Raw Hazelnut & Chai Brownies

After six months of traveling around the world, our life has now finally settled back to normal. And that is when we realize that we don’t know what normal is anymore. Even though Luise and I have been living together for a couple of years, it feels like our life as a family starts now. Just like Elsa, we are taking our first trembling steps towards our new family life. Right now we have no idea how that life will turn out, how we will find a balance between work and family, or even in which country our life will take place during the next couple of years. You might say that we have some figuring out to do. One thing that we do know, is that we will keep on sharing our favorite recipes with you. Like these Chai & Hazelnut Brownies that Luise made the other day. We would be lying if we called them healthy, but they are at least vegan, raw and gluten free. And they taste – pardon my french – fingerlickin’ good!

Before moving on to the recipe, we want to give you some basic tips when baking with dates.
1. Always use fresh dates. They should be dry on the outside, and very soft and sticky on the inside.
2. If you have to use dried dates, you need to soak them in drinking water a couple of hours before baking with them.
3. If you can’t find dates at all you can try using raisins, dried figs, dried plums or dried apricots (remember to always soak dried fruit first).
4. When you blend dates they should turn into a very sticky paste, so you need a strong food processor or blender. If you do not have one, place the pitted dates on a plate and mash with a fork until sticky and like caramel.

Raw Hazelnut & Chai Brownies
Makes 12 brownies

What makes this cake special is that it is spiced up with chai spices, it gives it such an unique taste! Use normal tea bags, cut them open and just pour them in the dough, isn’t it easy? -and you can choose green, black or herbal chai tea!

2 cups (5 dl) fresh medjool dates, pitted
4 tbsp extra virgin coconut oil, room temperature
2 tbsp maple syrup

6 tbsp raw cacao powder
1/2 tsp ground vanilla or vanilla extract
3 chai tea bags, (or your favorite tea blend) cut them open
2 tbsp ground flax seeds, chia, psyllium or hemp
1 pinch sea salt
1/2 cup (1,2 dl) raw hazelnut, coarsely chopped (or nuts and seeds of choice)

Place all ingredients, except the hazelnuts, in a food processor or a high speed blender. Mix until smooth, you probably have to scrape the mixture down with a spoon a couple of times. Add the chopped hazelnuts and knead the ‘dough’ by hand. Cover  a brownie tin with plastic wrap and press down the dough to about 1/2 inch (1,25 cm) high. Rub a bit of coconut oil on your hands to prevent the dough from sticking. Put the cake in the fridge and let it set for a least half an hour. Cut in brownie-size pieces, dust with cacao powder and sprinkle with hazelnuts.

Photos by: Johanna Frenkel.


  • kristin
    I finally made these a few nights ago and HOLY COW! They are the BEST raw brownies I have tasted! I used this chai in it and I really think it made them better because it is a powder so it blended in seamlessly: http://bluelotuschai.com It is a spicy chai so it gave it a nice kick that really set this apart. Thank you sooooo much for sharing this recipe!
  • Karolina
    hi there! wow :) I've becoming a green junkie thanks to you! Today I was just wondering where I got the link to your website from.. no idea! However, it's saved a good taste in my kitchen. ...as I can't figure it out myself: how much dates do I really need? 5 dl would be, according to your another comment (1 dl = 6 tbsp), approx. 30 tbsp... which would be therefore 30 dates, isn't it? Cheers! Wish you great Easter holidays, Karo
    • kristin
      Woah! That sounds like a lot to me! I think I used about 15.
  • I just made these & they were marvelous. I'm going to serve them at my Christmas party as finger food, so I've rolled them into balls and put them in candy cups. Thank you!
  • Stella
    THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU ! I looooove your recipes, they are all amazing. First I tried your sushisalad, it was a succes. Then I made your fig & walnut pasta and my parents went crazy over it and same happened when I made the zucchini cupcakes and yesterday I made your sticky nutbars for my dad to snack at work and I just enjoyed my last bite of this delicious raw brownie... YUM. so in short, you have saved me from the trouble of thinking what to cook; I find all of my favorites here ;- ) tack så mycket! OCH hälsningar från Helsingfors !
  • Lily
    Hej, i really love your blog and these brownies look very delicious. i just have a little question: is there an alternative for the coconut oil? thanks :-)
  • Line
    Hej igen... Ja, så vil jeg så gerne lige igen høre, hvad ingredienserne hedder på dansk (det er ikke lige alt google-translate kan klare) :)... Endnu en gang.... Det er simpelthen sådan nogle lækre opskrifter i laver. Det er jo helt vildt.
  • Those look amazing! I Cannot wait to try them !!!!!!!!! Hazelnuts are my fave!!!!!!!!!!
  • Wow! these are delicious. Just made a batch and the boys were licking the sides of the bowl and wandering around the kitchen saying mmm... mmm...
  • Alexandra
    Hi guys, I am finally getting around to making these brownies.One question: what is a dl? (Measurement for your cocoa powder). Thank you.
    • Hi Alexandra, dl is a European unit which is equal to 2/5 cup or about 6 tbsp. Now we have changed it in the recipe, as we try to only use the American units. Thanks for pointing it out. Hope you'll like the brownies!
  • I've never eaten raw cake before, sounds interesting. The chai tea is a little different too. I've gotta try them ;) thanks
  • shara
    THESE ARE AMAZING! I just made them and due to a hazelnut allergy used walnuts instead, and they are delicious! thank you so much for this recipe
  • mmmmm... I wanna bake this brownie recipe together with my husband. He loves sweets. By the way, thanks also for the tips. :)
  • This blog is good. I'm thankful to I encountered this brownie recipe. I'm going to try make this for this can be a very good snack when I'm inside our car roaming around to relax. Thank you also for the tips. Nuts! nuts! nuts! :D
  • These sound amazing and I love the idea of using chai tea in them for flavor. I am definately making a batch of these goodies for Easter!
  • I haven't visited your blog in a while and I forgot how much I liked the recipes on here! This raw brownie bar is a really good idea, I really like the ones that you have dig around the supermarket for, but they always are either really expensive or don't have what you want in it. So why not make your own? ;) Best of luck with your new family life, it does sound exciting!
  • Great recipe, I'll make it this weekend! Also thank you for the basic tips. You emailed me the same (concerning my failure of making the vegan chocolate-blackberry cake :)).
  • Karine
    Hello! Thank you so much for sharing with us your marvelous recipes! :D Your blog is fantastic, I love visiting it. It is very calm and peaceful, the photos are beautiful, the recipes (I've tried two of them so far) are delicious, and I completely agree with your "food philosophy". Again : thank you for this little place of paradise! Oh, and by the way : your chocolate and date cake is wonderful. It has a very nice "Marzipan" melting taste... Hmm. And every one who ate it said it was (even people a bit reluctant to a sweet cake without sugar and butter). :D THANK YOU! Karine (Switzerland)
  • Oh how I empathize for you right now as you navigate this "new normal." I remember all too well what a strange and disorienting phenomena it is to actually be home after months on the go. Home doesn't really feel like home right now, does it? It will come. It takes time. It will never be the same but it will be rich and joyous and full of all the great memories and lessons from traveling the world. These brownies look delish. I'm not a big chocolate girl myself, do you think these would be yummy if I nixed the cacao? Be well!
  • "Normal" lives are boring! I think your adventures in and out of the kitchen are admirable and exciting and I wish you all the best whatever direction your lives take! I see you use coconut oil - I absolutely LOVE it, and have been putting it in every baked good imaginable lately (it makes for an amazing cupcake frosting I just discovered!), but have been hearing mixed things about it. What's your verdict? Is it healthy or not? Bisous from Paris!
  • These look so decadent, yet the ingredient list is so clean! You truly make masterpieces in the kitchen. I can't wait to try these ones out.

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