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brownies with a shortbread base on a sheet of grease proof paper

Vegan Shortbread Brownies


Vegan Shortbread brownies, a buttery shortbread base, a rich and chewy brownie, topped with chocolate ganache. Super easy to make and delicious!


Units Scale

Ingredients for the shortbread

  • 120g of plain flour
  • 70g of caster sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 115g of dairy-free block butter*

Ingredients for the brownie

  • 60g of cocoa powder
  • 180g of plain flour
  • 170g of dairy-free dark chocolate
  • 110g of dairy-free block butter*
  • 120ml of aquafaba (chickpea brine)*
  • 280g of caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon of coffee granules
  • 20g of dairy-free chocolate chips

Ingredients for the ganache

  • 80ml of dairy-free cream*
  • 80g of dairy-free dark chocolate


Method (shortbread)

  1. Preheat the oven to 180℃ fan, and line a 8 x 8 inch square / loose base tin with grease proof paper.  Allow the paper to hang over the edges of the tin, this makes it easier for removing the bars when ready.
  2. Sift the flour and sugar into a medium sized mixing bowl. Add in the vanilla extract and stir to combine.
  3. Add in the cold butter. Using your fingertips, rub the butter into the flour mixture crumbly dough forms.
  4. Crumble the dough into the base of the tin and press down with your hands or a off set spatula. Tip: Dust your fingers with flour, it prevents the dough from sticking.
  5. Place into the middle of the oven and bake for 20 minutes or until light and golden in colour.

Method (brownie)

  1. Sift the cocoa powder and flour together in a medium bowl.
  2. Fill a small saucepan 1/4 full with water and place on the hob over medium heat. Add the dairy-free chocolate and butter into a heat proof bowl. Place the bowl over the pan, creating a bain-marie. Allow the chocolate and butter to melt together, stirring with a heat proof spatula. Remove from the heat and allow to cool for a few minutes while you make prepare the aquafaba.
  3. Add the aquafaba and sugar into a medium sized mixing bowl and whip up on high speed for around 5 minutes until thick and glossy. I use a stand mixer with balloon whisk attachment. A electric hand whisk will work great too.
  4. Add in the vanilla extract and whip on high speed to combine. The aquafaba mixture should be thick enough that when it drips into the bowl, the mixture should ribbon off the mixer.
  5. Sprinkle the coffee granules into the hot chocolate mixture and mix to combine.
  6. Pour the chocolate over the aquafaba, and carefully fold together with a spatula. Make sure to be very gentle with this step as you want to keep as much air in the mixture as possible.
  7. Once combined, sift in the flour and cocoa powder. Again, fold this in with a spatula until a rich and thick brownie batter forms.
  8. Add in the chocolate chips and stir to combine (optional).
  9. Pour the brownie batter on top of the shortbread base and level off with an off set spatula.
  10. Place the tin into the middle of the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes.
  11. Once baked, remove the tin from the oven and allow to cool fully on a wire rack. TIP: Keep the brownie in the tin while it’s cooling. This will help it keeps it’s shape and will also lock in some of the moisture, which will help with the chewy texture.

Method (ganache)

  1. Place the chocolate into a heat-proof bowl. Fill a small saucepan 1/4 with water and place over the hob on a low / medium heat. Place the bowl on-top to create a bain-marie. Melt the chocolate. Pour in the dairy-free cream and whip until smooth.
  2. Pour the ganache over the top of the brownie, use a spoon or off set spatula to spread it out. Place into the fridge for 10-15 minutes to set the ganache. Optional: While the ganache is still wet, sprinkle over some chocolate shavings / chunks.
  3. Lift the brownies out of the tin using the overhangs of grease proof paper, and place on a board.
  4. Heat a sharp knife in some warm water then slice into bars.
  5. Serve and enjoy.


To store: Store in a sealed container in the fridge. Allow to come to room temperature before serving. Best enjoyed within 4 days of making

What dairy-free butter to use? My favourite vegan friendly butters are Naturli Vegan Block and Flora Plant Based Alternative. Both can be found in most large uk supermarkets. 

The ganache is completely optional, so if you would prefer not to have the chocolate on top, simply leave it off! The brownies will still be as delicious!

What dairy-free cream to use? For ganache, coconut cream or any vegan single / double cream will work perfectly! 

  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 60 minutes
  • Category: brownies and bars
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: vegan brownies, shortbread brownies, brownies, shortbread, chocolate brownies