Monday, February 1, 2010

Pamela’s Brownies – Adapted to be Allergen-Free

I am thrilled that so many vendors are offering gluten-free products these days, yet few offer true allergen-free products – especially when it comes to baked goods.

One of my favorite things to do is to adapt gluten-free mixes so they are indeed allergy-free. And one of my very favorite mixes is the Chocolate Brownie Mix from Pamela’s Products. I can find it in both the local health food store and my mainstream grocery store, and it’s one of the simplest treats to make. Best of all, it not only passes the family taste test, my kid’s friends actually ask for these brownies.

The key to adapting a gluten-free mix to be allergy-free is to start with a package that doesn’t contain any food allergens. Even if the recipe calls for adding eggs, butter, and milk, it can be made allergy-free with the right substitutions.

I should warn you that Pamela’s brownie mix does contain soy lecithin (not soy protein, and therefore should be safe in most cases), and it does contain a ‘may contain traces of milk’ warning. You should follow your own rules for that labeling, but my very-milk-allergic son has not had any difficulties with this product.

Here’s my simple allergy-free adaptation for Pamela’s Brownies:

1 package Chocolate Brownie Mix by Pamela’s Products
½ cup applesauce
½ cup oil (I like walnut oil)
¼ cup water (or 1/4 cup chocolate hemp milk)

Bake for 23-24 minutes at 350 degrees. Note that this is a higher baking time than the package suggests. The brownies will still be quite fudgy.

For true chocoholics, add ½ cup of Sunspire dairy-free chocolate chips, and add another minute of baking time.

Try them and let me know what you think!

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