37 Calorie Brownies

by Brad Nelson   10/21/17

I found this recipe online and then made some small changes. A friend of my brother’s recently underwent bypass surgery (which was successful). That and an inclination toward diabetes meant he had to cut the carbs, sugar, and fat. And, as I found out, one of his favorite foods is brownies.

I like brownies too. So I thought this would be a worthy project, not only to help this friend but myself. The recipe sounds a bit strange. But I know what real brownies taste like. These here are a bit different, for sure. But they turned out very well. I couldn’t tell you what the finally calorie count is (depends how large you cut them). But you can see from the recipe which lacks butter, sugar, and wheat flour that it can’t be all that bad.


1 ½ cups nonfat greek plain yogurt (Fage 0% is what I used) — better to use just a little more than a little less to ensure moistness
½ cup skim milk  (just slightly over a cup to make them moist)
1 cup Cocoa powder
1 cup Old fashioned rolled oats (like Quaker)
½ cup (plus about a tablespoon) Truvia Baking Blend (or any natural/stevia based sweetener that pours like sugar) — Add more if these aren’t sweet enough for you. But I like that little bit of bite of the cocoa.
2 eggs
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 pinches of salt
16 pecan halves medium chopped
3 tablespoons coconut flour (almond flour would do, but coconut flower is much less expensive)


Preheat the oven to 400°F. Grease a 12 x 9 baking dish.

Combine all ingredients into a food processor and blend until smooth (about 1 minute). Stir in chopped nuts.

Pour into the prepared dish and bake for about 22 minutes — which I did in a small convection oven…your time might vary. But from a little experimentation, you don’t want to dry these out. A toothpick should come out at least slightly moist. Cool a little before cutting.

Brad is editor and chief disorganizer of StubbornThings.
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Brad Nelson

About Brad Nelson

I like books, nature, politics, old movies, Ronald Reagan (you get sort of a three-fer with that one), and the founding ideals of this country. We are the Shining City on the Hill — or ought to be. However, our land has been poisoned by Utopian aspirations and feel-good bromides. Both have replaced wisdom and facts.
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4 Responses to 37 Calorie Brownies

  1. Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

    Also, while compiling this and other recipes, I discovered a very handy app that works for both Android and iOS: My CookBook. Best of all, it’s free. (Here’s how it looks in Apple’s App Store where you can see a few screenshots.)

    And thank goodness they have “My” in the name of it or I would have supposed it belonged to someone else. (eyeroll)

    This actually works good having this both on my Android tablet and my iPhone 6 plus. Although the app on my phone uses the screen real estate well, it’s still a little small to be able to prop your phone up on the kitchen counter and refer to it. The larger tablet works much better for that.

    And although it took some time, transcribing the dozen or so frequently-used recipes I have was worth it. If you’re like me, you perhaps print out a page on paper from the internet and put all kinds of notes on it as you change the recipe. Some of my pages had so many notes, they were difficult to follow.

    But now that I took the time to type them into this app, it’s easy to follow them and to document any small changes or add notes. And you need type in the recipe just once on one device. The other devices will suck down the recipes form a common database which you can access online.

    It seems that many, if not most, online recipe sites (from which I get most of my ideas) hold to some sort of standard format so that your phone or tablet app can download these recipes and the formatting stays intact. This is pretty cool. You can use the in-app browser in My CookBook or use your own web browser and then “share” (basically export) whatever you find on the web for inclusion into your list of recipes on your phone or tablet. I ran into one case where an online recipe was not listed in a format that My Cookbook Recipe Manager could use. But it seems the overwhelming majority work just fine.

    Some recipe apps come pre-loaded with a bazillion recipes. I don’t need or want that. It’s easy enough to browse recipes on your own on the web. But it’s okay if a bazillion recipes come pre-installed in an app as long as they are not in the way. My CookBook Recipe Manager doesn’t have a built-in bazillion recipes (or any) and that’s actually fine with me.

    It’s particularly nice to have My CookBook on my iPhone as well because the app includes a “shopping list” feature that has the ingredients of a recipe listed. And you can cross them off as you add them to your shopping basket. You can also, of course, print them out or email them. I emailed the brownie recipe to myself. That saved a lot of typing.

  2. Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

    One reason I added the 3 tablespoons of coconut flour was to make these brownies a bit “cakier.” That’s the same reason I added the pecans (and you could just as easily use walnuts…or both). I wanted a bit more of a pastry texture to them rather than, say, more of a fudge texture. These are still pretty chewy as opposed to a more traditional brownie “cake” but they are in the ballpark. And they do taste great so there really is no noticeable trade-off.

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