Monday, 7 April 2014

Avocado Quinoa Brownies


I've been getting pretty sneaky in kitchen lately, and becoming a expert at hiding nutritious ingredients in the food I prepare.  My kids aren't opposed to the idea of eating healthy foods, but their palates are less refined, their tastes are not always adventurous, and they still turn up their noses at less conventional foods.  If they're looking for a treat, they would choose something refined and sugary over protein and fibre.  If I want them to eat enough of the good stuff, sometimes I have to disguise it.  Our banana, berry, and yogurt smoothies also have spinach and avocado in them.  Most of the muffins I bake include quinoa, flax, and chia.  I hide finely chopped veggies in sauces and stews.  Pureed dates sweeten baked goods instead of sugar.  And they have no idea that the tuna salad in their sandwiches is hiding sardines and avocado.  Most of the time no one notices, the food tastes good, and everyone's happy.  But there have been a few failures along the way.  I'm still struggling with homemade granola bars, and I haven't quite nailed a few cookie recipes I've been working on, but I think I've figured out brownies.



I shared this photo of black bean brownies a while ago.  They were my first attempt at healthifying brownies, and they tasted great, but the texture was terrible and they fell apart as soon as they came out of the pan.  


I haven't abandoned black bean brownies yet, and I have plans to modify the recipe a bit, but in the meantime I made up a batch of avocado quinoa brownies.  And they were amazing, fudgey and chocolatey, just as a brownie should be.


I might increase the amounts next time, or use a smaller pan, as they were a little on the flat side.  There was an ever-so-slight crunch from the quinoa, which I liked and the kids didn't really notice.  Maybe I could cook the quinoa a bit longer.  Other than that, I won't change a thing.  These are really good brownies.


Feeling sneaky?  Or just craving chocolate?  Either way, these are what you need.


Avocado Quinoa Brownies

1 avocado, mashed
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
1/3 cup agave syrup
1 egg, slightly beaten
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup cooked quinoa, cooled
1/2 cup brown sugar

3/4 cup flour
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup cocoa (I used dark cocoa)
1/2 cup chocolate chips (I used milk chocolate chips)

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Prepare an 8x8 pan.  I usually put parchment in the bottom.  Stir together the wet ingredients with the quinoa and brown sugar and combine.  One of my teenagers walked into the room at this point and told me it looked like vomit.  Charming.

Sift together the flour, salt, baking soda, and cocoa.  I used dark cocoa, which has a slightly bitter taste.  Next time I might try half regular cocoa and half dark cocoa.  Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix well.  Stir in the chocolate chips and pour into prepared pan.  Bake for 20 min, or until toothpick inserted into the centre comes out almost clean.  A completely clean toothpick means overcooked brownies.  Cool in pan.




 Thank you for featuring me!

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96 comments:

  1. What a neat recipe!

    Thanks for joining the Link Up this week!

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  2. I want these! My kids are very opposed to healthy foods and I'm not against being sneaky. In some cases, it's necessary!
    And I love avocado and quinoa an brownies, so why not?

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  3. I love high fiber recipes and this would definitely be one, thanks! -Dawn @ We Call It Junkin.com

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  4. They look very nice indeed! #magicmoments

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  5. Love this recipe. I am a huge fan of Quinoa and I love the idea of adding avocado.

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  6. Avo and quinoa in brownies! How inventive. Cheers from Carole's Chatter

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  7. Will have to give this one a try…Thank you for sharing at One More Time Events

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  8. These sound like the healthiest brownies ever! I'm glad I found your link through yesterfood link party.

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  9. I LOVE quinoa and avocados, so have to try this and just pinned it now. Thanks for sharing, Happy Share Your Stuff Tuesdays

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  10. Jenn, these are gorgeous! Now you had some healthy elements (dark chocolate, coconut oil, avocado, quinoa, agave), and they're just genius! ♥ Thank you for sharing these with us at Treasure Box Tuesday....I have pinned and tweeted the deliciousness! :D

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  11. What a great idea putting healthy things in something so indulgent. I've been investigating Chia since you mentioned it before and have ordered some......thank you!

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  12. Mmmm what a great idea! Brownies seem to be the quick go to dessert as the sun starts shining and enjoying pool time. Definitely going to try this. Thanks for sharing, coming to you from Healthy Tuesday Hop!

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  13. These sound really delicious! I love the idea of adding quinoa!

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  14. You could have fooled me Jenn! These look delicious(anything chocolate gets my attention). :-) We have one who can sniff out a hidden ingredient like a bloodhound, lol! And we have one who LOVES to try new things(I love that kid), lol! I'll have to try these(I like healthy too)! So glad to be back...have a wonderful week! ;-)

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  15. These look amazing. I can't believe they have avocado and quinoa in them .Definitely going on my "must bake" list!
    I would love if you would link up to my "The Yuck Stops Here" link party. It is full of great recipes like yours and we would love to have you!
    http://thefreshmancook.blogspot.com/2014/04/the-yuck-stops-here-linky-party.html
    Thanks, Teri @ The Freshman Cook

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  16. I could never get black bean brownies to work either. . . I made some with sweet potato. and some with tofu both really good. Ive done muffins with avocado so I can totally see how it would work well. these look super. (don't worry about hiding things in food. . . I still do that with my man!)

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  17. I so have to try these, I know my kids would never suspect thing!

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  18. These sound incredible, wow! (Seen on The Blogger's Digest.)

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  19. What? Avocado and quinoa in a brownie! It looks so scrumptious! I love that you sneak extra (yucky) fish into your kids tuna! I'm sure you're stopping them saying "YUCK" to something they probably wouldn't even try if they knew it was there. And extra veggies in sauces are yummy even if they're not chopped up fine (but if that's what you have to do to get the kids to eat them, I say go for it) That's my mission, stopping the word "YUCK" from exiting little (and big) mouths everywhere! Thanks so much for sharing on The Yuck Stops Here link party! I hope we'll see lots more from you! HUGS

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  20. Oh. My. Goodness. These look absolutely amazing! I'm for sure going to have to try these. I love that you try to healthify your recipes for your family. Found you at The Blogger's Digest!

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  21. I saw this on inspire me wednesday and had to come take a closer look - i bet they taste delish!

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  22. Dear Jenn, I absolutely love these! I will be pinning to make sure I give them a try soon. They look moist and delicious. Stopping by from Treasure Box. Blessings, Catherine

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  23. Jenn, I am pinning these to try! I love this "healthier" brownie version---my sister uses agave for everything. And I use a lot of quinoa. Here is an interesting fact for you. I am living in Brazil now (my husband was born here and we came down for a while because his father is ill). Brazilian cuisine always features avocado as a sweet item (my hubby's family and friends are too repulsed to even consider tasting guacamole for example). They often make sweet milkshakes, and fruit smoothies, made with avocado and commonly make a wonderful tasting custard type pudding made with avocado. I say all of that to say, I understand the avocado in your healthy brownie. It makes a lot of sense to me:) Have a great week.....

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  24. Mmm I could go for one right now! Thanks for sharing your post at the Healthy Tuesday hop. :)

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  25. These look so good! Thanks for sharing...I'm a new follower from the blogger's digest...and I'm also a fellow Ontario girl :)

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  26. These look amazing! I love that they have avocado in them! Such a great recipe! Sharing/pinning and making ASAP!

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  27. That's terrific! You never know if recipes like this actually taste good, so it is great when you come across one that has been tried and proven. Thanks for linking up with the Bloggers Brags Pinterest Party. I have pinned your post to the Bloggers Brags Pinterest Board!

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  28. Oh Jenn, these sound so delicious and nutritious! I make avocado chocolate pudding all the time. Never thought to concoct a brownie recipe!

    Thanks for sharing! Pinning.
    xoxo

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  29. Ohh Jen, this is definitely something new. Avocado and Quinoa? Looks really healthy. :)

    Btw, big thanks for linking up with Let's Get Real.

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  30. I'd say you totally nailed those brownies - they look wonderful and what a great way of disguising a few "healthy" ingredients.

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  31. Great recipe but I never use agave as a sweetener, only because I have some concerns about the safety of using it, but still love all the other ingredients. . I would choice to substitute for organic stevia. Thanks for sharing on Real Food Fridays Blog Hop. Have a wonderful healthy day!

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  32. This look insanely scrumptious! What a great bake #PoCoLo

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  33. Jen these are delicious treat, thanks for sharing with Hearth and Soul blog hop.

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  34. You had me at the word avocado on this recipe - I LOVE them and had never thought of making brownies out of them. I am giving that a try! Thank you for linking to PoCoLo :) x

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  35. You sneaky thing, you!
    Your brownies surely look very chocolatey and fudgy. They would fool me!
    Thank you for sharing with See Ya in the Gumbo this week.

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  36. These are great Jen. These look very chocolately and, like you, I'd love that little crunch from the quinoa. Thanks for sharing this at the Let's Get Real Friday Link Party.

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  37. Wow - looks delicious! I'll have to try this. Thanks for linking up at Take it on Tuesday!
    ~ Betsy @ Romance on a dime

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  38. This just sounds awesome! I wanted to let you know that I am featuring your post tomorrow on Tuesday's with a Twist so please stop by to take a peek. Thank you again and have a great day.

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  39. I love the idea of hiding nutrition in goodies. :-) Thanks for linking up with "Try a New Recipe Tuesday." I hope you will be able to join us again this week. http://our4kiddos.blogspot.com/2014/04/try-new-recipe-tuesday-april-15.html

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  40. Now this is a brownie without any guilt attached! What a great recipe, Jenn. Thank you for sharing it with us at The Hearth and Soul Hop.

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  41. Mmm these sound fantastic. I have tried black bean brownies but not avocado. Hello from Treasure Box Tuesdays.

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  42. What a fabulous idea to sneak avocado and quinoa into a BROWNIE!! Love it! Thanks so much for sharing with us at Saturday Night Fever, Jenn!!

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  43. I love the chips poking out the brownies, yum. Thanks for linking up to Sweet and Savoury Sunday, stop by and link up again. Happy Easter, have a great weekend!

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  44. Those look delicious. I have some quinoa flour and wonder if that would work....

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  45. Your recipes are always so interesting and different. Thanks again for sharing them on Merry Mondays.

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  46. I never tried any cake recipes with avocade...but this looks yum! Thanks for sharing! And great photo tutorial!

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  47. OK, this is crazy...In a good way. Two of my favorite "Chopped" ingredients ending up in a brownie. Oh, I must try this. Thanks for sharing on #theweekendsocial. Please stop by next week and link up some more foodies surprises! <3 Oh yeah, I've pinned this as well1

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  48. hmmm healthy brownie......that is sneaky!! I like it :) Thanks for sharing with us!

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  49. Avocado and quinoa in a brownie? Yes please! Just another reason for me to keep my avocado drawer stocked! Chrystal @ YUM eating.

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  50. Thanks for sharing with the Merry Monday Linky Party!

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  51. Wow, I would never have thought of putting these ingredients together to make a brownie. They look amazing, and you can eat them guilt free (well sort of....lol).

    Thanks for sharing at Marvelous Monday on Smart Party Planning :-)

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  52. I would not have put those two in a brownie but it sounds great and I will give it a try. Thanks for linking up at The Southern Special.
    Looks like you have a knack for combining odd ingredients. Interested in our CIC or Crazy Ingredient Challenge? We post once a month. I assign two ingredients and you come up with a new recipe. We all post on the same day.
    Shoot me an email if you're interested or a FB message.
    Dawn
    Spatulas On Parade

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  53. I'm trying to sneak in more healthy ingredients in our desserts for the kids, too. I'll have to give these brownies a try since we've been using Quinoa a lot lately. Thanks for sharing this!

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  54. This looks like a fabulous and easily made vegan recipe! I'm pinning to my Vegan Desserts board and making this ASAP. Thanks for sharing!

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  55. I love your method of getting kids to eat healthier -- I'm the same way, and my teens have the same reaction when they see me trying something new -- gotta love 'em! :) Thanks for sharing your recipe at Snickerdoodle Sunday! :)

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  56. These look SO yummy! It never dawned on me to try quinoa in a brownie recipe. I will definitely be giving these a try.

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  57. You are definitely a clever cook! This combo never would have occurred to me, but they look delicious. You've made me curious, so I just might have to give them a try. Pinned!

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  58. Isn't it interesting what you can sneak past kids when there's chocolate involved? Another one of the reasons I'm convinced chocolate is magical. These brownies look delicious! Thank you for linking at the In and Out of the Kitchen Link Party. Hope to see you again next week.

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  59. I love sneaking veggies into my baked goods even though I'm the only one eating them most of the time haha
    I'm working on an avocado cupcake right now with no luck but I'll keep trying. I actually just posted a homemade granola bar recipe yesterday :D
    And for the black bean brownies, have you considered making them in muffin tins instead? They hold together a lot better that way IMO.
    Stopping by from Twirl & Take a Bow. Thanks for sharing!

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  60. Pinning! I need some o f these just about right NOW!!! :)
    xox, Crystelle
    CrystelleBoutique

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  61. I've always wanted to try a recipe like this. Sounds like a great way to get those veggies in to my picky eater! Thank you so much for linking this up to The Creative Collection Link Party.

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  62. Brownies are always a big hit and your recipe has such healthy ingredients. Sounds delicious. Thanks for sharing on Real Food Fridays Blog hop.

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  63. Those look brilliant, I love how they contain good for ingredients. Thanks for linking up to Sweet and Savoury Sunday, stop by and link up again. Have a great day!!

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  64. These look great! Healthy ingredients into a chocolatey dessert, it is my favorite kind of recipe. :-)
    Thanks for linking these up at the Bloggers Brags Linky Party. Come again soon!

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  65. Yummy! I love recipes that take healthy ingredients and turn them into chocolatey goodness.
    Thanks for linking up at the Bloggers Brags Party!

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  66. Thanks for sharing this recipe @ Monday Handmade Linkup Party!

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  67. Hmm...these look like something I just HAVE to try!! Thanks for sharing at Tips and Tricks!

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  68. I was just talking to someone today about hiding nutritious foods in my kids' snacks. What a good idea! Thanks for linking up with "Try a New Recipe Tuesday." Looking forward to seeing what you'll share this week. http://our4kiddos.blogspot.com/2014/07/try-new-recipe-tuesday-july-29.html

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  69. Love hidden healthy-ness!! Thank you so much for linking up at Tasty Tuesday! Your recipe has been pinned to the Tasty Tuesday Pinterest board! Please join us again this week!

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  70. I'm always looking for ways to make desserts healthier so I can get my "fix." I've heard of black bean brownies, but never avocado and quinoa. I'll have to give them a try. Thanks for sharing with Pin Your Friday Favorite!

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  71. Love it, pinned, thanks for sharing on Real Food Fridays.

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  72. I came over after reading your comment on my blog and realized I've read this post already and pretty sure I pinned it..but pinned it again just to be sure! I have these on my "to make" list! Can't have too many healthy brownie recipes :-)

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  73. Congrats! You are featured on this week's Do Tell Tuesday link party and have been pinned to our features board! Feel free to grab a button and link up this week too. :) http://www.vintagezest.com/2014/07/do-tell-tuesday-34.html

    Diane @ Vintage Zest

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  74. I love sneaking healthy food into my family's meals! I have heard that avocado is good in baking but I've never tried it...these look yummy so now I think I will! Sometimes if I don't have dates in the house, I will just put some raisins in the blender and those seem to work as well. Pinning!

    Thanks for sharing at the #healthylivinglinkparty

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  75. OMG these brownies look delicious! I have recently started experimenting with avocado (yeah I'm slow) and this sounds like another good recipe to try! Dropping in from the Healthy Living Link Party!

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  76. Interesting combo for brownies. Def need to make these for the kids. I love adding secret ingredients into special treats for the kids. Thanks for linking up and visiting Healthy Living Link Party.

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  77. Love the combination here! The brownies look AMAZING! I love that you used healthy options especially the quinoa! Brilliant! Thank you so much for sharing this with us at #saucySaturdays!

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  78. This certainly looks brilliant.. as for hiding the good stuff in the very good stuff.. wow!! absolutely genius! Thanks for linking up at #SaucySaturdays

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  79. I'm starting to think you can add chocolate to anything. I may have to test my theory. AFTER I whip up a batch of these brownies. Thanks for linking up at #SaucySaturdays.

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  80. I love the fact that they have some healthy foods in them! I love chocolate anything and now I won't feel guilty eating the whole pan! Thanks for sharing them with Saucy Saturdays:)

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  81. These sound amazing and look SO good!

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  82. I've never considered putting quinoa in brownies before, could you also add hazelnuts to this recipe or would it be too gritty?

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    Replies
    1. Sure, why not? I think nuts and brownies go well together!

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  83. These look delicious and very fudge-y! Thanks for sharing your recipe.

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  84. I love the idea of using healthy ingredients in foods. I don't have to hide it for the kids, my husband and I just like to add good things to our food. these brownies look great.
    Bev

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  85. Linking up after you at I'm Lovin' It - enjoyed reading about your creativity in including healthy ingredients!

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  86. Hi Jenn,
    These brownie look absolutely delicious and mouth watering. I love the healthy ingredients and who can resist chocolate brownies? Thanks for sharing on Real Food Fridays. Pinned & twitted.

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  87. I love finding recipes to hide a bit of healthy in for my son! Pinning these to try. Thank you for sharing with us at the #HomeMattersParty

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  88. I love sneaking healthy ingredients into my baking! These look amazing!
    Thanks for sharing on the Shine Blog Hop!

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  89. This looks to pack a healthy punch in disguise!

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  90. These brownies look ah-mazing. It's 9am and I'm craving a pan of brownies right now. Congrats, you're featured this week at the #ThisIsHowWeRoll Link Party.

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  91. I've been wanting to try out some avocado brownies for a while now, and yours have quinoa too! I also wanted to let you know you're featured today on Five Friday Finds! :)

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  92. These look INCREDIBLE! Shared on my FB page, and I'm pinning these for later!

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  93. Absolutely delicious. Was craving for a midnight snack and what a great way to help with your chocolate cravings. Delicious chewy and chocolaty, will definitely be making this again. Thank you for the recipe Healthy Brownie Recipes | Keep Healthy Living :)

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