Healthy Date Brownie


The dried fruit makes this brownie slice lusciously sticky and moist, and the craisins (dried cranberries) add a tang that cuts through the richness. The addition of dates and prunes, and the exclusion of the egg yolks means it is healthier than chocolate brownies but still has all the rich goodness you expect. Remember to let it cool after baking: just-cooked brownies often have a soft gooey centre which firms on cooling. 

Time: 1 hour
Serves: Many



  • 1/2 cup pitted dates, chopped

  • 1 cup self-raising flour

  • 1/3 cup cocoa

  • 1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

  • 1/2 cup brown sugar

  • 1/2 cup pitted prunes, chopped

  • 1/2 cup craisins or raisins

  • 1/2 cup pecans, chopped

  • 1 cup low-fat milk

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 3 egg whites


  • 1 cup icing sugar

  • 1 tablespoon cocoa

  • 1 teaspoon light margarine

  • 1–2 tablespoons water, hot

Preheat the oven to moderate, 180ºC. Lightly grease a 20cm square cake pan and line the base with baking paper.

Place the dates in a bowl, cover with boiling water and leave to soak for 15 minutes. Drain well.

Sift the flour, cocoa and bicarbonate of soda together into a large bowl. Stir in the sugar, prunes, craisins and nuts.

Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients. Pour in the milk and vanilla and stir in well.

In a clean bowl, using an electric beater, whisk the egg whites until soft peaks form. Fold into the chocolate mixture.

Pour the mixture into the prepared pan. Bake for 20–25 minutes until cooked when tested. Turn onto a wire rack to cool. Ice the brownies when completely cold. 

To make the icing, combine the icing sugar, cocoa and margarine, and enough water to make a spreadable consistency. Drizzle over the brownies. Cut into squares to serve. Store in an airtight container.


Recipe taken from Zest, by Catherine Saxelby and Jennene Plummer
From Catherine Saxelby, Australia’s leading nutritionist, and Jennene Plummer, Food Director of Woman’s Day, comes this companion to the bestselling Nutrition for Life. Rediscover your zest for life with simple and practical guidance on nutrition and good health, easy-to-follow summer and winter meal plans, and more than 120 mouth-watering dishes full of fresh ingredients and health-giving superfoods. Delicious and nutritious, Zest is perfect for the busy modern lifestyle. Get the right balance in your eating and notice the difference. Eat well and you’ll feel great – it’s that simple. Zest will show you how.

You can purchase Zest at amazon.

Published by Hardie Grant


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