I’ve been wanting to re-create some of the recipes from my grandmother’s recipe box for a while now. While they were originally stored away in an old wooden box, written on fading recipe cards, I had them typed up and bound into a recipe book a few years ago (I think I used Taste Bookย and it was wonderful!). I always wanted to delve into the recipes, following them along, one by one until I knew I had exhausted all the recipes that my grandmother thought worthy of saving and storing. In lieu of other, newer cookbooks, my grandmother’s recipe book was pushed to the side, lost in the sea of ever-growing cookbooks that I can’t stop from expanding (I mean, come now, everyone has a cookbook now! And they are all gorgeous!). This is one of my first ventures into my grandmother’s recipes, simple cocoa brownies. It always seemed like my grandma has something baked and ready to eat when we were visiting, whether it be something I loved (anything chocolate) or something I hated (custard pie, blegh, it was more my dad’s thing), she was always ready to feed us and send us home with leftovers, as grandmothers do. I love going through her recipes and trying to recall if she made them for us or if they are a recipe my mom remembers from her childhood. Heck, I think some of them were town out of magazines and tucked aside for another day, so she may not have even made some of them! Anyway, her recipe makes the simple cocoa brownie base for these and I went ahead and swirled in a plop of peanut butter and a bit of strawberry jam, because, why not?


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Peanut Butter and Strawberry Jam Swirled Cocoa Brownies


  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 flax eggs (2 tbs. ground flax seed mixed with 6 tbs. water)
  • 1 tsp . vanilla extract
  • 3 tbs . date paste
  • 2/3 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp . baking powder
  • 7 tbs . cocoa powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 c . non-dairy milk
  • 1/3 c . peanut butter (smooth)
  • 3 tbs . strawberry jam


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease an 8 x8 square pan and set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine sugar, flax eggs, vanilla, date paste, flour, baking powder, cocoa powder, salt, and non-dairy milk. Mix until combined and all lumps are gone. Pour batter into prepared pan and swirl in peanut butter and jam. For extra crispy brownies, freeze batter for 1-2 hours in pan before baking.
  3. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until middle is set and edges are crispy. These can be under baked or over baked, depends on your brownie preference.
  4. Store at room temperature for up to a week.