. Am I understanding this incorrectly? Thank you. Michelle
I input this into MyFitnessPal. I used 9 servings instead of 16, though (I LOVE brownies – haha). Total carbs: 6.1g. Fiber: 2.6g. So 3.5g net carbs for this recipe using 9 servings.
What is the best way to store these?
Wow… I am forever in your debt for this recipe. I have tried a few Keto friendly baking recipes in the couple of months I’ve been following a Keto diet and haven’t been that impressed, but these brownies are a game changer. I used the lower amount of erithrytol and substituted 10g of the cacao powder for instant coffee as my husband loves anything coffee flavoured. Baked for 23 mins in a fan assisted oven at 180 degrees and they came out perfectly. So gooey and fudgy, exactly how brownies should be. My Keto journey will now be a lot easier with these little gems. Thank you. xxx
I used 175g of powdered erythritol, coconut oil and coconut cream for dairy-free, Valrhona cocoa powder, and three eggs. The batter was very thick and didn’t really melt together over the water bath at all, but I stirred it as best as I could and let it cook a bit. The batter was still very thick and sticky even with three eggs added. So I had to spread it out in the pan with a spatula. I baked the brownies for 18 minutes and sprinkled with some flaky salt. The brownies were quite dense, but pleasantly so, and they were very yummy, and the sweetness level was appropriate. My daughter ate three for breakfast. I’ll try again sometime with xylitol.
Hi! Loving your recipes!! We want a keto cake like brownie. I know your recipe is more Fudgy and saw comments to add another egg which I tried. The amount of butter though gave our stomachs a big problem. Can the butter be cut in half? What adjustments need to be made to balance the reduction of butter? Thanks!!
ive made these and its amazing, although ive put it into carb manager and it said its 11g of net carbs per serving so im really confused if it is keto friendly or not
Please keep in mind that you need to subtract the sugar alcohols 😉
Oh my, I can not wait to try these!
Can u ask if you can use a substitute for almond flour? As my sons allergic to nuts (almost all nuts).
Also u have xylitol at home as I use it a lot with coffee, can I use this to sweeten?
You are amazing and so are these brownies!! I’ve tried countless keto recipes for desserts and they usually turn out nothing like the original sugar loaded AP flour version. But these brownies are great, I’ll continue to make them instead of my regular brownie recipes as well.
Have you used Allulose as a sweetener?
Have you tried it with Allulose?
Definitely! It works great, just make sure you use the upper range of sweetener as its 70% less sweet than sugar. xo!
Hello , these were amazing 🙌 . So good that I was planning on using this as a crust based for my thick chocolate cheesecake. Do you think it will work?
I refrigerated my batter overnight. It took almost 30 minutes to bake at 350 Fahrenheit. The oil Rose to the top well it was baking.
how many grams is one serving?
What happens if i use only around 100g of sweetener? will it affect the outcome/batter?
I’m wondering this as well. I made these brownies last night using 160g xtylitol and they were way too sweet.