Combine the delicious flavors of peppermint and chocolate to make these vegan gluten-free peppermint brownies. Makes the perfect gift for chocolate lovers!
Originally published on December 22, 2016
We are getting closer and closer to Christmas! It’s almost upon us… can you believe it? The time between Thanksgiving and Christmas was so short this year.
If you’re still scrambling to come up with some last minute gifts, I have the perfect option for you. These chewy vegan brownies are especially great for those chocolate lovers in your life.
Vegan Gluten-Free Peppermint Brownies
These are super easy to make ahead and give as gifts! You can get pretty creative with how you want to package them too. Then it looks like you’ve spent ages putting together this beautiful gift, but the reality is much simpler. It’ll be our little secret I promise!
Can I make these ahead of time?
Yes! You can absolutely prep ahead to make these an easy treat when you need them. I suggest making the dough, then storing in the refrigerator in an airtight container until ready to bake.
You can also bake the brownie part of the recipe, then freeze for later use. Make sure to wrap tightly (I use plastic wrap) and store in an airtight container in the freezer to keep the best texture.
I love giving these as gifts for the holidays, they look so pretty packaged up and make a delicious treat for those you love. I’ll link some of my favorite methods of packaging these below!
Finding Vegan Candy Canes
Most traditional Candy Canes are Vegan! Which makes this topping super simple to accomplish. The only time you’d have to be careful is when using Candy Canes that may have a chocolate, butterscotch or other fillings that may contain dairy.
But for this recipe I use the traditional red and white peppermint kind! You can find them at about just any store or for a quick delivery from Amazon, you can follow the below link.
Other Great Holiday Treats
If brownies just aren’t your thing, you can also check out some of my other favorite holiday treats! They also make fabulous gifts and taste delicious. Here are some of my favorites:
- Melomakarona (Greek Christmas Cookies)
- Vegan Oatmeal Raisin
- Caramel Protein Truffles
- Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls
How To Make Vegan Peppermint Brownies
- Combine the dry ingredients into a bowl and mix to combine.
- Blend everything else in a food processor and roll into balls.
- Bake and top with melted chocolate.
- Sprinkle with crushed candy canes.
Combine the delicious flavors of peppermint and chocolate to make these Vegan Gluten-Free Peppermint Brownies. Makes the perfect gift for chocolate lovers!
- ¼ cup brown rice flour , I use a finely ground brown rice flour
- 1 tablespoon tapioca starch
- 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- 2 cups vegan chocolate chips , divided into ½ cup, ½ cup and 1 cup portions
- ½ cup cashew butter , room temperature (or tahini for nut free)
- 6 Medjool dates , soaked in hot water, plus 2 tablespoons of the soaking water
- 1 tablespoon molasses
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon peppermint extract
- 2-3 tablespoons crushed candy canes , optional for topping
Preheat oven to 375 F/ 190 C. Soak dates in hot water, allow to soak while prepping the other ingredients. I soak mine with the pits because it is easier to remove the pits once soaked and soft.
Combine flour, starch, baking soda and salt in a small bowl and whisk to break up clumps. Set aside.
- Melt ½ cup chocolate chips with tahini using a microwave or double boiler. If using a microwave, be sure to heat in short 10-15 second increments so you avoid burning it. Stir in between heating to break down large chunks. It took mine about 1 minute to melt, but it will depend on your microwave.
Once melted, pour mixture into a blender or food processor (save the bowl you used for later). Add dates (make sure to remove the pits), 2 tablespoons of the soaking water, molasses, vanilla and peppermint extract. Blend until smooth.
- Add in the flour mixture. Blend again to combine.
- Pour the other ½ cup of chocolate chips into the blender or food processor and pulse to combine.
- Put batter into the refrigerator for at least 20 minutes to harden. You want it pliable but not too sticky or it will be hard to roll into balls.
- Once firm, roll into balls about 1 ½ inches in size. Place them on a parchment lined cookie sheet.
Bake for 12-13 minutes, until slightly firm. They cook more as they cool so make sure NOT to over bake.
Allow to cool completely. Once cool melt the remaining 1 cup chocolate chips. Pour melted chocolate into a piping bag used for frosting, or you can use a plastic bag and cut the corner off, make sure it isn’t too hot so you don’t burn yourself. Pipe the melted chocolate over the brownie bites so that it covers the entire top, it’s okay if it melts down the side. Messy is good.
Sprinkle the tops with crushed candy cane if you want and allow the chocolate to harden. You can either put them in the refrigerator or leave them out if the weather isn’t too hot.
- Make sure all ingredients are at room temperature or the melted chocolate will harden and not mix well.
- You can use another variety of dates, just keep in mind the size and sweetness as compared to Medjool to ensure the same results.
Tips to prep ahead:
- Crush candy canes