For reasons I am not yet ready to reveal to the Internet, I recently had to start counting carbs and watching my diet. In a nutshell, it’s not fun. I have always been a very healthy eater, but there’s something about being told I have to eat healthy that is just so . . . well, annoying. Nevertheless, I have committed to following the rules. Most of the time, anyway. When I do feel like cheating, it will most definitely be for chocolate.
At our Superbowl party last weekend I cheated with these brownies. They have less flour and less sugar than your average brownie. The chocolate flavor really shines through from the Dutch-processed cocoa, which is supposedly more flavorful than your run-of-the-mill cocoa powder.
These brownies also have a nice dose of salt, and I have to admit I find the sea salt and chocolate combo to be downright mouth-watering. Initially I made a version with all of the salt inside the batter, but I think the crunchy topping makes for a nice finish.
If you happen to be watching your carb (or calorie) intake, give these brownies a try. I hope to cheat with them again soon!
Lower Carb Chocolate Sea Salt Brownies
Makes 16 brownies
- 1 teaspoon instant espresso powder
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- ½ cup unsweetened cocoa (preferably Dutch-process for a flavor boost)
- ½ cup all-purpose flour
- 1 ¼ teaspoons sea salt, divided
- ¼ teaspoon baking powder
- 1 cup sugar
- ¼ butter
- 2 large eggs
Preheat the oven to 350 degree F. Grease an 8-inch square metal baking pan.
In a cup, dissolve the coffee in the vanilla extract. In a small bowl, combine the cocoa, flour, ¾ teaspoon sea salt, and the baking powder. Then in a medium bowl, whisk the sugar, vegetable oil spread, eggs, and coffee mixture until well-mixed. Then blend in the flour mixture. Spread the batter in the prepared pan. (It will be a thick batter.) Lastly, sprinkle the remaining ½ teaspoon sea salt over the brownies.