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About these Coffee Chocolate Chunk Gluten Free Cookie Bars:
They’re all I’ve ever wanted in a vanilla brownie, enrobed in a magical trio of coffee, chocolate, and pecans. Not to be outshined by brown sugar and butter, lending notes of toffee. No mixer needed. And once you’ve shared a pan with friends — you’ll be expected to tote to every picnic, potluck, and barbecue from now on.
The tops are crackly, the crumb is soft, yet dense. Far from cake, but not as chewy as a cookie. Uniquely rich, but not too sweet.
I adapted this recipe to be gluten-free, originating from The Vanilla Bean Baking Book, by Sarah Kieffer (more about her, and the brilliant book below). It took me several tries to find success, but my gut instinct to use teff flour turned out right, it was just the ratio of starch that needed tweaking. I also wanted to make them gum-free, so initially I used a small bit of psyllium husk to act as the binder, but two important things through testing:
About The Vanilla Bean Baking Book:
Minnesota may be known as the land of 10,000 lakes, but it’s also home to some very talented food writers and creatives. Sarah Kieffer is one of them, the natural beauty, the baker by nature, the maker of The Vanilla Bean Blog. I love what she creates for numerous reasons. Her writing for its classical heart and soul. Her photographs for their simple, stunning beauty and emotions they evoke…..
A giant cinnamon bun that one could only be lucky enough to tear layers from. Tiny treats, with her babes tiny hands that whisper “mother.”
I’ve gotten to know Sarah since meeting her at Zoe’s house, about 5 years ago. She told me about her love for the place where she started – The Blue Heron Cafe in Winona, her quest for the perfect pie crust, and aspiration to create timeless recipes to pass on to her kids.
As I read Sarah’s blog religiously, every entry made me wish there was a story or recipe every day, instead of once a week. She made me think, and rethink.
To not rush.
To embrace the process.
To make mistakes, in life and cooking.
To share food, and wisdom.
To delight in the result.
From Sarah herself:
“Take recipes you love, and make them yours. Change them, expand on them, simplify them. Make meals with them for your family and friends: let them set up atmosphere; invoke laughter. Create your own food history.”
The Vanilla Bean Baking Book is not just one that will sit on your coffee table because it’s shockingly pretty. It will become your baking bible that’s shockingly pretty, that acquires stains and tattered pages. For its techniques that Sarah has perfected, to timeless classics for every level, and flavor combinations we wouldn’t dream of on our own. These are recipes for today’s baker, for our generation.
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What is a good online source for conversions from grams to cups?
Hi Becky! With flours, it isn’t possible to do a gram to cup conversion because they all have different weights. So one cup of teff flour might equal xxx weight, and brown rice flour is a different weight. It can also to depend on the brand. This is the reason I use grams when creating baking recipes, because the precision is important.
These brownies look heavenly! I am imagining them with a hint of cardamom, and are almost already running to the grocery store to get the ingredients:P
oh, a few pinches of cardamom would be lovely in these blondie bars!
Hello, Amanda! I can’t find teff flour in Russia. Frankly, we don’t know anything about this grain here:) How can I replace it (not necessarily gf)?
hello anna! i’m sorry i can’t be of more help, but i haven’t tested it with any other grain to replace the teff. i would think buckwheat flour would be your best bet.
Hi Amanda! Need to bring a gluten-free desert for a Super Bowl party and I’m thinking of trying these. :) Quick question- the tablespoon of coffee is brewed coffee, right? Not coffee grinds or instant coffee?
yes, brewed coffee is correct! hope you enjoy. xo
Made this and shared it this evening. Everyone loved it! Thanks so much.
oh yay! so glad you enjoyed and thank you for sharing your success with the recipe. xo
These are my favourite flavours! Especially the coffee. Coffee in baking is always, always a winner for me! I wonder what it would be like with ground coffee (not instant) – I made the momofuku compost cookies recently and the ground coffee just brought such a strong flavour and worked well in a cookie dough. Need to get a copy of Sarah’s book!
oooo… i like that idea of grinding a tablespoon or so of coffee and trying that! and yes, chocolate and coffee are a match made in heaven. thanks for stopping by Claudia. xo
Beautiful post about Sarah’s book! It’s one of my new favorites and I can’t wait to try these coffee blondies.
These look so scrumptious!
I feel the exact same way about Sarah’s book, it’s one of those ‘going to have and bake from for years’ books. I feel like we face a lot of the same challenges with GF and vegan baking, so I’m so happy you got these to work for you too! I’m going to pluck one blondie right from the edge, if that’s cool with you? xo
These look like some epically delicious treats to enjoy anytime!
anytime is right!
Sarah’s heart and Sarah’s book are both made of gold. And these blondies seem like something I’d really enjoy. I really appreciate your dedication to testing and testing and more testing to make sure this gluten-free version was just so. I have some teff already, but I need to grab some tapioca starch. These are going on my ‘things I want to bake list’. xx
Both of those things, yes! We’ll all have to get together next time you come and visit. And I remember saying you got a bag of teff flour, so yes, just that tapioca starch (which I use all the time) is needed! xo
I haven’t used Teff flour . I ‘ve used other
Gluten-free flours with great success. Do you use
Coconut flour much?
Photos and recipe looks great- I’ll definitely try
Your recipe soon.
hi! i don’t use coconut flour much, as it one of the most absorbent gf flours, which makes recipe development with it tricky. teff flour has an amazing nutty flour, and thickens a bit when wet, which helps it to hold things together.