Gluten-Free,  Cookies, Biscuits & Bars,  Sweets

How To Make My (Gluten-Free) Prohibition Brownies

Alright, people, it’s time to level-up our gluten-free baking. I’m not what you would call a gluten-free fiend, but that’s honestly because so much of what’s out there is a little drab. The point is to chuck the gluten, not the flavor. And while the world of gluten-free baking is relatively new to me, I have SO MANY friends and colleagues with gluten sensitivities that it seemed like the right time to learn. 😀👍🏻

Looking for the regular version of my Prohibition Brownies? Click this link to get there!

After doing a thorough deep-dive into gluten-free baking on the internet I’ve discovered there are two camps. First, there is the camp that treats gluten-free baking like those auto manufacturers that rip the top off of a coupe and proudly claim that they’ve built a convertible. Second, there is the camp that prides themselves on building the metaphoric convertible from the ground up (hello, Mazda Miata, I’ve been in love with you since I was 13 😍).

I would like to take a moment to point out that I just used a car analogy. #MadProps.

When it comes to gluten-free, I fall squarely in the middle. Some recipes naturally lend themselves to being gluten-free (flourless chocolate cakes, pavlovas), while others require the rip-the-top-off-the-coupe approach. But I don’t think anyone’s grandmother was discussing her gluten sensitivity with her doctor when she was 17, so to make foods like the ones our grandmothers made we’ll need to take the top off of the coupe.

The most important thing, obviously, is to repack the flour. Now, there is an easy way — and a more challenging way — to achieve a gluten-free flour blend. Perhaps the easiest way is to buy one, and I’ve become partial to Bob’s Red Mill 1-to-1 Gluten-Free Flour Blend (they don’t sponsor me, I just think the product is great). There is a growing trend of blending different gluten-free flours in order to achieve a “traditional flour” result, and Bob’s 1-to-1 is the closest thing I’ve found to the non-commercial version of that blend. But some people won’t want to use Bob’s, or they’ll prefer to make their own blends, so I’ve included instructions on how to do that here, too.

All that said, let’s talk brownies. I am personally not interested in dry, caky, or overly refined brownies. I want something that hits your mouth and makes you feel like a child again — albeit with some adult flavors thrown in there because, let’s face it, none of us are children anymore. I’m not going to lie to you, my Prohibition Brownies are REALLY good. They’re moist, they’re super chocolatey, and they’re JUST under-baked enough that you get that elusive fudgy quality everyone is after.

Why add alcohol, you ask? It’s not that these brownies are going to taste like your favorite memory of a frat party that happened 20 years ago. The alcohol really just enhances the flavor of the chocolate. You get a deeper, richer, “what is that flavor, I can’t quite place it” experience.

My original Prohibition Brownie recipe calls for whiskey, but whiskeys can be made from wheat and out of extreme caution I’ve swapped alcohols and replaced the whiskey with rum. Happy discovery: these brownies are absolutely delicious with rum.

Happy gluten-free baking! 😀👍🏻

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Gluten-Free Prohibition Brownies

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 9 substantial brownies 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Gluten Free


  • 1 bar (4oz) unsweetened chocolate (133 grams)
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter (84 grams)
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil (25 grams)
  • 1/2 cup Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free 1-to-1 Flour Substitute* (75 grams)
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder (21 grams)
  • 1 teaspoon espresso powder (2 grams)
  • 1/4 teaspoon table salt (1.5 grams)
  • 3 large eggs (150 grams)
  • 1 cup granulated sugar (200 grams)
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar (107 grams)
  • 2 tablespoons rum (28 grams)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract (9 grams)
  • a small handful of chocolate chips

*If you don’t have access to Bob’s Red Mill products, or you prefer to make your own wheat-free flour blend for this recipe, substitute the following ingredients for the Bob’s Red Mill product:

  • 1/3 cup white rice flour (42 grams)
  • 2 tablespoons brown rice flour (15 grams)
  • 1 tablespoon potato starch (10 grams)
  • 2 teaspoons tapioca flour / tapioca starch (5 grams)


  1. Preheat your oven to 325°F (165°C). Make a parchment sling and line an 8×8-inch (20×20-centimeter) baking dish with it.
  2. Combine the Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free Flour (or white rice flour, brown rice flour, potato starch, and tapioca flour)espresso powdercocoa powder and salt in a small bowl. Make sure to break up any small clumps of flour of cocoa powder. Fair warning: As soon as you go after the clumps of chocolate you will unleash a cloud of chocolatey rice-flour upon your kitchen. Such are the trials of home baking.
  3. Melt the unsweetened chocolatebutter, and oil together in a small pan over low heat, stirring constantly so that you do not burn the chocolate. This is really important — we’re bypassing the hassle of building a double-boiler, so just make sure that the heat is low and the mixture keeps moving so you don’t ruin your chocolate. Remove from heat, stir in the rum and vanilla, and cover to keep warm.
  4. Whip the eggs with both sugars on medium speed until the mixture is thick and fluffy and ribbons off the beater. This will take about 4 to 5 minutes with a machine, or 8 to 10 minute by hand. I used the machine. 
  5. Fold the chocolate mixture into the egg mixture followed by the flour mixture. It’s OK if you deflate it a bit as we’re making brownies and not cake, but try to leave some air in those eggs as they’re the only things here that will help the batter to rise. Pour your batter into your prepared pan and bake for 30-40 minutes.
  6. Brownies are done when a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out with wet crumbs but no wet batter attached / an instant-read thermometer reads 200°F (400°C).
  7. Allow brownies to cool in the pan (about 1 hour). Remove the brownies with the parchment sling and place on a cutting board. Cut into 9 squares with a chef’s knife dipped in hot water and wiped clean and dry after every cut.
  8. Melt a handful of chocolate chips in the microwave by placing them into a small bowl and microwaving them for an initial 30 seconds, followed by 10 second intervals, stirring each time, until the chocolate runs smooth.
  9. Drizzle the chocolate across the top of the brownies. Serve immediately.

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