As you probably know by now, I am obsessed with tahini, and I am always looking for ways to use it in anything and everything. And how couldn’t you fall in love with such a delicious, simple, yet versatile ingredient? It is important to use a super smooth, high quality tahini, like this Seeds of Collaboration tahini that is sourced in the Middle East and contributes to Middle East Entrepreneurs of Tomorrow! Check it out here.
It adds a unique, nutty, rich flavor to desserts, yet in savory dishes, it can become the simplest creamy, tangy complement to a dish. These tahini brownies use my favorite ingredient to make an incredibly fudgy, rich, and moist dessert!
The recipe uses just enough tahini to make the flavor pronounced, yet not overwhelming. I like to use one flax egg and one puréed ripe banana because the sweetness of the banana complements the tahini flavor without overpowering it.
As a child, one of my favorite Middle Eastern desserts and snacks was halawa. It is made from sesame paste, just like tahini, and is basically tahini in a thicker, sliceable, sweet form. It is not so overwhelmingly sweet that you could not eat it for breakfast though… I loved to eat slices of halawa on toast for breakfast. And halawa always came decorated with chopped pistachios on top, so of course, they make the perfect topping for these brownies! I also decorated these brownies with a delectable caramelized tahini swirl, made from dropping dollops of tahini swirled with maple syrup on top of the batter. Once baked, the delicious caramelized swirls and toasted pistachio pieces are reminiscent of the sweet simplicity of halawa.
These brownies are delicious straight out of the oven… I finished off half the batch immediately the first time I made them! But they are also incredibly tasty after being stored in the fridge because they get even more fudgy, dense, and rich, especially when slightly underbaked. I brought half a batch home to my family to stop myself from eating all of them by myself and they were gone the same night.
- ½ cup flour
- ½ cup cocoa powder
- ½ cup sugar (I prefer coconut or raw)
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp instant coffee
- ½ cup maple syrup
- ¼ cup + 2 tbsp tahini*
- 2 tbsp melted coconut oil
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 puréed ripe banana**
- 1 flax egg (1 tbsp ground flax seed + 3 tbsp water)
- ½ cup almond milk
- ½ cup chocolate chips (optional)
- 2 tbsp tahini*
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- chopped pistachios for topping
- Preheat oven to 350F. Whisk together all dry ingredients in a large bowl except for chocolate chips (if using).
- Mix wet ingredients in a separate bowl, slowly add them to the dry ingredients, and stir or whisk to combine. Stir in chocolate chips if desired.
- Grease or line an 8x8 brownie pan with parchment paper. Pour the brownie batter into the pan.
- In a small bowl, mix together 2 tbsp tahini with 2 tbsp maple syrup. Spoon in dollops over the brownie batter, and make swirl patterns with a knife. Top with chopped pistachios.
- Bake for 42-48 minutes, until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean.
**You can use 2 flax eggs if you prefer, but I like to use one ripe banana because it adds some sweetness and the taste is not too overwhelming!