After the gluten free chocolate mug cake went wild (and as I continue my quest for the secret to crinkly brownies) a small batch brownie seemed inevitable. Gluten free small-batch brownies that are easy, quick and perfect for two. Let me confess, though: this recipe is essentially a small-batch version of my best-ever gluten free brownies. I had intended to create cute little mug brownies, but it transpired that the microwave is not conducive to a crackly top. Then I figured that they may as well be small batch brownies.
I reasoned that there must be other people out there who cannot have a whole batch of brownies in the house, for fear of eating them all in a day. If you are that person: I see you. I feel you. I am you.
Gluten free small batch brownies with almond meal
These gluten free small-batch brownies are FODMAP friendly, gluten and grain free and low in lactose. They’re the perfect treat for two (or three, because they’re incredibly rich and fudgy).
These fudgy gluten free brownies are made with almond meal or almond flour. They use browned butter for a delicious complexity of flavour, as well as a pinch of salt to round everything out.
Recipe notes for your gluten free small batch brownies
- At the moment, I’m using 45% dark chocolate for my brownies. It’s not as deep a chocolate flavour as 70%, but it’s more foolproof in creating a crackly top.
- I use regular cocoa for my brownies currently. I find that dutch processed tends to produce a brownie top with a reddish earth hue. That’s not a bad thing, it’s just a phase I’m entertaining.
- You can use 30g caster sugar and 30g light brown sugar, if you’d like. I tend to use the whole 60g caster sugar for ease. One thing I don’t recommend is using all 60g light brown sugar.
- Some optional additions include 1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or 1/2 tablespoon espresso (in place of 1/2 the water). Both of these will amplify the chocolate flavour and add more nuance to your brownie.
- I made these in a mini skillet. You could also use two mini loaf tins or small ramekins. I like my brownies to be reasonably thin.
- I used almond meal for this recipe. Aside from it being grain free, I tend to find that it produces shinier brownies than a gluten free flour. However, if you need to keep these nut free, you could try 2 tablespoons of quinoa flour or buckwheat flour in it’s place.
- If you’re into the nut theme but fancy mixing it up, you could also use hazelnut meal.
- Brown butter is extremely low lactose, if not lactose free. If you absolutely must you can use a dairy free spread, although the results may vary due to their varying compositions and fat contents. Use about 5-10g less to account for the liquid evaporation during the browning process.
- If you’d like a vegan version, you could potentially use my vegan brownie recipe (please note I haven’t tried this). Just divide the ingredients by 3.
- I don’t have a substitute for regular sugar or for eggs in this recipe.
To make a Caramilk small batch gluten free brownie
I am a sucker for Caramilk, so I had to see if it worked in this small batch brownie. Let it be said that Caramilk (and white chocolate in general) are not low lactose. Let it also be said that pistachios are not overtly FODMAP friendly. So, if you’re catering to FODMAP concerns, I recommend using 70% dark chocolate and/or leaving off the decorative pistachios. If not:
- Use Caramilk in place of the chocolate
- Melt the Caramilk in the brown butter (as per below). Whip the egg and sugar together alone, then add the Caramilk butter mix, the almond meal and salt.
- Omit the cocoa and water and add an extra 10g or so of almond meal
- Bake for 15 minutes.
I find it’s easiest to melt white chocolate in a fat so as not to ‘curdle’ it. I simply make the brown butter and then add the chocolate to the saucepan off the heat. Stir to combine until the chocolate is melted.
More gluten free chocolate recipes
- My easy gluten free chocolate cake
- The vegan gluten free chocolate cake in Intolerance Friendly Kitchen
- These vegan brownie cookies
- This vegan, gluten free chocolate mug cake
Gluten free small batch brownies
- 1 mini skillet (16cm diameter, 3cm height, 2 cup (Australian) capacity (or similar vessel)
- 60 g butter browned
- 75g (1/3 cup) caster/superfine sugar
- 1 extra large egg
- 65 g dark chocolate I use 45% for shine or 70% for taste
- 1/2 tablespoon cocoa powder dutch processed or regular
- 1 tablespoon water (see notes)
- 35 g (1/4 cup) almond meal
- Pinch of fine salt about 1/4 teaspoon
- Preheat the oven to 180C or 356F.
- In a small saucepan, brown the butter over a low heat until toasty and a warm dark brown in colour. Transfer to a medium sized mixing bowl and mix in the sugar, before allowing to cool for 5 minutes.
- Half fill the small saucepan with water and place it back on the heat. Place a heatproof bowl on top (ensuring it doesn’t touch the water) and add the chocolate. Allow to completely melt.
- While the chocolate is melting, use a hand beater to beat the egg into the butter sugar mixture. You can also use a stand mixer, but I find they struggle with small quantities. Do this for 3 minutes at a high speed. The mixture should become syrupy and a light brown in colour. It should have a vague sheen, similar to beginnings of meringue.
- Once the chocolate has finished melting, add the cocoa and hot water or espresso. Stir just to combine – the chocolate will begin seizing up so don’t stir more than necessary.
- Use a spatula to scrape all the chocolate mixture into the liquid sugar, butter and egg batter. Use the hand mixer on a low speed to combine. The mixture should turn from light brown to a deep chocolate brown.
- Add the almond meal and a good pinch of salt. Continue mixing until combined and glossy (it’s OK if you see almond meal granules).
- Use the spatula to decant the brownie into your vessel of choice. I used a mini skillet (16cm diameter, 3cm height with 2 cup (Australian) capacity. Ideally you’ll use something with similar dimensions, and with a wide top so as to showcase the crackly brownie.
- Place into the oven for 13-15 minutes, depending on your vessel and how fudgy you like your brownie.
- Add a scoop of ice cream on top and serve.
Hi, how much should I multiply this recipe for a 8×8 inch baking pan? Would the brownies turn out the same way if I increase your recipe? Thank you! 🙂
Hi Geraldine, I have a recipe for a full size batch of brownies here: https://georgeats.com/recipes/best-ever-gluten-free-brownies-the-extremely-fudgy-sort/
They use a 24x24cm baking dish which Google tells me is slightly larger than 8 inch. You will need to cook them a little longer to compensate for them being thicker 🙂
Thanks for your reply Georgia! I noticed however, that the full recipe link uses a slightly different method as compared to the small batch one – will the brownies outcome differ much in terms of taste or appearance? Also, I followed the small-batch brownie recipe but the top did not turn out crackly at all… do you have any tips to making sure it does? It did taste really good nevertheless! ? Thanks again!
The full recipe was designed to make shiny brownies while this one was designed for small batch and ease. If you want shiny brownies, I recommend reading and making the full batch post. There are loads of tips in that post for shiny brownies.
Also, what type of chocolate are you using? I found that 45% dark chocolate produced the shiniest brownies. I’ve also found that the quality of almond meal you use can create a ruddy surface on the brownies
Ahh I see! I’m using 50% Callebaut dark chocolate. The outcome was shiny but not crackly. The almond meal I use is grounded pretty finely so hopefully that’s not the cause of uncrackly brownies! Shall give the full-batch brownies a try and see 🙂 Thank you once again!
I found that a combination of milk fat and milk solid content in the chocolate was important for shine. As for a crackly top, beating the eggs really well seems to help. Sometimes I also lift my brownies up while hot (using the baking paper to lift) and scrunch them up a bit so that the top cracks into shards. Seems very basic but it works haha. Good luck!
I see! Does the quantity of sugar affects the crackly crust as well? For the full brownie recipe, is it alright to cut half the sugar? As using 50% (& not 70%) dark chocolate makes it pretty sweet on its own already ?
Yes it does so I wouldn’t recommend cutting the sugar back if you’re after shiny brownies. I probably wouldn’t recommend cutting it back regardless because it does make up a lot of the structure in the recipe. If you want a less sweet brownie then I’d use 70% choc and keep the sugar as is, but you’ll have a more matte and not very crackly top
Ahh no wonder, thanks for the tip Georgia! As for the grounded almonds, it says 75-100g; how do I gauge the varying quantity when adding it into the batter? Making these tmr ??
Use 75g if you prefer a super fudgy brownie or 100g if you prefer a brownie with more structure 🙂