Gluten-Free Peppermint Brownies

Gluten Free Peppermint Brownies

Few combinations of flavors say “Holidays” quite like chocolate and peppermint. And what better way to showcase this sweet and tantalizing duo than dark chocolate brownies studded with melted candy cane pieces.

Cool minty crunch contrasted with rich, chocolaty goodness… It’s no wonder that peppermint brownies have remained a classic holiday favorite for decades.

But like most holiday treats, peppermint brownies are one baked good you should generally avoid if you’re watching your waistline (and your health).

In fact, boxed brownie mixes notoriously contain ingredients that spike blood sugar levels (encouraging weight gain and physical aging) and expose your body to a load of harmful substances. And the red and white candy canes that add sweet, minty crunch are filled with artificial colors, sugar and corn syrup (or gut-harming sucralose in the “sugar-free” varieties).

The research on how these “allowable” ingredients can harm your health is extensive:

  • Hydrogenated oils (trans fat): Although the Institute of Medicine claims there is “no safe level” to consume, many packaged brownie mixes still use this ingredient, which has been proven to cause heart disease, diabetes, weight gain and brain changes associated with memory loss. And that’s not the only unhealthy fat in these products. Many also include omega-6-rich and genetically-modified vegetable and seed oils.
  • Corn syrup, sugar and refined flour: Known to elevate triglycerides and blood-sugar levels – key factors in heart disease and metabolic syndrome.
  • Sucralose: An organochlorine that acts as a hormone disruptor and has been found to kill beneficial bacteria in the gut. A healthy microbiome is imperative for a strong immune system and optimal health.
  • Artificial colors: Linked to hyperactivity and attention deficits in children. Some are also known carcinogens.

And that’s just the beginning of the sour news on these sweet treats!

No fleeting experience of holiday “yum” is worth exposing your body to these health-harming ingredients and their potential long-term effects.

Fortunately, there is a better (and even more delicious) way…

Using what we call “intelligent ingredients,” Wellness Bakeries has created a rich chocolate brownies mix that is low-glycemic, gluten-free and low-sugar too. Our Better Brownies Mix is not only free from artificial sweeteners, trans fats, artificial flavors and colors, it’s also rich in antioxidants (thanks to a full cup of organic non-Dutched cocoa in every batch).

And while Better Brownies are delicious on their own, we used this chocolaty canvas for our better-for-you version of peppermint brownies. And the results were delightful!

Here’s the super-simple step by step…

Better-For-You Peppermint Brownies: The Simple Step-By-Step

First, gather your ingredients and tools… or, as the French would say, “Mise en place.”

You will need:

  • 1 Better Brownies Mix
  • 2 whole eggs, plus 1 egg yolk
  • 6 Tbsp. grass-fed butter or coconut oil
  • 2 candy canes. We recommend TruJoy Organic Candy Canes.They are gluten-free and contain no corn syrup or artificial colors. You may also try Dr. John’s Peppermint Pop hard candy, which are sugar-free and sweetened with xylitol (use 8 hard candies)
  • ½ tsp. real peppermint extract

Ingredients for Peppermint Brownies

You will also need an 8 x 8 square pan, a piece of parchment paper to make a sling (optional, but helpful), a medium saucepan, silicone spatula and a cooling rack.

Preheat your oven to 325 F and line your pan with the parchment paper. You might need to add a few drops of oil to the pan so the parchment will stay in place.

Prepare pan for peppermint brownies

Add the butter to the saucepan and heat over low until melted.

Melt the butter for Peppermint Brownies

Add Better Brownies Mix and stir over low heat. Continue stirring until fully combined and the delicious dark chocolate drops and cocoa liquor wafers within the mix are melted.

Adding Better Brownies Mix for Peppermint Brownies

Remove from heat. Add the eggs, one at a time. Stir vigorously after each addition.

Peppermint Brownies Batter

The brownie batter will thicken and take on that classic sheen. Stir in the peppermint extract.

Stirring the batter for Peppermint Brownies

Scrape the brownie batter into the parchment-lined pan. Spread evenly.

Peppermint Brownie Batter in Pan

Using a meat mallet or the bottom of a metal bowl, gently crush the candy canes. Leave a few larger pieces for interest and added crunch.

Crush Peppermint Brownies

Now sprinkle your candy cane shards over the brownie batter.

Peppermint Brownie Batter with Candy Canes

Transfer to the oven and bake 23-25 minutes. The edges should just begin to pull away from the pan and the candy cane pieces will melt into the top layer of the brownies.

Remove from the oven and cool the pan and brownies together on a baking rack. Alternately, you may use an ice bath as noted on the package. Once the brownies have cooled, remove from the pan and cut into squares.

Baked Peppermint Brownies

Enjoy!

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Gluten-Free Peppermint Brownies
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Yield: 16
Ingredients
  • 1 Better Brownies Mix
  • 2 whole eggs, plus 1 egg yolk
  • 6 Tbsp. grass-fed butter or coconut oil
  • 2 candy canes. (TruJoy Organic Candy Canes or Dr. John’s Candy Canes)
  • ½ tsp. real peppermint extract
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F and grease or line an 8 x 8 baking pan with parchment.
  2. In a medium saucepan, add the butter to melt.
  3. Stir in Better Brownies Mix, heating over low, to melt all chocolate pieces.
  4. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.
  5. Remove from heat, stir in the peppermint.
  6. Spread batter into prepared pan.
  7. Crush peppermint pieces and sprinkle over the top.
  8. Transfer to oven and bake 23-25 minutes, or just until edges of brownies begin to pull away.
  9. Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack or in an ice bath.
  10. Cut into squares and serve.
Notes
NUTRITION INFORMATION PER SERVING
124 calories, 11 g fat, 40 mg cholesterol, 88 mg sodium, 10 g carbohydrate*, 2 g fiber, 1 g sugar, 6 sugar alcohols*, 3 g protein

*Made with Dr. John's Peppermint Candy (xylitol based, sugar free)

 

Peppermint Brownies - PinterestDo you have a favorite holiday dessert combination?

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