Have a Healthy Brownie! (a Mere 77 Calories)

January 25, 2010   8 Comments

Is it possible to create a healthy brownie? A regular brownie contains oodles of butter, sugar, eggs, and chocolate. They are a confection of MEGA calorific proportions and should be eaten as a treat.

No Bake Brownie Balls

But, if you have a food processor, you can whip something up in minutes that tastes delicious. The key is to use healthy replacements for the butter, eggs, and sugar. In this recipe, which I created in my test kitchen (ahem, my kitchen), I used dates and almonds.

You can find dates next to the raisins in most grocery stores (I bet you haven't even noticed them).

Having a food processor in the house is extremely helpful. It cuts time on many cooking projects, such as making dough (pastry and pizza), grating cheese, and chopping nuts.

I highly recommend the one featured below. I have had my Cuisinart for many years and it still works like new. Just be aware a food processor IS NOT for liquids. A blender is a much better choice for smoothies, soups, etc.

Roasted almonds are just one choice for this recipe. You could use raw nuts or any kind of nut that you like. I used roasted because roasting makes the almond taste stronger.

I rolled these balls in confectioner's sugar and cocoa. My tasters (friends) thought that the cocoa ones were too bitter. I actually liked them better, so give them both a try. You can add more honey if you find these lacking in sweetness.

These would be a great party snack too! You can make them ahead and just artfully arrange them on a plate. Or do what I did, and just put them on a plate :)

These brownie balls are gluten-free so you can serve them at snack time for the kids with wheat allergies. Kids will also love making these as they get to use their hands in making them.

To make these brownie balls vegan - use maple syrup or agave syrup.


No-Bake Brownie Balls

1.9 from 26 reviews

Makes 15 balls

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15 pitted dates
2/3 cup cocoa powder (plus extra for dusting)
1 cup roasted almonds (no salt added)
1 tablespoon honey
2 tablespoons water
confectioner's sugar (optional)


Add almonds to food processor and pulse until ground. Add dates, cocoa powder, honey, and water. Mix until it just forms a sticky mass. Wash hands and attempt to make a ball with the dough (it may need more water to get to the perfect consistency). Put a tablespoon of cocoa or confectioner's sugar on a plate. Roll balls in your hand and then roll in sugar or cocoa (or both). Eat! These can be store in the fridge for a week.

Points values are calculated by Snack Girl and are provided for information only. See all Snack Girl Recipes

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I'm new to your site and I love it. I will definitely be coming back :)

These brownies look delicious and I love that they are low in calories.

I like making brownies like these, but I process 1/2 cup walnuts, 1/2 cup dates, a pile of cinnamon, and 1/8 cup cacao powder. Sometimes I substitute 1/2 cup PB2 for the walnuts. These are SO much better than any other butter/white sugar brownie out there!

Substitute Agave Syrup for the Honey to be vegan. Because Honey is not vegan.

These look great!

I just made these and they turned out a hit!

Thanks!! Cant wait for snack time to have one of these (or two) :)

hi, do you use those fresh dates (those Medjool ones) or just the semi dried ones that are packaged?

Nice idea! I bake my own brownies, but they're actual brownies for only about 85 calories (I added the ingredients into MyFitnessPal and it said 85 calories) and it's about a normal serving size. If anyone bothers to make them, here's the recipe:

1/2 C alkalized cocoa powder (I use dark chocolate powder)

1 C all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder (or soda)
1/2 tsp salt

3 tbsp unsalted butter, melted (2 tbsp work fine too)

1/2 C granulated sugar*
1/2 C dark brown sugar, firmly packed
2 large egg whites
1/2 C unsweetened applesauce
2 tsp vanilla extract

One 9-inch pan, sprayed (or lightly greased) and lined.

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees

2. In a medium bowl, beat the butter and granulated sugar together with a rubber spatula. Beat in the brown sugar, egg whites, applesauce, and vanilla, one at a time, beating until smooth after each addition

3. Stir in the dry ingredients

4. Bake for about 30 minutes, or until toothpick inserted emerges clean**

Makes 16 squares

*Originally, this is already a low calorie dessert, and called for 1 C of sugar, but I did 1/2 C instead. It may be less sweet if 1/2 C is used. I like it just fine that way though.

**I like to check on them every 5-10 minutes, just to make sure they're fine and not over-baked and dry

When I ran these No Bake Brownie Balls through my calorie calculator, it says that one ball is 112 calories, but when I had it serve 22 people, it said 77 calories. Hmm...weird, but I am still going to try these!!

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