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Whole Wheat Avo-licious Fudgy Brownies

Published by Cheryl Mussatto, MS, RD, LD on Oct 15, 2018

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Anyone for brownies?  If so, you’ve come to the right place as it’s a good day to be a choco-holic.  These oh-so-delicious chocolatey fudgy beauties are just the perfect brownie to sink your teeth into. Imagine a rich, almost velvety chocolate flavor and guess what?  No surprise from me but this recipe includes healthier items without the excess sugar or less-than-stellar ingredients.

I’m calling this my ‘Brownies with a boost’ because it uses a couple of secret ingredients no one will notice – avocadoes and olive oil.

Avocadoes – If you’re a health-conscious baker, you may already know that a very ripe avocado can be substituted for traditional baking ingredients such as butter or shortening.  It’s a simple way to cut back on fat plus save some calories – two tablespoons of avocado has 50 calories compared to two tablespoons of butter which totals 204 calories – that’s a calorie savings of 154 calories!

In addition, avocadoes are full of healthy monounsaturated fats helping reduce blood cholesterol levels and decrease your risk of heart disease.  Avocadoes also contain phytonutrients, thought to prevent many chronic diseases and the oil found in them keeps skin young and glowing.

Olive Oil – I used olive oil in this recipe but you can also use canola oil too.  In fact, I made this recipe twice, the first time using olive oil and the second time using canola, and was unable to tell the difference in taste or appearance between the two.

However, there are different types of olive oils – extra virgin, virgin, refined and light.  While extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) has the highest quality, it is not ideal for brownies. EVOO when heated in an oven can cause it to release a strong smell that may not make the brownies that appetizing!  The best blend of olive oil is to use light olive oil.  This type will not cause a strong smell when heated and there should be no taste difference between it or canola oil.

Olive oil is a rich source of healthy monounsaturated fat and is a mainstay of the Mediterranean diet in which some of the world’s longest-living cultures use as a staple food. This wonder oil has been studied extensively and is associated with being effective against and reducing the risk of breast cancer, type 2 diabetes, stroke, heart disease, and even osteoporosis. Let’s hear it for olive oil!

Here are a couple of other health-boosting ingredients found in this recipe:

Whole Wheat Flour – Instead of using all-purpose flour, I substituted whole wheat flour. Whole wheat flour is a favorite of mine as it contains all three parts of the grain kernel – the bran, endosperm, and germ, making it a more fiber and nutrient rich flour than all-purpose flour. The bran is the hard outer layer of a whole wheat grain that contains fiber, antioxidants, B vitamins, and phytochemicals.  The endosperm is the middle of the whole wheat grain and the largest part of the kernel. It is made up of carbohydrates and protein with a small amount of B vitamins and minerals. The germ is the part of the kernel that is the embryo of the seed. It provides B vitamins, phytochemicals, antioxidants and vitamin E.

Unsweetened Cocoa Powder – Many brownie recipes tend to use sweetened chocolate but this one uses unsweetened cocoa powder. Cocoa powder, which comes from the cocoa bean, is highly nutritious with many health benefits and contains the all-important flavonoids. Flavonoids, found abundantly in cocoa, are a type of antioxidants called polyphenols that help fight cancer, heart disease, and aging.

Get ready to serve up a pan of these brownies and I can guarantee no one will even know they are eating a better-for-you brownie.  But, be sure to share the secret ingredients surprising everyone just how good they can make brownies taste!

Whole Wheat Avo-licious Fudgy Brownies

Course Dessert
Servings 16 brownies
Calories 195 kcal


  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large very ripe avocado (8 to 10 ounces), peeled and seeded
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup olive or canola oil
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 tablespoons mini chocolate chips, divided


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Line an 8-inch baking dish with heavy aluminum foil allowing ends to stick up: lightly coat with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, combine flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
  • Place peeled and seeded avocado, eggs, oil, honey, sugar, and vanilla in a food processor or blender and blend until smooth.
  • Pour avocado mixture into the dry ingredients and stir to combine – batter will be thick. Stir in 2 tablespoons of mini chocolate chips.
  • Spread batter evenly in prepared baking dish. Sprinkle additional 2 tablespoons of mini chocolate chips on top of batter.
  • Bake for 15 to 18 minutes until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean but be careful not to overbake. Brownies may look damp in the center but will firm up as they cool.
  • Cool on a wire rack and remove brownies from pan using foil handles. Cut into serving sizes.


Nutrition per serving: Calories - 195 calories; Total Fat - 12 grams; Protein - 6 grams; Carbohydrates - 16 grams; Fiber - 2 grams; Sodium - 90 milligrams


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Cheryl Mussatto, MS, RD, LD

Cheryl Mussatto MS, RD, LD is a registered dietitian with a master’s degree in Dietetics and Nutrition from the University of Kansas and a bachelor’s degree in Dietetics and Institutional Management from Kansas State University. She is a clinical dietitian for Cotton O’Neil Clinics in Topeka and Osage City; an adjunct professor for Allen Community College, Burlingame, KS where she teaches Basic Nutrition; and is a freelance writer and blog contributor for Dr. David Samadi, Urologic Oncologist Expert and World Renowned Robotic Surgeon in New York City. Cheryl is also the author of The Nourished Brain, The Latest Science on Food’s Power for Protecting the Brain from Alzheimers and Dementia and The Prediabetes Action Plan and Cookbook, both available on Amazon in Kindle and paperback editions.


  1. kirsty on February 13, 2019 at 7:57 pm

    When do you add the eggs????????????????????????

  2. Cheryl Mussatto on February 14, 2019 at 3:11 pm

    Thanks for your sharp eye and letting me know!! The eggs are put in at the same time as the other “wet” ingredients into a food processor or blender which is during step 4.

    • Cynthia on May 14, 2020 at 2:14 pm

      What are the nutrition facts for this recipe?

      • Cheryl Mussatto, MS, RD, LD on May 14, 2020 at 4:28 pm

        Hi Cynthia!
        Thanks very much for your interest in this recipe – you’ll love it! Sorry I did not have the nutrition information on there but it is now. Check it out! Hope you enjoy the recipe and please keep returning to my website for additional recipes and articles on health and nutrition. Best regards,
        Cheryl Mussatto MS, RD, LD

        • Sydney on June 29, 2020 at 7:24 pm

          Hi, do you know how many grams of sugar are in each serving? The rest of the nutrition info was very helpful though

          • Cheryl Mussatto, MS, RD, LD on July 7, 2020 at 7:21 am

            Hi Sydney! The total grams of sugar are reflected in the total carbohydrates per serving which is 16 grams. Sugar is a type of carbohydrate and in this recipe, the total grams of sugar out of the 16 grams of total carbohydrates, would be 8 grams.

            Thank you for your question and thanks for trying out the recipe – hope you enjoyed it!!


  3. Janie Jones on December 9, 2020 at 10:51 pm

    Is it fudgey or a cake-like brownie?

    • Cheryl Mussatto, MS, RD, LD on December 11, 2020 at 5:13 pm

      In my opinion, it’s more of a fudgy like brownie. It’s a little more dense, compact, that “fudgy” type of feeling. Thanks for asking and hope this helps!


      • Missy on January 18, 2021 at 6:39 pm

        Should these be refrigerated? So yummy!

        • Cheryl Mussatto, MS, RD, LD on October 26, 2021 at 7:45 pm

          Hi Missy!

          Since it’s been baked, it doesn’t have to be refrigerated but if you prefer it to be, then you could certainly do so.

          Thanks for asking!

          Healthy regards,


  4. Cheryl Mussatto, MS, RD, LD on August 22, 2021 at 4:30 pm


    Thank you very much for reaching out to me with your question on substitutes for eggs in my whole wheat avolicious fudgy brownies. To answer your question, here is a link from Livestrong that makes several egg substitutions for you to consider. Eggs are mainly used in recipes as a binder, holding ingredients together, so any of these recommendations should have a similar outcome. Here is the link:

    Thanks again and hope you have a great week ahead!

    Stay healthy,

  5. Linda Hutchison on October 19, 2022 at 1:05 pm

    Can I substitute the honey and sugar for splenda granulated?

    • Cheryl Mussatto, MS, RD, LD on October 19, 2022 at 1:39 pm

      Hi Linda!

      Thanks for asking such a great question! You should be able to do that substitution to still provide that certain level of sweetness that the honey and sugar would provide. It shouldn’t affect the moistness of the brownie since it uses both an avocado and eggs.

      Good luck and let me know how it turns out!

      Thanks again for reaching out and have a great rest of your week,


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