Place zucchini in a colander while you are getting other ingredients ready. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and line 8 x 8 baking dish with unbleached parchment paper.
In a large bowl, add egg, oil, maple syrup and pure vanilla extract; whisk to combine. Add cacao powder, baking soda and salt; whisk until well mixed.
Give zucchini a gentle squeeze but do not ring out completely, add to a bowl and stir. Add flour and mix gently until combined.
Transfer batter into prepared baking dish and level with spatula. Bake for 25-28 minutes or until the centre is barely jiggly. Do not over bake as brownies will have more of a cake consistency. A toothpick inserted has to come out somewhat not clean. If centre is too jiggly bake a bit more – ovens vary.
Remove from the oven and let cool for about an hour. Lift by the parchment paper flaps and transfer to a cooling rack to cool off completely. Cut into 16 squares.
Store: In a glass airtight container in a cool dry place for up to 4 days. If it’s hot outside, refrigerate for up to a week. Freeze for up to 3 – 4 months.
Brownies become fudgier the next day, especially if stored cut up and separated or refrigerated. I leave them on a plate covered with kitchen towel on a counter overnight.
Flour – You can use only whole wheat or spelt flour. Any gluten free flour will not work because it doesn’t have gluten in it. This zucchini brownie recipe relies on gluten in dough to rise. All purpose flour acts differently than whole wheat flour too. So please stay the course for successful healthy brownies.:)
Maple syrup – You can replace only with liquid sweetener like honey, agave, brown rice syrup etc. Baking is a science and the ratio of dry : liquid is important and can’t be offset.
Coconut oil – You can use any mild tasting oil like avocado oil. Or basically any oil you like the taste of. Oil is oil. One thing though. Because coconut oil is solid, zucchini brownies will be a tad more fudgy as it cools down and becomes solid again after baking.
Cacao powder – More common cocoa powder is OK. It’s just more processed where as cacao powder is considered a healthy choice with more antioxidants and nutrients.
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