Gluten-free Brazil Nut Brownies
When I set out to create a Brazil nut brownie recipe, I had ulterior motives. I was trying to find an enjoyable way to eat what used to be my least favorite nut. My motivation came from the knowledge that Brazil nuts are a thyroid superfood, and blow any other food out of the water when it comes to selenium content. Nothing comes close, and just one a day may exceed the recommended daily value (though be aware, selenium content in Brazil nuts can vary widely).
In looking up food pairings for Brazil nuts, chocolate, coconut, and vanilla topped the list. Brownies seemed like a perfect excuse to get those Brazil nuts down, no problem.
With a crackly top and crisp-chewy edges, these decadent, ultra-fudgy, brownies are the stuff chocolate dreams are made of. They also happen to be gluten-free and if you use chocolate that is free of soy lecithin and milk solids, they’re dairy and soy-free, too.
An added bonus, at least in my opinion, is the 8×8-inch pan. I mean, 9×13? Who on earth is going to eat all that? I am. That’s the problem.
Full disclosure: Some of the links in this post may be affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. If you choose to purchase a product using one of these links, it will support my work at no additional cost to you.
Thyroid-healthy Recipe Highlights:
- When cut into 16 squares, each brownie contains roughly 1 1/2 Brazil nuts, or approximately 190% DV for Selenium. The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for Selenium, in adults, is 55 micrograms (mcg) per day, so you can feel good about that. In addition to supporting the synthesis of thyroid hormone, selenium is essential to the conversion of T4 to T3 and protects the thyroid from stress. It also protects the thyroid from an overabundance of iodine. It’s like the thyroid gland’s bodyguard.
- Coconut oil has been touted as a thyroid, metabolism, energy, endurance, and weight loss booster by many health professionals, including Dr. Oz.
- Sea salt is a natural source of iodine as well as numerous other bioavailable trace minerals.
- Chocolate is usually high in sugar and can contain soy lecithin, which some people with an underactive thyroid choose to avoid; however, dark chocolate, when consumed in moderation, can be a good source of trace minerals like copper and manganese. Chocolate, esp. dark, also contains flavonols, a type of antioxidant that can reduce the cell damage caused by heart disease, and help to lower blood pressure and promote vascular function.