by Kathleen Walck

This week, my son’s school is holding their annual Spring Carnival where there are games, events, and of course food.  When the request for baked goods came in, I offered to bake brownies; they’re usually enjoyed by all and are less troublesome to transport than cupcakes.  Though my family doesn’t struggle with gluten issues, I know there are some children in the district who do.  In addition to the typical wheat-based brownies I normally bake, I thought I’d try a gluten-free version (adapted from here), so that everyone could enjoy a chocolaty treat.


What I like about this recipe is that it doesn’t use any hard-to-find ingredients.  I always have rolled oats on hand (make sure they’re gluten free ones if you’re making this recipe for someone intolerant of gluten) and they make a great flour when pulsed in a blender.  And dare I say they might be a bit healthier for you than wheat flour?


The brownies come out moist and chocolaty; I honestly couldn’t tell the difference in texture from other brownies I’ve eaten.  You could add nuts if you’d like, or experiment with peanut butter chips instead of the chocolate (maybe even peanut butter in place of the coconut oil?  Can you tell I like playing scientist in the kitchen?).

This recipe uses eggs so it’s not entirely non-dairy, although no milk or butter are used.  I considered using a chia seed replacement recipe for the eggs to make them vegan, but I was worried the brownies might not come out right.  For the family, it would be ok but not for a group of eager kids at a carnival.

This recipe is a great option for when you want to bake something gluten free that can be enjoyed by all.  I doubt many people would even know they weren’t eating wheat.

Gluten-Free Oat Brownies (makes 8-12 brownies)


  • 2 cups of gluten-free oats, finely ground in a blender or food processor (it should measure 1 1/2 cups when ground)
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil (or butter), melted
  • 1/4 cup applesauce
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease and flour (using cocoa powder) an 8×8″ or similar sized pan.


Pulse the oats in a blender or food processor until finely ground.  In a mixing bowl, combine the oats, salt, and baking soda.  Whisk until well blended.

In a small saucepan or microwave dish, melt the coconut oil (or butter) and stir in the sugar and cocoa until dissolved.  Add the applesauce, vanilla and the beaten eggs.  Add the wet ingredients to the dry ones and fold them together until just combined.  Add the chocolate chips and spread the batter into the pan.


Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes.  The brownies will have a nice crust on top but still be moist in the middle.


Allow to cool, then cut into squares.   They were surprisingly easy to cut.


They keep well for a few days, probably due to the applesauce.  I hope the kids and parents at the carnival enjoy them, and you too!