Blondies get a bad rap, but only because you need the right ingredients!
I will say it, and say it again: Hazelnut butter and chocolate make a great couple.
I have never made blondies in my life, but now I understand why they don’t have as solid a reputation as brownies: They can be made different ways, and with ingredients you don’t care for!
I’m glad I saved Vegan Richa’s recipe for gluten-free almond butter blondies in a Pinterest board because it’s changed my life! The recipe I’ve included here is adapted to my own preferences, but what I love about this dish is that it’s gluten-free (but you can choose not to make it so if you’d like), you can adjust to make it healthier, and/or use whatever nut butter you please. (Erin McKenna’s Babycakes cookbook uses garbanzo-fava bean and brown rice flour, potato and arrowroot starch, and evaporated cane juice for a gluten-free recipe, for comparison.)
As I’ve mentioned previously, although I LOVE almond butter, I have a sensitivity to almonds so naturally I tried this with hazelnut butter, and as I just said…I’ve stumbled upon gold. Blondie gold.
1/4 c + 2 tbsp non-dairy milk
1/2 c maple syrup
1 tbsp flaxmeal
1.5 tsp vanilla
3/4 c smooth nut butter of your choice (I use hazelnut, obv)
1/2 c oat flour
1/4 c almond flour
2 tbsp coconut flour (I used brown rice)
2 tbsp arrowroot or corn starch
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp cinnamon (can add more)
2 tsp cocoa
1/4 c vegan chocolate chips + more for sprinkling on top, if desired
Optional: Additional desired toppings (I used crushed walnuts here, but would use crushed hazelnuts)
Preheat the oven to 350 F. In a bowl, warm the non-dairy milk until hot. Add the rest of the wet ingredients and mix well until smooth. It will take about a minute for the nut butter to mix in (you can warm it before adding if it’s really thick). In another bowl, whisk the dry ingredients together. Add the wet to dry and mix in. Fold in the chocolate chips.
Drop the batter on a parchment-lined 8×8 pan and spread using a spatula or oiled hands. Sprinkle additional chocolate chips and desired ingredients on top and press in slightly. Bake for 24 minutes (or until a toothpick an inch from the edges comes out almost clean). Cool for 15 minutes, then remove from the pan. Cool for another few minutes before slicing. This can be stored on the counter for a few days. Makes 6 servings.
- I used soy milk for the ones in the photo, but I typically use rice milk for baking as it makes things fluffier.
- The original recipe called for 2 tbsp maple syrup and 1/2 c liquid coconut sugar, but I used 1/2 c maple syrup instead (you could also do agave).
- I didn’t have coconut flour, so used brown rice flour.
- I added cocoa to enhance the chocolate flavour without needing to add more chips, and for zinc.
- The original recipe called for 1/2 c of chocolate chunks and chips, and I only had chips around so used that. I’d use chunks to make more of a dessert option. 1/4 c of chocolate chips is what I usually use in a week’s worth of pancakes, and you can always add more on top.