Sweet Potato Brownies

By Patricia Helding | February 19, 2015
You would have to live under a rock (or perhaps in a cave?) not to have heard of the Paleo Diet, which emphasizes unprocessed and nutrient-rich foods. While I have serious doubts that cavemen and cavewomen foraged cacao beans, pulverized them with their clubs, and made chocolate treats, I'd like to think they would have enjoyed these dense, rich brownies made with sweet potatoes. I like to put these atop a scoop of (non-Paleo) ice cream.


  • 1 cup mashed sweet potato
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup refined coconut oil, melted (see instructions below)
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup almond flour


To make the mashed sweet potato, prick 1 large or 2 small sweet potatoes all over with a fork. Wrap with foil and roast in a 400°F oven until soft. Cool the potatoes, then split them open, scoop out the flesh, and mash with a fork.

Coconut oil melting instructions:
Coconut oil solidifies below 75 degrees. To liquefy it, put the jar in a small saucepan of very hot water and let it stand for at least 15 minutes. If it still hasn’t melted, set it over low heat and simmer for a few minutes.


1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease a 9" × 9" baking pan with coconut oil or cooking spray. Dust with flour and tap out the excess.

2. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the sweet potato and eggs until smooth. Add the maple syrup, vanilla, and oil and beat until well blended.

3. Measure the cocoa, baking powder, and salt and sift directly into the sweet potato mixture. Stir in the almond flour and mix until combined.

4. Spread the batter evenly in the prepared pan and bake for 32 to 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean or with only moist crumbs, not batter, on it. Cool in the pan on a rack for at least 1 hour, then transfer to the refrigerator. Cut into squares just before serving.

Storage: The brownies will keep longer uncut. Cover the pan with plastic wrap or foil and store in the refrigerator for 5 to 7 days.

Tip: If you have a freezer and can put someone on an ice-cream-scooping station, it's a scrumptious addition to your bake sale. Brownies, bars, or cookies can be wedged in for a yummy topping.

  • sweet potato brownies with ice cream recipe