Dark Chocolate Brownies

These brownies are the creation of Engine 2 participant and baker extraordinaire Lydia Heckendorf. Lydia started cooking four years ago and is a natural at knowing how to make food so terrific tasting!

  • Prep Time 15 minutes
  • Cook Time 20 minutes
  • Serves 20 brownies

Screen Shot 2014-11-12 at 8.47.43 AM


½ cup light brown sugar, packed

½ cup raw sugar

1 cup unsweetened applesauce

1 tablespoon Ener-G egg replacer mixed with ¼ cup water

¼ cup + 2 tablespoons non-dairy milk

1½ teaspoons vanilla extract

1½ teaspoons apple cider vinegar

1½ cups whole-wheat pastry flour

¾ cup cocoa powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon sea salt

1½ cups (dairy-free) chocolate chips or chunks



Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Combine the sugars and applesauce with an electric or hand-held mixer.

Beat in Ener-G mixture, non-dairy milk, vanilla and vinegar.

Combine the dry ingredients (except the chocolate chips) in a separate bowl.

Gradually add the dry mixture to the wet ingredients, then stir in the chocolate chips.

Pour the batter into a parchment lined (or non-stick silicone bake-ware) 9” x 13” baking dish.

Bake for 16 to 20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.  These are best made a day ahead for the best flavor.


  • Linda
    Posted at 12:55h, 12 November

    Where do you cane Ener G mixture egg?

    • Lora Baete
      Posted at 12:06h, 26 November

      I have found it at Kroger but any health food store would have it. 🙂

    • Magz
      Posted at 13:32h, 21 December

      Use chia seeds with a little water

      • disqus_jd6famZ0IA
        Posted at 02:55h, 28 January

        Or ground flax seeds with a little warm water.

        • Jeanette Krigholm
          Posted at 03:20h, 15 November

          Super to get tips on what you can use instead for Ener G egg mixture . Mvh Jeantte Sweden

    • Jen
      Posted at 09:33h, 27 March

      In the baking aisle of most grocery stores, especially health food stores.

  • Dora
    Posted at 20:05h, 30 November

    Looks great! I am going to try it with carob.

  • HealthNut
    Posted at 08:58h, 29 December

    can you just use dates instead of all the sugar? since engine 2 is about removing processed foods from the diet and all…

    • disqus_jd6famZ0IA
      Posted at 02:54h, 28 January

      Yes, you can just use dates.

      • margo
        Posted at 22:36h, 07 February

        how many dates do you use per cup of sugar?

        • Jen
          Posted at 09:32h, 27 March

          I would measure out the same amount as the sugar. Blend them first or with the wet ingredients so they mix well with the brownie mix.

  • Jo Po
    Posted at 21:05h, 02 January

    Great brownies! My husband and daughter loved them too. I used berry apple sauce, 1 cup of regular sized chocolate chips, 1/2 cup of mini chips and truvia (stevia and sugar). I substituted because these are the ingredients I happened to have on hand. Next time, to reduce the sugar content, I’ll use all truvia in place of the white and brown sugars.

    • wendy spezowka
      Posted at 00:36h, 19 March

      You may want to check out truvia . As soon as I saw is was created by the cocoa cola company , who supports monsanto by giving them millions to help them keep from labelling GMO’S I was correct in my thinking the one product in there is made from GMOed corn:( They can call it stevia because 1% is stevia the other 99 apparently is GMO. Bad very bad for everyone. Our bodies can deal with toxins but it can not deal with what GMO’S do to our body. Hugs

      • Chris
        Posted at 14:47h, 04 April

        TRUVIA IS BAD NEWS. Look it up

  • Jessica
    Posted at 14:19h, 08 January

    Try subbing the brown and white sugar for organic coconut sugar. I do that for all my baking recipes and it works great!

  • newsjunkie
    Posted at 08:17h, 10 January

    I am confused regarding the use of sugar. I have attended several Engine 2 Retreats and thought that Dr. E. has told us that sugar is harmful to our arteries. Can an Engine 2 person comment on this?

    • Anon
      Posted at 19:05h, 02 February

      I like to sub any sugar with Xylitol. It’s expensive, but a healthy alternative, and tastes like sugar. Some use Stevia, which I like in coffee, and some other things, but not the best for baking in my opinion.

      • Chris
        Posted at 14:46h, 04 April

        However, sugar alcohols —
        including xylitol — do not make “sugar-free” foods calorie-free. If
        foods containing sugar alcohols are eaten in large enough quantities,
        the calories can be comparable to sugar-containing foods. As with all
        foods, you need to carefully read the food labels for calorie and
        carbohydrate content, regardless of any claims that the food is
        sugar-free or low-sugar.

        Maltitol, another commonly used sugar alcohol, spikes blood sugar
        almost as much as a starchy new potato. Xylitol, in comparison, does
        not spike blood sugar much at all. Pure xylitol also does not usually
        produce the gas or bloating associated with other sugar alcohols.

        So in moderation, some sugar alcohols can be a better choice than
        highly refined sugar, artificial sweeteners, agave, or high fructose
        corn syrup. Of the various sugar alcohols, xylitol is one of the best.
        When it is pure, the potential side effects are minimal, and it
        actually comes with some benefits such as fighting tooth decay. All in
        all, I would say that xylitol is reasonably safe, and potentially even a
        mildly beneficial sweetener.

        As an aside, xylitol is toxic to dogs and some other pets, so be sure to keep it out of reach of your family pets

    • Jen
      Posted at 09:25h, 27 March

      Coconut sugar is healthier and tastes great. Maybe you would like half coconut sugar and half stevia or xylitol. Processed white sugar or aspartame are the worst, raw sugar is better!

    • Katie
      Posted at 21:08h, 28 June

      Natural sugar is everywhere. It’s about using the least processed thing you can find/afford. Stevia is great, but you have to play with it mixed with other things to fully substitute sugar in some recipes. Some recipes require next to no modification. Just do the best you can with what makes you feel the best. The less “doctoring” needed for a specific ingredient, the better! 🙂

  • disqus_jd6famZ0IA
    Posted at 03:00h, 28 January

    Yum! I like to use tbs ground flax seeds + a tbs of warm water in place of Ener-G, and even (black) beans in place of flour, just need to use a processor for the ingredients since I’m using beans.

    I’ve used beans in place of flour when making peanut butter-chocolate chip blondies, and it’s delicious!

  • Tom
    Posted at 15:53h, 10 February

    I made these using 1 cup erythritol and 1 tsp of stevia glycerite, I also subbed brown rice flour , they are really tasty!

  • Sheila House
    Posted at 23:45h, 16 February

    Mine is baking now. I too used Erythritol, with the brown sugar, and I added dates and nuts. Smells great baking!!!

  • Jeanne Greenstone
    Posted at 15:27h, 02 March

    I can’t eat any whole or regular wheat. Can I replace it for almond flour pastry?

    • Jen
      Posted at 09:22h, 27 March

      I don’t eat wheat either. You may be able to replace the wheat flour with 1 1/2 cups of rinsed canned black beans.

      I know it sounds weird, but I’ve made blondies using garbonzo beans and peanut butter plus all the other baking ingredients and they turn out great.

      • Katie
        Posted at 21:06h, 28 June

        Oat flour is really good too. It’s a trial-and-error sort of thing when you substitute, but I’m sure you’ll be able to find a flour that works for you as concerns this recipe 🙂

      • Graham
        Posted at 03:01h, 27 July

        Interesting. Who woulda thunk! Thanks. Garbanzo beans also substitute of wheat flour? Also canned and drained? But peanut butter? What or how is peanut butter used?

    • Jen
      Posted at 09:57h, 27 March

      According to other bakers, almond flour is fine to replace it.

    • Heather N
      Posted at 11:14h, 16 September

      I used a gluten free flower blend and they come out more than amazing 🙂

  • Heather N
    Posted at 10:46h, 25 March

    I never thought I would say this but these are too good 🙁 They taste so much like junk food that I have had one four days in a row. I think I will save for birthdays or holidays……very awesome recipe!!!

  • Skipper
    Posted at 16:51h, 07 April

    Can I replace some or all of the suggested sugar with organic agave nectar?

  • Carla Bray
    Posted at 21:49h, 08 May

    I am vegan, therefore cannot use brown sugar (as it is white sugar with molasses and contains bone char). Maybe I should stick to Forks Over Knives recipes-where they are also not trying to make meat-like products. I love my plants as they are.

    • Matt Cooper
      Posted at 19:26h, 09 May

      How about instead of placing a negative comment on here you suggest a change to make it vegan. As for the rest of your comment about the meat like products that is totally unnecessary since the entire creation of this was predicated on getting a group of meat eating firefighters to eat plant strong and Enjoy eating.

      A new convert to plant strong diets.

      • Carla Bray
        Posted at 13:30h, 25 May

        Don’t get your panties in a twist!

        • Matt Cooper
          Posted at 19:27h, 25 May

          You just showed how mature you are with that comment. Doesn’t the Internet bring out the best in people.

          • Carla Bray
            Posted at 12:20h, 26 May

            It was not your place to tell me what I should have posted in the 1st place. That was a very arrogant thing to do when someone was kind and pointed out that organic brown sugar was vegan. Go be a keyboard bully some place else. This is a recipe! And the rest of it is vegan, I didn’t need to ask how to make it so. Now you are taking things personally. I am out of this conversation.

          • Matt Cooper
            Posted at 09:41h, 27 May

            By the way look at when I posted my comment. It was weeks before the response your talking about. True I shouldn’t have told you what to post but the tone of your comment was derogatory to this site. The same site that was trying to help people like me who like to eat meat but see the health benefits of eating a plant strong diet.

    • Kristen
      Posted at 14:12h, 24 May

      Organic brown sugar does not contain bone char.

    • Michael
      Posted at 01:23h, 19 August

      Engine 2 is vegan and is affiliated with Forks Over Knives.

      • Carla Bray
        Posted at 23:21h, 17 September

        Honey is on the list of approved sweeteners. Honey is NOT vegan. I am vegan and do eat FOK. I do not eat honey.

  • Paulette
    Posted at 08:11h, 21 May

    Mine were a little dry. Perhaps I baked them too long although I baked them less than the recipe suggested. Any thoughts to make this better? For me giving up meat was not hard, but giving up desserts….is impossible so I would like to get this recipe right.

  • Kristen
    Posted at 10:01h, 26 May

    First, these are amazing, and super rich! I plugged all the ingredients into a nutrition calculator, and they are around 33% fat, mostly from the chocolate chips. They would be just as amazing with half that many, and it would bring the total calories from fat down to under 20%. That’s still not the 10% goal, but it’s a lot better, and I bet they would be great using a 1/4 of the amount listed. If I’m wrong about those numbers, let me know.

    • Wandoo Sandra Ityavyar
      Posted at 19:38h, 28 June

      I’m sure they’l be just as good if you leave out the chocolate chips all together

  • Mary Douglas
    Posted at 15:35h, 02 November

    I am wondering why sugar is ok to consume? I do not consider that a “whole food” There are wonderful grain-sweetened chocolate chips out there, but can I omit the sugar and still have enough body in the dough?

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