Mini Skillet Brownies with Fresh Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream (gluten-free, paleo)


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Delicious gluten-free and paleo mini skillet brownies are topped with a dairy-free and vegan fresh mint chocolate chip ice cream.

(Gluten-free, Paleo and Vegan) Mini Skillet Brownies with Fresh Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

As I was planning this recipe and post I started thinking about traditions. Those same things you do year after year on a special day. And to be honest, I don’t have many (at least not that I can recall at this moment). But there’s one I do have, every year, that’s pretty much set in stone….my birthday cake!

When I was 5 years old, I was admitted to the hospital the day before my birthday (good timing mom!) to have my tonsils removed. I’d had a lot of bronchial infections and strep throat as a child and back in the 80’s tonsil-removal was a common procedure. Tonsils inflamed….oh, let’s yank ’em!

In hindsight, it was likely an indicator of my wonky immune system and early stage autoimmune conditions (as I continued to have issues even after the surgery), but you only know what you know at any point in time. (*Sidenote: since I removed gluten and totally revamped my diet and lifestyle four years ago – I haven’t been sick once. No bronchial infections, no colds, no seasonal allergies, no ezcema. Score one for team Downshiftology!).

So I have my tonsils removed and turn 6 on the day I’m discharged from the hospital. Happy birthday to me! Not being able to eat much except popsicles and ice cream, you know, healthy recovery food, cold treats become my sustenance for the next couple of days. And my birthday cake becomes an ice cream cake with my two favorite flavors – chocolate cake with mint chocolate chip ice cream.

(Gluten-free and Paleo) Mini Skillet Brownies with Fresh Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

(Gluten-free and Paleo) Mini Skillet Brownies with Fresh Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

(Gluten-free and Paleo) Mini Skillet Brownies with Fresh Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

For 30 years that cake was my tradition and the week before my birthday I’d always call Baskin and Robbins to have that combo ready to go. Then, four years ago I was diagnosed with celiac disease and my birthday cake tradition got thrown a curve ball as Baskin and Robbins (obvs) doesn’t do gluten-free chocolate cake. I was just gonna go without, then my former corporate marketing team came to the rescue and surprised me at the office with gluten-free chocolate cake topped with mint chocolate chip gelato. It seriously made my day (and made me teary eyed).

Since then, I’ve kept the mint + chocolate flavor tradition but have gotten creative with the form and shape of what that looks like (cakes, smoothies, cupcakes, pies, etc). And to be honest, it’s kinda fun coming up with a new recipe every year. As long as I can stick a candle in it, I’m a happy girl!

So this year I present to you an extra special mint + chocolate dessert…..for my 40th birthday!!! A mini skillet brownie (that’s just the cutest) topped with fresh mint chocolate chip ice cream. Fresh being the key word…from actual mint leaves. It’s a more subtle peppermint flavor but delicious. Of course, you can always add peppermint extract if you don’t want to go to the extra effort. The ice cream will also be a slightly grey/green color ’cause it’s all natural. I’ll take that over green dye number whatever any day. The entire recipe is also gluten-free, dairy-free and paleo.

I’m posting this recipe today (my actual birthday is the 31st) because I’m hopping on a flight tomorrow to New York to celebrate with a bunch of girlfriends. Yay! To help in the celebrations, Vitamix is generously donating one Professional Series 750 Blender (the exact same as mine pictured below) for me to giveaway to one of YOU, my lovely readers. If you’ve been reading my blog for a while you know I’m very selective with the brands I partner with and only promote stuff I use myself. I’ve now used my Vitamix for 3 years I can honestly say that I’d be lost without it. It’s the one appliance that gets used DAILY in my kitchen. Smoothies, soups, sauces, you name it. And of course, ice creams like today’s recipe (and this one, this one or this one).

So enter the giveaway below. Then, whip up these mini skillet brownies. Even if you don’t win the giveaway, you’ll definitely win with this delicious dessert.


(Gluten-free and Paleo) Mini Skillet Brownies with Fresh Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

(Gluten-free and Paleo) Mini Skillet Brownies with Fresh Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

(Gluten-free and Paleo) Mini Skillet Brownies with Fresh Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

(Gluten-free and Paleo) Mini Skillet Brownies with Fresh Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

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*Giveaway open to US residents.

(Gluten-free and Paleo) Mini Skillet Brownies with Fresh Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

Skillet Brownies with Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream (gluten-free, paleo)

5 from 3 votes
Prep: 4 hours
Cook: 20 minutes
Total: 4 hours 20 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Author: Lisa Bryan


Delicious gluten-free and paleo mini skillet brownies are topped with a dairy-free and vegan fresh mint chocolate chip ice cream.


Fresh Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

Skillet Brownie


  • Roughly chop the mint leaves (no stems) and set aside.
  • Heat the coconut milk and honey on medium heat, stirring until just simmering and bubbles form around the edge. Keep a close eye on it as the milk will quickly boil over. Turn off the heat, add the mint leaves, stir and cover. Let the mixture sit for 1 hour, to fully infuse.
  • Strain the milk mixture over a fine mesh sieve and use the back of a large spoon or spatula to push down on the mint leaves to extract as much of the flavoring as possible.
  • Pour the milk and remaining ice cream ingredients (except the chopped dark chocolate) to a high-powered blender. Blend until smooth and creamy. Transfer the ice cream to a covered bowl and place in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours. The more chilled the better.
  • Pour the ice cream into an ice cream maker and proceed according to maker directions. Add the chopped dark chocolate in the last minute to combine into the ice cream.
  • Place the ice cream into a small loaf pan and chill in the freezer for at least 3-4 hours.
  • To make the skillet brownies, preheat your oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit.
  • In a double-boiler, melt the butter and chocolate and stir until smooth. Remove from heat.
  • In a mixing bowl whisk together the cacao powder, sugar, arrowroot powder and salt. Stir the eggs and vanilla together in a small bowl, then add them to the dry ingredients and stir. Add the melted chocolate and butter to the mixing bowl and whisk together for 2-3 minutes.
  • Divide the brownie batter evenly between 4 mini cast iron skillets. Place the skillets on a sheet pan and bake for 20 minutes or until set in the center. These are best not over-baked.
  • Remove from the oven and let cool slightly. Place the skillet on a plate and serve with a scoop of fresh mint ice cream.


Calories: 1035kcal | Carbohydrates: 74g | Protein: 15g | Fat: 79g | Saturated Fat: 49g | Cholesterol: 113mg | Sodium: 480mg | Potassium: 907mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 45g | Vitamin A: 950IU | Vitamin C: 4.5mg | Calcium: 108mg | Iron: 12.5mg
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: mini skillet brownies, mint chocolate chip ice cream, skillet brownies
Did you make this recipe?Mention @downshiftology or tag #downshiftology!

Other recipes you might like:

Chocolate Truffle Tart

Molten Chocolate Cake with Coconut Whipped Cream and Pistachios

Chocolate Avocado Pudding with Hazelnuts and Sea Salt

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About the author

Lisa Bryan

Lisa is a bestselling cookbook author, recipe developer, and YouTuber (with over 2.5 million subscribers) living in sunny Southern California. She started Downshiftology in 2014, and is passionate about making healthy food with fresh, simple and seasonal ingredients.

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Recipe Rating


  1. Hello, Lisa. Remember your presents. Wow! What a nice Vitamix. It would be in my kitchen. I can see making vegan chocolate chip applesauce cookies. Happy day!

  2. Thanks for all the great info and recipes, Lisa! I love the mayo video and so many others. I appreciate you sharing what you’re learning and the way you encourage us all toward goo health!

    1. So glad you like the videos Carrie! I’m planning (fingers crossed!) to release one new video a week through the end of the year. Thanks so much for your kind words! :) x

  3. Hi, Lisa, I hope you had a great birthday celebration! And thank you for all the good recipes. I retired this year and my husband will be retiring in a couple of years. we are both in our 60s and I know that our nutrient absorption is probably decreasing. I’ve read that the Vitamix, by processing everything so fine, increases availability of those nutrients. My husband has some arthritis and digestive issues. I would love to make smoothies (of course) with organic whole foods, soups, your recipes ;) and anything else the Vitamix could do. I think this would help my husband’s issues. And I would make these and treats for my three granddaughters to teach them how to eat healthily. Thanks for all you do.

    1. Thanks for the birthday wishes Christina! :) And how awesome that you’re focused on healthy foods not only for you and your husband, but to also teach your granddaughters. I LOVE that! :) x

  4. Happy Belated Birthday my fellow virgo. Hope you had a wonderful birthday. I just love a lot of your recipes. They are simple, love the colors and most importantly healthy. So if I won the sky would be the limit. Smoothies, soups, ice creams, dressings, shakes you name it. I might even put in my pocketbook when ever I leave home, lol.

    1. Yay for virgos! And so happy you love my recipes Denise! Oh, if they made a pocked-sized Vitamix I’d definitely take it everywhere too! ;) x

  5. Thanks so much for all that you do! and yay for starting your first full decade with your new lifestyle- I’m sure it will be your favorite decade! If I win the Vitamix, I would make EVERYTHING in that glorious machine!!! I would make nut butters, my daily smoothies, sauces, baking mixes, and I would definitely get creative with it and invent some recipes! HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

    1. The best way to start a new decade, right?! And yes to all those recipes….the sky’s the limit! Thanks for the birthday wishes Avary! :) x

  6. Vitamix of my dreams! Healthy homemade salad dressings, soups, smoothies, sauces. Oh, the possibilities are endless.

  7. Happy Birthday!!!! I’d like to try more dairy free ice creams as that’s one of the things I miss the most! And different nut milks!

    1. Dairy-free “nice creams” are the best. And my fave nut milk is cashew milk…which I’ll be doing a new video on shortly! Thanks for the birthday wishes Colleen! :) x

  8. I’ve been SUPER obsessed with Acai bowls with all the toppings lately, and with the idea of grinding my own flours-both of which would be pretty friggin spectacular in a vitamix :)

    1. Oh, acai bowls are so deliciously addictive, aren’t they Anna?! And the Vitamix attachment for grinding flours is top notch! :) x

    1. That’s probably the only thing I haven’t done in my Vitamix yet – but now you’ve planted a seed. I’ll have to give it a go! :) x

  9. Happy 40th birthday! I had my tonsils out when I was 19 years old. The tonsils kept getting inflamed every month before that, I only received shaved ice, would have loved ice cream instead!!

    My sister has a Vitamix and tells me the soups and nut butters she makes with it. I would love to have a Vitamix. I want to try a white bean cream (has chicken stock) soup with cut-up broccoli. I know it be delicious, love broccoli! I like greek yogurt and fruits and would make smoothies with the Vitamix.

    1. Thanks for the birthday wishes and hopefully all your inflammation went away with your tonsils! ;) That white bean cream soup sounds amazing! :) x

  10. First and foremost..Happy Birthday, Lisa!!! ?? What a great place to be spending your birthday. (Love love love NY. Just moved down to Fl from NY and I miss it!!) If you’re going out to eat, there are plenty of yummy places to dine for celiacs.
    My son and I both have immune/inflammation issues. He has eczema, tonsil stones, allergies and asthma. I have other inflammatory issues, but I’d like to have help getting a good anti-inflammatory diet going for him especially since he is young. Get it going now. I’m hoping a vitamix could help with making anti-inflammatory appetizers, dinners and desserts. P.s…..his favorite flavor of ice cream is chocolate chip mint. The recipe looks delish!!!
    Happy Birthday!!

    1. NY is awesome, isn’t it? I ate so much delicious food yesterday it was wonderful! And kudos to you for starting your son on an anti-inflammatory diet at a young age. The long-term benefits will be well worth the effort! Here’s to mint all the mint choc chip lovers – and thanks so much for the birthday wishes Tess! :) x

  11. Happy 40th! This year I, too, hit that milestone and it’s been big time growth all year. I would adore a Vitamix and from what my friends say about theirs I won’t stop using it once I start. My first few things would be salsa with all the tomatoes I have followed by some savory fall soups.

    1. Happy 40th right back at you Nicole! Homemade salsa is the best and savory fall soups….yes! :) x

  12. Happy 4-0!!! :-D Vitamix is also my fave! Such a sturdy blender–I’ve had one 5 years now and use it multiple times all day long! I would and DO make butter coffee and smoothies and homemade salad dressings!

    1. Thanks Danae! Sturdy is right….and the warranty is top notch! Oh, I love bulletproof coffee as well. :) x

  13. Well happy birthday!!! I’d love to use a vitamix to make this recipe it looks so good!! And where do I find those mini skillets they are amazingly adorable!!!

  14. I’m simple!! I love blended drinks so protein shakes and smoothies would be my top picks!! I’d also try my hand at homemade dressings and soups.

    1. Protein shakes and smoothies are what I make most frequently as well. And it makes such easy work of them! :) x

  15. I would make EVERYTHING if I had my own Vitamix! I have some recipes lined up and am about to launch my own blog so it would be an amazing addition to my kitchen! Also I love this post this dessert looks beyond scrumptious! I hope my blog will take off and be as successful as yours!

    1. Aww, thanks Ariel – I’m sure your blog will be wonderful! I’ve written a post on starting a blog, with more blog/biz-related posts to come in the future! Best of luck to you! :) x

  16. This looks amazing! And just in time for my 29th birthday next week ??? I love making smoothies, vegan nice cream, soups… But there’s only so much you can ask from a regular blender ??? I definitely need the vitamix ❤️

    1. Happy early birthday to you Corina! It’s amazing the difference between a Vitamix and regular blender. I never thought I would love an appliance so much – but oh, I do! :) x

  17. Love the flavor combination and the presentation is flawless for this recipe!! I’d love to have a new Vitamin to start whipping up some smoothies and baby food!

    1. So glad you like the recipe Katherine! The Vitamix would be wonderful for smoothies and homemade baby food! :) x

  18. Delicious! With a Vitamix I would also use it everyday for everything, smoothies, sweets, soups, ice cream, and try many recipes!

  19. I think the hardest thing to make without a blender is soup. Trying to make soup with a food processor… Yeah. That doesn’t work. If I won the Vitamix, I’d probably make soups in the same way I make smoothies, adding as much nutritious content to vitalize my day & health.

    1. Oh, I could tell some kitchen fail stories about trying to make soup in a food processor – ha! ;) It’s a million times easier with a Vitamix for sure. Best of luck to you Rebekah! :) x

  20. Amazing how many creative recipes there are to make with this blender ! I would use it for smoothies and interesting veggie soups.

    1. The recipes really are endless! And seasonal produces helps spur creativity for those veggie soups. :) x

  21. Well, after I made this delicious sounding recipe, green smoothies are my go-to for breakfast and it would be nice for them to be actually blended thoroughly for a change. ;-) Blended soup season is also just around the corner!

    1. I used to tease my brother about his “non blended” blended items – ha! He had an old blender, but I convinced him to buy a Vitamix and now he’s a convert! Big difference. Good luck Kate! :) x

    1. Hi Nicole – you could try tapioca flour or cornstarch (if you do corn). Hope you like them! :) x

  22. My dream appliance! I want to make soups, ice cream, nut butters, smoothies, purées etc for my growing family. We love healthy food… It might not come in solid form anymore! Haha. Your recipes look so good that I would have to give them all a try!

      1. Can’t get this recipe out of my head…oh no! I am pregnant so it’s not helping haha ;) – perfect way of celebrating a birthday I’d say – Happy birthday, it looks mouth-watering fantastic!

  23. I would love to own this awesome blender! Not only to make that incredible on my birthday next month! But to make creamy dressings and soups and to make perfect blended kale smoothies with frozen fruits! :)

  24. These look amazing, and your photos are gorgeous! What wouldn’t I make with my Viatmix? But I would definitely be looking forward to green smoothies that are chunk free. My blender right now doesn’t blend the greens finely enough.

    1. Thanks for your kind words Marianna! The Vitamix blends everything so fine it’s unbelievable. As a former “chunky greens” smoothie gal, I totally understand! :)

  25. The skillet brownies look delicious and nutritious! I’m definitely going to give this recipe a try! Thanks! Also, awesome giveaway!!

    1. Thanks Stefanie! Homemade nut butters are the best (I’ll actually be making a video soon!) and winter soups are the best. My fave is always my carrot ginger that I whip up with my Vitamix. :)

  26. We might just share a birthday! I celebrated my golden birthday yesterday on the 29th :) Happy birthday, Lisa!

  27. I am having delightful visions of Fall soups with the Vitamix. Ooooo and fragrant purees and sauces to adorn over pastas or salmon or just about anything (my wife didnt grow up being made to eat her veggies but when they dont look like vegetables she is a happy camper). Also, I am recently made gluten free and grew up baking with my Granny – now I am on a voyage of exploration to make equally tasty foods and these skillet brownies are next up.
    Happy early Birthday to you. New York is my favorite place to celebrate especially with friends. I hope you thoroughly enjoy your day and that joy sets the tone for your upcoming year!!

    1. Thanks so much for your sweet message Tori! I’m definitely excited to be celebrating in NY! Purees and sauces are wonderful to make with the Vitamix. Navigating the gluten-free waters can be a little challenging at first, but just keep doing what you’re doing sticking with real food, veggies, salmon, etc. It all gets easier as time goes on, promise! :) x

  28. Ooh! I would make smoothies, salsa verde, ceviche, nice cream, and so much more with mine if I won! And happy birthday! Have so much fun in NY!

    1. Thanks Julie! I’ve been on a smoothie and nice cream kick during the summer for sure! ;) x

  29. Happy Birthday my Virgo friend! I also had my tonsils out and ended up with allergies and asthma! Weirdly, I also had Baskin Robins mint chocolate chip or peanut butter ice cream cakes every year! I was obsessed and I loved forest scenes with the candy rocks. Small world! Have a wonderful day tomorrow!!!??? I would use the Vita Mix for everything! Soups, smoothies, pesto, hummus etc….

    1. OMG – those forest scenes and candy rocks, yes! Too funny! Thanks so much for the birthday wishes Stephanie, my fellow virgo! And here’s to learning how to nourish our bodies as we get older! :) x

  30. We’re an ice cream-loving household, and the mint is taking over the garden right now, so… Otherwise, one final chilled gazpacho before hot soup season! Thanks, happy one-day-early birthday, and CHEERS to a marvelous new year of you.

    1. Thanks so much for the birthday wishes Heather! Homegrown mint is the best. I have mojito mint right now that’s awesome. And yes, before you know it we’ll be into hot soup season. Enjoy the gazpacho while you can! ;) x

  31. Happy Birthday tomorrow (the 31st)!!! I’ve been dreaming of owning this machine, it would be awesome to win. Thanks for the giveaway. Mint Chocolate Chip ice cream is my favorite!!!

    1. Thanks Crystal! I can attest that the machine is well worth the investment. And homemade mint choc chip is divine! :) x

  32. What a story! Happy birthday! This recipe sounds amazing. I’ll make it for Mia. She will love you forever for this one hahaha

  33. Happy Birthday my friend from the Great White North! Come check us out sometime! Although I do recommend summer as opposed to winter! :) I love my Vitamix…..sprung for it the day after I was diagnosed celiac. Best investment I have made in my health. Smoothies, soups, ice cream, humus, …….

    1. Thanks Donna! Perhaps Vitamix should run a celiac special as so many of us purchased one after we were diagnosed – ha! :) x

  34. Happy birthday fellow Virgo! Mine is the 10th Sept! ? The things I wouldn’t do in the blender! I have an old food processor & as much as it’s going strong, it’s not blending everything so I’m left with rather chunky things…. But milks, nut butters, anything requiring power… The thing I’ve been dying for is pistachio paste… My favourite ice cream & macaron flavour is pistachio. Making it with real homemade pistachio paste does not even come close to the fluorescent fake sugar loaded playdoh they pass for ice cream… I can also powder the almonds as finely as the macarons need so I can finally maybe get the texture right…. I can go on…. Pastry is my passion & I do wish to one day have my own place… I need to get better & technology helps give us the right results & see that we are actually doing things right, we’re just using bad equipment ☺️ Have a safe trip, memorable travels & a happy birthday! My chocolate cake is coming in like 2 weeks! Eek!

    1. Pistachio paste sounds amazing! It’s funny, I never liked pistachios as a kid but now I can’t get enough of them. Thanks for the birthday wishes Dina…and an early happy birthday to you as well! :)

      1. Thank you ☺️ I love that pistachio paste has that almondy taste but not quite almondy; totally different than just normal pistachio nut in itself, that’s why when they try to “trick” it by adding almond extract & green colouring, you know it’s not the real deal…. It’s a little too almondy (& a little too fluorescent ?)

  35. With my Vitamix, I would make macadamia nut butter. And I hope I’m not disqualified from the giveaway by including this in the same comment, but wishing you a VERY happy upcoming birthday! While I’m sorry about the past memory of your birthday and surgery, at least it influenced a fabulous treat recipe later on :)

    1. Haha – not disqualified at all! And thanks so much for the birthday wishes! I love macadamia anything as well. :) x

    1. You could use any baking dish, though you may need to double the recipe for a larger dish.