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We use fresh beets in this recipe to create a red velvet appeal, moisten the brownies and provide an extra boost of nutrition. This recipe is in my top five all-time favorites; the result is a tender, delicious brownie. The candied nibbed walnuts are added for crunch and flavor, but they are a great recipe on their own as well, for a snack or ice cream topper!   Credit: Reprinted with permission from The Art of Raw Desserts by Crystal Bonnet. Page Street Publishing Co. 2022. Photo credit: Crystal Bonnet.

Double Chocolate Red Velvet Brownies [Vegan]




For the Candied Nibbed Walnuts:

  • 2 cups (200 g) raw walnuts, soaked for 4 hours and rinsed
  • 1/4 cup (30 g) cacao nibs
  • 1/4 cup (40 g) coconut sugar
  • 2 tablespoons (30 ml) coconut nectar
  • 6 drops vanilla extract
  • Pinch of Himalayan salt

For the Red Velvet Brownies:

  • 1 cup (165 g) peeled and chopped red beets
  • 11 large Medjool dates, soaked to soften and pitted
  • 3/4 cup (72 g) cacao powder
  • 1 cup (80 g) medium-shred unsweetened dried coconut
  • 1 cup (130 g) soaked and dehydrated almonds
  • 3/4 cup (75 g) soaked and dehydrated walnuts
  • 1/4 cup (40 g) coconut sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon Himalayan salt
  • 2 tablespoons (30 ml) melted virgin coconut oil
  • 10 drops vanilla extract, Medicine Flower brand preferred
  • 3/4 cup (111 g) chopped Candied Nibbed Walnuts


  • 1 batch Dark Chocolate Ganache
  • 1 batch White Chocolate Sauce


For the Candied Nibbed Walnuts:

  1. In a bowl, combine the walnuts, cacao nibs, coconut sugar, coconut nectar, vanilla and salt. Spread the mixture on a lined dehydrator tray and dehydrate at 115°F (46°C) for 24 hours. The mixture will be sticky but will have a crunchy texture once cooled. Place the candied walnuts in the freezer to crisp up before use.

For the Red Velvet Brownies:

  1. In a high-speed blender, blend together the beets and dates to form a puree. In a food processor, process the cacao powder, coconut, almonds, walnuts, coconut sugar and salt together until a coarse flour forms. Be careful not to overprocess the mixture into a fine flour; some texture should remain.
  2. Add the beet mixture, melted coconut oil and vanilla to the food processor, and process until the mixture is combined and starts sticking together. Add the chopped candied nibbed walnuts and pulse until they are incorporated. The batter will be very sticky and you may have to stir in the candied walnuts by hand using a spatula.
  3. Line an 8-inch (20-cm) square baking pan with parchment paper and, using your hands, press the brownie batter into the bottom of the pan to create an even, thick layer. Using the back of a spoon, firmly smooth out the layer.

For the Assembly:

  1. Before adding the dark chocolate ganache, have the white chocolate sauce made and ready to use as we are using this as a marble decoration on top. Pour the dark chocolate ganache on top of the brownie mixture and pat the pan on the counter to release any air bubbles and even out the mixture.
  2. Transfer the white chocolate sauce to a squeeze bottle or piping bag and create horizontal lines approximately ⅜ inch (1 cm) apart, starting from one side of the pan to the other, until there are even lines across the entire ganache layer. Usinga toothpick or wooden skewer, graze only the top of the lines from one end to another in the opposite direction, alternating from top to bottom, creating a beautiful design on top.
  3. Chill the brownies in the freezer overnight or for a minimum of 8 hours, until firm. Remove the pan from the freezer and slice into 2-inch (5-cm) squares (you can use a ruler to mark each cut with a knife). Allow to thaw and serve immediately or store in the freezer for up to 1 month or the fridge for up to 3 days. They won’t last long in the fridge because of the fresh beets, but they store well in the freezer.



When choosing beets for this recipe, choose the ones smaller in size. The larger the beet, the woodier it tastes. Smaller beets are sweeter.


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