Almond Joy Brownies (Gluten Free + Paleo)
These Almond Joy Brownies have a coconut butter topping and a drizzle of dark chocolate – you’d never guess that these indulgent brownies are gluten-free, refined sugar-free, and Paleo!
The candy copycat train has gotten rolling and it CAN’T BE STOPPED! Since the Homemade Twix Bars started this obsession, followed by the smashing successes of these homemade Peanut Butter Cups + the Girl Scout Cookie copycat Samoa Bars, I’ve been thinking of lots of candy-inspired but totally healthified recipes to make for you.
Next up: Almond Joy Brownies! I was going to go for straight up copycat Almond Joys, and that will probably happen around here someday, but piling all the goodness of an Almond Joy onto a deliciously rich and fudgy brownie? Well, that sounded like it needed to be made ASAP.
These brownies are super quick and easy to throw together – the batter is made in one bowl! The recipe uses cocoa powder for all the chocolate flavor, and the resulting brownie is incredibly fudge-like and positively scrumptious.
Now for that irresistible Almond Joy topping: the coconut mixture is just two ingredients, unsweetened shredded coconut and coconut butter. For the coconut butter, I like to make it myself. All you need is unsweetened shredded coconut and a blender or food process – a few minutes on high will give you a smooth and creamy butter that tastes like coconut heaven!
I have a recipe for Toasted Coconut Butter here, but just skip toasting the coconut for this recipe. You can also purchase it here, but making your own is way more economical!
Once the coconut butter and shreds have been spread all over the brownies, almonds are pressed into the top and the brownies get a drizzle of dark chocolate. Then, use all of your self control to try not to devour them!
The brownies are super chocolatey and fudgy, the coconut layer melts in your mouth, and almond adds a bit of crunch. They are super reminiscent of the much more unhealthy Almond Joy candy, with way less sugar. You’d seriously never guess biting into one of these that they’re gluten-free, grain-free, refined sugar-free, and Paleo!
Whip up a batch of these and share with your coconut loving friends to get all the love. If you’re still have candy cravings, maybe you’d be interested in a peanut butter cup or a Twix bar? Go get those cravings satisfied – enjoy!
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Almond Joy Brownies (Gluten Free + Paleo)
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 25 minutes
- Total Time: 40 minutes
- Yield: 16 brownies 1x
- Category: Dessert
- ½ cup + 2 tablespoons (4.5 oz or 130g coconut oil, melted)
- 1¼ cups coconut sugar
- ¾ cups plus 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder (2.5 oz or 70g)
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 large eggs
- ½ cup almond flour (2 oz.)
For the topping
- 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
- 1 cup coconut butter (melted)
- 16 whole almonds
- ½ cup dark chocolate (melted)
- Preheat oven to 325ºF. Line an 8-by-8-inch baking pan with parchment paper or foil and spray with cooking spray; set prepared pan aside.
- In a mixing bowl, combine the melted coconut oil, coconut sugar, cocoa powder, and salt. Whisk to combine completely.
- Add the vanilla, eggs, and stir vigorously until batter is thick, shiny, and well blended. Add the almond flour and stir until combined. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and spread evenly.
- Bake until a toothpick in the center emerges slightly moist with batter, about 22-25 minutes. Check with a toothpick – it should come out with moist crumbs attached. Place brownies on a cooling rack to cool.
- Stir together the unsweetened shredded coconut and coconut butter. Spread evenly over the cooling brownies. Score the brownies into 16 squares and place an almond in the center of each brownie square. Place in the refrigerator or freezer for 30 minutes to an hour to set before cutting into 16 squares.
- Place melted chocolate into a small piping bag or Ziplock bag with the corner snipped off, and drizzle each brownie with chocolate. Let the chocolate set before serving.
- Brownies will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Your copycat recipes are amazing, Rachel! I’ve never had an almond joy brownie before, so I’m loving the looks of this! Is it bad that I want this for breakfast?!
I am equally obsessed with your candy copycat recipes, Rachel! I seriously want to try them all and EAT them all! But first on the list is most definitely these brownies. Oh my GOSH, that fudge! That almond joy topping! These can’t even possibly be real life. They just look that amazing. ;)
Eeek thank you so so much Sarah! I’m sad I gave them all away, haha!
You are killing me!!! These brownies look amazing!!! That coconut layer is killer!
I was never a big candy person growing up, BUT I LOVED almond joys. The coconut gets me every time! These are SO being added to my list of sweets to make in the next couple of months!
I just can’t believe how beautiful and easy these brownies are and in addition, they are gluten free? The combination of coconut and chocolate is just dreamy and oh those photos Rachel they are gorgeous! Loving this recipe! <3 <3
My favorite candy bar and my favorite baked good in one? Yes! Why haven’t I had these yet?? Pinning!
I hope the candy copycat train keeps on rolling! These look so fudgy and delicious!
Yum! I love a healthy copycat recipe. we don’t have almond joys in Australia; I think I’m missing out!
You’re making me want dessert before I even think about dinner! haha These brownies sound awesome!
OMG Rachel! These brownies are looking fabulous!!! I am drooling over my screen. I have to make them this week!
I love Almond Joy candies! A great thing is that I’m the only one in the family who likes them, so I can have them all to myself on Halloween! I’m so excited about the Almond Joy brownie – now I can get even more of my Almond Joy fix!
These were made for just pass me the whole pan and I am good!
These bars are SO pretty, Rachel! I can’t stop staring at these beautiful photos! And the almond joy flavor sounds amazing!
They look delicious. …I wish you would include nutritional value with you recipes ! !
These look amazing! Any gluten free dessert is heaven in my eyes. TOTALLY trying these soon.
perfection is an understatement for how I feel about these brownies! Please don’t stop this copycat candy train!
I love your candy-inspired treats and Almond Joys have always been a favorite of mine! I love that these are so much healthier and they look so delicious!
I love Almond Joy baked goods! These brownies look incredible!
You are a master with desserts – for real, these sound incredible! And you always introduce me to new healthy recipes, now I’m going to be on the lookout for coconut butter, sounds amazing!
Mmm these look delicious!
Yum! Brownies and almond joys are two of my favorite things :)
These look absolutely amazing! I love that you make the coconut butter — I need to try that. I would totally make these if I knew I wouldn’t eat the first batch the first day! When I’m ready to splurge, I’m making them! :)
SUCH a creative idea! You can make anything paleo!
I can’t get over how amazing these look! And I didn’t know you could make your own coconut butter. Great tip!
This was so delicious!!! I tweeked it a bit though because I didn’t have coconut butter, so used organic peanut butter instead and it worked great. Soooo tasty, the kids were going mmmmmmmmm as they ate it!
Ooh sounds like a delicious switch! So glad you enjoyed the brownies, Rin. Thanks for sharing your experience with me!
Holy incredible! Such a classic combination that never fails. Have you tried these or any other brownie with Cassava flour by chance? I am experimenting with this variety and would love any feedback you may have. P.S. I adore all your recipes!
I haven’t tried cassava flour yet, Dawn! I should order a bag to start experimenting with. I don’t have any advice for how it work here, though. Sorry!
No worries, I was just curious. I ordered my first bag and will be experimenting soon :) Thanks for replying!
I loved this so so much! You are literally a genius. I had a quick question that I really hope you see, but I was wondering if I cut the sugar measurements down would that effect the consistency and if so how can I make up for it?
You’re too sweet! Thanks Sara. You could probably cut it down without too much trouble, you wouldn’t need to replace it with anything. Enjoy!
Making these now…the brownie batter is not very thick. Seems very oily. It’s not baking well. What am I doing wrong?!
Hi Liz, unfortunately without being in the kitchen with you or having any info about how you made them, it’s hard for me to know. Were you sure to whisk everything together until it smoothed out and everything absorbed? If you can give me more info, I might be able to provide more help.
Hello, I find 1/2 cup of oil is a lot, is there an alternative to do half/half with something else? Nut butter? Banana? Avocado? Thanks
This recipe has only been tested as written, so I can’t say exactly how it would turn out if you were to substitute part of the oil for something else. Nut butter or bananas would be my first tests, though. Enjoy!! :)