These adorable penguin brookies are gluten free and vegan.
As I went to write this post, I was suddenly curious about the history of the brookie. I’d certainly never heard of them until the dawn of Pinterest. My mom made cookies often, and brownies less so, but never together. Were they a classic when you were growing up?
As a former history major, I certainly know the steps involving a full-blown brookie investigation. It takes more than just a Google, and I’m not that curious. One thing is certain, the brookie takes many forms. Bars, pies, cake pops probably. So I’m here to present my own version: the gluten free, vegan, totally adorable penguin brookie.
Speaking of adorable, do you have trouble eating “cute” foods? I kinda do. Like when I get a chocolate bunny or something, I bite its head off first so it doesn’t know I’m eating it. That’s not crazy, right? Anyways, that’s what I had to do with these. Eat the head first.
But still eat, because they were so good. I mean. Brownie + sugar cookie = holiday cheer!!!!
Especially for an indecisive person such as myself. I both love and hate a generous array of holiday cookies. My grandma would often make over a dozen different kind of cookies — in her later years. I’m told she would make twice that when she was younger. As much as I loved every last variety, it was so hard for me to choose. So I would choose them all and then end up with a bellyache. Cookies were easy to sneak because they were kept in various tins the the chilly garage.
For these treats, you don’t have to choose. Isn’t that kind of the point of a brookie? They are an utter boon to the indecisive American.
They are also a boon to the frosting-fighter. You know, those folks who have lofty dreams of intricately designed cookies, but end up with a melted mess. That’s me. For this, you need to paint two dots and a triangle. If I can do it, you can do it. And free-form the scarf. And to shape this, all you need is a three tier snowman cookie cutter.
See? the bottom part of the cookie cutter makes the outer part (the dark brownie) and the top part of the cookie cutter makes the inner white part (sugar cookie). Easy easy easy.
Even these are totally simple, there are some steps involved….but don’t be intimidated! You don’t have to do the steps all at once. The sugar cookie dough has to be chilled before cutting, and the brookie dough has to be chilled after cutting, and you can decorate them any time you like. Just take it fifteen minutes at a time here and there. So even if you’re busy, you totally have time to bake up these wintery little cuties. 🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧
I always recommend sifting gluten-free flour prior to using. I like Bob's Red Mill Cup-to-Cup in the blue bag (not sponsored). For this recipe, it's okay to sift lightly.
- 1/3 cup vegan chocolate chips
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 2 flax eggs
- 3 tbsp coconut oil, solid
- 1 tbsp espresso powder (optional)
- 2/3 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup cocoa powder
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1 1/2 cups sifted GF flour
- 2 flax eggs
- 1 tbsp vanilla
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 3 tbsp coconut oil, melted
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 1 1/3 cups flour, plus more for dusting
- 1/2 cup chocolate chips
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar
- 1/2 tbsp corn syrup
- 1 tbsp water
- Combine the flax eggs, the vanilla, the coconut oil, the salt, and the sugar.
- Add the baking powder and the flour.
- Pat into ball, cover with plastic wrap and chill for at least 2 hours
- Place the chocolate chips, the coconut oil, the maple syrup, the flax eggs and the brown sugar in a double boiler over medium heat. Stir constantly until chocolate is fully melted and a dark, even consistency is reached. It will appear watery.
- Turn off the heat but do not remove from heat source.
- Stir in the espresso powder, the salt, and the baking powder.
- Gradually stir in the flour. The dough will be firm and shiny.
- Immediately turn the dough out onto a parchment-covered surface.
- Place another layer of parchment over top of the dough and roll it to just under 1/4 inch thick.
- Use the bottom two "balls" of a snowman cookie cutter to cut out the dark part of the penguin.
- Collect scraps and re-roll and cut as needed. You should end up with 24 pieces.
- Place the brownie penguin cut outs in the freezer.
- Dust some parchment with flour.
- Place the dough over the flour and cover with more flour and a second piece of parchment.
- Roll the dough out to just over 1/6th of an inch.
- Use the top two "balls" of a snowman cookie cutter to cut out the sugar cookie part of the penguin.
- Re-roll scraps and cut as needed. You might end up with a little extra dough (more than 24)
- Preheat the oven to 300. Line cookie sheets with parchment.
- Remove the brownie parts from the freezer.
- Quickly assemble by placing the sugar cookie over the brownie.
- Bake at 300 for 10 minutes.
- Gently slide the parchment off the cookie sheet and allow brookies to cool completely before touching.
- Place the chocolate chips in a zip-seal baggie.Immerse in warm water until fully melted.
- Cut a small bit off the corner of the bag and carefully dot on the eyes and beaks. Allow to harden -- it won't take long.
- Combine the powdered sugar, the corn syrup, and the water. Use small paintbrush (or pipe with a second baggie) to paint on an icing scarf. Immediately add the sprinkles over the icing, shaking off excess.
- Serve with love.
- These keep best in the freezer, wrapped up. They taste fine cold, but I liked them best warmed up just a tad in the microwave.