Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Sweet Potato Brownies (bonus recipe)

I feel compelled to share a culinary experiment that became a quickly disappearing gastronomic success, both because it really surprised me that it worked structurally and that it actually was tasty.  I came across a Pinterest pin for this recipe for Sweet Potato Brownies, and was instantly all "What the cornbread stuffing?! How in the Charles Dickens does that even work? You must be outside your mind if you think brownies not made with any flours taste like brownies, Internet."

Naturally, I had to try.  Naturally, I tweaked it a bit.  Naturally, I added a little spice.  Unnaturally, it worked.  It really, seriously worked.  It did not survive the weekend, let alone for much longer than it took to take this truly crappy picture.  Luckily, they're made with sweet potatoes, so I only felt 15% bad about having some for breakfast, and 10% of that was just feeling guilty because I felt like I should feel guilty for having a brownie for breakfast. The best way to describe this is as a warming, soft, slightly gooey, sweet way denser souffle-like marvel without being cloyingly sweet delicious delight.  It's probably not for those weirdos who like cakey brownies or the corner, but it is for those of use who fight to get the gushiest, gooiest piece, smack dab in the middle.  The best part?  I suspect you can totally tweak the flavor profile by using different nut butters and stir-ins, as I've noted where I should.  In the notes.

Good luck trying to share these, brownie aficionados.

Sweet Potato Brownies
Serves one: you (or a few friends if you can bear to share)
Sweet Potato Brownies 
1.5 c Roasted/cooked sweet potato, skin removed, smashed, cooled
¾ c almond butter*
4 Tbsp cocoa powder
1 egg
¼ turbinado sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp cayenne
½ c chocolate chips
¼ c + 2 Tbsp shredded, unsweetened coconut


  1. Prepare sweet potatoes (can be done in advance) by roasting in the oven or microwaving until tender enough to mash thoroughly.  Cool entirely.
  2. Preheat oven to 350.
  3. Mix all ingredients except for sugar, egg, and 2 Tbsp coconut in a bowl.
  4. In a separate bowl, whisk sugar and egg together for at least 3 minutes unitl light, fuly combine, and until the sugar is thoroughly disolved.  
  5. Mix the egg and sugar into the sweet potato mixture and pour into a prepared 8X8 pan. Sprinkle remaining 2 Tbsp coconut over the top.
  6. Bake roughly 40 minutes. Cool for at least 15-20 to let the brownies set.


  • I used Trader Joes crunchy salted almond butter.  I encourage using an unsweetend nut butter because why, why do we need to add corn syrup to everything, but you do you, and adjust sugar to taste.
  • I’m also open to adding even more chocolate both in cocoa or chip form.
  • I’d also suggest omitting the coconut and cayenne, and trying some peanut butterin lieu of almond butter to make PB brownies (I’d up the PB to a full cup if omitting the other stuff).  Maybe I’d even get crazy and add some marshmallows...s’mores! Or just omit the cayenne if you're a wuss.
  • I started with a cook time of about 30 minutes, let it cool, cut into it, and decided I wanted it to be more firm. I threw it back in the oven for roughly 10 more minutes, but do keep an eye on it and remember that chocolate does burn easy, and sweet potatoes were always going to be softer than flour, so unless you want charcoal, stick to about 40.

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