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Double Chocolate Cheesecake Brownies

The idea that you could ever make a Double Chocolate Cheesecake Brownie really healthy seems almost ridiculous. It’s just not the kind of food that you’d imagine could ever nurture your body. Except yesterday I achieved the near impossible and invented the world’s healthiest version and wow was it awesome! I mean seriously out-of-this-world good. So good that I may have eaten seven in a row, but who’s counting! The beauty of them is that they don’t taste even a little bit healthy, yet they are actually so good for you, and as I demonstrated yesterday you can enjoy as many as you like without any negative effects – no bloated stomach, no heart palpitations, no blood sugar crashes, no nothing… just pure happiness after every bite!

I think it’s the combination of the brownie bottom and cheesecake top that really makes these so outstanding, as they contrast together so perfectly to make the bite. The top layer is just so insanely deliciously thick, light, soft and creamy. It’s actually kind of insane and it melts perfectly against the wonderfully firm, yet ever so slightly gooey, nutty base. It’s total heaven. I am seriously in love. Perhaps my best cake yet. Nothing so healthy should taste this good! You really can’t feel bad about it though as you’re taking in so much goodness while indulging! The top is made up mainly of avocado, which is just crazy. It sounds so weird but it works so unbelievably well, no one could quite believe that was what they were eating. All of the natural avocado flavour disappears under the delicious combination of raw chocolatey cacao, banana, almond butter, maple syrup and dates, and just the awesome creamy texture remains. Everyone knows avocados are a super food too, so now you can gobble up all its goodness in a whole new way! The base is simply a nuttier version of my favourite raw brownies, which are made from just almonds, pecans, dates and raw cacao. So it is bursting with great protein and fibre. If you needed one more reason to make these then you’ll love this. Not only are they super easy to make but there’s no washing up! All you need is a food processor and that can go straight in the dishwasher. So it’s totally fuss free.

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Makes about 15 brownies:

For the bottom layer

- 1 cup of pecans

- 1/2 a cup of almonds

- 2 and ½ cups of medjool dates

- 2 tablespoons of raw cacao

For the cheesecake layer:

- 3 avocados

- 1 banana

- 1 cup of dates

- 3 tablespoons of pure maple syrup

- 2 and a 1/2 heaped tablespoons of raw cacao powder

- 2 tablespoons of almond butter

Start with the brownie layer. Remove the stones from the dates, then place all of the ingredients into a food processor. Blend for 2-3 minutes until the mixture becomes nice and sticky, you still want some little nutty pieces in there though as this creates a deliciously crunchy texture.

Place the brownie mix into a deep baking tray, using a spatula to press it down firmly. Leave this to one side.

To make the cheesecake layer, simply place all the ingredients needed into the food processor (having removed the date stones) and blend until a really creamy, chocolatey custard-like deliciousness forms! This should take around 5 minutes depending on the strength of your processor.

Pour this mixture over the brownie base, you can then sprinkle a few pecan pieces on the top and placing the whole thing in the freezer. Freeze for about an hour or so before serving. At this point it will be set enough to be eaten, but I’d really recommend moving it into the fridge after this time and letting it fully set there for a few hours, over night is best.

Then slice, serve and enjoy. Everyone will adore this. Between five of us we somehow managed to finish all twenty squares in twelve hours. I think that says enough about how delicious they are! I had some very happy flat mates!

  • http://glutenfreescdandveggie.blogspot.co.uk/ Vicky

    This looks absolutely delicious! I’m not surprised you finished it off so quickly!

  • Tiril

    Those were soooo yummy Ells! I will miss living with you next year…

  • http://www.facebook.com/bookladydavina Davina Spafford Stuart

    question..or two… i can not find “medjool” dates in any of my local stores so far.. would “regular” dates work?? I know to get whole dates instead of chopped :) also, any ideas on substitutes for agave?? I’ve recently learned it’s really not a good sugar substitute for those of us with PCOS (still doing research to back that all up, but better safe then sorry… if it’s not one thing.. it’s another 12….)

    • http://ellawoodward.wordpress.com Ella Woodward

      Regular dates will absolutely work, they’re just not as sticky so you may need just a few more to get the right consistencies. Instead of agave I’d recommend maple syrup, if you can eat that? Otherwise honey? Enjoy!

  • http://vegansparkles.com * Vegan Sparkles *

    WOAH! These look incredible! I will try them for sure! Nice work!

    • http://ellawoodward.wordpress.com Ella Woodward

      Thank you! They really are incredible, I’m sure you’ll love them!

  • http://alittlefitter.wordpress.com karenllaing

    I’m loving these recipes Ella. I’ve just discovered raw coconut sugar. Have you tried cooking with it?

    • http://ellawoodward.wordpress.com Ella Woodward

      Yes! I love it, it’s really great. I use it a lot in crumbles and cakes. I find in something like these brownies though that agave or maple syrup works better because of their runny consistencies

      • http://alittlefitter.wordpress.com karenllaing

        I’m definitely going to try the brownies. It’s fantastic to find alternatives to sugar so I’m happy giving treats to my little boy (he’s nearly 2). He loves avocado and nuts so I’m sure the brownie bites won’t last long. I’ll let you know!

  • http://loveandsomewords.wordpress.com zoe

    OH. MY. GOD.

    definitely making these as soon as i possibly can. thank you!

  • Eloise Edwards

    is there an alternative to avocados if i want to make these when avocados are out of season? x

    • http://ellawoodward.wordpress.com Ella Woodward

      Yes absolutely a combination of tofu with a few cashew nuts would work really well too!

  • Rebecca

    Any way to make these without nuts?

    • http://ellawoodward.wordpress.com Ella Woodward

      Sorry for taking a while to get back to you on this one Rebecca, I’ve been thinking about what could replace the nuts. I’m not totally sure by I think it could be worth trying oats? I can’t think of anything else that has a thick enough texture otherwise. Will let you know if and when I find something!

  • http://www.facebook.com/betjett Bethany Jett

    Just sticking my toe in the vegetarian/vegan pool. I’m going to try these and serve them without telling my family what’s in them. If they pass the taste test of three little boys and a husband, I’ll let you know!!!

    • http://ellawoodward.wordpress.com Ella Woodward

      Awesome to hear that you’re trying the vegetarian/vegan way of life! I hope these pass the test, let me know!

  • Kassie

    These look scrumptious. I was thinking of making these tomorrow. But, Could I use, raisins instead of Dates and cocoa powder instead of cacao powder, as it is what I have on hand? Thank you, seems like an awesome recipe!

    • http://ellawoodward.wordpress.com Ella Woodward

      Hi Kassie! So glad you like the look of these, they are delicious! Cocoa powder will work perfectly, although you may need a little more as it’s not quite as strong in flavour. Sadly raisins won’t work though as the consistency and sweetness/taste just aren’t similar enough. In the UK you can get dates in every supermarket, even the little city ones – not sure where in the world you are though! Hope that helps! Have a great weekend

  • http://homecookexplorer.wordpress.com homecookexplorer

    These look truly wonderful! I’m trying them tomorrow and will post how they turned out!

    • http://ellawoodward.wordpress.com Ella Woodward

      That’s awesome – hope they were a success and really looking forward to hearing your thoughts on them!

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  • Hek

    what is a “dessert” spoonful??? would a tbls be the same?

    • http://ellawoodward.wordpress.com Ella Woodward

      Hi! Yes a dessert spoonful is the same as a tablespoon! Hope that helps!

  • Helena

    is a “dessert spoonful” the same as a tablespoon??

  • http://www.spottedrose.co.uk Michelle

    Oh my gosh Ella, I have a feeling you might be about to change me life !! x

    • ellawoodward

      Haha that’s awesome! I hope they lived up to your expectations! x

  • Kayla

    Hi Ella, I’m starting on the quitting sugar journey as of this week so naturally when I saw sugar free in the title I got a tad excited. Just one question though – are medjool dates not full of sugar? They’re so sweet (I’ve only had them once) that I can’t imagine they wouldn’t be.
    Thanks, and love your recipes! x

    • ellawoodward

      Dates do have sugar, but it’s fruit sugar which is a totally different thing to refined sugar like white sugar etc. The sugars in all fruit are important for energy and a healthy body, they’re used up quickly by the body and are so easily digested – quite the opposite of refined sugar. I hope that makes sense! So when giving up sugar you have to see all fruit as totally separate as giving that up would do more harm than good! Dates are awesome though as you’re giving up sugar as they stop you from craving normal sugar as you’re right they are super sweet! Good luck on your journey, I hope it’s making you feel amazing! Have a lovely weekend x

  • Lk

    These look amazing and I love your recipes :) I would love to try these but we can’t eat coconut oil, only extra virgin. Do you think that might work as a substitute? Thank you :)

    • ellawoodward

      Yes that will absolutely work! :)

  • Karina

    I’ve just become a vegan (two months ago). I love your blog!

  • Stephanie Hatten

    Hi !
    Where in London do you buy your medjool dates? Looking for a good deal :) !

    • ellawoodward

      The best deal I’ve found is tesco, you get about 12-14 medjools for 2 pounds!

  • Erika

    Hello! Whta do you think, could I make this cake with Carob powder also?

    • ellawoodward

      Carob powder is so great but it doesn’t have quite the same chocolate flavour so I’m not sure that it would taste quite the same, sorry!

  • Carenza

    These look amazing. Is the agave in the brownie mix syrup as well, or is it some thing different?

    • ellawoodward

      Hi. I don’t fully understand the question? Yes the agave is mixed in with the brownie mix. :)

      • Carenza

        For the brownie section it says 2 tablespoons of agave and in the cheesecake section it says 4 dessert spoon of raw agave syrup and I was just asking if they were the same thing. Sorry I’m new to a lot of these ingredients!

        • ellawoodward

          Hi, I’m so sorry about the confusion – I’ve edited the recipe and hopefully it’s much clearer now! :)

  • Melina

    Seriously amazing! I’ve made 2 batches this week! Haha

    • ellawoodward

      That’s awesome, thank you!

  • Holly

    I love your recipes Ella and these look amazing! Quick question though……do you use medjool dates for the cheesecake layer as well as the brownie layer? And would date syrup work ok instead of the maple syrup…..I’m addicted to date syrup!

    • ellawoodward

      Yes date syrup is an amazing replacement, totally addicted to it too! And yes medjool dates in both layers!

  • Leslie

    Hi Ella,

    I just tried one of your raw chocolate brownies and it blew my mind how its tasty!
    Thank you for sharing!

    I have a question about the nuts, like almond, hazelnuts and pecans, are they raw or cooked? and about the almond butter, I’m sure you made it by yourself, did I miss somewhere a how-to for that? Thank you!!

    have a lovely day!

    Leslie

    • ellawoodward

      So glad that you loved these, thank you! The nuts in baking are uncooked, as for almond butter the recipe for that will be on my app in January! :)

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  • Kim

    I’ve made about a dozen of your recipes since I went vegan/gluten free almost 2 months ago. Everything recipe I have made from this site has been delicious, but this recipe is by far the best! so amazing! I’ll be surprised if I don’t eat it all in 1 day.

    • ellawoodward

      So glad that you’re enjoying all the recipes so much, thank you! These are one of my all time favourites too! x

  • Gabriela

    Dear Ella,

    I just recently discovered your blog and by now have developed a new found passion for vegan food. :-) A lot of your recipes contain banana like this sweet dish. Unfortunately I cannot eat bananas, so is there any other ingredient I could use instead?

    Greeting from Bavaria (Germany)

    Gabriela

    • ellawoodward

      I’m so glad that you love the blog! It’s hard to replace the bananas in everything, here you could leave them out and add more dates to make sure there’s no avocado taste! In smoothies avocado also works well instead of bananas :)

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  • Laura & Thalia

    <3 these lovely cheesecake brownies. The crumbly nutty base and the rich topping! Quick question: Can you keep these in the freezer and then reheat?

    • ellawoodward

      I think so!

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  • Annie Warwick

    These look so good! can you use peanut butter instead of almond butter or is the taste too different?

  • Annie Warwick

    I tried this recipe today and it didn’t go well unfortunately. My food processor found it extremely hard to make the brownie base and I had to hand mix and add water in order to get it anywhere close to spreadable :( It also didn’t make enough compared to the topping (which made loads!) however I am yet to taste it so fingers crossed it tastes good!

  • Donna

    Hello!
    These look amazing and I can’t wait to give making them a go, but first a couple of questions!!
    Where do you buy your uncooked nuts from? I assume you buy them in bulk to make it cheaper? And what size cup are we talking for measuring the ingredients? Like a mug?
    Sorry if you’ve answered these questions elsewhere, I’m reading through all the recipies slowly but surely!!
    Donna :)

    • ellawoodward

      Hi Donna,
      I use a standard mug (3×3.5 inches). There are some links to online shops for nuts on the bookshelf page.
      Ella x

  • Donna Roberts

    Thanks for replying so quickly, can’t wait to try these :)

  • May Dark

    Hey i know this is a dumb question but can i substitute the avacadoes? I currently live in South Asia for my dads job and they dont have avacadoes here! Can i sub them?

  • Karen Malone

    WOW!! I’ve been using your recipes for the past week and I am totally converted!
    I don’t know what made me try your recipes as I have never thought of eating vegetarian let alone vegan, yet here I am a week in and I can honestly say I’ve never enjoyed food as much as I have this past week.
    I’ve made so many lovely things and I’m so excited by the tastes and flavours in the food.
    I have the app too and it’s brilliant, very easy to use and convenient in the kitchen.
    I look forward to trying even more recipes, I just wanted to say thank you as I think this might change my life.