Double Chocolate Cheesecake Brownies

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.

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!


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  • 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…

  • 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….)

    • 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!

  • * Vegan Sparkles *

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

    • Ella Woodward

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

  • karenllaing

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

    • 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

      • 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!

  • 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

    • 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?

    • 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!

  • 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!!!

    • 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!

    • 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

  • homecookexplorer

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

    • 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?

    • 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??

  • 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!


    • 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)


    • 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?

    • Sonia

      I used peanut butter, and it tasted nice. Just waiting for the dessert to freeze to taste it.

  • 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!

    • Sonia

      I know! The same thing happened to me today. I wonder if Ella actually had a lot of people test it out before putting it on her blog? I don’t see a recipe like this getting put in a published book without it being thoroughly tested by others. Hopefully the brownies taste nice at least.

  • Donna

    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?

    • Ella Woodward

      I wouldn’t recommend it sorry – perhaps give the sweet potato brownies a try in stead?

  • 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.

  • LC1804

    I can’t wait to try these! I tried a very unhealthy version of a brownie based cheesecake once and it was so dense and sickly that my friends and I considered it an actual dare to try and eat one entire slice! Don’t get me wrong, it was an extremely yummy dare, but with serious tummy bloat consequences. Cannot wait to try and lighter healthier option without the side dish of guilt!!

  • Chantal

    Hi Ella, I’ve been trying some of your meal recipes and they are so good that I am now determined to try the baking – even got myself a nice food processor. My challenge is that my boyfriend is allergic to nuts. You suggested using seeds for the raw brownies. Any chance I can swap the almond butter for something suitable for nut allergies? Many thanks x

  • ellawoodward

    Yes, you can use pumpkin seed butter!

  • Tallulah

    I love your webiste! Do you have this recipe with gram measurements rather than cup?

    • ellawoodward

      I have started to add grams in my newer recipes :)

    • ellawoodward

      I have started to add grams in my newer recipes :)

  • Maryam

    Hi! I was wondering if you have any suggestions on what could be used as a banana substitute? I can’t eat it which is a real problem as so many smoothie and sweet recipes use it. Any advice would be much appreciated!

  • ellawoodward

    Hi Maryam,

    It really does depend on what you ate making – something like avocado and nut butter works in smoothies or there are things like chia seeds soaked in water as a binder for baking.

    I hope that helps a little,

  • Sonia

    Ella, what type of food processor do you own? I made this recipe with my Vitamix, but it shut off because it must’ve been really tough to blend all of the base ingredients. I just don’t think the base will turn out like yours if I add water or a plant milk to the base ingredients….

  • ellawoodward

    Hi Sonia,

    You need to use a food processor rather than a blender – it won’t work well in a blender, even a vitamin as the blade is too small. I do make sure my recipes are well tested and I always listen to feedback and work on any recipes where lots of people have had trouble.

    Have a great day,
    Ella x

    • Sonia

      Thanks for taking the time to reply since I know you’re super busy. 😉

  • Sonia

    Ella, please help me out. How did you cut your brownies so perfectly without the topping getting smeared away? I’m serving these later today and need your help before I cut the rest of them.

    • Katie Drax

      Try heating the knife up in very hot water, dry, cut, repeat. Each cut should be with a clean edge

  • ellawoodward

    I use a large, sharp knife so it tends to work fine! Hope that helps x

  • Fifi

    For the base when you say raw cacao, do you mean nibs or powder? Found this confusing in other recipes also, Thanks

  • ellawoodward

    Hi Fifi, raw cacao often refers to the powder. X

  • hk

    Hi -i have become very excited and ordered your cookbook and been ordering all your ingredients you suggest in order to become healthier. However on my research into Cacoa I found a very very worrying study:-
    Please can you look into this as my daughter has POTS and I have tachycardia and reactive hypolglycaemia and wanted to begin the new year with your raw cacoa snacks etc. The article was a four year study and the results have scared me now! I was getting all ready to make the cookies too! Apologies to be negative and I am a huge fan of yours as are my daughters! I hoped you would also want to know too so please could you perhaps look at this professors link? with thanks and fingers crossed it is ok!

  • ellawoodward

    Hi, thank you for your message. I will be writing a blog post all about cacao which you will be able to find next week so be sure to have a read. Have a lovely day! X

  • cindy


    i was wondering whether this melts? i made your raw blueberry cheesecake and i had to keep it in the freezer to store after i was finished with it! is it the same with this one?

  • ellawoodward

    Hi Cindy, it shouldn’t melt if you keep it in the fridge but if you are worried you can always store it in the freezer too and let it defrost a little before you serve it. X

  • Maisie

    Hi Ella,
    I made these today and they turned out really well, however the banana has overpowered the rest of the taste, I can’t taste anything other than banana.
    Is the banana there for something other than flavour or could I omit it next time I make these?
    :) x

  • ellawoodward

    HI Miasie, the banana is great for sweetness and is also the perfect ingredient to bind the mixture together. Have a lovely day! X

  • Tegwen Matthews

    What would you recommend to replace the nuts with in the brownie base? We’ve a nut allergy and can’t have the almond butter either. Help!

  • ellawoodward

    You could try using pumpkin seeds instead. You could also trying sunflower seed butter! Hope they turn out delicious! X

  • Sarah

    Hi, I clicked on the link and read the article. I saw no scientific merit in any of what was written. No scientific research papers were cited and no evidence for the claims being made. Apparently, research had been conducted at that famous University of Hawaii (really?!), yet no studies are available to read. This man has set himself up as an expert. Click on his link, and try and find out what his qualifications are, where he studied and there is nothing, just a bunch of crazy articles and even a donation page!! If something doesn’t sound right to you, it probably isn’t.

  • Karen Woodroffe

    Hi Can you give the MEDJOOL DATES IN GRAMMS because it would make it easier buying them in WEIGHT as opposed to CUPS please? Also how long does this cake last for in the fridge ? (I just wondered because of the Advacados) thanks very much , KAREN

    • ellawoodward

      Sorry but I only have the measurements for the dates in cups for this recipe. These brownies should last in the fridge for up to 3 days. They freeze well too! X

  • ellawoodward

    You really need a series food processor like a Magimix to create a really smooth texture. I’m not too sure why the top had a bitter taste, I’ve never experienced this before. Make sure your bananas and avocados are really ripe. It might also be the type of cacao powder, as some brands may vary! I buy a raw organic cacao powder from my local health store x