Gluten-free vegan no-bake brownies

A few weeks back (maybe a month back), all of us had gone to Abu Dhabi to spend a weekend with Tash & Co (My niece who is my sou chef when she’s here in Dubai). They have a nice garden which has a palm tree, a fact I never bothered to register properly till that weekend. When we stepped out to the garden just to have a cuppa tea & chit-chat, I noticed how the base around the palm tree were filled with dates. There were just too many of them. Some of them were obviously bitten by the squirrels around. But most were good (just dusty). I couldn’t resist but take 1 and taste it (I cleaned it in water prior to this) and the dates genuinely tasted really good. This was the first time I had dates fresh from the trees and I realise how adulterated our versions outside are. The dates we get outside are mostly sweetened with honey and stuff. I asked my manni (co-sister whom I call manni) if I could box up some dates home and boy was she happy!!! She told me she didn’t know what to do with so much dates and asked their cleaner to clean it and take it with her. She told me it hadn’t struck her to ask me and that she would be glad if I take it and make something off of it. So off we all went picking up un-bitten/ un-squished dates from the ground. Even Adya & Tash helped in the process (A little exaggerated that Adya helped but I would like to think he helped in the process rather than add to the process :)). I had ear marked certain recipes I wanted to try out with the dates and this was on top of the list. So on of the days when the home was just devoid of the resident toddler (aka when he was happily vacationing without his parents in chennai), I tried this out. I do not have a fancy shmancy blender (I have a regular preethi mixi I think LOL). So, my heart skipped a beat when I started churning the dates at first. But I figured, that was going to be my only way out and stuck to the process (the date churning took 10 minutes of my time and I am not too thrilled about that). Anyways, this recipe receives my honest full thumbs up (I could even borrow your thumbs if you would lend me for this process). There is NO added sugar and there is ZERO gluten-flour in it. It actually doesn’t take too much time (well, in my case the date churning did take 10 minutes of time) but otherwise pretty quick. Above all, there is no baking involved but the finally product is a nice and chewy brownie. It’s surely healthy (of course, don’t indulge on it too much at one go) and it’s a great pre or post workout snack apart from serving as an awesome party dessert. If you can’t understand from the above few sentences that I am trying to really publicise this recipe because it’s damn awesome, let me spell it out for you – THIS RECIPE IS AWESOME!!!!! Do try and give me your thumbs up :).

Gluten-free vegan no-bake brownies
Prep Time
20 mins
Passive Time
8 hrs
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: International
Servings: 12 pieces
  • 2.5 cups dates
  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 1 cup almonds
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 1/4 tsp salt
For garnish (optional)
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  1. Soak the dates in hot water for 10 minutes. Set it aside.

  2. In a mixer/ blender, throw in the walnuts & almonds. Blend well till you get a powder consistency.
  3. Add the cocoa powder, salt & vanilla essence and blend. Set the nut mixture aside.
  4. Pit the soaked dates & place it in a mixer/ blender and blend well (This part might be hard if you have a rudimentary mixer like mine but don't lose hope :)). Set it aside.

  5. Throw the nut mixture back into the blender & add the dates bit by bit and blend.
  6. Once all the dates are blended in with the nut mixture, take a greased bread loaf pan (preferably a square/ rectangle) and throw the mixture in.
  7. With you fingers, spread the mixture & press hard for the mixture to get firm.
  8. Garnish with chopped walnuts on top.
  9. After freezing the mixture for 30 minutes, cut the brownie to desired shape.

  10. Freeze again for 6-8 hours before digging into the goodlicious brownies!!! 

Recipe Notes
  1. If you don't want your brownies too cold, you can warm it up in the microwave for 10 seconds or keep it in the refrigerator a few hours before you want to have it.
  2. You could try soaking the dates for longer so that it's easier to grind them. I am surely going to try this next time.

Stepwise pictures

Take a large bowl & place the dates in it.

Soak the dates in hot water for 10 minutes. Set it aside.

Take a blender/ mixer and place the almonds & walnuts & grind them.

Ensure to get a smooth mixture.

To this add, cocoa powder, salt & vanilla essence.

Blend well. Transfer to a bowl & set it aside.

Pit the soaked dates & place them in a blender/ mixer.

Grind as much as you can (if you use a rudimentary mixer as mine, there will still be small chunks and that’s absolutely fine).

Take the dates out & set it aside. Add the nut mixture back into the blender and bit by bit start adding the dates and blending.

Once you have the dates and the nut mixture blended, you will have your brownie base ready.

Transfer the mixture to a greased bread loaf pan.

Spread it out, press firmly & evenly.

Roughly chop walnuts & garnish on top. Stick the mixture into the freezer.

After 30 minutes, take out the mixture & cut into desired shape.

Stick it back into the freezer for another 6-8 hours before you dig in without any guilt 🙂


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