Fudgy Secret Ingredient Vegan Skillet Brownies
4.67 from 6 votes

Fudgy Secret Ingredient Vegan Skillet Brownies | The Full Helping

This post is sponsored by So Delicious Dairy Free Frozen Mousse. All opinions are my own, and I love this light and creamy new treat. Thanks for your support!

One of the first cooking routines to fall by the wayside when I’m busy is baking, which is a shame, because I love it so very much. It’s hard to justify the time spent baking bread or mixing the batter for a cake when I have a lot of necessary weekly batch cooking to take care of, but I inevitably perk up and feel better when I make these things. They’re reminders that making food doesn’t always need to be purposeful or functional. Sometimes it can be a source of pleasure, pure and simple.

These fudgy, secret ingredient vegan skillet brownies à la mode are a pleasure indeed, and I’m so happy that I made them this week. In spite of the fact that there’s nothing particular practical about having them around, they’re delicious, and the relatively short ingredient list makes them appropriate for even these hectic times.

Fudgy Secret Ingredient Vegan Skillet Brownies | The Full Helping

I really should call these double secret ingredient brownies, because there are two special components to speak of. The first—the secret ingredient that gives the brownies richness and a wonderfully fudgy texture—is tahini. I’ve been seeing recipes for tahini chocolate chip cookies right and left, and I’ve wanted to see how tahini would work in a brownie for a while now (I’ve had success with almond butter in blondies, after all).

Fudgy Secret Ingredient Vegan Skillet Brownies | The Full Helping

It works. It worked out much better than I expected, actually, on my first try. Using tahini means that the brownies are fudgy without being greasy. You don’t taste it, but it does the work of creating a dense, moist texture. The brownies are rich, but they’ve got a few healthful perks: whole wheat pastry flour for a little extra fiber if you like, iron and vitamin E from the tahini, unrefined sweetener if you use coconut sugar, and all of those lovely antioxidants in the chocolate 🙂

Fudgy Secret Ingredient Vegan Skillet Brownies | The Full Helping

The only thing that could make the skillet brownies even more appealing is the addition of a really great frozen topping—because skillet brownies are so much better when they’re served hot and gooey and covered in something cool and sweet. That’s where special ingredient #2 comes in: the new So Delicious Dairy Free Frozen Mousse.

Fudgy Secret Ingredient Vegan Skillet Brownies | The Full Helping

I’ve been hearing about this light, frozen dessert for a while now, and I’m so happy to have had a chance to sample the flavors. They range from lemon and mango swirl to chocolate chip, salted caramel, and peanut butter swirl. Not surprisingly, these last three were my favorites, but the fruity flavors are refreshing and tasty, too.

The salted caramel swirl was the winner for me—I love a touch of salt in any dessert—and I chose to pair it with the skillet brownies for a perfect hot/cold texture contrast. How to describe the frozen mousse? It’s someplace in between ice cream and frozen yogurt, but not really either of those things. It feels whipped and light, which makes it lovely for pairing with an otherwise rich, decadent, fudgy dessert. It’s always my instinct to serve ice cream with cake or other treats, but it can all get a little cloying if the ice cream is itself super rich.

These frozen mousses really aren’t—they add the frozen creaminess that so many desserts call for without overwhelming the dessert itself. And because they’re not overly rich, I think they’d make a super refreshing, summery (or wintery?) afternoon treat, too.

Fudgy Secret Ingredient Vegan Skillet Brownies | The Full Helping

What else to say about this dessert? When you first, mix the dough, it’ll seem very dense and stiff. Don’t panic. It’ll bake out nicely; you just have to spread it evenly in the skillet.

Once baked, the brownies are more tender than some others I’ve made (like these espresso brownies, which keep their shape more readily), but the fact that you can practically eat them with a spoon feels sort of appropriate for a skillet dessert. I cut them into wedges and ate mine warm, but it would be very fun to serve these for a crowd and have everyone just dig—no slicing required. Here’s the recipe.

Fudgy Secret Ingredient Vegan Skillet Brownies | The Full Helping

4.67 from 6 votes

Fudgy Secret Ingredient Vegan Skillet Brownies

Author - Gena Hamshaw
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 22 minutes
Total Time: 32 minutes
Yields: 12


  • 3/4 cup whole wheat pastry or unbleached, all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup coconut sugar or brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons tahini
  • 5.3 ounces (2/3 cup) plain or vanilla-flavored vegan yogurt of choice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 8 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chunks or morsels
  • 1 container So Delicious Dairy Free Frozen Mousse


  • Preheat your oven to 350F and oil a 10-inch, well-seasoned cast iron skillet (a nonstick skillet will also work well!).
  • Mix together the flour, coconut sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, and sea salt in a mixing bowl. Separately, whisk together the tahini, yogurt, and vanilla.
  • Melt 5 ounces of the chocolate chunks or morselsin the microwave or over a double boiler. Add the tahini/yogurt/vanilla mix to the melted chocolate and combine well. Add this mixture to the dry ingredients. The batter will be very thick. Fold in the remaining 3 ounces chocolate chunks or morsels.
  • Spread the batter into your skillet. Bake for 22 minutes, or until the top is set and the edges firm. Remove the skillet brownie from the oven and allow it to cool for at least 30 minutes before serving with the frozen mousse.

Fudgy Secret Ingredient Vegan Skillet Brownies | The Full Helping

I certainly won’t mind having slices of this delicious, chocolatey treat to pack up in my everyday lunches. It may even be worth storing some frozen mousse in the work freezer! I’m excited to keep exploring these frozen mousses—with and without another treat to keep them company. Yet another fun new product that makes me grateful to be vegan right here and now.

Wishing you all a lovely start to this new work week. I’ll be back on Thursday with a delicious, versatile new dip from my friend Brandi‘s awesome new cookbook! Stay tuned.


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Categories: Recipes, Bars & Brownies
Method: Oven
Ingredients: Tahini
Dietary Preferences: No Oil, Soy Free, Tree Nut Free, Vegan

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Recipe Rating

  1. 5 stars
    Absolutely amazing!!! My daughter and I are also GF. We just substituted Bob’s Red Mill GF flour and it turned out perfectly.

  2. Dear So Delicious, if you are reading this PLEASE bring Dairy Free Frozen Mousse to Dover, Delaware!!

  3. Hi Gena,
    These brownies look amazing, and tahini in chocolate brownies…..yummmmmm! I love tahini in so many things. I make a lot of different smoothies, but one of my favorites that seems to really help reduce my chronic migraines, if I drink it at least a few times a week, has tahini as one of the ingredients (I think maybe it’s the combo of magnesium and calcium rich foods in this smoothie that helps me…?). Plus, just tahini dressings, hummus, and dips…is there anything that tahini just doesn’t make better. I don’t think so! 🙂 Anyway, I’m going to make these brownies for my whole family’s once-monthly dinner this Saturday, so thank you for the perfect timing. Just a few questions, I always have cacao on hand (the Navitas brand) would that work in place of the cocoa and use the same amount (or should I just buy cocoa)? Also, I’ve been waiting to buy a set of cast-iron skillets, pots, and pans, but haven’t gotten them yet (maybe I’ll have to start just getting one at a time), and I do not trust my skillets in the oven. So, can this same recipe be made in some other baking dish, like glass or….? If not, just let me know “no” and I’ll at least get one cast-iron skillet for now. What size did you use? It looks like you have 11 or 12 slices and my family is 11 people…SO that is perfect!

    Also, just to share, I have been loving you and your work for about 8 years now and I consistently love all of your recipes that I make. I also bought each and every one of your cookbooks, since the beginning and I think they are so well organized and comprehensive and have delicious recipes. I also love that, at least occasionally, you will mention your love of animals and that being an important part of your life choices. I went vegan for the animals almost 9 years ago now, and living according to my values of love and compassion is one of the greatest joys and gifts of my life. So, I always feel a special place in my heart for you and your work, because I’ve read things in the past that make me feel you are a kindred spirit. We have some other things in common that you write about, as well.


    Ps. I thought it was brilliant that you took a Sunday break yesterday! What a good example, sharing that decision with us. So often I push myself to do things I “should” do rather than what my body is telling me I need.