Chocolate Brownie Vegan Cookies

Think soft, chewy, brownie-like and wickedly delicious cookies that happen to be vegan. These Chocolate Brownie Vegan Cookies get sweetness and texture from a chocolate-prune puree base that’s made with California Prunes, unsweetened cocoa powder, flaxseed and hot water. No need for eggs or butter. These are honestly too good to be true (it’s true), so make ‘em!
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close up of cookie stacks

These Chocolate Brownie Vegan Cookies are the second post, in a two-part series with California Prunes to showcase/highlight the magic of baking with prunes. Last month we made vegan brownies (that are so delicious) and this month, we jump into cookies (one of my favorite topics!).

Prunes are loaded with moisture, natural sweetness, vitamins, minerals, fiber and antioxidants all of which make a wonderful addition to anything you’re throwing on the table. I’ve been having a heap of fun futzing with vegan baking as of late, so alas, here we are with these cookies.

Overhead shot of brownie cookies close up

These cookies very much remind me of a brownie cookie. The center is soft, chewy, fudgy and, well, frankly, very brownie-like. I added in chocolate chips for more chocolate jazz hands, but feel free to omit. The chocolate flavor is deep and rich and no prune taste to be found.

I should note that my family loves prunes, so this isn’t a slight. But when I’m biting into a fudgy, brownie-like chocolate cookie, it’s not the flavor I’m looking for…so we get all of the delicious healthy attributes and sweetness and not much else!

prune puree to make brownie cookies

Chocolate Prune Puree, Details, Trivia, Etc, Etc

The prune puree is the moisture base for this recipe. Using either a high-speed blender or food processor add in California prunes, unsweetened cocoa powder, flaxseeds and hot water and blitz until smooth. It won’t be perfectly smooth, but get it as smooth as possible. 

This prune puree makes enough for two batches of cookies or brownies. If you have no desire for two batches of sweets (I get it!), reserve half of the puree for your next sweet treat. The prune puree will last for several days, wrapped tightly, in the fridge or stashed in the freezer (again, wrapped tightly) for about a month-ish.

a cookie dough ball in Demerara sugar

The combination of prunes and flaxseeds do away with the need for butter or eggs. I do add in some oil for extra fat.

Important Note

I like to blend the prune puree one more time once it’s combined with the melted chocolate as it yields the best texture. If you don’t want to do this second blend you can skip it…but you didn’t have to clean out the blender in between blends so I’m thinking why not?!?

For more info on healthy baking with prunes, click here (this links to CA Grown’s website)!

cookie stacks

That Chocolate Brownie Vegan Cookie TEXTURE

The texture of the cookie dough is a little funky as we’re using non-traditional ingredients. So prepare yourself for a very thick, kinda oily cookie dough. And when I say think, I mean you’re going to be blending in the dry ingredients thinking, I’m never getting this combined. But you will and you shouldn’t have to work your flour too hard in the process.

The texture of the final cookie is quite heavely. Very soft, not a crispy bite in sight. 

cookie stack with a bite out

Cocoa Powder Details

Use unsweetened cocoa powder, ideally one that is dark or Dutch-processed. If you don’t have that handy, by all means use whatever unsweetened cocoa powder you have.

Melting Chocolate

Melting chocolate is tricky business. For the absolute best results, go for a chocolate around the 60% cocoa range and make sure it’s chocolate that’s meant for baking and melting. This chocolate tend to melt the nicest. Melting chocolate chips most often doesn’t yield the best results so I would steer clear of them.

Make sure that the water beneath the bowl of chocolate doesn’t get too hot. If your chocolate gets too hot it can wreck the whole process.

single cookie stack

Best Baking Oils for the Cookie

I love a flavorless sunflower seed oil and I wouldn’t be opposed to a nice, mild California olive oil. I’ve had so many people as of late ask me about avocado oil that I’m going to have to bake some cookies and give it a try. Stay tuned!

brownie cookies stacks on a vintage french cooling rack

A Note for Gluten Free Chocolate Brownie Vegan Cookies

One of my favorite GF flours is Thomas Keller’s Cup4Cup. Whatever gf all-purpose flour you use, be sure to rest your dough, ideally overnight. Gluten free flours have a harder time absorbing moisture, and the fridge time will give it the time to do that.

overhead shot of cookies

Chocolate Brownie Vegan Cookie Variations

These would be utterly delightful with more espresso added. If I was going to amp them up 2 teaspoons of finely ground espresso (I like to use real coffee and not instant). However, if you have the instant handy, use that.

Since I am forever a sucker for chocolate and mint together, these would be fab with ½ to 1 teaspoon of peppermint extract. 

What about orange zest + orange blossom water?

cookie close up

More CA Grown Recipes

Vegan Peppermint Brownies

Salted Honey Pear Crostata

Flaky Buttery Prune Danishes

Best Pizza + Sauce 

Burnt Caramel Apples

Five-Spice Prune Bars

Cherry Jammy Streusel Muffins

For more CA Prunes recipes, click here!

Let’s bake some delicious chocolate brownie vegan cookies, shall we?

close up overhead shot of brownie cookies
Overhead shot of brownie cookies close up

Chocolate Brownie Vegan Cookies

Think soft, chewy, brownie-like and wickedly delicious cookies that happen to be vegan. These Chocolate Brownie Vegan Cookies get sweetness and texture from a chocolate-prune puree base that’s made with California Prunes, unsweetened cocoa powder, flaxseed and hot water. No need for eggs or butter. These are honestly too good to be true (it’s true), so make ‘em!
5 from 5 reviews
Print Save Rate
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Cookies
Keyword: Dessert, Baking, Vegan, Brownie, Cookies, Chocolate
Servings: 3 Dozen

Equipment

  • High-Speed Blender or Food Processor

Ingredients

For the Cookies

  • 8 oz (227 g) California Prunes
  • 1/2 cup (43 g) unsweetened cocoa powder (I prefer dark) sifted
  • 2 tablespoons (20 g) raw flaxseeds
  • 1/2 cup (112 g) hot water
  • 1 cup (170 g) dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup (112 g) sunflower seed oil or other neutral oil
  • 1/2 cup (105 g) light brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 cup (100 g) granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon (15 g) real vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon (15 g) fresh-brewed espresso or strong coffee
  • 13/4 cups (237 g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons (7 g) sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup (170 g) dark chocolate chips

To Roll

  • ½ cup demerara sugar optional

Instructions

  • Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C) and line several baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • To a high-speed blender add the prunes, cocoa powder, flaxseeds and hot water (in that order). Blend on low for several minutes or until very smooth. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the blender to make sure that everything is well combined. Measure out about ½ cup (170 g) of the prune puree and reserve the remaining for your next batch (it freezes great!). Don’t clean your blender and set aside for the next step.
  • To a large, heat-safe bowl set over simmering water, add the dark chocolate, oil, brown sugar, granulated sugar and ½ cup (170 g) of prune puree from above. Make sure the water doesn’t boil or touch the bottom of the bowl. Stir frequently until the chocolate is melted and then pour the mixture back into the blender, add the vanilla and espresso/coffee and blend on low until quite smooth, no more than 1 minute.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sea salt, baking powder and baking soda. Scoop the chocolate mixture into the flour mixture and fold until the dough is mixed, but you still see streaks of flour. It will be very thick. Add the chocolate chips and fold until evenly mixed throughout the dough. The dough will appear slightly glossy and quite thick, this is perfect.
  • Gently roll 2 tablespoons (28 g) of dough into a ball and place it on the cookie sheets, allowing about 2 inches (5 cm) between each dough ball. Optional: If you want the cookies coated in sugar, add the demerara sugar to a shallow bowl and roll each dough ball in the sugar and set on the baking sheet. Bake one sheet at a time in the center of the oven for 10 minutes. You want to slightly underbake these. Allow the cookies to cool on the sheet for 15 minutes then transfer to a cooling rack.
Thanks for baking with me! Please tag me on social @displacedhousewife #displacedhousewife so I can see your beautiful treats! xo

15 Comments

  • Leslie March 11, 2022 at 4:09 PM

    5 stars
    Just made them. So delicious! I’m really going to have to restrain myself from eating too many at a time!

    Reply
    • Rebecca Firth March 11, 2022 at 4:23 PM

      Hi Leslie!!! Aren’t they yummy!?! Enjoy and have a wonderful weekend!! xox

      Reply
  • Eon Mckenzie February 19, 2022 at 10:51 AM

    5 stars
    I’m going share this recipe with everyone that I know this is really fantastic

    Reply
  • Jackie February 8, 2022 at 3:51 AM

    Hi Rebecca
    I emailed you about a week ago, I just purchased your cake book and I had a question about one of your recipes, since I did not get a response through your email, I decided to put the question up on your blog. The Banana Rum Cake on page 129. For the Brown Butter Rum Glaze, is there something nonalcholic I can use in place of the rum.

    Reply
    • Rebecca Firth February 8, 2022 at 5:47 AM

      Hi Jackie! My apologies. You can use milk to replace the rum…or even water if you’d like. Have fun baking it! xo

      Reply
  • Junie Rozborski January 17, 2022 at 11:10 PM

    I’m so excited….

    Reply
    • Rebecca Firth January 17, 2022 at 11:17 PM

      Yay! Let me know if you have any questions!! xox

      Reply
  • Pallavi January 16, 2022 at 9:23 PM

    Hi what’s the substitute for prunes?

    Reply
    • Rebecca Firth January 17, 2022 at 7:35 AM

      Hi! I can’t give a sub for the prunes as they’re the base of the cookie. Sorry!! xox

      Reply
      • Pallavi January 18, 2022 at 12:22 AM

        Can I use dried prunes?

        Reply
    • Camila February 28, 2022 at 3:11 PM

      Hi, I used dates Instead of prunes and the results was good

      Reply
  • Sarah James January 16, 2022 at 11:23 AM

    5 stars
    Delicious! I can’t wait to make these

    Reply

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