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Cookie Dough Brownies

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Gooey, fudgy, rich, chocolatey, decadent cookie dough brownies + less than 100 calories each! Recipe link:

When I was really young, I had an imaginary friend.

His name was Zozo, and he enjoyed getting me into trouble. Some of his antics included drawing on the walls of my room with permanent marker, telling the babysitter I had no bedtime, pulling my little sister’s hair, and sneaking so many tastes of cookie dough while baking that very few cookies were actually ever made.

Somehow, my parents never bought the excuse it was my imaginary friend behind all of this mischief. 😕

Cookie Dough Brownies

By the way, my childhood imaginary friend is still around and causing trouble.

Only now the trouble comes in the form of convincing me it’s a good idea to watch Netflix instead of going to the gym or doing the dishes. And he still eats the raw cookie dough while we’re baking, until suddenly I will look up and all the batter has disappeared.

Cookie Dough Bars

Seriously, this guy is evil.

I don’t know why we’re still friends…

Secretly Healthy Cookie Dough Brownies:

Cookie Dough Brownies

  • 1 cup plus 2 tbsp milk of choice (270g)
  • 2 tbsp ground flaxmeal (11g)
  • 1/2 cup plus 3 tbsp vegetable or coconut or olive oil (110g)
  • 1 tbsp pure vanilla extract (15g)
  • 1 cup spelt, all-purpose, or Bob’s gf flour (120g)
  • 1 cup unsweetened cacao or cocoa powder (80g)
  • 1/4 tsp plus 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar or packed 1/2 cup coconut sugar (115g)
  • only if using Bob’s gf flour, add 1/4 tsp xanthan gum
  • 1/3 cup stevia baking blend, or 1/4 cup regular sugar
  • 2/3 cup mini chocolate chips, optional
  • 1 recipe of the following: Cookie Dough Dip, made the day after making the brownies

Preheat oven to 330F. Grease a 9×13 pan and set aside. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together all liquid ingredients and the ground flax. In a separate bowl, thoroughly combine all remaining ingredients except the cookie dough dip. Pour wet into dry, stir to combine, and pour into prepared pan. Bake 16 minutes, or until mostly set. Brownies will look a little underdone when they come out, but that’s okay! Let cool, then refrigerate overnight and the texture will firm up nicely. Once chilled and firm, make the cookie dough dip and spread it in a thin layer on top of the brownies. Makes 30-35 brownies (35 the size of the ones in the photos). Store in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

Cookie Dough Brownies Nutrition Facts

Cookie Dough Brownies

Question of the Day:

Did you have an imaginary friend when you were younger?


Other Brownie Recipes:

Maybe there are too many brownie recipes on my site and I should stop posting brownie recipes for a while…

No. Sorry. That won’t ever happen. :)

Katie is the baker, photographer, and author of the popular blog Chocolate-Covered Katie. Her favorite food is chocolate, and she believes in eating a balanced diet that includes dessert every single day. More about Katie—> 
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  1. Omg I love/hate you right now. I could eat this entire pan in one sitting.

  2. Livi says:

    yum! can’t wait to try these!

  3. I had an imaginary friend, too…but I wasn’t as smart as you to blame my mischief on him! This recipe sounds great, I wish I had some cookie dough in front of me right now!!

  4. These look so indulgent! Perfect for the weekend :)

    I never had a human imaginary friend, but at some point I did have an imaginary black Lab named Buddy. He grew into a whole pack of imaginary dogs of all different shapes and sizes. Can you tell I really, really, REALLY wanted a dog?

  5. These look so tasty! I’m bringing your famous cookie dough dip to a trivia night tonight! Can’t wait to let everyone keep going for more and THEN tell them its healthy!! These cookie dough brownies may be next!

  6. Megan says:

    These look delicious! I have all the ingredients already so I think maybe today would be a good baking day… :)
    And yes I did have an imaginary friend! Her name was Mari and I told everyone about her and our adventures. My dad still brings her up and laughs at me. Haha.

  7. Anything with cookie dough in the title will entice me! And no, no imaginary friends! I had two brothers and a lot of neighborhood kids, so I guess I just didn’t have the need? Definitely had a teddy bear that I took everywhere though!

  8. I completely agree – brownies are the best dessert. I’ve been trying my best to find a healthy brownie as good as the full-fat ones, but it’s tough. :-)

  9. Yum and yum. I now need to go buy some cookie dough ice cream to satisfy this craving!

    1. EVA says:

      I have a solution: make these brownies!

  10. Helen says:

    Hello Katie! Haha, this was a funny post! It reminds me of a time when I told my parents that the cake I had in the fridge was not ready yet, but they didn’t really care for “perfection”. After a couple of hours half of it was gone (yet unfinished). 😀
    Lovely recipe! I want to eat it now! I guess you are lucky they ate only the missing part in the pictures!

  11. Charlotte says:

    This looks and tastes devine! I never had an unimaginary friend, I was just naughty when I was younger! Love from Spain

  12. Mary Sanchez says:

    On the Cookie Dough Brownies, can you subsitute something else for the ground flax (optional) in the brownie part? I see you can use oats in the dip in place of the flax. Can you use anything else?

  13. The best of both worlds! Definitely pinning these for later!

  14. your story about Zozo made me laugh and these brownies look fabulous – send me some pleasee!!!! 😀

  15. Sara says:

    I had 3 imaginary friends… Sofie, Toofie and Afra. They had 2 pets: Pet Shop and Zebra. Apparently it’s a sign of creativity in children. No wonder I grew up loving the arts and being an art major in college.

  16. Amanda says:

    Has anyone tried ground chia instead of ground flax? In any case, I will try it :)

  17. Janna says:

    Anything with cookie dough in the name has to be amazing. Going to make these today … It’s going to be hard to wait until tomorrow to eat them!

  18. EVA says:

    I think, since I don’t gots no blender, that I’ll just forgo the cookie dough dip (you all can burn me for that) and use the brownies as a base recipe. I need a special dietary-friendly base without fancy ingredients, and this certainly THE ONE.

    I tried having an imaginary friend as a child, it was a husky named Nana. Unfortunately, TRIED doesn’t mean succeeding, I just could never get into it. Probably because I have a twin sister, so I never had the need to make up someone since I was never lonely.

    Haha, sounds like you have a twin of your own Katie, and Zozo is the evil one!

  19. Andie says:

    OH MY GOSH!! My 2 favorite things rolled into one!! Perfection. Will try ASAP. Just out of curiosity, what do you do when you go to the gym? Due to injury I can’t run, so I’ve mostly biked and would love some new ideas 😀

  20. Emilylovesraisins says:

    Lol, my friend and i have an imaginary friend named Norman. He’s pretty mischievous.
    These brownies looks so good! :)

  21. Rachel says:

    These look amazing!! It reminded me of when I tried making chocolate chip brownies!! When I made them though I added to many chocolate chips and they melted so it turned into a chocolate melt in the middle brownie fudge cake- thats the technical term!! It was so nice!! I will definitely try this recipe and I will put both recipes for the brownies and the cake thing I made on my blog!

  22. Rachel says:

    These look amazing!! It reminded me of when I tried making chocolate chip brownies!! When I made them though I added to many chocolate chips and they melted so it turned into a chocolate melt in the middle brownie fudge cake- thats the technical term!! It was so nice!! I will definitely try this recipe and I will put both recipes for the brownies and the cake thing I made on my blog! (It may not be on for afue days though)

  23. Gemma says:

    My two favorite things in this world together in the same recipe! I’m the ‘eat the cookie dough’ kind of girl and can’t resist trying new brownie recipes cause you CAN NEVER have enough brownies. ;-p. So I’m very happy that you won’t stop posting brownie recipes, I am very grateful for that (and my inner sugar monster too).

  24. Steph says:

    Too many brownie recipes? I’m confused how this is possible :)
    Cookie dough brownies look goooood!

  25. Colleen says:

    Never had an imaginary friend, but I had several Alter Egos: Sue Turtle, Betty Lou Cowgirl, Ronny the Horse, Terry Pteradactyl, and others. They all had costumes that went with them, and sometimes they went to school for me. :-)
    Never stop posting brownie recipes.

  26. Andie says:

    Also, out of ALL the brownie recipes you’ve posted (which are amazing), which one is your all time favorite? :)

    1. Haha I could never choose!! I really like the zucchini brownies though…

  27. Carrie says:

    I really love your recipes! I am just confused with your calorie content, like in the above recipe you would have to cut the brownies into 60 pieces to hit that mark… And if you’re anything like me that’s not quite big enough:) just wondering how you are coming up with the numbers. Thanks

    1. Haha no no, not 60. Just 35… which is still small, but no one says you can’t have more than one. I always do ;).

  28. Andrea says:

    omg!! that looks sooo good! I need new recipes to try out and I’m glad I stumbled upon your blog! I definitely need to try out this recipe, and haha I love cookie dough too

  29. Rachel says:

    This looks delicious! I tried making brownies once and I added to many and it turned into an chocolate melt in the middle brownie fudge cake! (that’s the technical term!) I will definitely do this recipe and I will put the recipe I was trying to follow and my made up recipe on my blog!

  30. This is calling all cookie dough lovers! I love spreading cookie dough on top of fudge-y brownies! It is great how you can add flax seeds!

  31. Julia says:

    Delicious! I don’t think you can have too many brownie recipes on this site:)

  32. amy says:

    Um, I don’t know if you know this, but Zozo is the name of a demon who often comes up when using a Ouija board. It’s a little creepy that that’s the name you came up with when you were a kid. In any case, I looooove your recipes!

    1. Evelyn says:

      that’s exactly what i thought of when i read ‘zozo’! spooky stuff

  33. Anne says:

    Cookie dough AND brownies? I think I just died and went to heaven.

  34. Sarah says:

    Hi Katie! Great recipe! Made these last night…here are a few of my notes…the brownies I thought could use a little more sugar….but I know you don’t need the sweet as much as I do! Also, I baked a little longer so they firmed up a bit more and a made the cookie dough dip the same day and just put on after the brownies cooled. Oddly enough, in my cookie dough dip I only use about a 1/2c of brown sugar for my sweetener instead of 2/3 cup. So although the brownie part could use a little more sweetener, these were great! I look forward to getting home tonight to dig into them again… Thanks for all the great recipes!

    1. Thank you for making them!

      The reason for waiting is actually that they are MUCH sweeter the next day 😉

      1. Sarah says:

        Yup! Way better on day 2…and 3… :)

  35. michael says:

    Those look delicious! I could eat a couple of those right now! :-) I am going to make these for the weekend.
    check out my recent post, Strawberry Pie,

  36. Auxai says:

    Hi!!! I just discovered your blog and I loved it … I will try more than one of your recipes. Thanks for publishing.
    And yes I had a very good imaginary friend, we used to talk a lot 😉

  37. Teneille Campbell says:

    Apologies for the essay, but it’s only to highlight the appreciation I feel :)

    I have struggled with my weight since my metabolism died when I was 10. I’ve found it really hard to stick to diets (and believe me I’ve tried them all) because in all honesty, I just love food way too much. In my experience I’ve found that if something looks too good to be true, then it most probably is.
    When I found this blog I was seriously sceptical because (when it comes to food and health etc) I’ve had to train myself not to get too excited when I find something like this it has always tasted like crap.

    I honestly love love loved these brownies! I would definitely NOT use peanut butter next time as I’ve decided I don’t like it THAT much, but I could tell that with the right nut butter and a better food processor these would have been just perfect!

    Sincerely, thank you so so much for posting these fantastic recipes, it’s seriously a life changing thing for me – I can eat ‘healthy’ brownies that actually taste like brownies and not something that’s been picked up on the side of the road and dipped in chocolate.

    Haven’t been this excited in a while :)

    And yes, I had two imaginary friends. Heidi and Klunk. Named from one of my favourite TV shows Humphrey Bear. Not as naughty as Zozo, but maybe I just wasn’t clever enough to lay them blame 😉

    1. Teneille Campbell says:

      Wow. 3.19am. No, I’m not a crazy mid morning blog stalker – I’m in Aus :)

      1. Haha I love reading essay comments. Thank you for making the brownies :).

  38. Janna says:

    So I made these, and they were gone in a day. I did refrigerate overnight as noted, but I left them out the next day and after sitting at room temperature few hours it was like eating this deliciously soft brownie batter cookie dough combination dessert, so amazingly good.

  39. Kasey says:

    These look so good! Is there anything I can substitute for the ground flax?

  40. AnnaBananaBelle says:

    I am going to give these a try this weekend! they look so delicous! i can’t wait! i am a little nervous about how the garbanzo beans will work in the cookie dough…well i guess i will see. Do you think i could use oat flour for the brownies?

  41. AnnaBananaBelle says:

    I made these over the weekend and i thought they were pretty good. i mad the sugar-free version of the cookie dough dip and used almond butter which i think was a mistake as it tastes very much of almond butter. next time i will use peanut butter. I think the brownies could have been a little sweeter… very much appreciate the idea though! After making a few changes i think these will be great! and no i never had an imaginary friend when i was younger. 😉

  42. Stephanie says:

    Oh. my. goodness. That was insane. Just made these for a family get together. Didn’t tell them what was in the cookie dough until after they ate it. My ridiculously picky teenager even went back for more once I told him. They were THAT good. :)

  43. Mike Boyer says:

    How healthy are these really, I’m kinda watching my weight a little and am jonesing for a snack…

  44. ILoveCCK says:

    Hi Katie!
    I love the sound of this recipe and can’t wait to try it. I was wondering, do you think you could maybe try making a white chocolate brownie? If you could I would love you forever!!!!!!!! Also, thanks so much for putting the measurements in grams on the side – I live in England so it really helps.
    Thank you so much for your delicious recipes! I don’t know how I’d live without them

  45. Rita says:

    Going to make these for my 7 year old granddaughter. I had an imaginary horse as a friend when I was 7. My granddaughter, Ari, has a whole menagerie of dogs and other creatures in her imaginary world, and has since she was 3 and learning to talk English. (From 5 months of age, she spoke in an entirely unknown language. Not babbling, but talking in sentences, repeating words and phrases until we could figure out what she wanted. Her mother and I worked hard to get her to speak English, and now she doesn’t remember her first language. Big mistake, I think.) Shark and Snowball are the two main characters, giant dogs that run alongside the car when we’re going someplace. Snowball, the white Husky, has 3,000 girl puppies and 250 boy puppies. Shark, also a female, has fewer puppies, but she’s been sick lately. Ari tells stories about her dogs, zebras and her one giraffe. She’s a marvel and a wonder, a bright star in my constellation of grandchildren.

  46. Faith says:

    I’m definitely going to have to try this. And my imaginary friend was a monkey who lived on the roof, and whenever we moved, he moved right along with us, until one day he got into a helicopter and flew away for good, never to return again.

  47. Beth says:

    I was wondering, because it is not cooked, does the cookie dough topping tastes like beans? So far I’ve only tried one black bean brownie recipe, but the batter didn’t taste that great before baking. Have you tried baking the cookie dough topping, and if so, how did it come out? They look delicious regardless!

    1. Beth says:

      Ah, that wasn’t very clear. I meant, have you tried baking the topping once it was on the brownie. As in, baking them together?

    2. Unofficial CCK Helper says:

      Rinse the beans well and no, it will not taste like beans. If you try baking it, though, definitely report back!

  48. Cynthia says:

    Hi Katie, thank you for all your choco-licious recipes! Me and my man are so hooked now.
    I wonder if I can use coconut flour for this cookie dough brownie recipe? Thanks!

    1. I’m unfortunately not allowed to publish it online, but there is a coconut flour brownie recipe in my book :)

  49. Sophie says:

    Thank you so much for these! They are incredibly delicious and I especially love that these are also healthy! I can feed these healthy things to my siblings and they have no idea that the cookie dough topping is made with beans!

  50. gen says:

    How did you come up with the name of your imaginary friend? Just wondering because “Zozo” is the name of an ancient demon. Yikes.

  51. So glad I found your blog – I am in love with it. Making me so hungry! x

  52. Anna says:

    I am making theses for a party
    on a scale of one to ten how good are they
    with 1 being the lowest and 10 the highest

  53. Tabitha says:

    These are currently baking in my oven. The mix tastes AMAZING!!! And it’s oh so easy to make! I can’t believe I haven’t tried this before!
    I did tweak the recipe slightly. Instead of brown sugar (which I can’t have) I added 1/2 cup of Rice Malt Syrup in with the wet ingredients. And then added 1/2 cup of Stevia with the dry instead of 1/3 (I couldn’t find the 1/3 cup measurement).

    These will be a perfect edition to my birthday celebrations tomorrow! I hope I can stop myself (and my family) from eating them until then! :)

  54. Susie says:

    Katie, I can’t find the flourless version of these promised at the bottom of today’s (Jan 22 2015) e-mail. Can you (or anyone?) help me find it?

    1. Sorry about that! Completely my fault… I thought I had written that in as an option in this post. If you want flourless cookie dough brownies, use either my black bean brownies or zucchini brownies recipe as the base instead.

  55. Kara says:

    I love chocolate too and love using cacao powder to make healthier sweets for my children and family. However, recently, I have read some info. regarding heavy metals being discovered in cacao powders. Are you at all concerned with the high levels of cadmium and other heavy metals being discovered in Cacao powders?

    1. Sorry, I’ve not heard anything about this. Will have to research.

  56. Katie says:

    Hello Katie!
    I was wondering what the flourless option was?
    I am making these this evening for a party we are having tomorrow and would, very much, like the flourless option. Thanks in advance! :)

    1. Sorry about that! I thought I had written that in as an option in this post. If you want flourless cookie dough brownies, use either my black bean brownies or zucchini brownies recipe as the base instead.

  57. Kathleen says:

    Hi – I can’t seem to locate the flourless version that was mentioned in the email. Could I sub a nut meal for the spelt/gf flour?

    1. Sorry about that! I thought I had written in as an option in this post that if you want flourless cookie dough brownies, you can use either my black bean brownies or zucchini brownies recipe as the base instead.

  58. Grace says:

    May I know how many calories this is without the frosting? :) can’t wait to try it out!

  59. Rachel says:

    Hello! I’m a huge fan of all your recipes! I’m working on my dietetics certification, and have been recommending your recipes to clients quite a bit. I noticed in your nutrition info for this recipe, you noted using Have you ever tried using the Nutrition Analysis Tool 2.0? It is online – NATS 2.0 – and it’s a tool that a lot of nutritionist fri ends I know use.

    Please never stop what you’re doing!

  60. Sylvia says:

    Is there a comparable substitute for the spelt? And can I sub xylitol for the stevia? Wish I had all the ingredients so I could bake these right now! :)

  61. Len says:

    Um…Zozo? That’s the name of a demon. A very very terrifying demon that likes to come across from ouiji boards. Your “imaginary” friend might not have been very imaginary.

  62. Katie, is the 1/2 cup brown sugar packed or unpacked? That would make a difference in sweetness. So how do you measure your brown sugar here? Thanks for responding.

    1. Unofficial CCK Helper says:

      I have always just loosely packed it here, but either will work.

  63. Cindy M says:

    I made the Avocado Chocolate Cake and it was easy and delicious.
    Tonight I made the Chocolate Oatmeal for tomorrow’s breakfast.
    All the recipes have been wonderful and super tasty. I would recommend anything Katie post. I would love to have her cookbook.

    Cindy M



  64. Sandy says:

    Hello, these look absolutely amazing! I was wondering, can you use whole wheat pastry flour instead of the other recommended flours?