Pumpkin Swirl Brownies

I heart brownies. Any sort. The Sugar Bakeshop, which is the coffee shop I have spent most of my life at, makes the most fantastic smelling brownies ever. And tasting. I think because there is about 8 pounds of butter in it. Genius. I’ve made a handful of paleo brownies on my website. I pretty much like them all the same because they all taste like chocolate. I’ll actually be making my sweet potato brownies for my cookbook signing on Saturday October 5th (meaning tomorrow) at the Rx Dash n’ Bash at Sports Authority Field from 8am-2pm. Come by, pick up a brownie or muffin and my cookbook! All spectators are welcome so come by and watch or just gossip with me. That’s more fun.

So I recently tasted the best brussels sprouts in the entire world. Seriously. I LOVE brussels sprouts, but only when they are cooked a certain way. Meaning burnt. So I tend to only like my own because I know how to burn them just right. But the other day, I went to Steuben’s and figured out what I want to eat for the rest of my life. They are truly the best thing, ever. I’m pretty sure they cook them in butter, or duck fat, or bacon fat (so I really have no idea) then they flash fry them in some kind of delicious oil, then they cover them in salt. Then more salt. And if that’s not good enough for you, they give you some kind of dipping sauce on the side. Before you go freaking out on me, believe me, I don’t think any of this was paleo other than the raw brussels sprouts that started the process, but it was so completely worth it.

I’ve decided that this is going to be a regular Wednesday afternoon activity. Mostly because I get to hang out with my friend Sergio from CrossFit Colfax and Clark from CrossFit South Denver. We mostly just like to talk about whose gym is better. I obviously win. Because I have boobs. Boobs always win. Anywho, I posted a picture of my food with the guys in the background on instagram and people mentioned the french fries they were eating. Which were delicious, FYI. It’s always interesting to see what people write when it has to do with non paleo food. They don’t like it, that’s for sure. But please remember, these individuals workout a balls ton AND are adults. They get to consume whatever the hell they want. Especially when it comes to Steuben’s. What you didn’t get to see is when I consumed both Sergio’s and Clark’s sides of flash fried brussels sprouts. I bet people would have judged me if they would have seen that. Stop that judging. That’s my duty.

It’s becoming moth season. NOOOOOOOOOO. The worst.

Hey, remember when I went to the Dominican Republic for a girls trip a while back? Well, we are already thinking about our next one. Which won’t be until March or April, but I guess we like to plan. But we don’t know where to go next time. When we were in the Dominican, it was ALLLLLL couples. Which is fine, unless you’re not a couple. We want to go somewhere that we don’t feel like the outcasts, but we aren’t partying like we’re 21. No Mexico please. Any advice? Anything?


Pumpkin Swirl Brownies

  • Yield: 6-8 1x



For the pumpkin frosting

  • 3 tablespoons pumpkin puree
  • 2 tablespoons coconut milk
  • sprinkle of cinnamon


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a double boiler, melt chocolate chips along with coconut cream concentrate until well combined.
  3. Remove from heat and mix in pumpkin puree and honey.
  4. Add egg, vanilla, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Mix well.
  5. Grease an 8×8 glass baking dish with coconut oil.
  6. Pour batter into baking dish and into oven. Bake for 30-35 minutes until toothpick comes out clean. Let rest and cool. The longer these rest, the more dense they become. Which is what we want! Duh.
  7. Once brownies have cooled, mix together pumpkin puree, coconut milk, and cinnamon in a bowl. Place the mixture in a plastic bag, cut off the end, and pipe on designs however you see fit on the brownies.

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Oh, Hi! I’m Juli.

I’m a food hoarder. And a really bad dancer. If you don’t know me well, you will probably not understand my humor. Therefore, I apologize ahead of time. Thanks for listening to my ramblings of my ever-changing life and trusting my kitchen mishaps. Your trust in me is appreciated.


106 thoughts on “Pumpkin Swirl Brownies”

  1. Stay at the Turtle’s Nest Inn in Grand Cayman. You will LOVE it. Check out the reviews on Trip Advisor. Just be ready to drive on the wrong side of the road…through traffic circles. It’s an adventure, but totally worth it 🙂

  2. Hello. I roasted a pumpkin and I cleaned it out,… so can I use that.? I usually use the cab but I’d like to use fresh.

  3. Belize!!!! The island… not the mainland!
    Seriously one of my favorite places I’ve ever gone.

    Ooh… or St. Martin… I was only there briefly (was a stop on our cruise) but it was beautiful. And I hear the French side is amazing.

  4. Hi there, I recently started looking at your little blog and your recipes and have tried them and I am in love! I saw your site through a zumba instructor I found on you tube named Lauren fitz. She is awesome as well. Any who, I just wanted to tell you thank you. I am stationed in Germany( 3rd military base here) for 9 years now with my hubby and kids and find it so hard to make new friends all the time every time we move. I love, love, love getting on here to listen to whatever it is that you have to say. Your sense of humor is priceless and it just makes my day. Thank you for being there 🙂
    Mandy ( AF wife)

  5. I vote cruising. When you do the more tropical locales via cruise, you get a very wide range of the types of people that travel. Old, young, coupled, single, etc. $0.02, deposited.

  6. I would recommend a cruise too. I’ve been on a few with my girls and it’s always been an absolute blast. Plus we get to visit a bunch of beautiful places in the meantime. Can’t be beat. And it’s not all couples.

      1. Out of vanilla extract I used 1 tsp almond extract instead
        Is that ok? N do u suggest to add any thing else to make it seem more vanillay?? Thanks

  7. Belize is a great vacation spot. I stayed here last year with a bunch of friends and had a great time. It is very secluded though but authentic and if you have a large enough group you’ll basically have the resort to yourselves!


    Also these brownies look delicious!

  8. How do you make coconut cream concentrate? it is just coconut butter? I made some the other week, not sure if its the right consistency to use for this recipe?

  9. My vote has to go to St. Martin! We stopped there for a day on a cruise and are already planning on going back next year. Cruising is fun but you are on the boats time schedule and if your late the boat wont wait (lol that rhymed) and how much can you really see with only having one day at port at each place?

  10. Costa Rica!!!! You would love it.. but Belize is another good choice.

    So, I’m pretty sure I don’t have a full cup of coconut butter left, since I eat it by the spoonful. What if I did a half-cup of coconut butter/half-cup almond butter instead? Any thoughts on how that might turn out?

  11. Looks like I’ll be making these tonight for a wine and dessert potluck.

    For the frosting, do you use canned coconut milk or cartoned? If canned, just the fat on top or mixed up? Thanks!

  12. Oh my gosh! You always have the yummiest recipes posted! I always have to try them and they always turn out great…I’m going to have to add this to the list! 🙂
    I’ve seen you post before about people judging you because of what’s in pictures; don’t you hate that? I’m not completely Paleo (I’m gluten free because of celiacs) but anything Paleo is automatically gluten free and I’m considering making the whole switch because I love everything so far and am feeling better! Anyway, I wanted to say I’ve been there. I don’t get it but I hate how people feel the need to judge every single morsel that goes into your mouth! You said it perfectly. We are adults. We should be able to eat what we want and if we don’t? Well, that’s our prerogative and we can deal with the consequences. I am very strict about what I eat and make sure it stays in my diet and is gluten free but I believe in enjoying life and not depriving myself…of things like Pumpkin Swirl brownies! 😉 Keep the posts coming and don’t let it bug you. Enjoy the French Fries and fried Brussels Sprouts (which sound intriguing! I like mine burnt too) and tell everyone else to grow up. <3

  13. Go to Cozumel! I’ve been twice and stayed at all inclusives which are so worth it. I went there for spring break with a girlfriend and we booked the room through groupon/living social. It was awesome

  14. If you liked those brussels sprouts you’ve absolutely GOT to try the sprouts at Panzano. They have an awesome happy hour with small plates and they are amazing!

  15. Costa Rica would make a great girls trip! I see lots of other people agreeing as well. I went there last March and the weather was perfect, there were lots of non-couples and the meat and fish is fantastic, they have this tumeric paste they marinate everything in that is to die for. Its a good mix of drinking, relaxing and adventures. Side note, you should try making a paleo version of honey cumin siracha glazed brussel sports, they make them at a resturant near by and they are delish.

  16. DUDE for VACATION go to Puerto Rico, American Money, Language, and No CUSTOMS so easy and freaking awesome and fun and beautiful,

  17. Hi Julie – love your blog . I want to make these but I’m doing the lurong living paleo challenge and enjoy life chips are no bueno…I have cocao powder and also nibs…substitutable?!

    1. OMG Cholon has a PICTURE MENU online! That’s a way to get me into your restaurant!

      One time several months ago the paleo food truck guys (Where the Hunters Gather, I think?) had some brussel sprouts fried this way in bacon fat. HEAVEN. Maybe it will rotate back onto their menu.

  18. Moth season? How about this snow we’re getting ON OCTOBER 4TH? WTFH is that?

    I vote Hawaii. I know it sounds like a cliche destination, but hear me out: It’s not a huge party scene, and you can go hiking and kayaking and paddle boarding and pretty much whatever else you want. In December I stayed in the most incredible house on the water that I found through VRBO and my friends and I are going back because it’s $200 a night…split seven ways?! Hell yeah.

  19. Just made these… LOVE LOVE LOVE them! I also love that they are nut-free since I believe I have an intolerance to nuts. Thank you!! I followed the instructions & baked for 35 minutes, but next time I think I will only bake for 30 minutes since they seemed a tad overdone (though my husband said they were fine… I’m just picky).

  20. I’m so frustrated 🙁 I can never get the texture right when I’m cooking your recipes! I am a paleo failure! The flavor of my brownies were awesome, they were just more like goop then brownie… Have any idea why that might have happened?

    1. Hi riley. I’m not Juli (obviously) but I might be able to help. If you did everything to the letter in the recipe to the letter…my thought is check your oven temp. A while back it seemed like everything I baked came out smooshy. I bought an oven thermometer and turns out the oven was running cooler than what I set it at. I have a gas oven and the igniter was not working correctly so the temp wasn’t steady…at all. Thus the smooshy baked goods. Just a thought! Good luck 🙂

      1. Natasha, thank you! That’s actually most likely the problem. It wasn’t just this recipe, but the weird mushiness has happened for a while now. I will definitely check that out next time!

    2. Riley mine are super goopy too 🙁 I feel ya. Did not stop me from eating an entire row though… Attempt #2 this weekend.

      1. I have a friend who had the same problem when making this recipe. I know what she did wrong though – she mixed her coconut cream concentrate with warm water! OOPSY DAISY. 😉

  21. So, they are not supposed to have the consistency of pumpkin pie? I cut in to them, completely cooled, and they are soft like pumpkin pie. They taste delicious, but I cannot hold them in my hand, as they fall apart when I try and take them out of the pan. :/

      1. Wait, coconut flour???? There’s no mention of it in the list of ingredients or the instructions…did I miss something? I hope not as they’re now sitting in the oven ; /

          1. Okay, these were awesome- made my sweet tooth happy! If you place them in the fridge for a few the consistency and texture becomes more “brownie like,” as opposed to that pumpkin pie texture that some were saying. Patience little grasshopper, patience…

  22. Hawaii!!!! Oahu is awesome. Tons of places to eat and drink on Waikiki. Went there for my baby-moon, it was amazing!

  23. I’m wondering if I could nix the honey and use stevia or would that change the consistency of the brownie? My niece is very sensitive to sugar

  24. Go to Costa Rica. It is absolutely amazing. I went with my girlfriend last May for two weeks. We did the first week being adventurous and climbing mountains, zip-lining, viewing volcano’s and being spontaneous. The second week we spent going to different diamond in the rough beaches. It was amazing. It is BEAUTIFUL so full of life, the locals are amazing as well! We swam with huge turtles went snorkeling, did some kayaking to near by islands and had fresh smoothies every morning for like a $1.50 and enjoyed local food (fresh fish was great!). We rented quads and explored on our own for an entire afternoon. Have I sold you yet?? If not, the water is perfect temperature you get fun rain showers (or at least the time we went we did) and you can do yoga almost anywhere over looking the ocean. It’s serenity in a bottle.

    Keep these pumpkin recipes coming! I LOVE pumpkin and suck at thinking of recipes so you are my guide. Pressure’s on 🙂

    ps- your pictures are looking better every day! Not that when you started I wasn’t sold by the pictures but now I droll.

  25. Oh to add on to Costa Rica – It’s cheap, it’s not really a couple’s retreat unless you specificly go to the ‘couple retreat’ areas. We stayed in hostels as we moved around and a few bungalows on the beaches (legit waking up and walking out the front door and your feet are in the sand and you are a hop skip and a jump to the water) For the 2 weeks I went I spent a total of $1600 including airfare.

  26. Wow, Juli! These are so good! Hands down, my favorite brownie recipe to date. I made my own coconut concentrate. Thanks for the recipe:)

  27. these look great. like everything you make. ok, for an idea, it’s Mexico, but different. Ever consider an eco-resort in Tulum? Very different experience but still with affordable airfare.

  28. I’m looking into a solo vacation in Bocas del Toro, Panama in January. It might be what you’re looking for – it looks like total heaven.

  29. These brownies are great… and even better after being in the fridge! My 5 year old daughter LOVES them!

  30. Juli! OMG I just made these and they are in the oven. If the batter is any indication of what’s to come these will definitely be on the ‘most favorite’ list. Right next to your Sweet Potato Brownies. Next time I make these I’m putting them in ramekins with some whip cream on top and serve it as pudding. You rock!!

  31. PS: I should add that I didn’t have chocolate chips so I substituted cocoa/oil/sugar mix and the consistency of the batter is smooooooth.

  32. Made these last night, and they came out great. Mine baked up fine – I think it was about 35 minutes in a metal pan. They puffed up nicely and had a cakey texture. I put them in the fridge once cool. Based on other posts, they may have an even fudgier texture and taste after a spell in the fridge, which sounds pretty fantastic to me. I was so surprised how they baked up without any flour! Super easy to make, too.

  33. Come to St. Thomas! It’s fabulous. And we have a fun CrossFit box. You dont have to change money into pesos, no need to get dressed up and trip in ridiculous high heels, definitely not all couples, and you can still go to the BVI and feel like a baller. Or Costs Rica. I want to vacation there, when I need a vacation from the Caribbean.

  34. This recipe is not for the faint of heart. These babies are RICH. Yummy… but RICH.
    I made my own coconut butter in in my Vitamix for this and it totally turned a latte color. What the crap?

  35. Made these with Nikki’s pumpkin donut ridiculousness instead of plain coconut butter because I needed to do something with it besides eat it out of the jar with a spoon. Awesome!! Thanks for another fab treat.

  36. Juli, I think this is the best recipe I have had on your site!!! My bf usually hates my paleo desserts and he ate half the pan in one sitting, haha.

  37. If anyone is new to making coconut butter — I used an 8.8 oz bag of unsweetened coconut to make one cup of coconut butter.

  38. I made these for my co-workers and everyone really enjoyed them! they came out thick and moist (not too moist!) and perfect.

    I’ll definitely have to make them again because I barely got a small bite from the whole batch.

  39. By far the best paleo brownies I have ever made – although I still need to try your sweet potato brownies. Thank you so much for such wonderful recipes!

  40. These brownies are incredible! Mine came out firm, but not quite traditional brownie firm (which I didn’t expect). They have the texture of really dense pumpkin pie. And the taste is creamy and chocolatey with a hint of pumpkin. Only thing I changed: I didn’t have chocolate chips so I used some 72% Trader Joe’s Dark chocolate (three bars worth) it its place.

  41. Hmm… if this is the same Sugar Bakeshop that I’m thinking of, a friend from high school owns it, Natalie Slevin. Is this the same one??

  42. Quick question! I’ve made your sweet potato brownies and thought the texture and just everything about them was perfect! I want to make these brownies, but I’m wondering how the absence of the coconut flour affects them? Do you prefer these to the sweet potato brownies?

    Thanks so much!!

  43. Can you please clarify the recipe? It says coconut butter in the ingredients and then says coconut cream concentrate in the instructions.
    Which one should I use?
    Thank you!

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